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2011 Buick Regal

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2011 Buick Regal Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 7.1

It's been a long time since Buick brought us any car we'd put in the same sentence as "sporty," but the 2011 Buick Regal is here to change that. Armed with sleek European style, engaging driving dynamics, eighteen-inch wheels and an available 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that produces 220 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque, the new Regal is not your grandmother's soft Buick sedan. However, the road to a younger fan base is lined with attractive competitors like the Acura TSX and Volkswagen CC – vehicles that no one has trouble calling "sporty."

You'll Like This Car If...

The 2011 Buick Regal offers a hefty dose of Euro cool in a well-packaged, premium-leaning American sedan.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The 2011 Buick Regal may be the sportiest Buick in the lineup, but don't confuse it as an answer to rear-wheel-drive performance standouts like the BMW 3 Series or Infiniti G37.

What's New for 2011

With engaging driving dynamics, fresh design and an available turbocharged engine for under $30,000, the upmarket 2011 Buick Regal is a step in a new direction for the brand.

Driving the Regal
Driving Impressions

While there's nothing to complain about in regards to the naturally-aspirated 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that comes standard on the Regal, the real star is the turbocharged 2.0-liter four. It's quiet,...

... refined, and although it's not the fastest turbo out there, it has decent passing power and little off-the-line lag. Torque steer in this vehicle is also negligible, which is all the better since the vehicle is only available - for now - in front-wheel drive guise. Opting for the turbocharged engine also nets you variable power steering. A Buick wouldn't be a Buick without a quiet ride, and you can expect just that inside the Regal. However, don't expect the soft ride of Buicks past. Although the Regal isn't as spry as the Acura TSX or the Volkswagen CC, it is sportier than any Buick of recent memory and perfectly willing to have a little fun.

2.0-liter Turbocharged Four-Cylinder Engine
While the Volkswagen CC also offers a turbocharged four-cylinder turbocharged engine, Buick's 2.0-liter powerplant offers more horsepower and torque.

Interactive Drive Control System (IDCS)
A first for Buick, this system is available with the turbocharged engine and allows you to choose from three different operating modes that modify the vehicle's suspension, stability settings, throttle response, shift pattern and steering sensitivity. What does that mean for you? Choose "Standard" when cruising around town, "Tour" for a softer ride when on the open highway, or "Sport" for more dynamic driving on a curvy section of asphalt.

2011 Buick Regal Details
2011 Buick Regal photo Interior

The interior of the 2011 Buick Regal is where the vehicle's premium designation really becomes apparent. All of the switches and knobs have a smooth, weighted feel to them, and although the interior shares some of its features with the larger LaCrosse sedan, the overall treatment is spiced with a bit more European flavor. This is especially evident with the BMW-like, center stack-mounted lock/unlock buttons and the optional navigation system's iDrive-esque control knob that sits just below the shifter. Our only complaint? Rear headroom is a little tight, so those over six feet tall might find sitting in the back a bit uncomfortable on long rides.

Exterior
2011 Buick Regal photo

While trademark Buick design cues remain - namely the waterfall grille - the rest of the 2011 Regal sedan is sculpted, sleek and carries over more than a few styling cues from the Opel Insignia, the award-winning European vehicle upon which it's based. In fact, if you were to look at the two vehicles side by side, you'd find that not much has been changed for duty in the Buick lineup, aside from the aforementioned grille, headlamps and badges.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Inside the Buick Regal CXL you'll find leather upholstery (unlike the Volkswagen CC, which has leatherette as standard), a 12-way adjustable power driver's seat, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, Bluetooth and a seven-speaker audio system with USB port. Motivation is supplied by a 2.4-liter in-line four cylinder engine paired to a six-speed automatic transmission (with tap up/ tap down shifting), and power is put to pavement via 18-inch alloy wheels. To help keep you safe, six airbags are standard on each Regal, as are stability and traction controls, Brake Assist and the latest and OnStar with Automatic Crash Response.

Optional Equipment

Most notable of the 2011 Buick Regal's options is a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine rated at 220 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. If having the latest and greatest in technology is more important to you than added power, you can add a 320-watt, nine-speaker harman/kardon sound system or a hard drive-based navigation system. Those who aim for creature comforts in their vehicle can opt for a rear parking assist system, a 12-way power adjustable passenger's seat or a sunroof, while those with safety on their minds can get seat-mounted rear thorax airbags. Extras for the exterior are limited to 19-inch machined alloy wheels.

