The Buick Encore is as spontaneous as you wish it to be, while providing comfort, utility, and luxury without excess bulk and wasted fuel.
The Encore handles nicely with the power to pass quickly without engine strain.
Buick’s grand design starts with the outside. The waterfall grille, ice-blue-accented projector-beam headlamps, and chrome portholes carve out personal style and confidence that assures Encore is wrapped in efficiency.
Encore’s available voice-activated navigation system helps to avoid congested traffic and bad weather, or provides the latest prices and movie listings. All this comes with available front and rear park-assist and the standard rearview camera.
Encore has QuietTuning technology, which reduces, blocks, and absorbs noise—helping to keep out what little driving noise there may be. Bose activated noise cancellation helps fade unwanted sounds into the background.
But don’t worry, this device is not going to muffle the sounds from the available Bose seven-speaker audio system with sound-expanding amplification. The new Encore allows you to personalize your listening options, be they music, news, or sports, and other features as well.
Using Bluetooth, Buick Intellilink connects a compatible smart phone to a high-resolution, 7-inch LCD screen, with voice recognition or steering wheel-mounted controls that allow access to audio apps on your phone such as Pandora and Sirius XM Satellite Radio.
Overall length: 168.4
Body width: 69.9
Minimum ground clearance, front: 6.2
Headroom, front row: 39.6
Headroom, second row: 38.8
Forward Collision Alert and Lane Departure Warning are available in the new 2013 Encore. Forward Collision Alert provides audible and visual cues if you are quickly approaching another vehicle and there is risk of a collision. Lane Departure Warning lets you know if you happen to change lanes without using your turn signal.
The Encore has plenty of style with seating for five. Front passenger and second-row seats fold down flat, easily transforming into extra cargo space. Flip the second row down and nearly 50 cu ft is readily available for play. Even if the rear seat is up, you still have nearly 20 cu ft of room.
The Encore has an ECOTEC Turbo 1.4L VVT engine that provides 138 hp with 4900 rpm and 148 lb-ft torque with 1850 rpm. All this power is promoted by a 6-speed electronically controlled automatic with Driver Shift Control.
The EPA estimates fuel consumption for the FWD is 25/city and 33/highway. The AWD is 23/city and 30/hwy.
Some examples of standard equipment for the Encore are a stable control system, driver instrumentation with an analog tachometer, speedometer and outside temperature, and Driver’s Information Centre featuring coolant temperature, battery, and compass.
Bluetooth with cellphone connections and power windows (with driver express up/down) are also part of the standard package.
There are three equipment groups: Convenience, Leather, and Premium. Prices range from $24,200 to $29,690.
Encore handles nicely with the power to pass quickly without engine strain. It shifts smoothly and handles well in the curve. The cabin is well lit, seats are comfortable, and features are easy to find and apply.
After two days of test-driving the Encore, drivers invited to the launch were fully convinced that Buick will sell every Encore they produce, and quickly.
Durhl Caussey writes a car column read around the world. You may reach him at this paper or firstname.lastname@example.org
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