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#8

in 2011 Upscale Midsize Cars

Avg. Price Paid: $14,300 - $15,746
Original MSRP: $26,360 - $28,860
MPG: 19 City / 30 Hwy
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Used Car: 2011 Buick Regal Review

Review Last Updated: 8/9/12

The 2011 Buick Regal offers midsize sedan buyers a sporty option that can compete with some upscale models.

The 2011 Buick Regal is ranked:

Buick has been undergoing a renaissance lately, with the redesigned LaCrosse bowing to almost-unequivocal reviewer praise last year. Now, the 2011 Buick Regal is hitting the market, and while it competes for near-luxury buyers with the LaCrosse, reviewers say it's aiming for a very different segment of that market: drivers who like a little sport in their sedans.

While the LaCrosse appeals to buyers who want a quiet touring car, Autoblog says, "For the first time in its history, the Regal is truly worthy of being called a sports sedan."  Not only that, Autoblog, like other reviewers, argues that the Regal can compete with upscale midsize sport sedans like the Acura TSX and Audi A4.

While most critics assert that the Regal lives up to its sporting pretensions, others question if the Buick brand, which is historically known for sedans that handle like yachts and are popular with the early-bird special crowd, is strong enough to pull buyers over from imports. Still, reviewers say that even though the Buick brand may not be strong enough to pull buyers in, overlooking the Regal would be a mistake.

Among midsize cars, the Regal shines with performance that balances fuel economy and power, handling and ride comfort.  Reviewers are impressed with the handsome exterior and comfortable interior. All in all, if you're shopping midsize sedans, reviewers say that the Regal should be on your short list.

For a more in-depth look at the Regal, check out our Regal video.

Other Cars to Consider

The Regal's price makes it more expensive than most base-model affordable midsize cars, but less expensive than other upscale midsize cars.  With that in mind, if you’re shopping for value, stick to the affrodable midsize car class and make sure you take a look at the Hyundai Sonata.  It starts at $7,000 less than the Regal and gets better fuel economy.

If you're shopping for premium feel, reviewers almost dare you to put the Regal against cars like the Acura TSX, Lexus ES and Audi A4.  All three are more expensive and have more cachet than the Regal -- however, many reviewers say the Regal can take them all on.  That means that if you’re willing to sacrifice brand recognition you can get a better car at a lower price by opting for the Regal.

For more information about other cars to consider, be sure to watch our Regal video.

Details: Buick Regal

The Buick Regal is an all-new model for 2011.  For its initial rollout, the Regal is available only in its top-of-the-line CXL trim; next year the base CX and middle CXS trims will be available. The Regal enters the market with a 2.4 liter four-cylinder engine, but a 2.0 liter turbocharged four-cylinder will be available in late summer 2010. A performance tuned GS model will be available next year. The Regal is based on the Opel Insignia (which is available only in Europe) and shares some components with the well-liked Buick LaCrosse.  However, the Regal is smaller and sportier than the LaCrosse.

  • "What it is, it turns out, is a very well tuned, near-luxury sport sedan that, in terms of sheer driving pleasure, surpasses anything else in its class made in Detroit these days, not to mention imports like the Acura TSX and the Lexus ES350."--Automobile Magazine
  • "Put another way: If you like your old Buick, this ain't it. But if you like the kind of work Acura has done with the TSX, the all-new Regal will be a pleasant surprise."--AutoWeek
  • "Like the Buick LaCrosse, the Regal is far removed from the floaty-boat reputation that has cursed the brand, along with an aging demographic that Buick is desperate to change. The Regal now looks and performs in a class-competitive manner. "--Car and Driver
  • "The $26,995 Regal CSX is sleek, stylish and comprehensively equipped, with suavely European road manners. The $29,495 Regal Turbo is a wonderfully subversive sport sedan whose punchy, 220-hp blown Ecotec four and supple, yet buttoned-down, chassis puts Acura's homely TSX on notice, and seriously makes you wonder whether an Audi A4 is really worth the money."--Motor Trend
  • "Buick hopes customers looking at an Acura TSX, Lexus IS or an Infiniti G37 will consider the Regal. I think that's optimistic but not out of the question, though it will take a while."--Chicago Tribune
  • "The Regal is a good-looking, excellent-handling midsize sedan that packs a lot of content for its price, with just a few drawbacks."--Cars.com
  • "So let's see what we have here; A gorgeous, fun-to-drive, quick, comfortable, well-equipped American sedan built with the quality of its German competitors... and it's a Buick. Who knew?"--Jalopnik
  • "On paper, the Regal Turbo’s just-under $30k price point puts it in competition with the base, four-cylinder TSX while offering power closer to the $35k TSX V6. "--The Truth About Cars

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