The second generation of Buick’s 7-passenger midsize luxury SUV made its show-floor debut at the 2017 New York Auto Show. The redesigned 2018 Buick Enclave wears sleek new styling and boasts improved passenger room and a host of new comfort and technology features.
The Enclave will be offered in base, Essence, Premium, and top-line Avenir trim levels. (Avenir is Buick’s new luxury sub-brand, similar to GMC’s Denali.) The lone engine is a 3.6-liter V6 with an estimated 302 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque; it’s paired with a 9-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard; the available AWD system has active twin-clutch rear differential and switchable AWD. Maximum towing capacity is up to 5000 pounds.
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The Enclave’s longer wheelbase translates into more third-row space, yet Buick claims the turning circle is 1.4 inches tighter than the first-generation model. There’s 23.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row, and though a specific measurement wasn’t provided, Buick says the Enclave outclasses the Acura MDX, Audi Q7, and Infiniti QX60 in cargo volume behind the first row.
The Enclave’s “windswept” body styling—particularly its front-end design language—was inspired by the Buick Avista and Avenir concept cars. Buick says the Enclave marks the company’s first application of “Evonik Acrylite” lighting technology, which provides a distinctive light signature to the LED headlights and taillights.
Standard equipment includes a rearview camera, rear park assist, keyless entry and starting, six USB ports, hands-free power liftgate, universal home remote, OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot capability, and tri-zone automatic climate control. A frameless touchscreen infotainment system comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality, GM”s Teen Driver monitoring system, and a Rear Seat Reminder feature that reminds the driver to check the back seats when exiting the vehicle.
Forward collision alert, rear cross traffic alert, lane keep assist with lane departure warning, safety alert seat, following distance indicator, and front park assist are among the available safety features. Optional comfort and convenience features include a 10-speaker Bose Premium sound system, power-folding third-row seat, and second-row SmartSlide seats that tilt and slide forward even with an empty child seat installed for easier access to the third row.
The 2018 Buick Enclave is slated to go on sale this fall.
The 2018 Buick Enclave shares its basic platform and some of its features with the new-for-2018 Chevrolet Traverse, but like the first-generation model, the new Enclave has a luxurious personality all its own. In addition to its appealing styling and competitive list of standard and available features, we expect that the new Enclave will offer an exceptionally comfortable, quiet driving personality that should win over a good number of luxury SUV shoppers.