Why Isn't the Buick Regal Selling Well?

Buick Regal

Over the past few years, we've seen a global convergence and streamlining of major vehicle lineups, which means more of the Eurocentric vehicles that automotive enthusiasts covet are coming here. But many of them aren't selling well.

For proof, just look at the relatively poor-selling BMW 1 Series, Smart ForTwo, Suzuki Kizashi or Scion iQ. (The latter two were designed with Europe in mind.) At the top of the list is the Buick Regal, which historically was one of Buick's best-selling models. In 2004 it was redesigned and renamed LaCrosse — now Buick's flagship sedan in the U.S. After a six-year hiatus in the U.S., the Regal returned to our shores, but as a different beast.

From Germany, With Love

The new Regal was engineered and designed in Germany by GM's Opel division, and it was originally built and shipped from Germany to the U.S. when the model went on sale in 2010 as a 2011 model. In Europe, it's known as the Opel Insignia and is the flagship sedan for the brand, with hatchback, wagon and sedan body styles. The Insignia also features high-end luxury items such as adaptive forward lights and a camera system that can read road markings and stop signs.

Opel InsigniaThe Regal was billed as a chief component of Buick's renaissance in America, but it never really lived up to that. GM has moved more than 500,000 Insignias in Europe and more than 200,000 Regals in China but has only managed to sell about 70,000 Regals in America over its lifetime. In fact, during 2012, despite a slew of updates and new trim offerings, Regal sales have tanked. They're down 34.9% year to date, and they're one of the main culprits for the brand's flagging sales, which are down 5.3% year over year so far. It's the slowest seller of Buick's four-model lineup, and its days-to-turn on dealer lots has been above the industry average.


In the Shadow of Verano and LaCrosse

One problem is that the Regal is overpriced. Furthermore, the more America-minded Buick Verano and Buick LaCrosse are roomier and deliver more value for the money. Both sedans (especially the Verano) are likely cannibalizing Regal sales.

Some might think this argument unfair, since the Regal is meant to compete against the Volkswagen CC, Acura TSX and Volvo S60 and performs pretty well in terms of sales when compared solely to this group. Also, the Regal has a high conquest rate, according to GM, with some 22% of buyers trading in their imports for a Regal as of 2011. The average age of a Regal shopper, 56, is below the average Buick buyer's age of 59, according to R.L. Polk & Co. The average age for the high-performance Regal GS is 43, GM says.

That's all fine and dandy, but Regal sales still have plummeted, mainly because of the more American-focused Verano. Launched in December, the Verano has a larger trunk and nearly identical front legroom, headroom and shoulder room as the Regal, though the Verano's rear passenger space is significantly smaller than the Regal's. The Verano supplanted the Regal as the most affordable Buick, with a starting price nearly $6,000 less than the Regal. Furthermore, when the Verano debuted, GM cut incentives on the base Regal, substantially increasing transaction prices while impacting sales volume, according to GM Inside News, a GM enthusiast forum. Since the Buick went on sale in 2010, the model has seen a $2,655 increase in its base asking price. Buick Verano

On the other end, the LaCrosse costs only about $2,600 more than the Regal and is substantially roomier. It also gets the same great gas mileage with the mild-hybrid system: 25/36 mpg city/highway. This doesn't leave much reason to consider a Regal, especially if you happen to step into a dealership not knowing much about Buick's three previous sedans.

GM would say shoppers choose the Regal over the other two because it's the brand's sports model. Fair enough, I suppose. The automaker taunts in its ads that the Regal is "German engineered" and "sport injected." Most of Cars.com's Consumer Reviews also mention the sporty handling and luxury-like interior, and most even mention the German roots, too.

On the flip side, most consumers complain of shoddy interior fit and finish, something that Cars.com Industry Analyst Kelsey Mays also complained about this in his review. And the model has below-average reliability, according to Consumer Reports.

Combine the pros and cons, sporty handling and a rich interior with poor reliability and a high asking price, and you do have a European formula to engineering and marketing cars, that's for sure. Unfortunately, that formula has never worked well in the U.S., and the proof is in the pudding. It will be interesting to see if the same problems beset the Buick Encore, a small crossover known as the Opel Mokka in Europe. That car seems to have been primarily designed for the old country and for China. Pricing of the Encore will likely be the key to its success.

Related
2013 Buick Verano Turbo: First Look 
Cars.com Reviews the 2012 Buick Regal eAssist, GS 
More Buick Regal News

Editor's Note:

Provided below is an offical response from Buick spokesman Nick Richards regarding our story. 

Thanks for the continued interest in Buick.  However, I must point out that many of your theories around the Regal and Buick sales in "Why Isn't the Buick Regal Selling Well" are misguided at best.  

