Last summer, Buick announced that they were releasing a new Regal GS with an impressive 310HP and all-wheel drive to help put that power to the ground, and we couldn’t contain our excitement. Could this new GS be the modern day Grand National that we’ve all been waiting for? To find out, we headed down to Atlanta a few weeks ago to put this ferocious Buick to the test.
Buick has been shaking things in recent years as they attempt to shed their “old” image, with more attractive offerings than they are traditionally known for, and going after untapped niches (aka white spaces). The new Regal continues this trend, getting completely revamped for 2018, and ditching the traditional sedan layout for three variants – a hatch (Sportback), a wagon (TourX), and a performance sedan (GS).
We had a chance to drive the 2018 Buick Regal Sportback a few months back, and I found the car to offer a nice balance of comfort, sportiness, and utility. So I couldn’t wait to see how an extra 60 horsepower and a bunch of performance tweaks would transform the car.
In a word.. Impressive! The 2018 Buick Regal GS most definitely brings the heat, with 310HP and 282 lb-ft of torque from its 3.6-liter V6 engine, more aggressive styling front and rear, performance brakes with Brembo front calipers, a sports-tuned suspension with Interactive Drive Control, Recaro-style performance seats, a throaty exhaust, 19″ wheels, a nine-speed automatic (sadly no manual this time around), and AWD.
With all of the other automakers moving to turbocharged engines, we were thrilled to see Buick do the exact opposite with the GS, opting for a large-displacement, naturally-aspirated motor. Power delivery is immediate and linear, with the car rocketing from 0-60mph in a respectable five seconds.
Buick’s Interactive Drive Control system lets you choose between three drive modes: Regular, Sport, and GS. Clicking the ‘Sport’ button increases steering effort, firms up the shocks, and quickens the shifts. And as you would expect, the GS mode dials things up another notch. Naturally, we spent most of the time in GS mode, grinning from ear to ear as we made our way through the hilly switchbacks of Georgia, the car hugging those corners, with tons of grip and no body roll whatsoever.
Visually, Buick did a nice job with the Regal GS, giving it just the right dose of sportiness without overdoing it. There’s a more aggressive front bumper and grill, with that familiar air ducts from the previous generation GS. Out back, the rear fascia and spoiler really work to hide the fact that this is a
hatch Sportback. The red brake calipers hiding behind those 19-inch wheels complete the look.
Step inside, and the first thing you notice are the GS-specific performance seats, which look like they belong in a racecar rather than in a Buick. Not only are these bad boys supportive, but they’re heated and ventilated and come standard with a massage function. The interior also features a standard heated flat-bottom sport steering wheel and GS-specific pedals and sill plates.
The 2018 Regal GS can be equipped with all of the technology bells and whistles you want, keeping drivers entertained (with an 8-inch infotainment screen), connected (with OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi), and safe (with the optional Driver Confidence II package).
Overall, we think Buick knocked it out of the park with the new Regal GS, delivering a confident, spirited, and efficient luxury vehicle that is ready to face off against the competition (Acura, Infiniti, Lincoln, etc) head on. And with a starting price of just $39,990, it undercuts those “premium” brands by a significant margin.
While it’s not quite the Grand National successor that we were hoping for, the Regal GS is one fun ride, and it will have you looking at Buick in a whole new light.
“The cure for the common commute” indeed!
The Best Way To Wash Your Car At Home
I don’t about you, but I care about my car far too much to take it through a machine wash. Not only will you save time and money by washing your car at home, but it just gives you a sense of satisfaction when you see it all shiny and clean afterwards. Here are some tips on how to wash your car at home the right way:
Before getting started, inspect your car for any tar, bugs or overspray. You can find tar and bug removers at most auto parts store, or you can seek out an overspray removal specialist if it is really bad. You also want to avoid washing your car in direct sunlight, as the sun will cause the soap to dry up too fast, leaving behind water spots and streaks.
If you’ve got a garage, wash your car there. Otherwise, find a shady spot to wash your car in, or wait till near the end of the day when the sun isn’t as bright, making sure to keep the car wet at all times until you’re finally ready to dry it completely.
Make sure you’re using a quality car wash soap. I have been using Meguiars Car Wash for years now, and it foams away tough dirt, road grime and contaminants without compromising wax protection. You’ll also want some premium microfiber sponges, along with two buckets – one filled with plain water, the other with soapy water.
So now you’re ready to get started. Just make sure that the doors are shut, all windows closed, and double-check your sunroof if you’ve got one. Because the last thing you want to see when you open your car afterwards are puddles of water inside.
Before washing the car, rinse off the entire car to remove any loose dirt and debris before you apply any soap, so you’re not rubbing dirt into the paint. And remember, keep the body wet from here on out, and avoid spraying water under the hood.
Once your car has been completely rinsed off, soak your sponge in the soapy bucket, and start washing from the top of your vehicle, working your way down. You’ll want to soap up the car with the straight line technique for the best results. Don’t use circular motions because they will cause swirl marks. Also, don’t apply pressure while wiping the car.
