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The Mazda 6 has standard Whiplash Reducing Headrests, which use a specially designed headrest to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Whiplash Reducing Headrests system moves the headrests forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Regal Sportback doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.
The Mazda 6 Signature has a standard 360-degree View Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Regal Sportback only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.
Both the Mazda 6 and the Regal Sportback have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its standard headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Mazda 6 its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Regal Sportback has not been fully tested, yet.
A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Mazda 6’s reliability 44 points higher than the Regal Sportback.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Mazda vehicles are more reliable than Buick vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Mazda second in reliability. Buick is ranked 18th.
The Mazda 6 Grand Touring/Signature’s 2.5 turbo 4-cylinder produces 28 lbs.-ft. more torque (310 vs. 282) than the Regal Sportback GS’ optional 3.6 DOHC V6.
An engine control system that can shut down some of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Mazda 6 (except Turbo)’s fuel efficiency. The Regal Sportback doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.
The Mazda 6 Grand Touring handles at .84 G’s, while the Regal Sportback GS pulls only .83 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.
For better maneuverability, the Mazda 6’s turning circle is 2.3 feet tighter than the Regal Sportback’s (36.7 feet vs. 39 feet). The Mazda 6’s turning circle is 4.3 feet tighter than the Regal Sportback’s (36.7 feet vs. 41 feet).
The Mazda 6 may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 to 700 pounds less than the Buick Regal Sportback.
As tested by Car and Driver while cruising at 70 MPH, the interior of the Mazda 6 Touring is quieter than the Regal Sportback Essence (67 vs. 70 dB).
The Mazda 6 has .1 inches more front legroom and 1.8 inches more rear legroom than the Regal Sportback.
The Mazda 6’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Regal Sportback’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully.
The Mazda 6’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Regal Sportback’s manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.
Consumer Reports rated the Mazda 6’s headlight performance “Good,” a higher rating than the Regal Sportback’s headlights, which were rated “Poor.”
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Mazda 6 detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Regal Sportback doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
The Regal Sportback (except Base)’s optional cornering lamps activate a lamp on the front corner when the turn signal is activated. The Mazda 6 Grand Touring Reserve/Signature’s standard adaptive cornering lights turn the actual headlight unit up to several degrees, depending on steering wheel angle and vehicle speed. This lights a significant distance into corners at any speed.
To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Mazda 6 has standard extendable sun visors. The Regal Sportback doesn’t offer extendable visors.
Both the Mazda 6 and the Regal Sportback offer available heated front seats. The Mazda 6 Grand Touring Reserve/Signature also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Regal Sportback.
Insurance will cost less for the Mazda 6 owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Mazda 6 with a number “1” insurance rate while the Regal Sportback is rated higher at a number “8” rate.
According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Mazda 6 is less expensive to operate than the Regal Sportback because it costs $457 less to do the manufacturer’s suggested maintenance for 50,000 miles. Typical repairs cost much less on the Mazda 6 than the Regal Sportback, including $582 less for a water pump, $785 less for a muffler, $128 less for front brake pads, $401 less for a starter, $40 less for front struts and $363 less for a power steering pump.
Consumer Reports® recommends the Mazda 6, based on reliability, safety and performance. The Buick Regal Sportback isn't recommended.
The Mazda 6 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Ten” for 2 of the last 7 years. The Regal Sportback has never been a Car and Driver “Top Ten” pick.
The Mazda 6 outsold the Buick Regal by over two to one during 2019.
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