As you know, Buick has undergone a product renaissance, resulting in vehicles like the Regal.  In the story you cite Buick sales are down, but what you do not state is that Buick retail sales CYTD are up 2-percent.  This means that we are focusing more on the sales to consumers rather than daily rental fleets, which at the end of the day, helps improve residual values and long-term vehicle values for our customers.  In fact, while increasing retail sales, we have also increased the average transaction price for each of our new models since they launched and decreased incentives.

As far as the Regal goes, you actually have all the facts in your story, you just either misunderstood them, or misrepresented them.  First, Regal has been a chief component of Buick's renaissance, just as the LaCrosse, Enclave, Verano and soon to market Encore. As you state in the story, the average age of the Regal buyer is lower and has typically been a customer new to the Buick showroom, with nearly 50-percent Regal buyers  conquest and half are coming out of import brands.

As you also point out, it is selling in similar volumes to its competitive set, with CYTD sales outpacing Volvo S60, Lexus IS250 and VW CC. Furthermore, we're seeing a greater mix of the Regal Turbo and Regal GS sales each month.  July was the highest sales month yet for the Regal GS.  And as your readers state, it is also fulfilling the role of the sport sedan of the Buick portfolio, with consumers purchasing it for its handling and luxury interior.

The simple fact is that now we have three elegant luxury sedans in the show room that all have a specific role and appeal to a different consumer.  The result is that we're selling more Buick sedans than we have in a long time.  In fact, we averaged nearly 10,000 sedan retail sales per month in May, June and July, something we have not done since September 2007.  However, we're not going to sacrifice the vehicle's value to the consumer by using incentives or daily rent to drive sales of one model over another.  At the end of the day, our goal is to bring more people into a Buick showroom and sell more Buick vehicles, which we're doing now with LaCrosse, Regal and Verano.
 
And of course, we're not sitting still.  Verano Turbo launches this fall, and we'll have some other tricks up our sleeves for the other models in the future.

Oh, and I'm not sure what it has to do with Regal, or why it was thrown in at the end of the story about the Regal, but I can tell you that we're seeing a lot of interest in the Encore.  Dealers are clamoring for it, and we have twice as many consumers asking for regular updates for Encore as we did Verano at this time last year.

Comments 

Jay

Another issue with the Regal is that buyers still might equate it with the previous body style. That and the Century were value models and buyers (new/old) will want the current models more like those (Verano/LaCrosse). Then there is the name. Buick has used all new naming with its lineups except this one and it has made potential buyers want to see what they offer and knowing they not offering the old image Buicks (Park Avenue, LeSabre, etc.)

sheth

You cant say the Lacrosse is cannibalizing Regal sales because the Lacrosse was on the market first. Regal sales have been hurt by the cheaper Verano but GM had to know that would happen. Buick's sales are down, but thats due to lower FLEET sales- the Lucerne was still on sale last year and it was a big time fleet car. Buick's retail sales have been up in recent months.

There are a lot of cars that havent sold as well as expected, I find it interesting that this GM product is singled out for analysis, especially when its a product cars.com doesnt much like. My 2011 had excellent fit and finish and the car is not overpriced relative to TSX or S60. I would argue a 3 series is overpriced but due to low lease prices and image it sells in droves. You cannot presume that low sales always been poor pricing. The current Mazda6 is roomy, stylish and well priced and it failed to make a notable dent on the midsize segment. I would also like to know where you found out that "most owners" complain of shoddy fit and finish. Unsurprisingly no reference was offered. What's your source?

The Verano is sold in China and is basically a sedan version of the Opel Astra, the interior is nearly identical to the Astra. The Astra was primarily designed in Europe. So much for that theory. Verano is close in size to Regal and costs less, that explains its success. Cruze was heavily developed in Europe/Asia and it has sold well.

sheth

Buick's "flagging" retail sales are UP 2% this year and 18% last month. Which means the decline in overall sales if from lower rental sales. I'd bet regal's decline is a part of that along with the discontinued Lucerne.

@sheth The Opel Astra sedan is a very different beast than the regular Opel Astra which is more commonly bought and sold throughout Western Europe. It was in fact primarily designed in China, not Germany, with light reengineering happening in North America pertaining to the bigger engine, mainly. It shares almost everything with the Opel Astra, yes, including its body structure, but again the tuning and designing of the model was more geared to Chinese, North American, and Eastern European (particularly Russian) needs, not Western European or German.

Ryan

The Germans took out the 3800 and ruined the name regal family has 4 ranging from 1988-2004 and the all run great with the same engine over 300,000 miles on the '00 '02 why change a perfect engine

cody

@colin b.

the verano shares it's body structure and interior with the astra. it's essentially an astra with a trunk instead of a hatchback/wagon back.

yes, it does have a larger engine for the u.s. market..primarilly to deferentiate it from the cruze and further justify the higher selling price. having been in germany and seen several on the road, i think the astra has more in common with the u.s. cruze in the engine department. i'm not sure how different the suspension tuning is between the astra and u.s. verano, but i doubt it's very substantial.

