With General Motors set to delve into smaller, more fuel efficient vehicle segments following its restructuring, evidence of this change has emerged with an all-new small sedan prototype spied near the Nurburgring.
Revealed as the new Buick Excelle, it will slot below the mid-size Lacrosse sedan in both size and price mainly for the US and Chinese markets when it launches sometime in 2012.
The Excelle will use GM’s new Delta II platform which also underpins the highly anticipated Holden Cruze and new-generation Opel Astra.
It will likely share its powertrain options with its more mainstream siblings, with front-wheel-drive variants set to gain a 1.8-litre petrol engine that produces 105kW and 176Nm.
The 1.6-litre petrol engine from the Cruze could also find its way into the range, although this is less likely as the Buick version will compete in a more premium segment.
There is also a possibility the new Buick Excelle could be sold in Europe under the Opel brand, in which case it would receive the Cruze’s 2.0-litre diesel engine.