When you are completely done washing the car, start rinsing off the soap from the top of the car down. Afterwards, dry off the car, using multiple towels for maximum efficiency. If it has been awhile since you last waxed/polished your car, now might be a good time to do so.
But if water is still beading up on the paint and the car is looking nice and shiny, call it a day and congratulate yourself on a job well done.
2020 Lexus RC F Track Edition To Debut At Detroit Auto Show
We’ve been fans of the Lexus RC F since it was first released back in 2015, but often wondered why it didn’t enjoy the same success as the competition, like the BMW M4 and others.
Truth be told, while the RC F was a great car to rip around town in (with a monster 5.0-liter V8 engine that puts out 467 horsepower and rockets from 0-60 in 4.3 seconds), it’s not nearly as much fun on the track, with softer handling and a lot of weight to hustle around.
But with the introduction of the 2020 Lexus RC F Track Edition, which makes its debut next month at the Detroit Auto Show. As the name suggests, this will be a more track-focused RC F variant, with Lexus promising to deliver “a higher degree of F.”
As you can see from this teaser photo, the Lexus RC F Track Edition features a massive carbon fiber wing, because downforce. To save even more weight, the hood, roof, front splitter, rear diffuser, and side skirts could all be done in carbon fiber as well.
We fully expect to see an increase in power to somewhere in the low 500HP range, with Robert Carter, executive vice president of sales for Toyota Motor North America, stating that “with the exception of LFA, this is the fastest, most powerful vehicle we’ve ever built.”
Bigger brakes and a set of 20-inch lightweight wheels wrapped in ultra-high-performance tires would make sense as well, improving the RC F’s braking performance and lateral grip.
For now, this is all just speculation, and we’ll have to wait until January 14th to find out all the juicy details. The Lexus RC F Track Edition is expected to be produced in limited numbers, so if you want one, you’re going to have to act fast!
Five Of The Best Superbikes On The Market Today
Creating a list of just five superbikes is a mammoth chore. Even picking the top 10 superbikes takes a lot of work, head-scratching and hours of YouTube research. But after all that, we have whittled down the list to five of the best superbikes on the market today.
Admittedly, some of them you need a heavy wallet and the right connections to track down, but that goes to show how brilliantly these bikes have been built.
1) Honda RC213V-S
The Honda RC213V-S is probably as close to a MotoGP bike as you’ll find. Brand new, it would have set you back a teeth-clenching $184,000, which is some pretty serious money for a bike. The limited production numbers means that price is only going up.. and people who’ve ridden the bike say it’s worth every penny of the price. The chassis is hand-fabricated and the whole thing weighs just 375 pounds. It’s a superb bike as is, but the Sports Kit package takes it to a whole other level, blowing away the competition. If what you’re after is basically a MotoGP bike with lights, then the Sports Kit version is for you.
2) MV Agusta F4CC
The MV Agusta F4CC might be a little difficult to track down, seeing that only 100 bikes were made. And it came with a whopping $120,000 price tag to boot. Almost everything on this bike is limited edition, with materials borrowed from the aero industry and supercars. Each F4CC has its unique serial number printed on a platinum plaque, and the owner gets a leather jacket to match. With a 200-horsepower 4-cylinder engine, a top speed of 195 mph, and plenty of carbon fiber and high-end tech, this bike really does deserve to be called super.
3) Suzuki GSX-R1000 K5/K6
Many owners of this bike caution against using it on the road simply because it’s so fast. One of the only downsides is you will probably end up with a good collection of speeding tickets if you’re not constantly checking your speed. It’s unlikely, and a shame, that bikes aren’t made as light these days, the lightweight (365lbs) paired with the superb engine means this is still one of the best superbikes out there.
4) KTM 1290 Superduke R
The KTM 1290 Superduke R is known for its crazy power, a fact fully acknowledged by KTM in the nickname they gave it – ‘The Beast’. A few laps around a track and you’ll know exactly why this bike earned its nickname. It’s pure, raw and straight to the point, with a monster 177HP on tap. Thankfully, the super high-tech electronics work their magic to keep the two wheels firmly planted on the road. If you want one, it’ll set you back around $18K.
5) Aprilia RSV4 RF
Riding most superbikes, you sacrifice the gadgets and gizmos for the pure power. But with the Aprilia RSV4 RF, you get the best of both worlds. In corners, it sticks to the road and seems to know where to go before you do. In 2016, the RSV4 RF was unveiled to comply with, or more accurately, take advantage of the new rules restricting the number of modifications allowed on superbikes. The RSV4 RF has smarter electronics, improved handling, is lighter, and more importantly, packs a bigger punch.
Sure, there are some truly awesome bikes that didn’t make this list – like the Ducati 1299 Superleggera. But the ones featured here really are monsters on the track and well worth seeking out if you are planning (or attending) a race day soon.