First Look: 2012 Buick Regal eAssist Hybrid

First Look: 2012 Buick Regal eAssist Hybrid
2012 Buick Regal eAssist Hybrid at the 2011 Chicago Auto Show - Automobile Magazine
Regal joins LaCrosse in getting new mild hybrid powertrain option.

The addition of the 2012 Buick Regal eAssist hybrid didn’t come as much of a surprise, given the ease of sharing the engine and “light electrification” system with its LaCrosse stablemate. The more efficient Regal, which is making its debut at the 2011 Chicago auto show, is expected to be rated 26/37 mpg city/highway pending EPA certification.

Photo Gallery: 2012 Buick Regal eAssist Hybrid at the 2011 Chicago Auto Show – Automobile Magazine

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2011 Saab 9-5 Aero XWD Sedan

2011 Saab 9-5 Aero XWD Sedan
2011 Saab 9-5 Aero XWD Sedan - Automobile Magazine
Good, but not quite right.

Poor, poor Saab. The entire time I was behind the wheel of the 9-5, I thought I was in a reskinned Buick. It’s just way too long and wide to feel like a real Saab. I really dislike the way the interior feels so much like a typical General Motors interior with a few concessions to the vehicles I’d really consider to be Saabs. Why is the nightpanel button (a signature Saab item) in almost exactly the same place as every push-to-start button on “normal” cars? I know Saab has always done the console ignition, but does that make any sense without a physical key? I spent a week with the car and that still wasn’t enough time to train myself to not push the nightpanel button when I wanted ignition.

Photo Gallery: 2011 Saab 9-5 Aero XWD Sedan – Automobile Magazine

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1997-2004 Buick Regal Pre-Owned

The new Buick Regal is on sale now– and it’s doing almost exactly what the last Buick Regal did for years: attracting a new and theoretically more youthful shopper to the brand’s showrooms. Regal’s long been the sporty model in Buick’s lineup, and the last-generation model packed much of the styling and hardware to back that up.

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2011 Buick Regal CXL

2011 Buick Regal CXL
2011 Buick Regal CXL - Editor's Notebook - Automobile Magazine
Not astoundingly awesome, but quite impressive nonetheless.

Germany supplies 40% of the parts in a Buick Regal, and the cars are assembled in Opel’s Russelsheim, Germany plant. This Regal was originally intended to be a Saturn Aura, but then Saturn was put out to pasture during the bankruptcy and even GM’s control of Opel was uncertain last fall. Thankfully, GM found a way to hang onto Opel after bankruptcy and the complicated restructuring process.

Photo Gallery: 2011 Buick Regal CXL – Editor’s Notebook – Automobile Magazine

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