Buick Wildcat EV Concept Walkaround

As a preview of future Buick styling and technology, the luxury brand has created the Wildcat EV concept. It came about in part because one of Buick's designers had put together a sketch of a coupe that grabbed the department's attention. The team kept working on it, and the brand eventually gave the go-ahead to turn it into a full-size model. But it also showcases design cues and branding that you'll see on upcoming Buicks. The shape of the headlights, the low, wide grille, the organic sheetmetal, airy cabin and striking rear taillights are all things that will be adapted to production Buicks. As for the coupe itself, Buick hasn't committed to a production version, and we wouldn't get our hopes up. Besides the styling, the Wildcat EV also showcases the new Buick logo and typography, and its EV nature is a nod toward Buick's electric plans. The brand will be fully electric by 2030, and the first Buick EV will launch in 2024 as a 2025 model.

Video Transcript

JOEL STOCKSDALE: We're here at the General Motors Research and Development Center with the Buick Wildcat EV. This is a new concept that gives a look at the future of Buick. Now, when we say future of Buick, we should point out that this is the future of the design language, and the badging, and the fact that Buick will be going all electric.

And so what you're going to want to look at on this car is key design details as opposed to the entire car because what you're going to see is a lot of these cues translating to production vehicles. Probably, a lot of them will be crossovers and SUVs due to the fact that that's what Buick specializes in right now. Now, up front, we've got a very aggressive nose with a low grille, wide headlights, and also the new Buick badge.

The badge is moved up out of the grille and onto the bumper. It loses the circle around it and has a very kind of minimalist, modern look to it. The typography for the Buick brand name has changed also, and it's on display in this really cool air vent kind of decor on the windshield. The whole car has a very organic look to it. It's very simple shapes with subtle, but distinct creases and curves. And that carries all through the car.

It has a wraparound windshield, or at least a wraparound design, and it all flows into a sleek, almost, but not quite, boat tail back end. It's got really wide, flared fenders and a really cool glass hatchback with tail lights that blend right into it. Now the coupe design was chosen because, basically, a Buick designer had a really cool sketch, and everybody really liked it. And that sketch kept getting developed, and it went to higher-ups. They liked it, too. And it's progressed into a full-size model that you see here.

One of the neat things about it, the wheels are very obviously turbine-shaped. And that's an homage to '50s Buick design. Kind of the jet age, the rocket age. And each one of these took two months to fabricate and to get the polish and finish just right.

Other cool features about this particular Wildcat concept are the doors. And if we go ahead and open these up, you'll see that the lower door panel opens out just like normal, but it also has a roof panel that opens up as well to make it a little easier to get in and out of this really low coupe. This interior is also very minimalist. It's got a fantastic green and white color scheme that, again, feels very kind of mid-century.

And everything is kind of floating. The center console is floating. There's open spaces in the dashboard. Some of the thinking from the designers is that you could have airflow coming through these vents and such. Obviously, you've got lots of ambient lighting. We've got simple screens that are really nicely integrated into the design. It's really a gorgeous car inside and out.

There are also a couple of neat Easter eggs. It is named Wildcat, which is another throwback to old Buick show cars. And you'll find a couple of wildcats around the vehicle. One of them is down here in the tail light etched into the lens. And then there's another one up here near the ceiling.

Now this concept, it's very much a design, well, concept. And so it doesn't really have any kind of production-type powertrain. There's not really slated production. However, it is designed to be an electric car.

That's where a lot of the proportions come from. The wheels are pushed out to the ends. There's lots of space in the interior that has been opened up because you don't necessarily have an engine that's taking up space. All of that can be stowed in the hood, and that opens up interior area.

But the electric part is important because Buick is heading to fully electric. It will be fully electric by 2030. And the brand's first fully electric model, which will feature Altium battery technology and motors, will be launching in 2024 as a 2025 model.

When Buick starts introducing electric cars, they will also be reviving the Electra name. And the Electra name will be applied to all electric Buicks. It will appear on all Buicks globally. And the Electra name will be accompanied with some type of number, alphanumeric type name.

So we're big fans of the Wildcat EV concept. And we would love to see it come to production. Buick hasn't made any kind of commitment to making this coupe a reality, but you will be able to see a lot of these styling cues on some models being introduced this year.

And Buick hasn't said no to making the coupe either. We wouldn't necessarily get your hopes up, but there is a chance, albeit small. We hope it happens, but we're also looking forward to future Buicks that adopt some of the styling language here.