2011 Buick Regal CXL Turbo: Track Tested
March 13, 2011
Okay, okay, we've heard enough about the super-light steering on our 2011 Buick Regal CXL turbo when it's on the street. It's time to find out what that steering does when the conditions are right for us to open up the taps and chuck our long term Buick around the test track.
Reminder: The Buick CXL Turbo makes 220 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque and puts that to the ground via the front tires through a six-speed automatic.
Follow the jump for the full specs and results including 0-60, quarter mile, slalom and skidpad...
Vehicle: 2011 Buick Regal CXL Turbo
Driver: Chris Walton
Drive Type: Front-engine, front-wheel drive
Transmission Type: six-speed automatic
Engine Type: Turbocharged 2.0-liter direct-injection I4
Displacement (cc/cu-in): 1,998/122
Redline (rpm): 7,000
Horsepower (hp @ rpm): 220 @ 5,300
Torque (lb-ft @ rpm): 258 @ 2,000
Brake Type (front): 12.6-inch ventilated with single-piston calipers
Brake Type (rear): 12.4-inch ventilated with single-piston fixed calipers
Steering System: Hydraulic-assist, speed-proportional, rack-and-pinion power steering
Suspension Type (front): Independent MacPherson struts with dual lower ball joints, coil springs, driver-adjustable 3-mode variable dampers, stabilizer bar
Suspension Type (rear): Hydraulic-assist, speed-proportional, rack-and-pinion power steering
Tire Size (front): P245/40R19 94W
Tire Size (rear): P245/40R19 94W
Tire Brand: Goodyear
Tire Model: Eagle RSA
Tire Type: All Season
Wheel size: 19-by-9.6 inches
Wheel material (front/rear): Painted alloy
As tested Curb Weight (lb): 3,759
0-30 (sec): 3.3 (3.4 with t/c off)
0-45 (sec): 5.4 (5.5 with t/c off)
0-60 (sec): 8.2 (8.4 with t/c off)
0-60 with 1-ft Rollout (sec): 7.8 (7.8 with t/c off)
0-75 (sec): 11.5 (11.8 with t/c off)
1/4-Mile (sec @ mph): 15.9 @ 90.0 (16.1 @ 89.4 with t/c off)
30-0 (ft): 32
60-0 (ft): 125
Slalom (mph): 65.8 (65.0 with t/c on)
Skid Pad Lateral acceleration (g): 0.83 (0.79 with t/c on)
Db @ Idle: 44.9
Db @ Full Throttle: 69.5
Db @ 70 mph Cruise: 63.6
RPM @ 70: 2,100
Acceleration: Absolutely refuses to leave the line with any verve. Refuses / punishes pedal overlap so best launch was "slap'n'go" first run. Power is at first meager then builds at @3,500 rpm all the way to redline. Got some time back from the bad launches by manually shifting as drive short-shifts 500 rpm shy of redline (half-hearted rev-matching).
Braking: Good pedal feel, aggressive jump-in and minor (but progressive) fade. First stop was shortest. Zero ABS hum/flutter and straight as an arrow. Slight odor.
Handling: Skidpad: In "sport" with ESC "off" there's good balance right up to the point when understeer begins to creep in. Surprisingly grippy. Springy steering doesn't provide any feel of the tires. In normal with ESC on, the throttle goes away first, then the brakes begin to pulse. Slalom: Remarkable balance that doesn't threaten to spear in a straight line or spin (in sport w/esc off). Crisp turn-in but little feel of what happens next makes it more of a rhythm exercise than a probing-the-limits one. With ESC on, slow-in fast out with a tight line nearly matched best ESC off pass. Good ESC w/minimal intrusion.