Automotive

Buick smuggles some Euro-wagon goodness into America

Buick smuggles some Euro-wagon...
The Regal TourX injects a dash of European wagon style into the USA
The Regal TourX injects a dash of European wagon style into the USA
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The load bay of the Buick Regal TourX 
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The load bay of the Buick Regal TourX 
Practicality is at the core of any wagon's appeal, and the Buick Regal TourX is no different 
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Practicality is at the core of any wagon's appeal, and the Buick Regal TourX is no different 
The cabin of the TourX is designed to feel more expensive than it actually is 
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The cabin of the TourX is designed to feel more expensive than it actually is 
The auto-bootlid of the TourX is a handy touch for anyone who needs to juggle kids, bags and keys
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The auto-bootlid of the TourX is a handy touch for anyone who needs to juggle kids, bags and keys
Even rear-seat passengers get heated seats in the Buick Regal TourX
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Even rear-seat passengers get heated seats in the Buick Regal TourX
The instrument binnacle of the TourX is decidedly European
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The instrument binnacle of the TourX is decidedly European
The Bose audio system will be an option on the TourX
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The Bose audio system will be an option on the TourX
GM has slowly been adding wireless charging across its model range 
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GM has slowly been adding wireless charging across its model range 
The Buick Regal TourX will come with a four-cylinder turbo engine
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The Buick Regal TourX will come with a four-cylinder turbo engine
The hood of the TourX lifts in low-speed accidents to protect pedestrians
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The hood of the TourX lifts in low-speed accidents to protect pedestrians
The new Buick Regal TourX
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The new Buick Regal TourX
The Regal TourX injects a dash of European wagon style into the USA
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The Regal TourX injects a dash of European wagon style into the USA
Behind the wheel of the Regal TourX
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Behind the wheel of the Regal TourX
Black cladding is straight out of the jacked-up wagon copybook
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Black cladding is straight out of the jacked-up wagon copybook
The TourX comes with running rails on the roof 
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The TourX comes with running rails on the roof 
Very few owners are likely to head off road in their TourX, but that doesn't mean they don't want to look the part
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Very few owners are likely to head off road in their TourX, but that doesn't mean they don't want to look the part
The Regal TourX will be sold as a Holden and an Opel
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The Regal TourX will be sold as a Holden and an Opel
The Subaru Outback is squarely in the sights of Opel 
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The Subaru Outback is squarely in the sights of Opel 
The Buick Regal TourX, complete in weekend explorer getup
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The Buick Regal TourX, complete in weekend explorer getup
This image presumably taken by a bird with x-ray vision
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This image presumably taken by a bird with x-ray vision
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Manufacturers are clamoring to create SUVs in every conceivable shape and size at the moment, but that doesn't mean wagons can't thrive too. The Buick Regal TourX, developed as the Opel Insignia Country Tourer, mixes the perks of high-riding SUVs with city-friendly road manners to create a compelling, stylish package.

They might be making a comeback at the moment, but the formula for high-riding wagons has been around for decades. Subaru was early to capitalize with the Outback, before posh Volvo and Audi wagons adopted the jacked-up wagon as well. Now, everyone from Skoda to Mercedes is on board. Not to be left out, Opel has taken the Insignia Sport Tourer and sent it to boot camp. Americans will be able to enjoy the results with a Buick badge on the nose, while Australians get their wagon in Holden form.

On the outside, the Regal TourX has been designed to look tougher than the regular wagon. Along with its 20-mm (0.79-in) taller ride height, the design team has slapped a set of black wheelarch extensions onto the wagon, and rounded out the look with some silver skidplates. We're not sure they serve any practical purpose, given most owners are unlikely to leave the pavement anyway.

Owners are likely to appreciate the GKN Twinster all-wheel drive system, borrowed from the drift-mode enabled, tire-torturing Ford Focus RS. Rather than using conventional differentials, the system uses a set of electronically-controlled clutches to shuffle torque between the wheels as required. It can even send all the engine's torque to one wheel, which is exactly what happens when owners prod the Drift Mode button in their Focus RS.

Although the Buick won't perform drifts on demand, the all-wheel drive system can shoot torque to the wheel with most traction when the going gets slippery. It will also send grunt to the outside wheels during high-speed cornering, helping nix understeer before it can ruin the fun. Coupled with the FlexRide chassis system – which allows drivers to tweak the feel of their damping, steering, throttle and gearbox – the GKN all-wheel drive should make the car competent in the corners.

Of course, the TourX wouldn't be a very good wagon if it wasn't practical. Folding the rear seats expands the load bay to a capacious 1,665 liters (58.8 cu.ft) and, if that's not enough room, the standard roof rails make it easier to carry skis, kayaks and bikes.

Behind the wheel of the Regal TourX
Behind the wheel of the Regal TourX

Engines will vary depending on market, but the Buick version of the car will be sold with four-cylinder engine making 250 hp (186 kW) and 295 lb.ft (400 Nm) of torque. Those outputs are nothing to be sniffed at, but it'll be interesting to see if displacement-conscious American buyers will be comfortable selecting a turbo-four over the bigger flat-six on offer in the Subaru Outback.

It might be down on cylinders, but the Buick matches the Subaru when it comes to safety. Along with the usual lane-departure, forward-collision and rear cross-traffic warnings, the car will automatically lift the back of the hood up by 4-inches in low-speed pedestrian accidents in the hope of reducing injury.

Pricing hasn't been announced for the Buck Regal TourX, Opel/Vauxhall Insignia Country Tourer or the Holden Commodore Tourer. The car will be on show in Opel guise at the Frankfurt Motor Show.

Source: Buick

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7 comments
JoeRussel
Great news: Questions: Will the 2018 Regal Tour X have pedal shifters and a height adjustable tailgate? Would be a nice touch!!! I'd buy it if it does.
Scott Collie
Hey Joe! The tailgate is height adjustable, but no sign of paddle shifters in the initial materials. Scott
Island Architect
This really is a wonderful Shooting Break! Lots of room for the shotguns.
DavidRogerBrown
Amazing-a Opel Buick one (under age 80) would actually be interested in buying. Laugh when a vehicle is "raised" less than a inch for snow conditions. Always wondered why Americans run from any that are called "station wagons." They make practical space and sell well in other parts of the world. A optional guard makes more sense in deer country than a urban spring hood. Why doesn't anyone make them for cars?
Gregg Eshelman
It needs a Vista Cruiser style roof.
navmed
How about a v8 for the Buick? I'm guessing the Holden will get one.
Martin Hone
DavidRogerBrown, here in Australia, many vehicles are fitted with what we call 'roo bars. They are retro-fitted and very handy in the country where wildlife tend to cross the roads rather carelessly....