General Motors has been working hard to reposition its Buick brand in recent years, especially with its recent "That's Not a Buick" ads that have highlighted the lineup's revamped styling and family-truckster appeal.
The 2020 Enclave three-row SUV is the latest model that offers a more appealing package in a bid to compete with higher-end luxury SUVs. The vehicle may be available to executive drivers with companies that purchase other GM models and have added Buick SUVs to a selector list.
The Enclave, which was introduced in 2008, is now in its second generation. When it was introduced, it essentially replaced three Buick vehicles, including the Rendezvous, Rainier, and Terazza minivan. The midsize SUV shares the GM Lambda platform with the Chevrolet Traverse and uses many of that vehicle's mechanical parts.
New for 2020
The 2020 Enclave boosts infotainment tech and introduces the optional Sport Touring package, which is available exclusively on the Essence trim. This appearance package brings a black mesh front grille, body-color grille surround, and 20-inch wheels made of chrome and graphite.
Standard infotainment tech now includes an 8-inch center dash touchscreen. Buyers can opt for a high-definition backup camera that functions well at night, as well as 360-degree exterior cameras.
Those who choose the top-line Avenir trim will notice even more luxury touches, such as a massage function for the driver and front passenger. Buick again offers four trims, including Preferred, Essence, Premium, and Avenir.
Engine and Transmission
While we tested the Enclave Essence 1SL with all-wheel drive, all models are powered by a 3.6-liter V-6 that delivers power through a nine-speed transmission to a front- or all-wheel powertrain. The V-6 makes 310 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque.
As we have written before, higher-gear transmissions are a great way to improve fuel economy without having to move down to a smaller engine. But the Enclave doesn't really benefit from this engineering decision, I suspect because it doesn't strive to lighten the load with mixed metals or aluminum body panels.
Our all-wheel model has been rated by the EPA to achieve 17 mpg in the city, 25 mpg on the highway, and 20 mpg combined. The front-wheel Enclave improves those numbers by 1 mpg in each cycle.
The Enclave retails for $41,195.
2020 Buick Enclave Specs
- Engine: 3.6L V-6 (310 hp, 266 lb.-ft.)
- Transmission: 9-speed automatic
- Cargo Space: 23.6 cu.-ft., 97.6 cu.-ft. with rear seats folded
- Fuel Economy (FWD): 18 mpg city, 26 mpg highway