By on July 19, 2017

2018 Buick Regal GS rear - Image: Buick“This is a sport sedan designed for everyday driving,” Buick’s vice president Duncan Aldred said of the unveiling of the 2018 Buick Regal GS today, “but one that makes every drive special.”

We’ll be the judge of how special a drive the next-generation Buick Regal GS provides in the real world, but the on-paper formula certainly goes down smooth.

Priced at $39,990, the 2018 Buick Regal GS forsakes four-cylinder power in favor of the 3.6-liter V6 we told you about more than three months ago before receiving further confirmation last week. The V6 sends 310 horsepower and 282 lb-ft of torque to all four wheels via a nine-speed automatic transmission. Manual option? No.

The GS is the top trim in a lineup that no longer features a true sedan. While the TourX is not destined to receive the GS moniker, this Regal Sportback brings its high-performance derivative under the $40K mark.

2018 Buck Regal GS front - Image: BuickThough roughly $2,000 more expensive than the outgoing Regal GS, this is substantially more car.

At $39,990, the 2018 Regal GS includes heated, cooled, massaging seats. Continuous damping control, Brembo brakes, and 19-inch wheels are also standard fit.2018 Buick Regal GS profile - Image: Buick“The new Regal GS is in the sweet spot of the market,” Aldred says. He’s not mixing up semi-premium sporty hatchbacks with SUVs. Rather, he’s discussing the Regal GS’s value equation. The 2018 Regal GS is, “more refined and luxurious than the mainstream,” Aldred says, but it offers, “more value for the price with style and premium features on par with higher-end competitors, and with standard features like AWD with active twin clutch and a rear sportback design that will surprise customers with its usefulness.”

Meanwhile, the basic Buick Regal is now less costly than before. At $25,915, the 2018 Buick Regal Sportback’s price point — $4,080 below the Regal TourX — is $2,075 lower than the 2017 Regal sedan’s base price. There’s also 31.5 cubic feet of cargo capacity on the Sportback, up from 14.2 in the fifth-gen Regal sedan.2018 Buick Regal GS interior - Image: BuickStandard on 2018 Regal’s is a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder producing 250 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque; 295 lb-ft when linked with all-wheel drive. AWD Regals with the 2.0T use an eight-speed automatic, not the nine-speed of other Regals.

Before the Buick Verano arrived to steal the entry-level Buick limelight, Buick sold 40,144 Regals in America in 2011, its first full year after a half-decade hiatus. Regal sales have faded ever since, however, averaging only 21,000 annual units since 2012.

[Images: General Motors]

Timothy Cain is a contributing analyst at The Truth About Cars and Autofocus.ca and the founder and former editor of GoodCarBadCar.net. Follow on Twitter @timcaincars.

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111 Comments on “2018 Buick Regal GS is a 310-Horsepower, V6-Powered, AWD, $39,990 Sportback...”


  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    Interesting, but I can admit I’m too vain to say “I drive a Buick”.

    • 0 avatar
      4drSedan

      Seriously, that is a handsome machine but can Buick ever shake the “blue hair” stereotype?

      • 0 avatar
        S2k Chris

        Their own ad campaigns acknowledge that people have to be duped into buying their cars because they don’t want Buicks. “I’m outside in a Buick….this is a Buick?”

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        Not sure about “blue hair,” or if that that will even remain a negative stereotype once millennials and post- become the meat of the market. But Buick really, really need to keep introducing unique cars; to shake the reputation that they are just overpriced, badge engineered Chevrolets.

    • 0 avatar
      KevinC

      My initial thought exactly. I’m now a “blue hair” myself, but could still never come to grips with driving a Buick. But it looks like a ton of car for the money, and is quite handsome. I like what GM is doing design-wise nowadays, they seem to be managing to make modern-looking cars that don’t look over-wrought or being too similar to competitors’ designs.

    • 0 avatar
      bikegoesbaa

      I enthusiastically tell people “I drive a Buick!”

      Of course, said Buick is 47 years old.

    • 0 avatar
      thegamper

      Difficult to tell from your tiny Avatar but that looks like an S2000, which is a sweet ride that I absolutely love, but go to Europe and tell them Honda is the bomb (Excluding such halo cars). You will get laughed at, they have nowhere near the brand cache that they have on the coasts in this country. Go to china and tell them you prefer a Honda over a Buick, similarly humorous. Stereotypes die hard I suppose, but newer Buicks are some very nice cars. I have owned two Honda’s in my past, one in the recent past. I wont ever be boasting about it.

