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Just ahead of the Detroit Auto Show, Buick has decided to give us the goods on a pre-production (or concept) high-performance version of the new Regal. Called the Regal GS Show Car, it's goal is to see if there really is a market for such a model in the U.S.

We have to say we're a little disappointed… and confused. Based on the Opel Insignia, instead of that car's turbocharged 2.8-liter V6 engine and 325-hp, this Regal GS Show Car uses a high-output version of the 2.0-liter Ecotec 4-cylinder engine that will normally be offered in the Regal, with 220-hp and 258 ft-lbs of torque. In this car, says GM, the same engine will produce 255-hp and 295 ft-lbs of torque - significantly less than the high-performance Opel model.

What has us confused is that at a live showing of the car, under the hood there is no such 2.0-liter Ecotec motor, but the Opel Insignia OPC's 325-hp mill. Sadly, GM probably just didn't bother to swap engines as this show car likely started its life as an Insignia and was just rebadged.

In other words, expect the Turbo 2.0-liter in the production version of this car, which hasn't been confirmed yet, but is most certainly coming.

Still, we can't really complain too much about the power ratings and Buick says the Regal GS will hit 60 mph in under six seconds! It also gets a six-speed manual transmission, AWD, 20-inch wheels with low profile rubber, four-pot Brembo brakes and a rear electronic limited slip differential! And to make the driving experience even more dynamic it features Buick's new Interactive Drive Control System (IDCS), which will be offered on the CXL models, letting the driver adjust suspension settings, throttle response, shift points (automatic only) and steering sensitivity by selecting one of three driving modes: Normal, Sport and GS.

And along with a sporty exterior, the Regal GS has an amazing interior, including some highly-bolstered Recaro seats.

We'll be sure to bring you more on this car with live coverage of the Detroit Auto Show starting January 1th.

More: Detroit Preview: Buick Regal GS Show Car Unveiled With 255-hp, 295 ft-lbs of Torque on AutoGuide.com
 
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