Buick introduced the 2016 Cascada convertible at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS). The Cascada will be the first Buick convertible offered in the United States in 25 years and the latest globally developed vehicle to join the brand’s growing portfolio. It goes on sale in early 2016.
The Cascada’s 2+2 configuration offers room for four adults. It features a rigid body structure, Buick’s HiPer Strut front suspension and responsive Watts Z-link suspension in the rea, and a 200-horsepower (149 kW) turbocharged engine.
The top can lower in only 17 seconds at speeds up to 31 mph. When it’s up, superior thermal and acoustic insulation contribute to driving comfort.
The Cascada is driven by a 1.6L turbocharged engine rated at 200 horsepower (149 kW). With more than 100 horsepower per liter, it’s one of the most power-dense engines in the segment. It delivers strong torque, estimated at 206 lb-ft (280 N·m), with an overboost feature that briefly pushes torque to an estimated 221 lb-ft (300 N·m).
Direct injection and variable valve timing complement the turbo engine’s performance with efficiency. It is backed by a six-speed automatic transmission.
HiPer Strut is based on the MacPherson strut design and features dual-path top mountings that separate the transfer of spring and damper loads to the body structure. It enhances ride and handling by reducing torque steer; more linear and communicative steering through improved camber control, and improved impact isolation on bumps and rough surfaces.
A responsive Watts Z-link design helps center the rear axle during cornering, which helps keep the Cascada’s handling responses symmetrical on both left-hand and right-hand turns. The linkage’s capability to center the axle during cornering delivers a more-balanced driving experience because the rear suspension better follows the lead of the front suspension.
The Z-link design is also lighter and requires less space than a typical fully independent rear suspension. The lower weight enhances efficiency, while the compact design enhances Cascada’s cargo room.
Steering inputs are executed by a fuel-saving, rack-mounted electric power steering system, while stopping power is handled by standard four-wheel antilock disc brakes. Cascada rolls on standard 20-inch wheels.
A rigid body structure features high-strength steel in strategic areas, reinforced side sills and press-hardened steel in the A-pillars. It is the foundation for the Cascada’s driving experience, contributing to steering precision, ride quality and quietness – as well as safety. A 106.1-inch (2,695 mm) wheelbase enhances ride smoothness while enabling greater rear-seat legroom.
Buick also introduced the Avenir concept—a sedan equipped with a next-generation direct-injected V-6 engine with fuel-saving Active Fuel Management (cylinder deactivation), stop/start technology and a nine-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission.