Buick Unveils Radical Riviera Plug-In Hybrid Concept in China

5 years ago by Eric Loveday 5

Buick Riviera Plug-In Hybrid Concept

Buick Riviera Plug-In Hybrid Concept

2007 Version of Buick Riviera Concept

2007 Version of Buick Riviera Concept

On the eve of the opening of the 2013 Shanghai Motor Show, Buick wheeled out its dramatic Riviera plug-in hybrid concept vehicle.

Buick describes the Riviera as a design exercise that hints at the future direction of the automaker.  The exterior styling is claimed to be inspired by water, which carries right on through to Buick’s traditional “waterfall” front grille.

The Riviera name is revived here for the second time (see image of 2007 Buick Riviera concept to your right) since it went out of production in 1999.

Buick was short on details for the Riviera concept, but we do know it’s powered by General Motor’s so-called dual-mode wireless plug-in hybrid electric vehicle propulsion system, or W-PHEV as GM says for short.

The Riviera feature wireless charging capability, but also sports the more traditional cord setup for users interesting in plugging in.

Other electronic gadgets include 10 high-resolution cameras, 18 micro sensors for image and distance monitoring of objects, a holographic image display on the windshield, 4G LTE service, night-view assist, eagle view, full-range adaptive cruise control and an autopilot system.

Obviously, the Riviera reeks concept vehicle, but Buick says it will inspire a future offering, possibly in two-door from, to be sold in China and maybe even the US.

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5 responses to "Buick Unveils Radical Riviera Plug-In Hybrid Concept in China"

  1. ClarksonCote says:

    I feel like GM business arms keep releasing concepts in China that would be wildly well received in the US, but aren’t even mentioned here. I wonder why?

    The other example I’m thinking of from the past, in addition to this article today, is the Chevy MPV5.

    1. James says:

      I agree a MPV5 ( with smoother lines ) would be very well recieved in
      America – why it was shown in Shanghai and not here? Perhaps because
      back then there was a lot of talk of the possibilities of building Volt in China
      for markets on that side of the world….

      Everyone scratches their heads as to why GM hasn’t used the Orlando
      with Cruze underpinnings to introduce a Volt CUV seating 5, but this concept
      is obviously just a flourish to excite Chinese into buying Buicks – GM’s hottest
      selling brand in the country. For one, it’s a coupe, impractical for high sales
      volumes – and if GM built ANOTHER impractical, unpopular, overpriced Volt
      – based flourish ( ELR ) it would mean they had lost their minds. As it is,
      ELR makes me wonder if anyone with half a brain is at the helm of GM.
      ELR is one case where bean counters should have prevailed over car guys.

      I understand they had the platform, they could tweak the software rather
      inexpensively, but it costs hundreds of millions to build stamping dies and
      engineer new interiors and luxury bits. I understand Volt sales will sag due
      to competition from Energi versions of Fusion and C-Max, and that
      the Hamtramck plant needs “fillers” on the line to keep running and not
      have periodic shutdowns… I understand all this but GM shows MPV5s
      at Shanghai and we still see no more Voltec variants THAT MAKE SENSE.

      This Buick is a mock up “2 – Mode” with ( possibly, imaginatively ) plug-in
      potential. That means zero to us in NA or Europe, and it just makes for
      a beautiful, sleek hunk of Motorama-like imaginarium for big Chinese Buick
      buyers.

      I wish GM would leak out something…SOMETHING…re: future Voltec
      variants – as I am beginning to lose hope that there are folks who know
      markets and can predict sales patterns at GM.

  2. MTN Ranger says:

    I wonder if this is Voltec-based. Photos from Autoblog Green show a tunnel hump extending from the front to rear seats just like the Volt and ELR.

  3. kdawg says:

    Take my money!