Premium compact car; Built in
  • 4-door sedan
  • transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $10,000 – $21,000*

2014 Buick Verano

2014 Buick Verano

2014 Buick Verano

2014 Buick Verano

  • Price
  • Quietness
  • Ride
  • Acceleration (non-turbo models)
  • Rear-seat room

Like its closest competitor, the Acura ILX, Verano straddles the line between mainstream compact cars and premium-brand compacts. The line-topping Premium model is a welcome addition; it replaces the middling acceleration of the base 4-cylinder with sprightly turbocharged power. The Premium’s improved acceleration comes with little penalty to EPA mileage figures, but at a considerable price premium. Still, Verano transcends its mainstream-compact origins–in any trim level, it handily undercuts the prices of its premium-compact rivals while delivering a convincingly upscale driving experience.


Verano was Buick’s smallest car, slotting below the midsize Regal in size and price. It was essentially a luxury-trimmed version of the Chevrolet Cruze and was produced alongside its corporate cousin in the United States.

The Verano was a difficult car to classify. It was on the pricier side of the compact-car spectrum, but it undercut the prices of most premium-brand compact cars. Feature for feature, Verano competed against mainstream models, such as the Ford Focus and Volkswagen Jetta. This Buick was also the target of the ILX produced by Honda’s luxury division, Acura. Consumer Guide categorized the Verano as a premium compact car, in part because of Buick’s addition of a higher-priced, higher-horsepower Verano model.

All Veranos were front-wheel drive, and most used a 180-horsepower 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine that paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission.

The top model had a 250-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged engine and a 6-speed automatic transmission. A 6-speed manual was available as a no-cost option, though ordering it deleted the standard remote engine start feature.

The Buick Verano included a standard complement of expected and federally mandated safety features. In addition, all models included rear-side airbags and front-knee airbags. Blind-spot alert and rear-cross-traffic detection were standard on all but the base model.

Yearly Updates

2012 Verano
New for 2013 was a performance-oriented Verano model that sported a turbocharged engine. Buick’s IntelliLink infotainment and a rearview camera were newly standard across the board. Blind-spot and rear-cross-traffic alert systems were newly standard on all but the Base trim level.
2013 Verano
Forward-collision and lane-departure warning became available on the 2014 Verano.


transverse front-engine/front-wheel drive

All Veranos were front-wheel drive. Most versions used a 180-horsepower 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine that paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission.

dohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.4/145
Engine HP 180
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 171
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic



Turbocharged dohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.0/122
Engine HP 250
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 260
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed manual
6-speed automatic

Road Test

With the 2.4-liter engine, acceleration is leisurely from a standstill, but Verano provides decent power overall. Despite having a fairly large-displacement engine, there’s not a lot of torque on tap for passing and merging. The Premium’s turbo 2.0 is relaxed off the line, but acceleration grows smoothly and rapidly as engine rpm rises. At highway speeds, passing power is ample. The 6-speed manual transmission operates smoothly, but not as crisply as some premium-compact competitors. With either engine, the automatic transmission shifts fluidly, but the manual shift gate is useful for summoning the best acceleration.

In Consumer Guide testing, we averaged 26.6-27.5 mpg in Veranos with the 2.4-liter engine. A Premium model with manual transmission averaged 22.3 mpg. Veranos with the 2.4 use regular-grade gas and/or E85 ethanol. Buick recommends premium-grade gas for the Premium’s turbocharged engine.

Verano’s suspension filters most bumps very effectively. Deep potholes register, but thanks to a solid body structure, they’re by no means shocking.

Verano aims for serene ride quality over handling ability, so it doesn’t feel particularly sporty for its size. Steering feel is accurate but rather lifeless, and the car exhibits moderate body lean around fast corners. The brakes, however, are strong and have good pedal feel. Despite its more powerful engine, the Premium model has the same suspension tuning and wheel-and-tire packages as other Veranos.

Verano is exceptionally quiet for its class. Only at speeds above 65 mph do we notice the slightest trace of wind and tire noise. The 2.4-liter engine growls a bit when accelerating and is silent at cruise. The sounds it makes are far from offensive, but they’re not the most refined, either. The turbo 2.0 is similarly quiet overall, but it doesn’t sound as rich or exotic as other performance-oriented engines in the premium-compact class.

Verano suffers from the same control issues that plague other Buicks, primarily too many look-alike buttons clustered too close together on the central dashboard stack. A few buttons use abbreviations whose meanings are not immediately apparent. When equipped with keyless entry/engine start, the engine’s ignition button is mounted high on the center stack instead of near the steering column or under the instrument panel.

Most surfaces are made of nicely grained or finished materials. The armrests are wrapped in leather or vinyl that matches the seat upholstery, which is a nice touch. Overall, the ambiance is surprisingly posh.

Despite its compact exterior dimensions, the front-passenger space is roomy and inviting. The seats are comfortable with decent support, which is a surprise given the car’s luxury (rather than sporty) bent. Rear visibility is fine, though the outside mirrors could be a bit bigger. Standard blind-spot alert on Convenience, Leather, and Premium models is a welcome new feature.

The rear seats are more cozy than the front, as you might expect from a small car. Their bottom cushions are shaped like a narrow bucket seat, making them feel confining. Legroom and knee space are tight if situated behind a tall front-seat occupant. The front seat backs are clad with a hard plastic backing, which can be uncomfortable if hit by rear passengers’ knees. Narrow door openings hamper entry and exit.

Verano has a center console box, an uncovered bin forward of the shifter, two cupholders, and bottle holders in the doors. The trunk is deep and the opening wide. The lack of a decklid trunk-release button or keyhole is a curious omission, however.


Model Tested: 2013 Buick Verano Premium

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.


Acceleration - 7
Fuel Economy - 6
Ride Quality - 8
Steering/Handling - 6
Quietness - 7


Controls/Materials - 7
Room/Comfort Front - 7
Room/Comfort Rear - 3
Cargo Room - 3


Value - 8

Total: 62


4-door sedan
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
105.7 183.9 71.4 58.4
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
15.2 15.0 5.0
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
38.3 37.8 42.0 33.9
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2013 Buick Verano 4-door sedan


(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
Front Passenger Injury - 5

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
Rear Passenger Injury - 5


(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Steering problems
Description: Turning steering wheel may require increased effort after long distance driving on a straight highway. (2012-14)
Description: Power windows may be misaligned and move slowly or not at all. (2012-14)
Electrical problem
Description: Power door locks may not lock or unlock. (2012)
Transmission problems
Description: Faulty transmission may leak and not engage Forward or Reverse. (2013-14)
Transmission problems
Description: Transmission can slip in Reverse, 3rd, or 5th gear. (2012)

Recall History

2012 Verano
Description: Driver’s airbag may not deploy.
2013-14 Verano w/engine-block heater
Description: Insulation of engine-block-heater cord could be damaged in cold weather. Exposed wire could result in electrical shock.
2014 Verano w/automatic tranmission
Description: The transmission-shift-cable adjuster may disengage from the shift lever. A shift lever in Park may not engage Park for the transmission. Vehicle could roll away.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.


Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.

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