      • 0 avatar
        S2k Chris

        There’s a difference between boasting about a car and admitting to owning it. I don’t brag about owning a Honda. But if I tell someone I drive a Honda, no one cares either way. It’s a nonevent. But a Buick? “Ewww…”

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          Although we might run in very different circles, if owning a Buick has negatively effected my life at all, I haven’t noticed it.

        • 0 avatar
          joeaverage

          Don’t tell them what you drive, just let them admire and wonder what it is for a while.

          Most of the coworkers my wife and I have stick so close to mainstream brands and models that it isn’t hard to leave them wondering what we drive.

      • 0 avatar
        87 Morgan

        I went from an Accord to a Lacrosse. I am a 42 year old teenager. I do however love everything about my Buick.
        Seriously, check out the average Lexus driver. I think Buick is younger now.

    • 0 avatar
      Fred

      Replace the badges with Opel and your ego will be fine.

  • avatar
    ajla

    Was hoping to see some reference to an active exhaust system, but I still like it on paper enough to buy one.

    We’ll see what Kia brings with the Stinger GT.

    • 0 avatar
      jkross22

      My thoughts exactly. This, the Stinger and possibly the new Accord. I still see a Pontiac Aztek in the 3 series GT and the A5 sportback is too pricey for what it is.

      Interior material quality could still be a deal killer as the current gen Regal cheaped out in a lot of areas.

    • 0 avatar
      FBS

      To me it smells like the Fusion Sport all over again – an exciting spec sheet that may not live up to the fantasy (of the journalists that write the reviews, anyway – I haven’t driven one).

      I’m still quite excited about the Stinger, though, depending on how it’s priced.

  • avatar
    John R

    Yeah…Is there an aftermarket solution to have the badges replaced with Opel/Vauxhall ones? I’ll even take Holden.

  • avatar
    LeMansteve

    The front end looks like a warmed-over Mazda 6 Sport or Touring. Several similar styling cues – grille shape, fog light housing arc, shape of lower grille opening, emblem in grille with “wings”.

    I like the idea of a sportback. I can’t tell why automakers are starting to re-introduce the sportback bodystyle.

    Do they see this inevitability where their most prized products – the crossover/CUV – must have a smaller cross section in order to meet efficiency targets? Introduce sportbacks now in order to gauge market reaction to this inevitability?

    As their customers flock to crossovers, are they making sportbacks to add utility to their midsized sedans in order to help slow the bleeding?

    Or – are customer tastes changing?

    • 0 avatar
      Dan

      Sport back is another word for Kamm back, they all look like that now because the wind tunnel says that they should. The lift back is the inevitable endpoint simply because there’s no longer room for a standard trunk lid.

      There’s no longer room for the rear passenger’s heads either, but one can’t ask for everything.

  • avatar
    rpol35

    What is it with GM and their goofy C-pillar treatment?

  • avatar
    dividebytube

    I’m no fan of the current GM design language but this is one of their better looking cars that I’ve seen for a long while. I see a lot of BMWish German design language – especially the interior.

  • avatar
    make_light

    This Regal lineup is looking pretty impressive. I always root for the underdog, so I hope Buick is successful. I think I read that the base Sportback would start at $26k with 250hp standard? That’s a pretty sweet deal, not many other cars offer that much HP at a mid-20s price point.

  • avatar
    turbo_awd

    Needs a rear wiper..

  • avatar
    bryanska

    Goddammit they made the interior Death Fucking Black again.

  • avatar
    brawnychicken333

    This looks like a pretty compelling package on paper. Is it as good as an A4? Almost certainly no. Is the Audi 20,000 dollars better-to get similar HP and equipment? Again, almost certainly no. Would definitely consider test driving if/when I can buy an actual car again.

    • 0 avatar
      S2k Chris

      “Is the Audi 20,000 dollars better-to get similar HP and equipment? Again, almost certainly no. ”

      For what it’s worth, you can get an A4 with the 2.0T and DSG (or 6MT if you like) equipped equal or better to this for around $5k more. And the 2.0T/DSG combo has shown to punch above it’s weight pretty well; you won’t get the same power rating, but I bet you get equivalent performance out of the A4 as you do the GS.

      • 0 avatar
        scott25

        You know how people love their V6s though.

      • 0 avatar
        RedRocket

        Except that there is a Regal Turbo (not a GS) with 250HP and a nice tight suspension and steering for around $30K.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        “For what it’s worth, you can get an A4 with the 2.0T and DSG (or 6MT if you like) equipped equal or better to this for around $5k more.”

        Not really comparably equipped. This is well enough equipped that you have to go to the A4’s Prestige trim to match it, which is $50k with quattro.

