With Buick a strong powerhouse in terms of sales for GM’s China operations, it is no secret that the company aims to maintain its strong grip on the Chinese market by unveiling an updated version of its Verano sedan (known in China as the “Wei Lang.”)
Regardless of what you like to call this latest iteration of Buick’s entry level sedan, the exterior styling promises to channel influence from the Riviera and Avenir concept cars though the lone teaser image that Buick released does make finding the resemblance somewhat difficult. It does reveal however that the upcoming Verano will receive slightly tweaked tail lights as well as new body creases that mirror those seen on the bigger Regal sedan. While this is certainly a change from the current Verano (this author owns a 2013 Verano Turbo) it appears that GM engineers still did not equip the trunk with a lid mounted release button which will force owners to continue either using the keyfob or the trunk release button in the cabin to get it open an odd omission especially in a car that can surpass $30,000 fully equipped.
Buick did not release any interior images with today’s release, but look for a significant improvement in overall ergonomics especially with the center stack where less buttons as well as a reworked touchscreen based infotainment system aim to make the cabin look more upscale while also reducing driver frustration at the same time. In addition revised interior materials, as well as a fresh design theme should allow the car to stand out better against rivals such as the Audi A3, Mercedes CLA, as well as the BMW 2-Series.
Buick was also mum on what performance hardware will motivate the car only promising that the new model meets benchmarks for “performance, safety, and comfort.” However, as is the case with the current Verano/Excelle, look for the final engine offering to change depending on what market it is being sold in with U.S. versions most likely being equipped with engines borrowed from the next generation Cruze. It is unclear if the Verano Turbo would still be offered with this update, but we hope it will feature bolder styling as well as a more performance oriented interior to make it stand out from mainstream Verano variants.
Buick will be unveiling the full details of the Wei Lang at a special media event on April 19th with more information expected to slowly trickle out over the next few days. Stay tuned to Autoinfoquest for the latest developments on the upcoming Verano/Wei Lang as the become available.