2012 Buick Verano Luxury Sedan Review

The all-new 2012 Buick Verano compact luxury sedan, the brand’s third new model in the past two years and first in the compact luxury segment, will be revealed at the North American International Auto Show. Buick Verano goes on sale in the fourth quarter of 2011, the latest model in a product renaissance that began with the Enclave and continued with the Buick LaCrosse and Buick Regal. Like them, Buick Verano is distinguished by luxury and technology, including 10 standard air bags, an available heated steering wheel and a next-generation radio system with OnStar-powered connectivity that enables seamless communication between the Buick Verano and the driver’s smart phone. An Ecotec 2.4L and six-speed automatic powertrain combination is standard and delivers an estimated 177 horsepower (132 kW) and 170 lb.-ft. torque (230 Nm), 0-60 mph performance of 8.0 seconds and an estimated 31 mpg on the highway. A 2.0L turbo engine will be offered in the future.

Verano expands our lineup, continues Buick’s momentum and gives us a great opportunity to attract a new generation of customers with a product that delivers on their expectations for design, performance and technology,” said John Schwegman, vice president of Buick marketing. “It is a smart choice that delivers unexpected luxury in a compact sedan and it will compete head-to-head with competitors from Audi and Lexus.

Verano carries the modern Buick design cues introduced on the Enclave and interpreted for the
LaCrosse and Regal. They include a bold, detailed black chrome waterfall grille, prominent blue
translucent projector beam headlamps, portholes, chrome accents, premium wheels and a
tailored body-to-wheel relationship. An arching roofline connects a steeply raked windshield and
fast-sloping rear pillars to give the car a sporty profile that’s complemented by large, 17-inch
standard multi-spoke forged alloy sterling silver-finish wheels. Two premium 18-inch wheel
designs are available. “Verano translates Buick’s sculptural design language in a new size, with all the refinement and attention to detail pioneered by the Enclave and LaCrosse,” said Dave Lyon, design director. “Beyond all that, it’s simply a great-looking car. It has great proportions and sophisticated details that will look great for years to come.” 

Unique to Buick Verano are translucent blue projector-beam headlamps, which give the car a
distinctive, upscale appearance. A palette of rich colors enhances the premium look, including
Claret Red Tintcoat and White Diamond Tricoat. Other exterior color choices include Black,
Olympic White, Switchblade Silver Metallic, Cyber Gray Metallic and Mocha Bronze Metallic.

Complementing Buick Verano’s precisely crafted, premium-accented exterior is an interior marked by exceptional seat comfort and support, as well as premium soft-touch materials, including ambient lighting inspired by the LaCrosse. Metallic and wood trims and warm ambient lighting make the cabin an inviting environment. Neutral and medium titanium colors are offered on interiors with leatherette/fabric seating surfaces, while ebony, cashmere and a unique Choccachino color are offered on the available leather-trimmed interiors. Buick Verano uses the same premium leather material for the seats that is used on the LaCrosse. The instrument panel blends with an integrated center stack that houses the infotainment display, climate controls and radio controls. Flush-mounted components within the center stack
have a gap tolerance of less than 1 mm, while the instrument panel to door panel gaps are less
than 5 mm. Those tolerances are among the best in class.

Buick Verano’s headliner cover is made of a knit material that is one of five layers of an acoustically designed headliner to help quiet the passenger compartment. The interior pillar and other moldings are color- and grain-matched to the headliner. Additional interior standard and available features include: Push-button engine start, Dual-zone climate control with standard air conditioning (automatic climate control available), Heated steering wheel, Heated leather appointed seating, Electronic parking brake, Console armrest that slides and locks, Power windows with express up/down in the front and express down in the rear, Steering wheel radio controls and Uplevel front and rear reading lamps. The Buick Verano’s heated steering wheel and heated seats are linked with the remote start feature. In temperatures lower than 45 F (7 C), the steering wheel heater and seat heaters automatically activate.

A power-dense Ecotec 2.4L four-cylinder, with dual-overhead camshafts, variable valve timing and E85 capability, is the standard engine in the Buick Verano. It produces an estimated 177 horsepower (132 kW) and 170 lb.-ft. of torque (230 Nm). Direct injection technology helps it produce more power with less fuel and lower emissions including up to 25-percent reduced hydrocarbon emissions when compared with a multi-point fuel injection engine. The engine is matched with a six-speed automatic transmission that helps the Buick Verano deliver an estimated 31 mpg on the highway. Electric power steering and a more efficient transmission design help optimize fuel economy. The front suspension uses decoupled MacPherson struts for better isolation, providing greater separation of extreme road conditions large potholes, for example from everyday driving conditions. At the rear, a technically advanced Watts Z-link design helps center the rear axle during cornering, which helps keep the Buick Verano’s handling responses symmetrical on both lefthand and right-hand turns. The linkage’s capability to center the axle during cornering delivers a more-balanced driving experience because the rear suspension better follows the lead of the front suspension.

The Z-link design is also lighter and requires less space than a typical fully independent rear suspension. The lower weight contributes to Verano’s fuel economy, while the compact design
enables more trunk space. Steering inputs are executed by an electric power steering system, featuring a dual-pinion rack. Electric powering steering helps save fuel because it removes the conventional power steering pump from the engine’s driven accessories. Engineers tuned the speed-sensitive system to provide quick, direct reaction to steering actions and a strong on-center feel. The system has a ratio of 15.5:1 and requires only slightly more than two turns, lock to lock. Stopping power is handled by a four-wheel disc brake system with standard anti-lock and electronic brake force distribution, as well as StabiliTrak electronic stability control with traction control.


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