When Buick released the first photos of the Cascada convertible on Sunday and I labeled the car as “nothing more than a rebadged Opel Cascada,” some of our readers felt I was bashing a good product for nothing.
While I have absolutely no reason to claim the Opel Cascada is not a good car, I was just pointing out the obvious: the Buick Cascada has nothing “Buick” about it, except the badges. I’m sure buyers will get to enjoy the first Buick convertible in 25 years and the fact remains that the Cascada is a good looking car – either with Opel or Buick badges.
What I’m a little concerned about is that it will go on sale in the United States a year from now – that’s three years after its introduction in Europe. Other than that, the Buick Cascada will likely satisfy US buyers with its powerful yet fuel-efficient 200hp 1.6-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine mated to a six-speed automatic transmission.
Handling characteristics will be good too for a convertible, as the 2016 Buick Cascada gets the HiPer Strut front suspension and Watts Z-link suspension in the rear. With 13.4 cubic feet (380 liters) with the top up and 9.8 cubic feet (280 liters) with the top down, cargo volume is also decent. Plus, the rear seatbacks fold down electronically to expand cargo capability for longer items.
The Cascada’s soft top needs 17 seconds to fold itself in the boot, and it can do that at speeds up to 31 mph (50 km/h). Among the car’s features Buick lists the IntelliLink infotainment system with a 7-inch-diagonal color touch screen, Buick OnStar 4G LTE with built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, electronic rear-seat entry system, electric safety belt presenters, rollover protection bars as well as safety assist systems including lane departure warning, rear park assist, rearview camera and Rainsense windshield wipers.