Before I hopped into test-driving the Buick Verano for a week-long review, I had to let go of the notion that this was a car from the brand plagued with being the car for the elderly. Having driven the Buick LaCrosse and the new Enclave, I knew that today’s Buick vehicles are nothing like the ones from the past. Today’s Buicks are firmer, smoother and have a broader scope.
When I first heard that Buick was working on a compact sedan based on a Chevrolet Cruze, I was a bit taken aback. Of course, the reason behind the Verano’s existence is to grab the attention of young affluent crowd to the brand. But could the Verano really offer an alternative to its other luxury competitors including the Lexus IS or the Acura TSX? Let’s find out.
2012 Buick Verano Specifications:
- Style: Sedan.
- Seating Capacity: 5.
- Base Price: $22,585.
- Price as Tested: $27,645.
- Engine: 2.4L 4-cylinder – 180-hp at 6,700 rpm and 171 lb-ft of torque.
- Transmission: 6-speed automatic; 6-speed manual.
- 0 to 60 mph: 8.2 seconds.
- Top Speed: 118 mph.
- Curb Weight: 3,300 lbs.
- Fuel-economy: 21/32 mpg (city/highway).
On the outside, the 2012 Buick Verano basically carries over most of the sheet metal from the Opel Astra sedan offered in Europe. Sitting on a wheelbase that measures 105.7 inches with a length of 183.9 inches, a width of 71.4 and a height of 58.4, the Buick Verano is just a tad bit bigger here and there when compared to the body of the Cruze.
Styling wise, the Buick Verano doesn’t take your breath away, but it’s something that wouldn’t make you feel insignificant when cruising around town. It has a nice elegant stance with Buick’s signature overuse of chrome.
What about the shoes? The Buick Verano rides on standard 18-inch forged alloy silver-finish wheels but buyers can opt for premium 18-inch forged alloy, split-spoke wheels in Manoogian Silver finish the 1ST models.
Inside, the 2012 Buick Verano is nothing short of impressive. The baby Buick offers exceptionally comfortable seats and a luxurious feel with premium soft-touch materials. The Verano also features Buick’s QuietTuning technology, which is designed to block sound and eliminate vibrations in the cabin.
The baby Buick offers exceptionally comfortable seats and a luxurious feel with premium soft-touch materials.
Standard and optional interior features on the Verano include push-button start, dual-zone climate control, 6-way power driver seat, heated leather steering wheel, heated seats and steering wheel audio controls. Standard technological features include Bluetooth, SiriusXM radio, USB iPod connectivity, rearview camera, and Buick’s IntelliLink infotainment system, which integrates Pandora and Stitcher and is controlled through a 7-inch LED high-res touchscreen. Navigation and a Bose audio system are available as an option.
For a car of this size, the Verano rides very comfortably and leaves you feeling confident when zipping in and out of traffic
0 to 60 mph takes a long 8.2 seconds with a top speed of 118 mph – so yes, the Buick Verano is by no means a sports sedan and it isn’t really trying to be. If you’re looking for a compact luxury car with a smooth ride and one that just glides over potholes, the Verano will definitely deliver.
EPA estimated fuel-economy comes in at 21/32 mpg (city/highway). Based on 45% highway, 55% city driving, 15,000 annual miles and current fuel prices, the annual fuel-cost on the Verano comes in at $2,250.
So is the Buick Verano a variable option in the compact luxury sedan segment. Definitely, yes – especially when you consider the massive list of standard features with a starting price tag of just $22,585.
The cars that it competes with (or cars that Buick is gunning after) start over the $30,000 mark. Even the top-end 2012 Buick Verano with all the bells and whistles starts at $25,965. Will the young affluent crowd rush into to dealerships to buy one? I’m going to leave that one up to Buick’s marketing time.
All Photos Copyright egmCarTech © Omar Rana.
- By: Omar Rana