2018 Buick Enclave

What room! That is the first thought I had when I set foot inside the 2018 Enclave from Buick. It was a cool day in Monterey, California when I first met the Enclave and the midsize SUV was far roomier than what I was expecting. Sliding into the rear seat, I, along with my companion, were lost in a sea of cabin space that can comfortably fit 7 people. And no, this isn’t like other brands where they say seven people and really mean 7 kids. You see, Buick set out to create an SUV that can not only compete with other brands, but comes standard with room and amenities that make driving anything else a foolish choice!

Buick, Car week Monterey, CA.
Photos by J. Emilio Flores

Speaking with the people at Buick, I found out that the 2018 Enclave was completely redesigned and features new architecture that makes the lumbering SUV more svelte and athletic in appearance. With a lower roofline, for instance, the Enclave has better aerodynamics and efficiency (which makes the Buick reach 18mpg in the city and 26mpg highway). In addition, the further slanted windshield and longer wheelbase add to the overall great looking SUV that has tons to offer consumers.

Standard on the Enclave are a rear vision camera, rear park assist, 7 airbags, which includes a front center airbag and it is powered by a 3.6 liter V-6 engine that isn’t’ over-encumbered by engine noise or low drawn sounds that make extended driving a pain.  Bringing everything back to a stop are 18inch aluminum wheels and 4 wheel disc brakes. LED lights are used throughout the vehicle, from bi-funtional projector headlamps and tail lamps, to the interior lighting. The low draw of LEDs makes for a longer lived battery.

What is also new for 2018 is the Avenir sub-brand from Buick. It’s name will be reserved for the hightest expression of luxury from Buick and will have styling cues and premium features from paint to material options. On the Enclave Avenir, you have a premium suspension with continous variable real-time damping (CDC), which makes drives over anything, seem like you are floating on a cloud of luxury. The QuietTuning, which is a new active noise cancelling feature, also comes in handy should your environment be too loud for your liking. And yet another premium feature is an air ionizer, which I have to tell you, is amazing. It eliminates odors and provides a much, much better air quality in the cabin, that every time you step into the vehicle, it feels like a literal breath of fresh air!

Also available, if that wasn’t enough, is the Surround Vision from Buick, which provides a cool overhead, 360 degree view of the area immediately around the vehicle, so you can park and maneuver like a pro. Intelligent All Wheel Drive is also another great addition that can help should the road conditions deteriorate rapidly. 20 inch wheels, 5 exterior color choices, contrast stitching, embroidery on the front row seats, wood accents, a three dimensional front grill with chrome wings also help the Avenir to set you apart from mere mortals.

So how is the car on the road? Simply, it is a refined car that has clearly been put through countless hours of testing and real world situations. The inputs and intuitive design and features make the car effortless. Never once are you looking around for an odd button or USB connection. The Enclave was redesigned with consumers in mind every step of the way. It is a natural fit and a pleasure to drive. It is at once easy and luxurious. The SUV does not go down the road in a bumbling sort of way. Instead, Buick created a car that is forward thinking and makes convenience a luxury. Sure you have all the bells and whistles, but what really stands out on this vehicle is just how perfectly placed and thought out each feature is. The Enclave is a supreme buy and no one can ever be disappointed in that!

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