2014 Buick Regal Premium 2 AWD Sedan (2.0L 4-cyl. Turbo AWD 6-Speed Automatic)
The 2014 Buick Regal Turbo AWD is worthy of praise for its spirited driving dynamics and competitive pricing. Unfortunately, its interior quality and comfort fall well short of other AWD rivals such as the BMW 320i xDrive and Lexus IS 250.
PerformanceThe Buick Regal AWD outperforms many entry-level luxury sedans both in our track testing as well as in real-world driving. It doesn't suffer in terms of comfort or ride quality, either.
Despite having all-wheel drive, the front wheels have a tendency to spin under hard acceleration. Still, the Buick posted a 0-60 mph time of 7.2 seconds, which is quicker than most rivals.
Needing only 118 feet to stop from 60 mph, the Buick Regal's brakes perform slighty better than the segment average. The brake pedal was on the soft side, but remained consistent.
Though there's a lack of steering feel and feedback, it is precise with an appropriate amount of lightness at low speeds and resistance on the highway when speeds increase.
The Regal is surprisingly capable in the handling department, bordering on fun. It tracks smoothly and predictably through turns and the AWD seamlessly provides more traction when needed.
Even when driven harder than the average consumer would ever consider, the Regal remains composed. In daily commuting, it's basically fault-free and poses no challenges to the driver.
ComfortIn the driver's seat, lack of a footrest (dead pedal) and the center console's hard plastic coming in contact with our right knee became annoying within an hour of driving. Rear-seat passengers will complain of a lack of headroom on long trips.
The front seats lack lateral support while rear the seats lack headroom. Padding is on the firm side and caused some uncomfortable pressure points.
The suspension does a good job of smoothing out surface imperfections while still maintaining a solid and anchored connection to the road.
Road noise is noticeable over coarse asphalt but is unintrusive over most other surfaces. Wind noise is barely detectable at highway speeds, and all told this is a pleasantly quiet cabin.
InteriorThough the cabin design is pleasing, the execution is a bit disappointing. The IntelliLink interface is frustrating, while the chrome trim around the shifter is prone to harsh reflections and the screen and gauge lighting aren't individually adjustable.
Controls are well placed and mostly intuitive, but the IntelliLink interface either fully ignores or at minimum is slow to respond to your inputs.
Front seat access is acceptable, but rear passengers will discover the rearmost roof pillar to be a serious impediment, forcing an awkward forward stoop to get past.
The front seats are roomy enough for most. Rear seat headroom is barely acceptable for adults and the thick roof pillars make things feel confining.
The forward view is acceptable, but the thick rear roof pillar and high trunklid force heavy reliance on the standard rearview camera when backing into a parking space.
With 14.2 cu-ft of trunk space, the Regal's cargo capacity is marginally bigger than some rivals. A wide opening and enclosed hinges do make loading easier.
ValueA base AWD Regal starts at $32,790, making it one of the more affordable entry-level luxury sedans. With plentiful power and dynamic handling, the Buick is a viable alternative to rivals from BMW and Lexus although it lacks some interior refinement.
Build Quality (vs. $)
Interior build quality is solid enough, but the materials fall well short of the competition. The dash top, in particular, looks and feels more like a lesser product from GM.
The AWD Regal Turbo is competitively priced against the BMW 320i and Lexus IS 250. Navigation is included while rivals offer it as an option, but Buick's infotainment interface can be frustrating.
With the optional Driver Assistance package and a sunroof, our AWD Regal Premium 2 cost $41,245. That's about even in cost with a similarly-equipped BMW 320i xDrive, about $2,000 less than a Lexus IS 250.
The EPA estimates 22 mpg Combined (19 City/27 Highway) for the Regal Turbo with AWD. We confirmed this by the 28.6 mpg we achieved on our evaluation loop and 23.2 mpg overall.
Buick's 4-year/50,000-mile basic and 6-year/70,000-mile drivetrain warranties are typical for cars in this segment.
Free scheduled maintenance is included for 2 years/24,000 miles. Lexus matches this, but BMW doubles the coverage.
Fun To DriveThe Buick Regal Turbo AWD is surprisingly capable and entertaining, especially when there's a spirited pilot behind the wheel. While we wouldn't consider it sporty, it will certainly exceed most drivers' expectations in this regard.
While the Regal benefits from relatively dynamic performance, the comfort issues put a damper on the overall experience. These shortcomings will be disregarded on short trips, though.
Exterior styling is pleasantly understated and its performance is admirable. Unfortunately, the interior quality and lack of long-distance comfort keep it from scoring higher.
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The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2014 Buick Regal Sedan in VA is:
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