        But I have a feeling the buyers would prefer an A4 Premium Plus to this. Badge is absolutely everything in this country. In coastal cities, if a sedan ain’t a Mercedes, Audi, or BMW it ain’t sh!t.

        • 0 avatar
          S2k Chris

          Premium Plus with Tech and Winter will do it, that’s about $46k.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            You need to add nav, 19s, and the ventilated seat option too. By that point you basically have a Prestige and the $50k price to match.

          • 0 avatar
            S2k Chris

            I don’t consider 19s a feature (that’s a flaw in my world) and the tech pack is nav.

            I’ve been building A4s regularly lately, and my preferred spec is Premium Plus with Tech/Sport/Cold and vented seats (plus silver for a stupid $575, wish they still had red) and it is $49.3k. Street value is about $45k. Prestige is $3300 more equipped similarly and there isn’t much advantage.

            More than the Buick, granted, but I would wager that gets eaten up by the MASSIVE depreciation the Buick suffers, though in fairness, the Buick will likely have a much lower street price than the $40k sticker too.

            At any rate, I think the premium for the Audi is about $10k, not $20k, and to probably 95% of buyers, well worth it.

  • avatar
    Secret Hi5

    How do I convince my wife to pick this over an Audi A5 SB?

  • avatar
    TMA1

    Looks good on paper, but a $14K price jump to drive around in that depressing black cave of an interior is a bit hard to swallow.

  • avatar
    kefkafloyd

    I’d be up for the TourX version myself, but I don’t think I could afford either of these cars. Still, I like them a lot. Good job, Buick.

    • 0 avatar
      joeaverage

      There is always the used market in a couple or three years. We’re driving a really nice vehicle that was 45% off of the original MSRP. I expect to easily drive it another decade with a minimum fuss.

  • avatar
    readallover

    Just because it is assembled in Germany does not mean GM can charge Audi, BMW or Mercedes prices.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    Frankly, it looks excellent, dumb 19-inchers aside. Another Euro Buick with modern styling and powertrains to shake the brand stigma and it will probably handle well. Except deja-vu is setting in. Wasn’t this the tack taken by the Regal back in 2009?

    How’d that one turn out?

  • avatar
    Steve_S

    Had they done the wagon in GS form I’d be much more interested. Between this and the Stinger GT I’ll likely op for the Stinger. 55 more HP and development led by an ex-BMW M division guy.

  • avatar
    pmirp1

    Great looking Buick. But the 500 pound gorilla in the room is the new Toyota Camry V6. It has the same power, it has wealth of engineering and reliability behind it, and the dealer network of Toyota.

    Why would I buy this Buick when I can get same performance, better reliability, better resale from a Toyota that now is great inside and out?

    I wish GM had put the V6 in the higher version of Malibu. That 2.0 turbo Malibu needs to get a V6 if Malibu is to have a chance against the new Camry.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      Theoretically the GS will offer better braking, handling, and ride over the Camry V6.

      Obviously if the Buick doesn’t accomplish that, it will be a problem.

      • 0 avatar
        pmirp1

        ajla, Realistically that Buick won’t have the reliability or resale or panache of a Camry V6. None of your friends will make fun of you for buying your father’s brand over a Toyota. The only thing Buick has going for it are looks. Otherwise, take the Camry V6 and run to the bank.

        • 0 avatar
          bikegoesbaa

          You’re the first person I’ve ever seen refer to “Camry panache”.

        • 0 avatar
          la834

          Hatchback practicality is a big advantage over Camry for me.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          My last three daily drivers have been a Dodge Diplomat, a Buick Lucerne, and a spoiler’d Dodge Charger in panic button red.

          If I was worried about panache or resale then I’m doing it wrong.

        • 0 avatar
          NormSV650

          Pmirp1, Edmund’s is listing Camry V6 for 12K miles annually at 56% and the Regal at 50%. Camry has $750 lease cash while Buick has $2,100. With a cars.com price for the V6 at $26K and the Regal at $21K….you can see that there is no more Camry residual to play with and considering the purchase price the Buick is a better deal compared to the V6 Camry.

          Sorry, you and Jack Baruth should drown your rose colored glasses over a beer sometime because the costs don’t add up when you look at the whole picture.

          I can go 10 years away now and the story will be the same, sorry Charlie.

        • 0 avatar
          kosmo

          Pretty sure that every single one of my friends would make fun of me for buying a Camry.

    • 0 avatar
      LeMansteve

      Cross-shopping a Camry with a Regal?

      Why does anyone buy an Acura or BMW when they could be in a Honda or Toyota instead?

      • 0 avatar
        pmirp1

        LemanSteve,
        Hate to break it to you, but Toyota is a much better brand than Buick. Personally, I would buy a Camry V6 over any Acura, and four cylinder turbo 3 series any day.

