Buick Regal Performance
Reviewers say the base 2014 Buick Regal strikes a good balance between comfort and athletic performance, and the eAssist model is a good option for buyers who want a smooth powertrain and excellent fuel economy. They add that the sporty and fun GS has sharp handling. Still, many reviewers stress that if you’re looking for a true sport sedan, you might want to look elsewhere.
- "The GS is, unsurprisingly, our choice of the Regal lineup, not in small part due to the attention Buick slathered on it to produce a truly buttoned-down, engaging ride. In all-wheel-drive guise, the car is genuinely fun to toss around some cones, with torque steer nearly erased and body motions, if far from sports-car-like, at least decently controlled." -- AutoWeek
- "It all adds up to a Regal that hasn't forgotten its Buick heritage (quiet, comfortable, modest elegance), but is more than willing to play." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "There is no doubt that the Regal GS is the better car for a back road blast, but the Regal Turbo is probably the better all-rounder. ... Moreover, the Regal Turbo provides about 80 percent of the driving fun of the GS when pushed, which is probably more than enough to satisfy the average driver." -- Left Lane News
- "Audi's 2.0-liter turbo, though down on power and torque compared to the Buick, builds power much more linearly and emits a perfectly tuned, rowdy engine note. And though the GS exhibits better body control, the A4 feels far more balanced and willing to rotate through corners." -- Automobile Magazine
Acceleration and Power
The 2014 Buick Regal features a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that generates 259 horsepower. An optional mild-hybrid eAssist powertrain includes a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine and a small electric motor that combine to make 182 horsepower. All Regals come standard with a six-speed automatic transmission. A six-speed manual is optional on front-wheel drive GS models. The 2014 Buick Regal gets an EPA-estimated 21/30 mpg city/highway, which is decent for the class, and the eAssist gets 25/36 mpg city/highway, which is very good for the class.
Some reviewers think the upgraded turbocharged engine is refined, but others say it doesn’t rev as smoothly as some of its competitors’ engines. Most automotive journalists agree that the turbo four is powerful and responsive, though one complains that the engine can feel a bit slow off the line. One test driver says the transmission has well-timed shifts, while another says it takes too long to downshift. Though critics say it is much slower than the turbo model, automotive journalists agree that the eAssist mild-hybrid model is fuel-efficient and accelerates smoothly, and they think it has a very refined start-stop feature.
- "Throttle response is right-now, the engine is smooth and quiet, and -- just as important -- fuel economy improves." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "That's partially the fault of the turbo four, which still suffers a bit of lag, and the six-speed automatic, which occasionally downshifts too late." -- Automobile Magazine
- "Refinement is up, but it's still not sewing-machine smooth under the hood like the Audi. However, power comes on strong, and with gear-holding algorithms built into the transmission mapping to keep the revs in the torquey sweet spot, some raspiness is certainly acceptable." -- Edmunds
- "The 2.4-liter engine with battery assist is very refined, if not especially fast. The transitions when the gas engine shuts off at stops and automatically restarts when the brake pedal is released are exceptionally smooth." -- Consumer Guide (2013)
Handling and Braking
The 2014 Buick Regal comes standard with front-wheel drive, and all-wheel drive is optional. Test drivers agree that the 2014 Buick Regal with the standard suspension has a smooth, comfortable ride and decent cornering ability. Reviewers say that the Regal GS has a firmer, though not uncomfortable, ride and very sharp handling. They also agree that the optional all-wheel drive system, which is new for 2014, does an excellent job keeping the Regal on course during high-speed cornering. Several say that the Regal’s all-wheel drive system outperforms the Audi A4’s Quattro all-wheel drive system. Critics write that the Regal has strong brakes, particularly on GS models, which features a high-performance Brembo brake system.
- "We also lapped all four test cars on a ride/handling loop, where the base Regal struck a happy balance between suppleness and control, carpeting the worst bumps just plushly enough without heaving to and fro in between. Bigger footwear prevent the GS from riding as smoothly in its normal mode, and I'm also happy to report that my kidneys suffered no trauma in GS mode, where the bottom bump stops proved compliant, and small/medium impacts were absorbed quite without the expected thwack one fears will eventually dislodge trim and strike up a chorus of squeaks and rattles." -- Motor Trend
- "Overall, the Regal's chassis still impresses. Buick has retuned the Turbo just a bit to soften harsh impacts, but it still has excellent body control. The GS feels quite a bit firmer, especially with its dampers adjusted to GS mode." -- Automobile Magazine
- "Braking is another strong suit, particularly in the GS, with its bigger front rotors and four-piston calipers, supplied by Brembo." -- Kelley Blue Book
- "Electronically controlled, it proved more fun in the tight corners of an autocross course, anticipating and reacting more quickly than Audi's mechanical Quattro system. We wonder how much time Buick (or even Audi A4) owners spend terrifying tiny orange cones, but the Buick had the edge on the German car in these circumstances." -- Car and Driver (all-wheel drive system)