Buick Unveils Excelle GT Compact Sedan In China, Coming To U.S. Next Year4
Say hello to the Buick Excelle GT, a new model for the Chinese market that will go on sale within the next few months. This is, of course, the same Delta II-based vehicle that was caught before its official unveiling (twice!), shown in patent filings, and briefly previewed last year at the 2009 Los Angeles Auto Show.
The Chinese model will be powered by a base 1.8-liter ECOTEC four-cylinder making 138 hp or a turbocharged 1.6-liter ECOTEC good for 181 hp. When the model arrives in the U.S. early next year – most likely under the Verano nameplate – we expect the base powerplant to be the 1.6-liter instead of the weaker 1.8. The Excelle GT will complement its hatch brother, the Excelle XT in the Chinese market.
Whether the hatch will make its way to U.S. soil is currently unknown, but the sedan version gives us a preview of the Opel Astra sedan that has yet to be revealed.
Click past the break for more pictures![Source: Inside Line]
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Please tell me GM is not up to it’s old trick of repackaging Chevy’s to try to sell in the other brands. That’s what killed Pontiac and it dilutes the Chevy brand too. They need to keep the brands distinctive. I understand that Buick has a big presence in China and it may be needed there but they should not import this small Buick to the US to compete with the Cruze. No one wants a small Buick in this country.
But if (when?) this small Buick sedan makes its way over to the US, it would not compete with the Cruze.
That’s the whole point of the “new” Buick – it’s soft luxury: not focused on performance, but rather comfort, style, and luxury. Like most of Lexus. There’s an entire market out there that doesn’t care about 0-60 times, hp, torque, or quarter mile times. Instead, this market just wants a luxurious and comfortable car. That’s the whole point of this small Buick.
And that’s not to mention that – being a luxury vehicle – it will be priced at about $23 thousand base – 6k higher than the base Cruze.
I think it may do fairly well, old peopl 50+ look for economic cars sometimes and instead of getting a corolla or something too expensive may opt for something theyre familiar with a Buick.
Interesting point; but I don’t think the target market of the Verano includes 50+ year olds. Don’t get me wrong, this would be an excellent vehicle for that set of the crowd as well, but I think of Verano car as being the polar opposite alternative to entry level (compact) luxury sedans such as the 3 Series, C Class, A4, Lexus IS, Infiinti G, Acura TSX, Vovlo S60, etc. Whereas every single one of those cars tries to be a 3 series (sports-oriented and spirited driving), the Verano can be the soft-luxury alternative that doesn’t focus on power, trading that for increased comfort and road isolation. Think Lexus LS in a small Buick car…
If they attempt to compete with the 3 series or any of the vehicles above, they’re gonna get creamed. If they attempt to compete with Corolla, Civic, Focus, etc., they would be competing with themselves since the Chevy Cruze already offers a better alternative to those models. So the only way to compete is to redefine the compact luxury space with a completely different vehicle. Let’s see if that’s actually what will happen here.