Under the Hood

The 2011 Regal is the first Buick to be offered exclusively with four-cylinder engines. The standard 2.4-liter in-line four produces 182 horsepower and 172 pound-feet of torque, and delivers fuel economy in the range of 20 city/30 highway miles per gallon. Those looking for more power can get a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which delivers 220 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque for a small penalty in fuel economy – 18 city/29 highway. Both engines are mated to a six-speed automatic transmission with tap up/tap down shifting, although paddle shifters are available with the turbocharged engine. Later in the year, a six-speed manual will also be offered, bringing the Regal more in line competitively with the Acura TSX and Volkswagen CC Sport.

2.4-liter in-line 4
182 horsepower @ 6700 rpm
172 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4900 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/30

2.0-liter in-line 4, Turbocharged
220 horsepower @ 5300 rpm
258 lb.-ft. of torque @ 2000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/29

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2011 Buick Regal Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.9
Out of 10

Based on 99 Ratings for the 2011 - 2016 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.0/10
    Quality
    9.0/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    9.0/10
  • Comfort
    9.0/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

ITS A BUICK

By on Saturday, June 25, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 38,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
7/10
Quality
7/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "DECENT RIDE."

Cons: "GAS MILEAGE NOT AS GOOD AS ADVERTISED."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 7

"GOT A GOOD DEAL ON A LEASE. TOO MUCH TO BUY. LEASE ALMOST UP, MIGHT KEEP DEPENDING ON THE BUYOUT PRICE. BOUGHT E-ASSIST ENGINE FOR GAS MILEAGE. RATED AT 30/42, BUT IM GETTING 27/36. HAD A COUPLE OF RECALLS. GOOD TIRES AND BRAKES FROM THE FACTORY. DECENT CARE, NOT WORTH A LOT, CAUSE NO BELLS AND WHISTLES. MIGHT LIKE THE UPGRADED REGAL IF NOT WORRIED ABOUT PRICE OR GAS MILEAGE. DRIVES LIKE A BUICK."

7 people out of 10 found this review helpful

Loaded excellent condition! One owner!

By on Wednesday, June 22, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 47,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "excellent condition"

Cons: "none"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"In excellent condition! One owner, no accidents fully loaded with sunroof, heated seats and navigation system! Beautiful black diamond exterior with black leather seats! Selling due to no longer need as I have a company vehicle."

3 people out of 12 found this review helpful

Nicest car I have yet to own

By on Sunday, May 1, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 20,100

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fun to drive, nicely built, classy design"

Cons: "lack of front seat bolstering, tight rear seats"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Bought Premium II used. Love the HID lights and Bose Stereo. Difficult to use all the engine power in suburban traffic. Getting about 20.5 MPG. Rear seats are tight and the front seats really could use more bolstering like the GS model has as the car feels it can take corners harder than I can while keeping myself in the seat."

14 people out of 27 found this review helpful

Lots of power with the new 2.0 L Turbo.

By on Friday, April 15, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 3,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Purposeful technology and lots o power"

Cons: "small back seat"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I just replaced my 2006 Impala SS, and although the regal does not have the same power it is much more comfortable and easy to handle. I love the radio system; easy to use and compatible with apple car play or android auto. I am enjoying the remote start off my smart phone too. Fuel economy ranges very wide depending on my driving. I have gotten 30 mpg and beyond on the highway, but I do tend to hit the gas a little too much around town. Usually my car reads out at 22-24 mpg. No complaints!"

8 people out of 13 found this review helpful

LOW VALUE CAR - would not purchase again

By on Tuesday, March 15, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 26,000

10 1.0
overall rating 1 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
1/10
Value
1/10
Reliability
1/10
Quality
1/10
Performance
1/10
Styling
3/10
Comfort
1/10

Pros: "Beautiful interior."

Cons: "Terrible value for a vehicle....many regrets."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1

"This car's value decreased over $12,000 in the first year. Terrible value for a vehicle. You can now purchase a brand new Regal for LESS than I paid for this one in 2014. Has a beautiful interior but flaws in the paint on the exterior. Too much road noise. MANY REGRETS....but now I'm STUCK with this mess!"

12 people out of 28 found this review helpful

It compares well to similar cars I have owned.

By on Wednesday, February 24, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 25,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
8/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I find the Regal Premium 3 with the turbo 2.0 motor is a fun car to drive. It has a comfortable ride and can handle all types of roads with ease. It has many options that normally come only in the high price cars. The 19 inch wheels are an added bonus. The leather seats are well made and don't wrinkle with use/age. They remind me of leather seats normally put in sport cars. I also really appreciate the 4 year 50,000 miles warrenty."

12 people out of 16 found this review helpful

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