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Buick Envision crossover to premiere in China

Tue, 01 Jul 2014 10:15:00 EST

Buick currently offers two crossovers: the compact Encore and the extra-large Enclave, leaving plenty of room to slot a mid-size crossover in between. And that's just what Buick is planning on doing. In China, anyway.
Previewed in the teaser above, Buick's upcoming new crossover is cloaked and nestled in between its aforementioned stablemates-to-be. Set to be unveiled in China sometime later this year, the model has been confirmed to wear the name Envision - at least in that market. That's the name which the concept version wore three years ago, but we're still waiting on word over whether that name will carry over to the US version or whether we should expect something different like Anthem. But we have to admit that Envision fits better in the brand's crossover naming scheme.
Shanghai GM isn't saying much about the Envision in the press release below, aside from it having "dynamic and assertive styling" backed by all-wheel drive and stop/start ignition. The last time Buick offered a mid-size crossover in North America was with the Pontiac Aztek-based Rendezvous that was discontinued seven years ago.

GM recalling 8.4M cars, 8.2M related to ignition problems

Mon, 30 Jun 2014 15:30:00 EST

General Motors today announced a truly massive recall covering some 8.4 million vehicles in North America. Most significantly, 8.2 million examples of the affected vehicles are being called back due to "unintended ignition key rotation," though GM spokesperson Alan Adler tells Autoblog that this issue is not like the infamous Chevy Cobalt ignition switch fiasco.
For the sake of perspective, translated to US population, this total recall figure would equal a car for each resident of New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Montana, Delaware, South Dakota, Alaska, North Dakota, the District of Columbia, Vermont and Wyoming. Combined. Here's how it all breaks down:
7,610,862 vehicles in North America being recalled for unintended ignition key rotation. 6,805,679 are in the United States.

GM announces six new recalls, covering 3.5 million vehicles

Mon, 16 Jun 2014 17:30:00 EST

General Motors has just initiated another crushingly large recall, this time affecting some 3.36 million vehicles built between 2000 and 2014 and sold in the US, Canada and Mexico. Once again, the issue surrounds the cars' ignition switches, which can be kicked out of the run position if they're carrying extra weight or if they experience a "jarring" event. In this particular case, though, GM will modify the keys, rather than the ignition itself.
A four-by-six-millimeter hole will be drilled into the key, which will more safely accommodate the weight of the key ring. As is usually the case, the work will be done free of charge. The recalled vehicles include the 2000 to 2005 Cadillac Deville, 2004 to 2005 Buick Regal LS and GS, 2004 to 2011 Cadillac DTS, 2005 to 2009 Buick Lacrosse, 2006 to 2008 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, 2006 to 2011 Buick Lucerne and 2006 to 2014 Chevrolet Impala. Only the Impala is still in production, and even then, it's only sold to fleet companies.
According to an official statement from GM, there have been eight crashes and six injuries due to this latest issue. As if this isn't a dire enough blow for GM, the company has announced five smaller recalls, covering 165,000 vehicles.

GM recalls 500K Chevy Camaros for ignition-switch defect

Fri, 13 Jun 2014 10:29:00 EST

General Motors issued a recall for more than a half million Chevrolet Camaros on Friday morning because of an ignition-switch safety hazard that mirrors the one at the center of the company's current crisis.
The problem affects Camaro models from the 2010 to 2014 model years. Approximately 464,712 cars are impacted in the United States, and 511,528 overall in North America. GM will alter the Camaro key to a more standard design, and will notify car owners with a recall notice in the mail.
In an announcement, the company said the ignition switches on the Camaros are fundamentally different parts than the older ignition switches found on defective cars that are responsible for killing at least 13 people and causing 54 crashes.

Buick asks design students 'What could a Buick sedan look like in 2030?'

Mon, 09 Jun 2014 16:31:00 EST

When you think of daring concept cars or emotional design-student projects, Buick probably isn't the first brand that comes to mind. It's not for lack of concepts; when General Motors ran down 11 concept-car highlights from Buick's 110-year history, three of them are from the past 15 years, with other experiments in that same timeframe like the Black Hawk, Centieme and Cielo left unmentioned.
But the company still thinks about them even if we don't. It ran a contest for students at Detroit's College for Creative Studies to create a Buick for the year 2030 that would incorporate future materials and transportation needs, and nanotechnology.
Best exterior design went to Sam Kenny for his Neo Classical Buick, Justin Salmon took honors for innovative material use, like having exposed algae on the bodyshell to generate energy, and Namsuk Lee nabbed best overall concept and best interior for his Buick Vision Sedan. You can read more about the design challenge and winners in the press release, and hear students talk about what went into the work in the video below.

