General Motors‘ Chinese joint venture has introduced two revised 2.5-litre V6 Buick Regal car variants about a month after it launched its revamped Buick saloon line with a top-line version with 2.98-litre engine and electronically controlled four-speed automatic transmission, Reuters reported.

The Regal G2.5 and GL2.5 models, made by GM’s 50-percent-owned Shanghai GM, will cost 243,800 yuan and 263,800 yuan respectively, Reuters said.

GM told Reuters the models would compete with the Honda Accord and Mazda 6 after launch in February.

According to Reuters, Shanghai GM sold 35,420 Buick mid-size sedans in China in the first 11 months of last year, up a massive 96%.
Analysts told Reuters they estimated the sales would have hit roughly 40,000 for all of 2002 and GM executives had said this year’s sales should rise 20% year on year.

According to Reuters, GM said last year the Regal would also be fitted with two-litre engines in February to compete with rivals in China, where the market is expanding briskly, helped by solid economic growth and an expanding number of joint ventures by the world’s largest car makers.

Car producers in China, including foreign joint ventures, sold 1.126 million passenger cars, up 56%, in 2002, according to official figures, Reuters noted.