2019 Enclave New Car Test Drive
Generous in size and in features, the 2019 Buick Enclave is a handsome three-row family crossover SUV, with luxury appointments within its subdued interior.
The current Enclave arrived in the 2018 model year, and it's more muscular than its predecessor, with a well-defined profile.
For the 2019 model year, a front-drive model in Preferred trim has joined the lineup. Premium and Avenir editions gain a standard heated steering wheel. An ebony interior is available for Avenir trim.
Buick offers four trim levels: Preferred, Essence, Premium, and Avenir. In each Enclave, a 3.6-liter V-6 produces 310 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque, coupled to a smooth-shifting 9-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard. All trim levels except the base model can have part-time all-wheel drive instead.
Premium and Avenir models include a rear differential that can deliver power just where it's needed most. Low fuel economy may be the Enclave's most notable demerit.
Active-safety features are available, but not at base Preferred level. Every Enclave gets forward-collision warnings, parking sensors, and a rear-seat reminder. Optional driver-assist and advanced safety features include automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, active lane control with lane-departure warnings, and a surround-view camera system.
Only one set of crash-test ratings has been issued, with mixed results. The NHTSA gave the 2019 Enclave five stars overall and for side-impact, but a four-star score for frontal collision. Rollover prevention (a calculated figure, not derived from an actual test) also was rated four-star. The IIHS has not yet reported any crash-test results.
Buick claims more third-row space than competitors ? an assertion backed up by the Enclave's 120.9-inch wheelbase and 204.3-inch length. Every Enclave includes an 8.0-inch touchscreen and 4G LTE hotspot, six USB ports, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. The simple IntelliLink interface is among the easiest to use. Buick's Enclave competes against such crossovers as the Honda Pilot and Ford Explorer, as well as the new Kia Telluride and Hyundai Palisade..
Prices do not include $1,195 destination charge.
Preferred ($40,000), the front-drive base model, comes with keyless ignition, tri-zone climate control, a hands-free liftgate, rear parking assist, and 18-inch wheels. All-wheel drive is not available.
Essence ($42,000 with front-drive, $44,000 with all-wheel drive) adds leather seat upholstery, advanced safety technology including lane-departure warnings and blind-spot monitors with rear cross-traffic alerts, and 20-inch wheels.
Premium ($48,100 with front-drive, $50,400 with all-wheel drive) includes heated and cooled front seats, a heated steering wheel, and Bose 10-speaker audio. Safety features include lane-keep assist, forward-collision warnings, and automatic emergency braking.
Avenir ($53,500 with front-drive, $55,800 with all-wheel drive) gets navigation, a heated steering wheel, 20-inch wheels, dual moonroofs, wireless smartphone charging, a surround-view camera system, unique appearance details, and a premium ride suspension..