2015 Buick Verano offered with six-speed manual after all

Mon, 09 Jun 2014 15:30:00 EST

Good news, boys and girls (well, at least those of you who still like shifting for yourselves). Buick got in touch with us to correct some information that it had mistakenly announced; namely, that the 2015 Verano will lose its optional six-speed manual transmission. Apparently, that announcement was incorrect, and the compact sedan will indeed continue to offer a manual option for 2015, despite what we're certain is a low take rate. Additionally, the Desert Dusk Metallic paint that was said to come as part of an Appearance Package is no longer part of the deal. With that out of the way, we now return you to your regularly scheduled automotive-obsessive broadcast...

2015 Buick Verano gets styling tweak, loses 6-speed manual

Fri, 06 Jun 2014 11:25:00 EST

Well, all good things must come to an end. For 2015, the Buick Verano's experiment with a manual transmission will cease, as the American manufacturer has announced it will discontinue the 6MT in the turbocharged version of its compact sedan. According to Buick, the take rate on the Verano Turbo 6MT was (unsurprisingly) low, leading to its discontinuation.
That's not the only bit of news for the Verano, though. After a few years on the market, Buick has seen fit to refresh the popular sedan. The visual changes aren't huge, really, with subtle tweaks to the headlights and taillights. We'd bargain that the average passer-by wouldn't notice a difference between the two.
The main aesthetic change is a new appearance package, available on the mid-range Convenience and Leather option groups. Unimaginatively called just that - Appearance Package - it offers up a new paint color, Desert Dusk Metallic, as well as a grille treatment and a rear spoiler. The new package is, however, limited to naturally aspirated models.

New Buick Verano testing in Germany

Thu, 29 May 2014 09:31:00 EST

A refresh to Buick's popular Verano sedan appears to be nigh, thanks to these spy photos that show the tweaked four-door testing in Germany.
As with the current Verano, the refreshed model will have a great deal in common with its European platform-mates, the Vauxhall/Opel Astra. Each car rides on General Motors's Delta II platform. Unlike the current car, though, the refreshed model's styling could lean more heavily towards its European roots, if these photos are any indication.
Despite its commonality with the Astra Sedan, the Verano has featured its own unique styling since arriving in the US back in 2011 as a 2012 model, with distinct fascias at both the front and back, as wells its own headlight and taillight designs. The two cars were still rebadged vehicles, but it was more subtle than it will be in 2015, when the refreshed Verano arrives. Astra-like elements are expected to dominate, particularly in regards to the headlights and taillights. That said, trademark Buick styling features will remain, like the waterfall grille. Really, then, the 2016 Verano won't be unlike the Regal - a rebadged Vauxhall/Opel Insignia, aside from a few very small styling details.

GM issues four new recalls, 2.4 million cars affected

Tue, 20 May 2014 11:54:00 EST

General Motors has announced another set of recalls, covering some 2.42 million cars in the United States. For those keeping track, The General has now recalled over 15 million cars worldwide this year due to various issues.
Here's the breakdown for this most recent set of recalls:
1,339,355 - Buick Enclave, Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Acadia models from the 2009 to 2014 model years; Saturn Outlook models from the 2009 to 2010 model years

2014 Chevy Malibu, Buick LaCrosse recalled over brake mix-up

Thu, 08 May 2014 15:43:00 EST

The recall madness over at General Motors isn't letting up anytime soon, as evidenced by this latest call-back of 8,208 Chevrolet Malibu and Buick LaCrosse sedans. For those keeping track, this is the fifth recall that GM has announced in the past two weeks, not to mention the massive ignition-switch issue from earlier this year.
GM issued a statement saying these sedans are being recalled due to "possible reduced braking performance," according to Automotive News. The problem? Rear brake rotors may have accidentally been installed in the front brake assembly. And since both cars use more robust braking systems up front than out back, braking power could be reduced, increasing the risk of a crash.
Automotive News reports that, of the over 8,000 cars being recalled, about 1,700 are currently in the hands of customers, while the others are still in dealer inventory. GM is unaware of any crashes or injuries related to this problem. All of the affected vehicles are from the 2014 model year.