Faceoff: 2012 Buick Regal GS vs. Acura TSX V6
Prejudices get pushed aside as Acura and Buick try to woo entry-level luxury sport sedan buyers
The idea of comparing any Acura against a Buick may seem laughable. Stereotypes would have you believe that Buicks are luxury-first floatmobiles, designed for your Great Aunt to get to church on Sunday with no fuss. Acura, on the other hand, is Honda's attempt at taking on more sporting rides from Europe. Yet in a surprising role-reversal, the Japanese TSX and American Regal sedans are more alike than you may think.
In Europe — a continent this pair of midsize family sedans were designed for — the TSX is sold as a Honda Accord, while the Regal wears Opel Insignia branding (think of it as a Chevy for Europeans before Chevrolet set up shop there). Here in Canada, though, both are sold in the ultra-competitive, entry-level luxury sport sedan segment, a class virtually invented by the BMW 3 Series in the 1980s.
But unlike the BMW, or just about any other car in the segment, the Buick and Acura are front-wheel-drive only, even in top-spec trim. Our Acura is powered by a Buick-sounding 3.5-litre V6, while the Buick gets a distinctively Japanese-sounding 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo. But can either cut the mustard as a true driver's car?