2020 Buick Enclave Avenir delivers good value for family use
You might be surprised to learn that the 2020 Buick Enclave counts as a mid-size crossover SUV. You wouldn't guess that from looking at it. This vehicle is big enough to comfortably seat seven passengers, and weighs in at over 4,600 pounds. The Enclave is the same length as the full-size Chevrolet Tahoe, but the Enclave offers its top Avenir trim for about the same price as the most basic Tahoe.
That's the value proposition that many larger crossovers bring to the market. They are less expensive than their traditional truck-based cousins, and if you can live with less towing capacity, these crossovers generally offer an excellent value.
The 2020 Enclave is powered by GM's reliable 3.6-liter V6 engine, which delivers 310 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque. Power is passed through a nine-speed automatic transmission, and the Enclave is available with front-wheel or all-wheel-drive. When equipped with the Trailering Package, the Enclave can tow up to 5,000 pounds, allowing it to handle most utility and camper trailers.
If luxury is a priority, Buick has established its new Avenir trim level as a sub-brand, much the same as GMC's Denali trim. Buick Avenir vehicles add some special features like a Bose 10-speaker audio system, heated and ventilated front seats, an 8-inch infotainment screen with GPS navigation, a wireless device charging pad, HD surround-view camera, and a camera-based rear-view mirror. The Avenir also comes with unique exterior trim and an exclusive ebony or chestnut and ebony interior treatment. That's all on top of the premium content available in other high-trim Enclave models.
The Enclave Avenir also offers access to some option packages that are not available on lower trims. The Premium Suspension package adds real-time adjustable suspension damping with steering calibration, while the Avenir Technology package provides adaptive cruise control, enhanced automatic emergency braking, and also includes the suspension package.
Driving the Avenir is enjoyable for a big SUV. It's smooth, quiet with active noise cancellation, and the V6 engine provides plenty of power. Make no mistake, this is not one of your sporty SUVs, but rather a comfortable family hauler with up to 97.6 cubic feet of cargo capacity.
There are a few disappointments, such as basic plastic trim in front seat touch locations, but also some unexpected pleasures. For example, the front seats include a massage function as well as power-adjustable lumbar support. There's also a heated steering wheel, which will be nice when the weather inevitably turns cold again. Finally, there's voice control for the infotainment system.
If you're shopping for a luxury family SUV, pay close attention to price and features. You may find that the 2020 Buick Enclave Avenir offers much more technology and luxury for your money than other brands. That kind of value is becoming a hallmark of modern Buick vehicles, and it makes the Enclave Avenir worth your time for a test drive.
2020 Buick Enclave Avenir
Base price: $56,100
Price as tested: $59,990
Type: Mid-size SUV
Engine: 3.6-liter V6 (310 hp, 266 lbs-ft)
Transmission: 9-speed automatic
EPA estimated mileage: 17/25
Overall length: 204.3 inches
Curb weight: 4,685 pounds
Final assembly: Lansing, Michigan
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