The 2013 Buick Regal GS
Patrick Rall's picture

2013 Buick Regal gets standard eAssist, automatic GS option

General Motors has just dropped the details on the 2013 Buick Regal lineup and the biggest changes for the next model year include the addition of an automatic transmission option for the high performance Regal GS and a standard eAssist drivetrain for the base model 2013 Regal.

The Buick Regal previously offered a standard 2.4L 4-cylinder but for the 2013 model year, the Regal comes with a standard 2.4L eAssist engine that offers an EPA rated 36 miles per gallon on the open road. The eAssist system is Buick’s name for a hybrid drive system, with a lithium ion battery powering a small electric motor that assists the 2.4L gasoline engine to improve fuel economy. The 2013 Regal will be the second model in the Buick lineup to offer the standard eAssist engine; following in the shoes of the premium LaCrosse sedan.

Pricing for the 2013 Buick Regal will be announced in the future – perhaps during the 2012 Chicago Auto Show that opens to the media tomorrow morning. The Regal eAssist will be joined by the Regal Turbo and the Regal GS for the 2013 model year.

The other big news for the 2013 Buick Regal lineup is the addition of a new 6-speed automatic transmission for the high performance Regal GS. When introduced, the Regal GS was available only with a 270 horsepower 4-cylinder mated to a 6-speed manual transmission but GM mentioned early on that there would be an automatic transmission in the future and it looks like 2013 will be that future. The new 6-speed automatic is built by Aisin and this new self-shifting transmission has been tuned specifically for the high performance Regal GS.

“With the Regal GS, we made a conscious decision to go against the current trend and give enthusiasts the manual transmission they desire as standard equipment” said Tony DiSalle, U.S. vice president of Buick Marketing. “Adding an automatic simply makes the performance of the GS even more accessible.”

This transmission features driver shift control and when the “GS” performance mode is selected, the new 6-speed auto transmission provides harder, more positive shifts for improved performance. The outcome is the interesting fact that the 2013 Regal GS with the 6-speed automatic transmission dashes from 0-60 in 6.7 seconds – the exact same time turned in by the Regal GS with the traditional 6-speed manual transmission. The main complaint with many automatic transmissions in performance models is that there is a decline in performance compared to the manually shifted models but with the steady progression of the fluid driven automatic transmission technology, vehicles like the Regal GS are no slower with the self shifting transmission. In addition to offering the new automatic transmission at no extra cost, the 2013 Buick Regal GS features the same HiPer Strut front suspension system and Brembo brake system found in the previous model year Regal GS models.

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