Kevin

Looking at the LaCrosse and Regal, it looks like they're both built off the same platform as the Opel, just like the Saturn Aura / Chevy Malibu were.

sheth

The Lacrosse is on the long wheelbase version of the Insignia's platform, often called Epsilon 2. The Malibu is on that platform. The Malibu/Aura had a long wheelbase version of the Opel Vectra's platform.

Verano is basically an astra sedan. There may be some minor suspension differences and the Verano has a different gas engine, but overall its basically an astra. The primary engineering for that class of car is done in Europe. Same applies to midsize cars. Asia is responsible for engineering of Sonic and Spark. GM's US operations do the trucks, crossovers, vette and Cadillac cars. Point is the Verano is not really a US creation.

Jay

@Cody
The Buick Verano is manufactured at the General Motors Orion Assembly plant in Orion Township, Michigan.
The Verano shares General Motors' Delta II platform with the Chevrolet Cruze, was co-developed with the Chinese market Buick Excelle GT. The Opel Astra (not Vauxhall) which you are probably referring to was replaced by the Holden Cruze.

@sheth
Yes that's true, but like you also said, none of GM's mainstream (non-luxury) cars are really US creations, are they? The distinction I was trying to make in my post is that the Buick Regal was more or a ported product for the US, but the Buick Verano was designed, tuned and re-engineered for the China and North America market. The 2013 Chevy Malibu was primarily engineered in both Germany and South Korea but even if it was engineered 8,000 miles away from the U.S., no one would say the Malibu wasn't built specifically for U.S. consumption... the same can't be said for the Regal.

Lance

"You cant say the Lacrosse is cannibalizing Regal sales because the Lacrosse was on the market first."

Doesn't matter. People may go in to look at a Regal but walk out buying a Lacrosse based on the price/size/value. If that's the case, it would be "cannibalizing" or taking sales away from the Regal. There could be some vice versa also but it appears that the Lacrosse probably takes more sales from Regal than the other way around.

Regardless of why you think Buicks sales are down overall(Lucerne etc), the fact remains that the Regal's sales are down big time.

And as to why they picked this model to analyse? I'm sure it's a conspiracy, don't you think?? LOL.

sheth

The Cruze/Astra/Verano are all on same platform. The Cruze has a totally different interior and was largely developed in Asia. Verano/Excelle GT are basically sedan versions of Astra, as evidenced by having teh Astra's interior. Vauxhall is just Opel in England. Holden sells some Opel/Chevy models (such as Cruze) in Australia.

Regal was always going to be sold in America, before Saturn was axed this was the next gen Aura. So no, it was not hastily modified to be rushed over for the US. Making it a Buick was easy because it was going to be one in China anyway. That said, there is nothing inherently "Euro" about the Regal aside from its button heavy center stack. The reality is there isnt a huge market for $30k FWD midsize sports sedans as evidenced by the fact that TSX sales arent much better than Regal sales and the VW CC does even worse than Regal. It's just not in a volume niche. It really has little do with where the car was engineered, I assure you most people who test drive or own the car probably have no clue as to its German roots. Perhaps you can identify the ways that the Malibu is far more americanized than the Regal.

@Lance:

No conspiracy, just reality. This is cars.com afterall. I wouldnt expect such a piece about a Honda, Nissan, VW, etc. When you find a similar post about an import brand product let me know. Regal is a failure and its current sales rate, but TSX and CC are not. Why is that? You have all the answers so surely you can explain.

@Sheth

You asked earlier where I was quoting what consumers think. That information is from our Consumer Review section, which you can check out here:
http://www.cars.com/go/crp/consrevwidget.jsp?mode=read&aff=national

We added an official response from GM in the text regarding our story, so make sure to check that out.

CJ

It's not selling as well because people over 60 just aren't buying cars as often. The few I've seen around the drivers appear to be happy and I'm sure it has to do with the Buick name and smaller more manageable size.

sheth

colin:

You shouldve specified that you were basing your comment only on responses on this site. The most said most owners complain of poor fit and finish- thats a very broad statement that isn't supported by comments from a few owners who posted on cars.com. Interestingly, you didnt mention that the overall rating for the 2011 by consumers was 4.6 out of 5 starts and 20/21 people would recommend the vehicle. Guess that didn't fit within the narrative- that isnt exactly a picture of a disatisfied customer base. Interior design is rated at 4.8/5 stars for the 2011 model. I was one of the people who wrote a review and I certainly didnt complain about poor interior fit.

sheth

I perused the reviews and saw little mention of poor panel fit. I was the one who mentioned poor fit around glove box, I didnt see anyone else who said that. It certainly wasn't "most owners", in fact it was a handful at the most who mentioned interior fit at all.

Highdesertcat

CJ, I'm waaaaay over 60 and more people my age are buying different vehicles these days, like Enclave, MKX, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Highlander and Pilot. That's what sells!

Chris H

Having just cross shopped this car I'll tell you exactly why from a sports sedan enthusiast driver from the exact 'conquest' demographic that Buick is after. I drove their sportiest flavor (GS) with the higher power turbo motor. Sticker was $38k and change.

