The next generation Buick Regal is shaping up to be one sleek luxury car from General Motors’ entry-luxury brand. Now turns out the American Regal might not be a sedan at all, but rather only offered in Sportback or wagon variants. Hooray for superior body styles!
Of course, this announcement did not come from Buick because like all automakers they “do not comment on future product plans,” but Automotive News is usually pretty on point, citing two prominent auto forecast firms who expect that Buick will reserve the Regal sedan for the Chinese market only—and give America a wagon and a five-door hatchback.
While having Buick abandon the Regal sedan in America may sound extreme, the reasoning behind it is sound. The sedan market has been rapidly declining for some time, with most buyers shifting to crossovers. Also, the current Buick Regal sedan wasn’t terribly successful at poaching buyers from the Germans, despite its European roots. Therefore going in a different direction could be the ticket into getting younger buyers into Buicks.
Since four-door coupes such as the Audi A5 Sportback, BMW 4 Series GranCoupe and upcoming Volkswagen Arteon are all the rage now, you can’t be a legit luxury car brand unless you offer some kind of liftback sedan. It is speculated that the Regal five-door will be a rebadged version of the Opel Insignia Grand Sport hatchback that was recently showcased in Geneva.
Of course, what we are really excited about is the speculated return of a Buick wagon on our shores which has been absent for 20 years. The new Buick Regal wagon should be based on the Insignia Sports Tourer seen in various global markets.
My worry is that with the possibility of a wagon-like Regal Sportback, Buick won’t offer us a traditional Regal wagon but rather a lifted and cladded version similar to an Audi Allroad or Subaru Outback.
The next Buick Regal is set to make its global debut on April 4 at GM’s Warren Technical Center in suburban Detroit, with an appearance at the New York International Auto Show soon after. We welcome our new Buick wagon-hatch overlords.