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This is Buick's rather lovely rear-wheel-drive concept coupe

'Avista' makes Detroit Motor Show debut with 400bhp. And doesn't it look good?

Buick hasn’t featured on many European wish lists over the last few years, but that might be about to change if the new Avista Concept is anything to go by.

Unveiled at the Detroit Motor Show currently underway in the US, the Avista is a swoopy two-door 2+2 with the engine up front and driving the rear wheels. Driven hard if the spec is anything to go by, because the motor is a ‘concept’ 3.0-litre V6 with twin turbos and 400bhp, backed up by an 8-speed auto. Progress should be suitably swift.

It looks really very good – obviously taking cues from last year’s Avenir Concept (pictured at the end of the gallery above) - and seems to include influences from a other bits of good-looking metal. There are hints of Jaguar and Mustang in the front end, and a light Japanese motif in the rear three-quarter. It all hangs together quite nicely, mind.

Inside, you get a pair of vestigial rear seats, a wonderfully swoopy dash and central console – all of which looks suspiciously close to production-ready to us – and a vague triangular theme that is supposed to echo the form of waves receding from a beach. “The Avista was designed to capture the spirit of the perfect drive”, said Bryan Nesbitt, executive director Global Buick Design, “waves, whether from the sea or in the sand, are all about motion and flow – that’s what this concept is all about – flowing design and the purity of the driving experience.”

But look past the slightly flowery language and base your opinion on facts: the Avista sits on exactly the same wheelbase as the Chevy Camaro, it’s got a decent real-world engine with stop/start and cylinder de-activation, a proper interior and beguiling looks. So pressing the green button shouldn’t be that much of a chore…

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