Styling (while always subject to personal opinion) is great. It is what attracted me to the car in the first place. NOTHING from Buick has held my attention EVER.

Handling - fantastic. Not at a 3 Series level, but it definitely has the right European feel. It completely changed my mind about what a Buick can and could be.

Interior - nice design but in some places a little too cheap for the window sticker. In fact part of the dash trim was already coming off and wouldn't snap back into place. Not good with so much at stake. Seats are fantastic however, if you like sporty buckets.

Engine - I have mixed feelings about it. You can always tell it's a four cylinder motor. They did an excellent job of hiding the usual thrash-ness at higher RPMS, but around town it sounds and feels like a turbo four, lag and all. That's not cool.

Transmission - this is the biggest letdown of all. I drove an automatic because a manual 6 speed was unavailable. The transmissions job, even in "sport" mode is to upshift as early as possible, presumably to save gas. It's slow to kickdown but when it finally does, there is significant lag and the engine spools up the turbos jetting you towards the car in front of you. Using the manual mode of the automatic is tricky because the shifter is at an odd uncomfortable angle. This hurts drivability. Likely the manual transmission would solve most of this - still wonder how much turbo lag would exist there though.

So Buick has created a cool sports sedan that has enough demerits that can turn off a true sports sedan buyer, but the sport sedan features will likely turn off traditional Buick buyers as well. The sticker price is aggressively high enough where looking at other luxury brands starts to make a lot of sense.

Mix that all together, and you have poor sales.

M

They are too friggin expensive! Buick has lost their mind with pricing these. At the current price point, it just can't compete with more established rivals.

J

So, Sheth is Nick Richards in disguise?

Lance

@sheth
Why is Regal such a failure? Well, I guess it's because nobody is buying it. There, that was pretty simple. CC is a very niche product and the TSX is suffering from overall poorly recieved styling of the Acura beak. No excuses just fact. Every time a GM brand is down you come in that "they've reduced rental fleet sales or government fleet sales". Convenient I guess but I've never seen any actual data offered.

sheth, your reality is always a conspiracy of some kind against GM. There can be twenty things said positively about a GM vehicle and you zero in on the one bad thing and come up with excuses for it. I've read articles in here that have plenty of negative comments about other brands but I don't see you defending them. But, I can almost guarantee that the first or second post on any reveiw of a GM product will be good ole sheth making excuses and calling foul.

Pauly

Buick spokesman Nick Richards should go work for the Obama administration. Oh wait he kinda does.

Alan

Government Motors = no thanks.

WTF

Don't look now Lance but who just made excuses?

So the Regal isn't for everybody. So what. At least the choice is there for consumers.

WTF

The TSX and CC must be failures as well based on that criteria.

Consumer choice is a good thing.

Lance

My so called excuse on the Acura was that they had styling that most people don't like ala the "acura beak". I wouldn't exactly call that an excuse or any kind of defense at all. If sheth said the Regal didn't sell because there was a major flaw in styling or something I wouldn't call that an excuse either. He always blames it on something other than the vehicle.

I really have no idea but are the CC and the TSX both over 30% less sales this year versus last? Why are they even mentioned in comparison to the Regal if not? Saying a vehicle outsells another is like saying a Camry outsells a Mazda6....no comparison in number of outlets and size of company. Of course a bigger company with three times the outlets will outsell in volume. But I think the article was about the tanking (-34%) of Regal sales ytd versus last year, not the total units sold.

Ben

Problem: Not enough passenger space, no V6 option, to "edgy" for a Buick.

jyd

They're not selling well now for the same reason most GM products weren't selling well before they almost went bankrupt.

Poor quality, too expensive, derivative designs. GM is in no better shape now than they were before the "bailouts". Money wasted but no lesson learned.

Tito M

The VW CC may not be selling well because it is getting a refreash next year maybe?? I don't know.

sheth

@chris:

In fairness, the GS is the sportiest model, I dont think the average potential regal buyer is really going to expect 3 series levels of performance and responsiveness. The car is most similar to the FWD CC, Maxima and TSX.

Pauly:

Good one! So clever and so accurate. GM is owned by Obama, glad you cleared that up.

Lance:

Your last post made no sense at all. We get it, you hate GM products and post something negative about every GM product mentioned on this site. Its ridiculous to make excuses for models like the TSX and CC and then in the same post say the Regal is a failure because "no one" is buying it. Guess less than "no one" is buying the CC. In addition, this being cars.com the majority of the negative stories and comments are about American brands. I dont really feel the need to speak up on reviews of Toyotas, Nissans, Hondas, etc for multiple reasons. One would be I'm generally not that interested in their products, the other would there really isnt much negative said about their products on this site in the first place. This sort of analysis of sales would only be provided for a domestic product like the Regal. Let me know when cars.com analyzes sales of the regal's competitors. I wont hold by breath.