        • 0 avatar
          jeoff

          Toyota is a better brand, but it is not a premium brand (at least for sedans).
          Not to mention that their sedan options range from bland to unattractive.

        • 0 avatar
          conundrum

          “Hate to break it to you, but Toyota is a much better brand than Buick.”

          Aside from your lack of understanding of what brands are, I’d say you should be saying Toyota is better than GM. Then you and Norm SV650 could have a ding-dong melee.

          You must be a young ‘un. Only young ‘uns are sure enough of their absolute correctness to say condescending things like “Hate to break it to you” to another commenter on a car website who you know, considering all the odds, likely knows a good deal more than you do. Toyotas are hardly the be all and end all of motor transport. I’ve successfully avoided buying one since 1965 when the Corona was first sold around here. Dull, slow-witted and boring in any sedan form until recently. And then they added ugly for that final touch of class.

          • 0 avatar
            pmirp1

            conundrum, remind me, which was the last GM branded car that was number 1 in sales in America many years in a row? Buick? Chevy? I thought so. As for you not realizing how much better Toyotas mainstream cars are, let’s play this game. How many GM brands have disappeared lately? Oldsmobile? Pontiac? Saturn? Hummer? (not to mention Caddy is dead man walking and Buick is a brand with an identity crisis). Of-course there was also GM owned SAAB, but that’s a different story.
            Meanwhile, Scion disappeared for Toyota. Market speaks the truth, and people vote with their pocketbooks (hence why I talked about resale value). The rest is just talk.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            We get it, you’re a Toyota fan.

            Doesn’t mean the Regal isn’t a good car, though.

            (And, frankly, Toyota’s been sailing on its’ ’80s and ’90s laurels since…well…the ’80s and ’90s. I hope for their sake that their new stuff is top notch, or they may well find themselves in the situation they put GM in all those years ago.)

          • 0 avatar
            pmirp1

            FreedMike, Good luck with this Buick. Not a bad car d

    • 0 avatar
      Frylock350

      @pmirp1,
      I don’t think a V6 Camry is going to sway a Regal GS intender in any way. You lose AWD, get crappier ride/handling, a cheaper interior and an overall less satisfying car to drive.

      And if you think you’ll get made fun of for driving a Buick over a Camry? Pay attention to what cars are driving 10 under clogging up the left lane. Nowadays they’re nearly always Camry or Corolla sedans here in the midwest. The Camry is the new blue-hair special for the baby boomers.

      Also the Camry is not and never has been the top selling vehicle, that’d be the Ford F-series. Its not even number two either, that’d be the Chevrolet Silverado. Does it get a bronze? Nope the Ram pickup gets the bronze.

  • avatar
    VW4motion

    Very nice. Will be a great deal at 2 years used for around $25k.

  • avatar
    Whatnext

    The rear doors look like they were cribbed from Saturn. And am I the only one tired of that pointless hockey stick line carved out of the lower body of vehicles these days?

  • avatar
    MrGreenMan

    With the Taurus dead, having to decide to go to the Continental if I want to keep the nice, big car, I was probably going to be looking at a Fusion Sport. Now, I will look at this, because it has a V6, and maybe it will remind me of my old Grand National. I test drove a Regal the first time they brought it back – oh, boy, was that a dog.

    • 0 avatar
      quaquaqua

      The Regal when they brought it back was no dog, unless you somehow drove one with the non-turbo 4-cyl. But even that would have been an upgrade over a freaking Taurus. Bloated and sloppy ever since it debuted ten years ago.

  • avatar
    notapreppie

    So, we’re just a turbo away from a modern Grand National?

  • avatar
    turf3

    I’m sorry, could someone translate “sportback” for me? Does it mean “hatchback”?

    Because if not, no one’s going to be able to put anything bigger than a magazine into that trunk.

  • avatar
    thegamper

    Geez, maybe I should have known there were so many brand snobs here, but geez. There is nothing to be afraid of with a Buick. Very prominent deceased dictators loved them. Buick used to be the Doctor’s car. Someone who made it, but was too modest, or needed to be modest and thus couldn’t drive a ostentatious Cadillac.

    I sort of like that brand image.

    In any event, the Regal GS sportback with its 310hp AWD sportback and the Regal TourX wagon, even with its power nerfed a bit, are two vehicles people like us consistently ask for. Who cares if its a Buick, would it really be any more desirable to drive a Toyota or Honda with these same specs? If think so, maybe you haven’t seen the parking lot of your local country club recently or driven through a retirement community in Florida over the last few years, because I can assure you Toyota’s and Honda’s run rampant. You can close your eyes, cover your ears and hold tight to those stereotypes, but Buick isn’t just for the elderly anymore.

