The wonderful past of the three-protect division is just that – past. The period when the sedan dominated the American brand’s lineup is coming to an end, with the Regal Sportback the only model continue to lively, together with its GS version. Considering that the arrival of the Enclave in 2008 – and probably even the Rendezvous in the early 2000s – the automaker has been expanding its presence in the utility segment, significantly like the relaxation of the automotive marketplace.

For 2020, Buick welcomes a new member, the Encore GX, which positions by itself among the Encore and the Imagine. At the time of composing, we previously know that the Imagine will be fully revised for 2021, but for the “normal” Encore, almost nothing has been announced still. Does the arrival of the Encore GX indicate the end of the “normal” Encore? It possibly does, but for now, Buick has material to give two Encore products to its prospects. The a lot more the merrier, in SUV-land. Keep in mind that Chevrolet is also splitting its smaller SUV lineup, as the Trax receives nudged more than in the lineup in 2020 to make area for the Trailblazer, a non-equivalent twin of the Encore GX.

I experienced occasion to drive Buick’s most recent utility model, the Encore GX, in its Essence trim, the most high-class in the lineup. At $37,678, this very little urban car or truck isn’t really precisely a cut price for initial-time purchasers, but for those people who want an agile, easy-to-park crossover, the Encore GX could be a feasible choice. This is what I have figured out about this most recent Buick, and yes, one more SUV!

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2020 Buick Encore GX, profile

2020 Buick Encore GX, profile

A bit greater than the Encore
The Encore GX title implies we can hope a cancellation of the Encore model that is been with us considering the fact that 2013. At the similar, it could just be a circumstance of the brand’s strategists deciding to make superior use of the badge’s title recognition Following all, the Buick Encore immediately grew to become Buick’s greatest-selling model just after it debuted. The addition of the Encore GX is strategic in my belief, a little bit like the Ford Bronco and its a lot more affordable equivalent, the Bronco Activity.

What’s well worth noting about the Encore GX is that it provides extremely related dimensions to the Encore it is hardly greater. A very little for a longer time and a very little broader, the Encore GX is also reduce to the floor than its cousin in title, while the wheelbase is for a longer time as nicely.

Exact same story inside?
These larger dimensions, even if the variances are slight, do translate into improved inside quantity. It is really not a significant achieve in both rows of seats, but in the trunk, the Encore GX features a lot more than one hundred litres a lot more cramming space than the Encore (665 vs 532 ). In this segment, every single litre counts!

2020 Buick Encore GX, interior

2020 Buick Encore GX, inside

The inside is also extremely related to that of the Encore. The dashboard has numerous similarities, especially in the curves of the dashboard and the layout of the air flow and central contact-screen controls. You can sense it’s a lot less cluttered in the centre console some buttons have been relocated not much from the transmission lever. What’s a lot more, the overall good quality of execution is in line with the brand’s other products.

3 cylinders, a turbo and thoughts
The selection of engines is, of course, the matter of some discussion. By selecting to give two very small three-cylinder turbocharged engines, GM is betting that individuals will concentrate on the Encore GX for its gas financial state initial and foremost. It is really also well worth mentioning that smaller-displacement engines are popular in China, a market place which is of course crucially crucial for Buick and wherever its products sell much a lot more than listed here.

Outfitted with the “huge” one.3L engine, my tester was not precisely an acceleration monster. With a hundred and fifty five hp and obtainable small-end torque of 174 lb-ft, the Encore GX is hardly superior equipped than the Encore. On the other hand, it is will help by the fact that inspite of its larger measurement, it weighs a lot less overall The electric power-to-pounds ratio is for that reason superior in the GX.

2020 Buick Encore GX, front

2020 Buick Encore GX, front

The only transmission obtainable is a nine-pace computerized unit (in comparison to six speeds in the Encore) and it is effective in the shadows without the need of grumbling. As for the all-wheel drive, it’s a partial configuration. Which suggests that to gain from four-wheel drive, you have to push that very little AWD button situated a couple of centimetres from the gearshift lever. The excellent par of that of course is that it’s doable to drive in two-wheel drive mode to conserve a couple of pennies at the pump.

At the wheel
So, how does this Buick Encore GX accomplish on the highway? In two terms: extremely nicely. Okay, the working experience is relatively related to that available by the Encore, but you can sense that the GX is a lot more secure since of its broader monitor, while the electric power steering appears to be to give superior feed-back to the driver. As anticipated, accelerations usually are not lightning-quickly, the transmission undertaking its greatest to cut down gas use and the very little engine’s RPMs when functioning challenging.

Soundproofing could be improved relatively, but at the hazard of repeating myself, the Buick Encore GX is an entry-degree car or truck. Its mission is distinct from that of the Enclave. As opposed to the outdated Encore, the new model is significantly quieter, which is not stunning supplied the style variance.

2020 Buick Encore GX, three-quarters rear

2020 Buick Encore GX, three-quarters rear

Through my time with it, I was also capable to test the AWD drivetrain many thanks of a major rain shower for the duration of a journey in the Laurentian mountains north of Montreal. While not the sportiest creature on the market place, the Encore GX has the considerable merit of sticking the car or truck to the floor even when the pavement is moist.

In the end, by alternating among influenced driving and a quieter journey, my regular gas use came in at 8.9L/one hundred km – a satisfactory statistic thinking about my – ahem – driving fashion and the fact that the AWD button was applied numerous moments for the duration of my week driving the wheel.

The past word
Buick can eventually count on a trio of contemporary crossovers the new 2020 Encore GX joins the Enclave redesigned a couple of a long time back and the Imagine that is about to be renewed. The original Encore, meanwhile, lives on borrowed time. Or probably it does not. Time will explain to, but supplied that the American crossover is primarily based on the similar formula as its predecessor, but is improved in most every single way, the outdated Encore is just that – outdated. And smaller.

The only flaw in the ointment for the GX is that it is not equipped to encounter the luxurious products that Buick likes to attempt to contend with, mainly since it would not give the similar degree of electric power below the suitable foot. The German, British or even Japanese products are all a lot more dynamic in this regard.

It is fairer than to review the most recent Buick to generic manufacturer products. But at shut to $forty,000 right before relevant taxes, this pocket-sized crossover is out of the blue a lot less attractive, inspite of all the appeal it exudes. It is really a pleasant very little merchandise to think about, but the opposition is intense, extremely intense!

2020 Buick Encore GX, front end

2020 Buick Encore GX, front end

We like

Far more comfortable than the Encore
Effective all-wheel drive
Over-all good quality

We like a lot less

Powertrain a lot less effective than the luxurious opposition
Only somewhat a lot more inside quantity than the Encore

The opposition

Audi Q3
BMX X1 / X2
Fiat 500X
Ford EcoSport
Honda HR-V
Hyundai Kona
Jaguar E-Pace
Jeep Compass/Renegade
Lexus UX
Mazda CX-thirty
Mercedes-Benz GLA/GLB
MINI Countryman
Mitsubishi RVR/Eclipse Cross
Nissan Qashqai
Subaru Crosstrek
Toyota C-HR
Volvo XC40

2020 Buick Encore GX, rear

2020 Buick Encore GX, rear

Specialists

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2020 Buick Encore GX photos