@Tito:

CC was just updated for 2013 MY.

sheth

@lance:

I will try to explain the Regal vs cc vs TSX in terms you can grasp. Those are the sedans that Buick has specifically mentioned as targets for the Regal. The number of outlets is irrelevant. Chevy has far more dealers than Toyota (as does Ford) and yet Camry is #1 selling sedan every year. Import dealers always move more product than domestic dealers, its always been that way. When Acura was outselling Buick a few years back it had many less dealers than Buick just as is the case today. Since Buick has improved its lineup it has been ahead of Acura and this is in spite of the fact that GM shed dealers. I offered little in the way of excuses for Regal sales, if you look at its target competitors its sales are right in the ballpark. All I said is that fleet sales were a factor in its 2011 figures and Buick has cut back on fleet sales. If Buick isnt using crazy incentive to move cars they are obviously more interested in residuals than short term sales goals. A true mark of lack of demand for a model is the presence of high incentives.

Lance

Of course the CC and the TSX are competitors. I don't believe they have had any where near the drop off the Regal has had. We are not talking number of units sold here, we are talking about % dropoff. Is that too hard for you to grasp?

And what does fleet sales for all of Buick have to do with the huge dropoff in Regal sales? Were there that many Regals going to rental? I thought you said it was the Lucerne that was heavy in rental fleets.

JB

I was walking a Buick lot the other day and came upon a beautiful Regal GS turbo. Really looked good until I saw the sticker showing a price of $38k.

I walked away wondering who was going to select that car over a comparably priced BMW 3-Series?

Even if the Buick had more impressive numbers on the track (or on the "options" section of the sticker), who would rather buy the Buick?

Highdesertcat

JB, that is because Buick and GM are desperately trying to convince themselves and the American public that they are still players.

They're not. Buick ceased to be a player a long time ago but does well in China.

In no way can any Buick compete with a BMW, Mercedes, Audi or Lexus in the $38K+ price point.

Buick is not that good and Buick has zero prestige factor. Who wants to be seen in any Buick?

GM should give Buick to their China partnership and have Buicks exported to the US for those few who still buy them.

When my dad was the age I am now, he owned a Buick Park Avenue. But these days old people choose to buy other vehicles, and if it is a Buick it usually is an Enclave, not a Regal.

The Regal doesn't sell well because so very few people want one. Buick has zero appeal.

JB

HDC,

Zero prestige factor is in large part what I was thinking as well. If Buick found a way to market a car that could physically challenge the BMW, they would need to be able to bring it out for less than $30k to avoid the direct comparison. We have seen it work from Kia and Hyundai, who I am sure we would all agree had NO prestige factor just 10 yrs ago. If I would have read that Regal GS sticker as say, $28,900, I would have asked for a test drive.

I believe any car company possessing the necessary resources, can make products that can succeed in the market. Obviously, it's never easy, and Buick is showing just that, despite having the resources.

Highdesertcat

JB, I agree. I happen to think that Buick is a redundant brand for GM in the US. They do well in China -- they should stay there and send the profits home to the US.

IMO what GM needs to do is to divest itself of Buick and GMC and focus on their core brands, Chevrolet and Cadillac. Ford cut Mercury and that helped a lot.

GM is unwilling to do that so we're back to the same song and dance routine.

And should GM at some future date become insolvent once again, the US taxpayers will bail them out again, no matter who is in power in Congress or who resides in the White House.

The US tax payer is on the hook, in for a penny, in for a pound, so to speak.

For those who like to compare and contrast, we should highlight what happened with Chrysler. Look at Chrysler, now a foreign-owned company, go now.

What used to be Chrysler models selling poorly have suddenly become best-sellers like the 300, 200 and Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Maybe we, the people should have dumped GM on some foreign automaker and bribed them to take GM, like we bribed Fiat with $1.3B to take Chrysler.

Maybe if we had done that, the Regal and many more GM products would be better sellers today.

Ultimately it is up to the taxpayers to decide if they want to buy any GM product, even the Regal, or not.

Right now the "or nots" have it.

sheth

Lance:

Sales of the CC are down and sales of TSX are up. I am talking about total unit sales, not simply performance vs last year. The CC is still underperforming the Regal in spite of the slowing of Regal sales. Talking about a decline in a vacuum is pointless. Perhaps this entire niche is shrinking this year. If Regal sales were way down and its competitors were doing well that would be more notable.

