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Driving Notes

2017 Buick LaCrosse AWD

December 16, 2016, by Andy Lundin - Also by this author

Photo by Andy Lundin.
Photo by Andy Lundin.

The 2017 Buick LaCrosse has been redesigned by General Motors from the inside out for its third generation iteration. While some of the highlights of the latest full-size luxury sedan include a longer and wider exterior and a new V-6 engine, it was the safety features that really grabbed my attention.

Upon first navigating the vehicle, which was the Premium all-wheel-drive trim, the first thing that almost quite literally grabbed my attention was its rear park assist safety feature. It activated while I was backing the vehicle up and got a little too close to an adjacent wall for the vehicle’s liking. The safety system beeped at me, and I felt my safety alert seat pulse, alarming me to stop before it was too late. The safety alert seat is available exclusively on Premium trims.

Another safety capability I found myself applauding was the rear cross traffic alert feature. As I was preparing to pull away from a curb, my vehicle detected a car that turned a corner behind me and was speeding toward me. I didn’t notice the oncoming car initially, but the 2017 LaCrosse flashed a warning signal on the touch screen monitor right before the car sped past me and as I was about to depart from my parking spot.

Photo by Andy Lundin.
Photo by Andy Lundin.

Speaking of corners, the AWD handled the winding roads of the Santa Monica Mountains during my drive quite well. It features a new 3.6L V-6 that makes 310 horsepower paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission. Handling was quite responsive, partly because the latest generation LaCrosse reduced its weight by roughly 300 pounds. This, along with the AWD, made some of the turns that might have been harrowing very manageable.

While navigating the vehicle, the automatic stop-start feature was hardly noticeable. This, along with its lighter platform, which the latest LaCrosse now shares with the Chevrolet Impala, helped the vehicle earn its estimated 29 mpg on the highway, 20 mpg in the city, and 23 mpg in combined driving.

After I finished admiring the safety features and handling, I really started to appreciate the latest luxuries of the newest iteration that I had not initially noticed. For starters, the cabin is very quiet, which is the result of lower mass sound-absorbing materials. This is something that my passengers also appreciated when I took them for a ride. Other perks that my passengers enjoyed was the ample leg space in the back seats and the 4G LTE in-car Wi-Fi.

The 2017 LaCrosse is available in four trim levels, including LaCrosse, Preferred, Essence, and Premium. Front-wheel drive is standard, while all-wheel drive is optional. Starting price for the base model is $32,990.

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Amy Winter-Hercher

Senior Editor

Amy is an associate editor for Auto Rental News and Business Fleet.

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Andy Lundin

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Andy Lundin works on Automotive Fleet and Fleet Financials.

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Chris Brown

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Chris is the executive editor of Business Fleet Magazine and Auto Rental News. He covers all aspects of the fleet world.

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Chris Wolski

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Chris works on Automotive Fleet, Fleet Financials, Work Truck, and Green Fleet. He edits the Global Fleet Management eNewsletter.

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Eric Gandarilla

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Eric Gandarilla works on Automotive Fleet and Fleet Financials.

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Mike has covered fleet management and remarketing for more than 20 years and entered the Fleet Hall of Fame in 2010.

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Paul is the senior web editor for Automotive Fleet, Fleet Financials, Government Fleet, Green Fleet, Vehicle Remarketing, and Work Truck. He has covered police vehicles for Police Magazine.

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Thi is the executive editor of Government Fleet magazine. She is interested in maintenance management and alternative fuels.

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