Consumer Reports has drunk the American Kool-Aid.
The magazine, influential among car shoppers who commonly consult its ratings and recommendations, has made a decision that doesn’t make any sense.
I’m not saying car shoppers should dismiss the magazine’s advice, but I will say, on this topic, mine is better.
Sports sedans are meant to be comfortable, luxurious and, by definition, sporty. Sporty cars should be rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive and built to thrill and perform in any situation.
After yesterday and now today, it may seem like I have something against Buick. I don’t, but I sure don’t consider it a sports sedan brand, because it builds only front-wheel-drive cars. Consumer Reports says the:
Regal beat the Volvo S60 in a head-to-head road test. Ultimately, the Regal wound up finishing just one point shy of the class-leading BMW 328i and tied the Mercedes-Benz C250 for second place in the organization’s overall ratings of upscale sport sedans—while costing thousands less.
Of course it costs thousands less. The corner latte costs less than Starbucks, laminate floors cost less than hardwoods, and Buicks cost less than BMWs. That’s just the way of the world.
The Buick gets high marks in comfort, interior quality and handling, but it’ll never outperform the BMW. For Consumer Reports to suggest that the Regal is a better buy than a 3 Series or C-Class is to misunderstand what German cars are supposed to do.
While a buyer might get more bang for their buck with a Regal as far as features go, they won’t get the German engineering and driving experience of a BMW. If shoppers are looking to get the benefits of a BMW at a lower price, the only way to do so is with a used BMW.
Instead of a new BMW, would you rather have a used BMW or a new Buick?