Highdesert:

Killing GMC would be stupid, they are the #2 selling brand and trucks are more profitable than cars. There is no sound logic for cutting GMC, especially when you consider most Buick dealers are coupled with GMC. You also makes the mistake of assuming that the regal is representative of the sales of all other GM models. Im sure you have no idea how ANY Of these models actually perform in terms of sales but vehicles like the lambda CUVs, Equinox/Terrain, Camaro, Lacrosse, CTS, SRX and Cruze have been very successful. The Regal is probably one of the least successful new products GM has introduced in the last 3 years. Don't confuse your disdain for GM and the auto bailouts for being knowledgeable about how these vehicles are selling on the market. And Im sure you know CHrysler has done extremely well in terms of marketshare over the last couple of years.

sheth

JB:

Comparing prices without talking about equipment is silly for obvious reasons. First of all the GS starts at $35k, not $38k. Even at $38k its far better equipped than the 3 series at that price point. A 328i with the same level of equipment as a loaded GS is about $10k more. The question is who would buy a REgal that is 10 grand less than a comparable 328i? I would say there are some folks out there. Buicks aren't cheap, they arent competing with Hyundai. A loaded TSX is almost $40k for the record. Do you wonder why the TSX is priced that way when the 3 series can be had for the same price?

sheth

HSD:

Its a shame that you are commenting so much on this topic when you know so little. Did you even bother to read the post? Buick's owner age is coming down and the Regal has younger owners that Buick as a whole. In 2010 and 2011 Buick's sales increased by a substantial margin. They just had their best July in 5 years as noted above. They have been outselling Acura for the last couple of years and they are well ahead of Infiniti and Cadillac in sales. Your information is flat out wrong. I do agree that Buick has zero appeal to folks like yourself who are still talking about the bailout 3 years later. Anyone who buys cars strictly to make a political point is silly in my opinion. YOu dont know anything about Buick or its vehicles or its sales performance, you are simply knocking them because of the bailout. Next time, offer some numbers to back up some of what you're saying.

Highdesertcat

There is no disdain on my part for GM. I divested at the top of the market in 2007/2008. GM made a lot of money for me! I could not enjoy my current lifestyle without GM.

I owned a lot of GM products over the years, including a few used Buicks. Would I buy GM again? Not on your life.

Would I buy Chrysler? You bet! I bought a 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland Summit for the wife (and they ain't cheap).

My point is that in spite of all those "sales" GM is still not a viable, self-sustaining company and may in fact need another bailout again in the future.

This has nothing to do with the past bailout. I'm talking about a future bailout here.

Whatever money GM is making in North America is sucked away by GM's losses elsewhere.

Whatever sales Regal does enjoy doesn't even cover the cost of its R&D, nor does it help pay the bills at the Buick division, let alone GM.

The entire Buick division is a loss center. What carries GM is the Chevrolet line of vehicles. Caddy isn't making any money for them and GMC doesn't pay the bills for GM either.

The question was why the Regal wasn't selling well. The answer is that so few people want to buy them but choose to buy something else instead, regardless of their age and social standing.

Just because the GM fanboys are having a tantrum on this board doesn't suddenly make GM a viable company again, and it does absolutely nothing for Regal sales.

sheth

HSD:

I will restate, you are not well informed. You can either acknowledge that and stop commenting or continue to lie.

1. GM is making money in the US and china, only Europe is doing poorly. Same applies to Ford and other automakers due to Europe's flagging economy
2. GM has like $30B in cash and little debt, they are not headed into bankruptcy. When you have low debt, lots of cash and are making money you are generally seen as doing pretty well.
3. You had no comment on my statements about Buick sales vs Acura so I guess you acknowledge that your assertion that no one is buying Buicks was false.
4. As noted, the Regal is competing in a relatively low volume niche. Its overall numbers arent that high, but the same can be said about its competitors.
5. My opinion of GM or its products is irrelevant with respects to their financial viability. What I say or what you say doesn't matter because its not about opinions. Their balance sheet and profitability makes it clear they are viable. If you cant understand that their prospects of bankruptcy can be easily determined by looking at their financial position than you really know less than I thought. And that's saying something.
6. Lower end vehicles do not make much money in this business. Every time you post you reveal how little you know. Chevy is the largest volume brand so overall they likely contribute the most in profits, but in terms of profits per UNIT Chevy is probably the least profitable GM brand. Trucks and luxury vehicles are the true generators of profits. VW is doing so well financially because of the success of Audi which contributes a huge portion of VW profits in spite of moving a fraction of the volume of VW the brand. GMC most certainly delivers more profits per vehicle than Chevy as does Cadillac. Luxury automakers like BMW and MB deliver far more profits per vehicles sold than the larger mainstream automakers like Ford, Toyota and GM.

Highdesertcat

Sheth, we all know that you are a shill for GM and the UAW. The only liar on this board is you. The crap you come up with is something only you would believe. No one else does.

You are entitled to your POV. Others are entitled to theirs.

Don't try to convince others to change their mind about GM. No one is trying to change your mind about GM.

More people choose not to buy a GM product, including the Regal, than those that do.

The only decent seller GM has is the Silverado and it is a dinosaur. That's why it is being redesigned for 2014.

Hence GM's market share is an astounding 18% where it had been more than 50% at one time.

GM's stock is worth diddly and is artificially kept floating by the Treasury around $20ps. Not too whoopee for the $50B the taxpayers stuck in GM. It should be worth at least $50ps.

