GM has revealed the US version of the Vauxhall Insignia VXR – the Buick Regal GS – ahead of the Los Angeles Motor Show.
Yes, I know. News on a Buick isn’t anything to get too excited about unless you’re the wrong side of sixty. And a resident of the US. But that was ‘Old’ Buick. ‘New’Buick is a lot more interesting, especially when what’s on offer is a the American version of the very good Vauxhall Insignia VXR.
In fact, on the outside there’s not much to seperate the Buick Regal GS from its Euro cousin apart from the grill. Sadly – certainly from the perspective of our Colonial Cousins – it’s a different story under the metal.
The Buick GS gets a 2.0 litre Ecotec 4-pot which delivers 255bhp and 295lb/ft of torque. Unfortunately, that power is all shoved through a six-speed manual ‘box and out through the front wheels. Yep, the Yankee VXR doesn’t get 4WD. Which I suppose may be no loss when you’ve only got 255bhp to play with instead of the 325bhp the Euro VXR has.
But apart from the lack of power and FWD the Buick GS gets much of what the VXR/OPC gets. It gets a decent interior which feels on the good side of decent; a nice set of Brembos to haul you in and an all-round ‘Premium’ feel.
Still, even with less power than it deserves, the Buick Regal GS must seem like a car from another planet to Buick’s regular customers.