Coming off a major model refresh for the 2014 model year, the 2015 edition of the popular Buick Regal will include major technological upgrades that include increased connectivity and a new standard rearview camera.
As technology becomes an increasingly important purchase criteria, especially for younger consumers, manufacturers like General Motors are finding that increasing tech-content in vehicles is an easy way of differentiating and keeping models fresh between model years. The new Buick Regal is an excellent example.
The new features in the 2015 build on the vehicle-wide improvements made in the 2014 edition that include a new interior and exterior. The new connectivity features should appeal to a younger audience, something Buick has been able to do in spades since GM discontinued the Pontiac brand several years back.
For the 2015 model year Regal, Buick is adding OnStar with 4G LTE that includes a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, as well as, IntelliLink with text messaging alerts and Siri Eyes Free. OnStar with the 4G LTE and standard built-in Wi-Fi hotspot provides a mobile hub for drivers and passengers to stay connected. The hotspot is on whenever the car is on and comes with a three-month/three-gigabyte data trial.
For 2015, the Regal will still be available in four trim levels, including the base Regal, Premium, Premium II and GS. All models offer standard technological features such as OnStar’s Directions and Connection with six months of service and an eight inch color touch screen radio with Buick IntelliLink, AM/FM and XM with three months of service, USB ports, SD Card and Bluetooth wireless connectivity for select phones.
Radar- and camera-based safety technologies, such as rear cross traffic alert, lane change alert, side blind zone alert, lane departure warning, forward collision alert and adaptive cruise control are available.
An advanced Haldex all-wheel-drive system is also available, giving Regal drivers the most of traction in all driving conditions. Under the hood, you’ll still be offered Regal’s two engine choices, a 2.0-liter Turbo rated at 259 horsepower and a 2.4-liter four-cylinder with eAssist, GM’s light electrification hybrid technology.
The eAssist powertrain uses a lithium-ion battery system and electric motor-generator to enable regenerative braking capability. Instead of providing all-electric propulsion, the system provides power assistance to the internal combustion engine. The eAssist system also allows the engine to shut down fuel delivery in certain deceleration situations, or at a stop, which saves additional fuel.
The Buick with eAssist gets a very impressive 36 miles per gallon on the highway, although it does impact performance, especially when compared to the 2.0-liter turbo. Six-speed automatic transmissions are paired with both engines. If you choose the GS trim, you can opt for a six-speed manual at no additional cost.
The Regal also benefits from the legendary Buick refined ride, although it also has one of the most rigid body structures in the mid-sized segment, which supports its more precise suspension tuning. The Regal GS and AWD-equipped models feature a four-wheel independent suspension with unique High Performance Strut front suspension design.
This design helps reduce torque steer, improving wheel sensitivity to tire irregularities and wheel balance. It also affords a more precise steering response while improving the feel of bumps and potholes on the road.
With the new technological upgrades Buick is making, the 2015 edition of the Buick Regal should be very popular with those who want the latest and greatest in terms of connectivity. However, if you’re not as interested in technological content, the 2014 Regal offers almost the same vehicle. In addition, Buick dealers will likely start to offer incentives on the 2014’s to make room for the 2015’s, which are due to arrive this fall.