I urge your to read articles other than those sponsored by GM and the UAW. I'm not here to re-educate you.

Not everyone shares your views of the automotive world according to Sheth, GM and the UAW.

If you want to believe that the Regal sells well, by all means be my guest! The sales data does not support you.

And that's what it is all about. The name of the game is to sell. If you don't sell, you go bankrupt.

And that has already happened once before in 2009. It will happen again unless GM takes some drastic measures and cuts its losers, like the Regal.

WTF

Somehow it always boils down to petty insults.

sheth

HDC:

The UAW? I said nothing about them. You are getting upset due to your political leanings. My statements are grounded in fact which is why you cant refute them. You say killing GMC is smart and I explained to you that trucks/SUVs are more profitable than non luxury cars. Killing GMC would do nothing to help GM's financial position. You claim GM is headed towars a second bailout but provided absolutely no basis for your claim- that's because the claim has no merit. Their financial condition doesn't show any signs of heading back to bankruptcy.

More people choose not to buy Toyota than do buy Toyota. Same applies to VW and Ford. Of course the MAJORITY of people don't buy GM. If more than 50% of folks are driving anything but a GM product that means the majority chose something else. Not exactly a groundbreaking statement. Silverado is only decent seller? Really? SRX is #2 in its segment. Impala is technically #1 in its segment. Equinox/Terrain are right up there with Escape and CR-V for top sales in that segment. Lacrosse is top seller in its segment. Camaro is top in its segment. Cruze is a strong player in compact segment. Enlave leads amongst 3 row luxury crossovers. You are wrong- again.

I never said the regal sells "well". Don't put words in my mouth, I said its volume is in line with its competitors. Thats a fact.

You say if you don't sell you go bankrupt- GM still has more marketshare than Toyota and Ford and is the top overall seller in the US market. Also top in China. Process that and then tell me more about the prospects of bankruptcy. Gm sells about 8m vehicles a year- right up there with VW and Toyota for the top spot worldwide.

sheth

"The only liar on this board is you. The crap you come up with is something only you would believe. No one else does."

Anyone can review GM's financial statements online and review their standing. Thats not my "POV", that's reality. If you're an intelligent person you can review the fundamentals and come to the conclusion that they are far stronger financially than they have been in a few decades. Same applies to Ford.

Highdesertcat

Yeah, WTF, it's always the same clown on every thread that starts it.

Since I'm an Independent and have voted for candidates from both sides, I remember well the arguments in 2008 about who was for and who was against the bailout of GM and Chrysler.

We dumped Chrysler and it is doing very well now. We held on to GM and we're still nursing this cripple along three years later.

And I also remember people like Sheth telling the world prior its collapse that GM would NEVER go bankrupt. Read the financials!!!! GM is strong!

Glad I listened to MY financial adviser instead of Sheth. If I had listened to the GM fanboys like Sheth and had believed all that horse schitt and held on to all my GM stock I'd be a poor man now.

After GM went bankrupt there was dead silence from the GM fanboys. All that could be heard was a faint "Awwwwwwwwwwwww Sheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeet!" somewhere in the corners of Detroit.

So my take on this situation is that everyone is free to have their own view of the auto industry even if the global sales and financial data forecasts gloom and doom.

There are plenty of other publications that track the global auto industry that do not reflect a rosy picture of GM's future.

GM needs some major changes, and cutting that which is not making money for them should be a good start.

IMO, dumping Buick on China would do wonders for GM. They can always import Buicks to the US like the imports used to do before they became transplants.

WTF

If everyone is entitled to their POV then why respond?

Highdesertcat

Have you read how this sheth character has tried to dress down just about everyone on this thread who commented, including the author?

All the people who chose to comment on this thread can't all be wrong because they don't share sheth's POV.

Ignoring this clown is the worst that can happen to him and you can see it in his comments as they become increasingly more combative and abusive when you ignore him.

I realize this guy is a couple of cans short of a sixpack but there may be other readers who could be fooled into thinking that sheth is an expert at something.

He's not. He's just a keyboard commando that wants to win other readers over to his GM-inspired way of thinking, regardless of what is happening out here in the real world.

If he really knew what he was talking about he would have read the WSJ and other publications that actually follow the industry, and he would have visited other sites like ttac and autoblog where the readership would have cleaned his clock for his ill-informed GM-biased comments.

You're probably right though. I should have ignored him but then the name calling would have just gotten worse and worse like it always does with sheth.

Jack

Car & Driver dope slapped Sheth in front of millions of their subscribers and he still didn't get it. He fits the GM demographic to a t.

sheth

"And I also remember people like Sheth telling the world prior its collapse that GM would NEVER go bankrupt. Read the financials!!!! GM is strong!"

Never made any such statement.

"We dumped Chrysler and it is doing very well now. We held on to GM and we're still nursing this cripple along three years later."

