By Veeno Dewan
Welcome to the 2013 Buick Encore a brand new small Crossover Utility Vehicle (CUV) that is a much smaller sibling to the larger-sized Buick Enclave CUV. Unlike most Buick vehicles which tend to be large or mid- sized, the Encore is tiny in comparison, but don’t let that fool you. With its as-standard 18-inch alloys and such storied Buick trademarks such as the grinning waterfall grille and hood-mounted Ventiports and a sprinkling of chrome the Encore looks upmarket and classy. Its mission? To deliver Buick luxury and convenience and creature comforts in the small CUV market that is rapidly expanding.
Arriving at dealers in the first quarter of 2013 with a suggested retail price of $26,895. The Convenience Package is standard in Canada and features include QuietTuning with Bose Active Noise Cancellation, 18-inch wheels, 10 airbags, fog lamps and a seven-inch, high-resolution, full-colour display radio with IntelliLink connectivity.
In Canada, three trim levels will be available, including the base Convenience group model with all of the features listed above. An Encore with the Leather Group starts at $30,190 and includes all of the above features plus leather-trimmed upholstery, heated front seats, a heated steering wheel, dual zone climate control, remote start, , a power passenger seat and driver’s seat memory functions.
Encore’s Premium Group includes all content from the Leather and Convenience Packages, along with front and rear park assist, Forward Collision Alert with Lane Departure Warning, a seven-speaker Bose premium audio system with a subwoofer, rain-sensing windshield wipers, a 120 volt outlet, XM Satellite radio, 18 inch chrome wheels, a cargo net and area cargo mat. The top of the line model costs $32,505.
With Encore’s optional Forward Collision Alert, the vehicle gives audible and visual warnings when a collision may be imminent at speeds above 40 km/h. Lane Departure Warning alerts drivers when they may have crossed a detected lane marker without using a turn indicator when driving at speeds over 55 km/h. This feature can be deactivated with the push of a button.
All-wheel drive is available on all Encore models for $1,950. Standalone options available for Convenience, Leather or Premium Encore models include navigation ($995), 18-inch chrome-clad wheels ($995), a sunroof ($1,100) and a Bose premium audio system ($775, but standard on Premium Package).
“Encore opens the Buick brand to new groups of customers with a compelling blend of luxury, utility and efficiency,” said Tony DiSalle, vice president of Buick Marketing. “It’s versatile shape, agile size and available all-wheel drive invite owners to live active lifestyles while enjoying Buick’s signature style, comfort and refinement.”
Encore has a Natural Resources Canada estimated fuel consumption of 8.2 L/100 km city and 6.0 L/100 km highway for front-drive models.