Buick expands its Sport Touring trim to the LaCrosse, Regal, and Verano

Buick is expanding the Sport Touring trim level recently introduced for the Encore to its lineup of sedans. The three sedans get similar styling changes to the subcompact crossover, but that’s all.

The 2016 Buick LaCrosse, Regal, and Verano Sport Touring all get model-specific 18-inch wheels with machined faces and black “pockets,” plus a rear spoiler. Despite Buick’s claim to be emphasizing “design-focused choices,” it’ll take an eagle eye to spot the difference between these and run-of-the-mill Buicks.

The Buick sedans are unchanged mechanically for 2016, which means they feature the same powertrain lineups. For the LaCrosse, that means either a mild-hybrid system with a 2.4-liter, four-cylinder engine and electric motor and 182 horsepower, or a 3.6-liter V6 with 264 hp and 306 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission is the only option. Front-wheel drive is standard; all-wheel drive is optional with the V6.

The Regal gets the same mild-hybrid system as the LaCrosse, as well as a standalone 2.4-liter four that produces the same 182 hp, plus 172 lb-ft of torque. A 2.0-liter turbocharged four-banger is also available, with 259 horsepower and 295 lb-ft. A six-speed automatic and front-wheel drive are standard, with all-wheel drive optional. A six-speed manual is also offered on the sporty GS model.

Completing the Buick sedan triad is the compact Verano, which is starting to look a little older now that its sibling, the Chevrolet Cruze, has moved on to a new platform. The Verano’s standard engine is a 2.4-liter four-cylinder with 180 horsepower and 171 lb-ft of torque, but there’s also a 2.0-liter turbo four with 250 horsepower and 260 lb-ft. Six-speed manual and automatic transmissions are both available, with front-wheel drive.

Like most General Motors models, the LaCrosse, Regal, and Verano come standard with OnStar 4G LTE and a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot that can support up to seven devices. A separate data plan is required for service, though. The LaCrosse and Regal will also get Apple CarPlay at launch, with Android Auto following sometime before the end of the 2016 model year.

The 2016 Buick Sport Touring models go on sale this fall.

Cars

Nissan and Italdesign’s GT-R50 concept will become a $1.1 million reality

The Nissan GT-R50 is a customized sports car built to celebrate the 50th anniversaries of both the GT-R and design firm Italdesign. Underneath the sleek bodywork sits a 710-horsepower engine fortified with race car components.
News

The 2020 Chevrolet Silverado HD boasts monstrous torque, intimidating front end

Chevrolet has released the first official images of the new 2020 Silverado HD. The big-bodied truck stands out from the Silverado 1500 with a polarizing design that customers will either love or hate.
Smart Home

Is old-school Airstream finally embracing smart home technology?

Airstream's vintage-looking trailers have a huge audience but its 2019 Classic camping trailers are getting a modern upgrade with the addition of app-controlled smart home technology to bring modern convenience online.
Cars

Did that car just wink at you? Daimler previews car-to-pedestrian signals

Eager to show off progress with autonomous cars and perhaps do some consumer softening as well, Daimler and Bosch previewed car-to-pedestrian communications. A sensor-loaded Mercedes S appears to wink to acknowledge a pedestrian's presence.
Cars

Uber is about to restart self-driving car tests but on a reduced scale

Uber is reported to be on the verge of restarting its autonomous-car test program. The company halted it in March 2018 following a fatal accident involving one of its vehicles, but its cars could be back on the road within weeks.
Cars

Bosch is developing a Rosetta Stone for autonomous and connected cars

Bosch and start-up Veniam want to create a common language that autonomous and connected cars can use. The two firms have developed a connectivity unit that transcends the national boundaries of technology.
Product Review

Audi built an electric SUV for buyers who want gasoline-free to mean stress-free

We finally got to spend time behind the wheel of the electric 2019 Audi E-Tron bustling cities and arid desert of the United Arab Emirates to see how it compares with Jaguar and Tesla's competitors.
Cars

Aston Martin bets classic car owners will choose volts over carburetors

Aston Martin has converted one of its most sought-after classic models to run on electricity instead of gasoline. The roadster uses electric components sourced from the upcoming Rapide E sedan.
Cars

Volkswagen may be planning a tougher challenge for its all-electric I.D. R

The Volkswagen I.D. R electric race car may head to the Nürburgring in 2019 for a lap-record attempt, according to a new report. Volkswagen will reportedly aim to set the quickest lap time ever by an electric car.
Cars

600-hp, $155K Polestar 1 is the alluring Volvo coupe you’ve been waiting for

Volvo's return to the coupe segment just took an interesting turn: the model will join the Polestar lineup, and it will get a 600-hp plug-in hybrid powertrain. The Polestar 1 will be built in China starting in 2019.
Cars

The Aston Martin Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake is the sexiest wagon ever

Aston Martin has revealed new photos of the limited-production Vanquish Zagato Shooting Brake. The Vanquish Zagato line now includes the Shooting Brake, Coupe, Volante, and Speedster, each with bespoke styling.
Cars

Ford’s new Shelby GT500 Mustang will have 3D-printed brake parts

Ford's new $45 million Advanced Manufacturing Center will focus on emerging technologies, including 3D printing. One of the staff's first jobs is to print parts for the 700-horsepower Shelby GT500 Mustang.
Mobile

Car-branded phones need to make a U-turn if they ever want to impress

Your car and your smartphone are becoming one, yet smartphones branded or co-created by car companies are a problem. We look at the history, some examples of the best and worst, then share hopes for the future.
News

World’s fastest electric race car to display at Petersen Museum

The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak race car smashed the all-time record at the hill climb for which it was named. The all-electric VW record-holder will be on display at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles until February 1, 2019.