Chrysler and GM are making more money than they have in many years. Chrysler was able to get its smaller loan package paid off but they still aren't healthy enough to go public. With Fiat's current problems they may not go public for a while.

"Glad I listened to MY financial adviser instead of Sheth. If I had listened to the GM fanboys like Sheth and had believed all that horse schitt and held on to all my GM stock I'd be a poor man now."

I made no recommendations on GM stock. I said they arent close to going bankrupt. I asked you back up your assertions that they are headed for another bailout with fact but you haven't done so yet.

"I realize this guy is a couple of cans short of a sixpack but there may be other readers who could be fooled into thinking that sheth is an expert at something."

You haven't been about to refute one single statement I made.

"If he really knew what he was talking about he would have read the WSJ and other publications that actually follow the industry, and he would have visited other sites like ttac and autoblog where the readership would have cleaned his clock for his ill-informed GM-biased comments."

I read autoblog (BTW, they dont really discuss financial matters), MT, C&D, Cnn.money, autonews and whatever other sources that may be out there. Interesting that you accuse me of not reading any notable sources regarding the automotive business but you're the one saying to kill GMC to increase GM's profitability. One of the basic facts of the auto industry is that trucks are more profitable than cars. That's why higher gas prices hurt domestic automakers far more than their foreign counterparts- the domestics are far more reliant on truck sales which decline when gas prices spike.

"I should have ignored him but then the name calling would have just gotten worse and worse like it always does with sheth."

What name did I call you?

sheth

@Jack:

If you read C&D you know that they always respond to legitimate letters that disagree with their results with smart aleck responses. It's what they do, the more more legit the beef, the more likely they are to issue a insolent response that totally ignores the issue raised by the letter writer. Its what they do to everyone- again if you subscribe you know how it works.

Jay

@Everyone that's posted a comment since 8/20, especially sheth
KT has had 10 new blogs since this one. Time to move on to another topic. Regal is old news now...

Jon

I don't know about Regal sales, but I'll tell you this. I used to own a BMW 3 series. Two of them, actually. An '02 and then a 2010. I saw my 2011 Regal on a lot next to the Bimmer dealership here in L.A., looked right over the salesperson's shoulder (at the BMW dealer) and said, excuse me, I'm interested in the vehicle I see on the lot next door.

I now own a 2011 Regal and couldn't be happier. Fully loaded, the same price as the 3-series I was looking at, and it gets attention everywhere I go, even now.

I admittedly do not see many other Regals on the road, and that's absolutely fine with me, but I do know this--all of the Regals that are on the lot at the dealer where I bought mine are always gone with each service visit I make. He's high volume, and his Regals are off the lot in just a matter of months.

A couple of months ago, I was looking at a 2013 model online, at the same dealership. I called to make an appointment, and the day I came in, just a few moments before I arrived, my phone rang to tell me they sold that particular Regal, and it was the last of that color they'd have for a while until they could reorder for me.

I decided to keep my 2011 anyway. But my point is that while I don't see many on the road (and again, I happen to think it's cool that I don't see many on the road), I do know that my dealer is selling them just fine.


I don't think we'll be losing the Regal, or Buick, anytime soon, or even in the remote future. And for the record, I live here in Los Angeles--import world--I'm 34, not 64, and I'm a professor--I don't work for GM or the UAW.

Totally happy with my purchase and will happily buy another Regal if my dealer can keep his lot stocked.

nolepeter

I purchased the Regal because its a stunning car.
I focus on design mainly, and
this car is above the others in its class. The Volvo S60 looks pudgy and not as elegant as the buick

nolepeter

Someone commented " Who would buy a Regal instead of a BMW ?" I would say someone who wnts a more aggressive design...BMWs are so boring. And also, Someone who supports the USA by purchasing American Products and not foreign!

Marc

The Regal is kind of a pricey car. I think selling it as a Cadillac would have been a better idea. All they would have had to do was redesign it from the outside, and improve the interior quality.

michael s giglio

If you are buying/leasing a Regal expecting to get good fuel economy..GOOD LUCK.
My 2012 Regal with a 2.4 ECOTEK 4CYL ENGINE averaged
only 18.8 mpg over 1100 miles of mostly city driving in Florida
For over 2700 miles of highway driving it averaged less than 33 mpg!

HL

I'm pretty happy with my '12 Regal and also a little curious about that not many are seen on the road, too. But to the contrary from the POV as a end user, this is a plus rather than a negative. Who cares!

Chrysler and GM are making more money than they have in many years. Chrysler was able to get its smaller loan package paid off but they still aren't healthy enough to go public. With Fiat's current problems they may not go public for a while.

"Glad I listened to MY financial adviser instead of Sheth. If I had listened to the GM fanboys like Sheth and had believed all that horse schitt and held on to all my GM stock I'd be a poor man now."

Dan

Eventually they will all be OBAMACARS.

just like how it was in the Soviet union. Pieces of Shhhh cars..and good ones only available to the commisar leaders,. Pelosi/reid ring a Bell?

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