    Instead of trolling the interwebs with your brand snobbery, say “thank you GM”…. for bringing us these two relative unicorns enthusiasts pine for, that even look pretty darn good inside and out and have a nice range of powerplants to choose from.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      This is the Doctor’s Hot Rod – Buick, go fast with class.

    • 0 avatar
      BrentinWA

      Thank you sir for saying what needs to be said. I get so frustrated that Hooondoi and Kya, companies that built absolute crap inside of 10 years ago are somehow more respected than this stellar brand that was at least magnificent at one point in time, even if they had some dark days. No one will ever reminisce the time they spent with a Hyndai Elantra, but oh man does my mom still swoon over her 64 Wildcat that she had in High School back in 1967.

    • 0 avatar
      S2k Chris

      “There is nothing to be afraid of with a Buick. Very prominent deceased dictators loved them. Buick used to be the Doctor’s car. Someone who made it, but was too modest, or needed to be modest and thus couldn’t drive a ostentatious Cadillac.”

      When was that last true? Maybe 1965? That’s almost a full twenty years before I was born. Which itself was (ugh) 35 years ago. So basically A HALF CENTURY AGO, Buicks were cars for stealth-wealth people. Speaking of “Century”, I’m glad I brought that up, because that’s the kind of crapbox from Buick I grew up knowing, an already crappy Chevy with plushier seats and a suspension with more body roll. Yay. For basically my whole life, Buicks have been barely-designed rebadged Chevies that weren’t any good to begin with. And now they’re rebadged Opels which are okay, but still not what anyone would call world-beating especially at the price requested for them. And all that mediocre product with a badge my grandpa would make fun of for being “for old farts” right up until he died at 83?

      Where do I sign?

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        The Church of 3800 demands you repent and bow to the Lord of Eternal Torque.

      • 0 avatar
        thegamper

        Thank you for proving my point about badge snobbery with several posts herein S2k. I’m going to go out on a limb and suggest you need new friends. If you are going to be dumped by your girlfriend and ostricised by you friends for the car you drive….sorry to hear buddy. I know lots of people like you, but I have never subscribed to the “it’s better because it costs more” worldview and my happiness and self worth has never hinged on what others think of me, and especially not what they think about my car. You aren’t alone though. Being shallow is very fashionable these days, so at least you aren’t lonely. Please tell me more about how you are superior to people who don’t own the right brands. It’s so interesting. (Picture that Willy Wonka meme below).

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    I want I want I want. Just throw a few thousand on the hood or give me a good deal for my trade and I’m there.

  • avatar
    jimmyy

    Why would someone purchase this instead of a new Camry? 40K is a huge price tag. Looks like 40K down the drain.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    We dost not approve of thee wicked cam configuration of thy motor, but we see a possible value for both believers and non-believers.

    • 0 avatar
      davefromcalgary

      I doth not approve of not being able to buy a go fast car with cloth seats, no adaptive this, non-9-speed that, non-fragile rims, and with a roofline that easy to see out of and shove people and things into.

      But thats not a Buick GS problem, thats a buying cars in 2017 problem.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      We should rejoice dear Brothers that this car has a V6 in excess of 3 liters in displacement! How many of you thought when the creator (Buick) announced intent that there would be DISPLACEMENT brought to the altar?

      OH YE OF LITTLE FAITH!

      Can I get an AMEN!

  • avatar
    Fred

    Looks like a nice car if it’s half way reliable. I’d wait until the second year at least.

  • avatar
    seanx37

    It’s not 40k. Nothing that says Buick on it has gone out the door at sticker price since 1987. These will all go in cheap lease deals. Or heavily discounted after sitting on the lot for 8 months.

    But I kind of want one.

  • avatar
    AK

    I’m only 33 but I want one.

    The idea of driving a big comfortable quick Buick is oddly appealing to me.

    • 0 avatar
      joeaverage

      Sure beats running down the interstate in a buzz box turning 3500 rpm at the speed limit.

      I will always buy a quiet “touring car” to compliment whatever economical daily driver or fun cars we might have from now on.

  • avatar
    MRF 95 T-Bird

    For most folks who do not need a SUV/CUV this could be a great choice. At $40K its priced about the same as a fairly generic Envision and its much more stylish.

    Chrysler could have redesigned the 200 as a sportback competitor and as a way to make up for slow sedan sales.

  • avatar
    SuperCarEnthusiast

    I like everything about the GS except it’s highback front passenger seats. Think of an Audi S6 front seats.

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