2018 Buick Enclave

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2018 Buick Enclave Review

The previous Buick Enclave was in production for a full 10 years and while it was a smooth and capable SUV, the fully redesigned 2018 model was long overdue. Aside from the obvious visual differences, the new model ushers in a raft of new technological and safety devices.

2018 Buick Enclave Models

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
3.6L V6 Gas
9-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
3.6L V6 Gas
9-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
3.6L V6 Gas
9-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive
3.6L V6 Gas
9-Speed Automatic
Front-Wheel Drive
All-Wheel Drive

See all Trims and Specs

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2018 Buick Enclave Front View Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Rear View Buick

What’s it like inside?

The Enclave has always been a luxurious vehicle and this new model adds a modern touch to the cabin as well as some welcome features such as three-zone climate control and LED ambient lighting accents.

2018 Buick Enclave Central Console Buick

The Enclave looks and feels like a premium product even in base trim and most surfaces are covered in high-quality materials, it is configured solely as a 7-seater, the first two rows seat four and offer a high degree of comfort for adults of all sizes.

2018 Buick Enclave Infotainment System Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Interior Overview Buick

The third row is tasked with seating the remaining three occupants. If those three occupants happen to be adults then they will not enjoy the same sort of comfort as the passengers up front but two shorter adults will have no problems even on longer trips. This is partly to the enlarged interior dimensions and even the cargo space remains generous with all the seats up.

2018 Buick Enclave Rear Seats Details Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Sunroof Buick

How does it drive?

The old car was more of a relaxed cruiser than a sharp driving tool and the new model retains that effortless cruising ability while offering a bit more dynamic ability.

Base models are front-wheel-drive while higher trim levels get all-wheel-drive. All versions offer good cornering abilities although the AWD models will be the preferred choice for slippery surfaces.

2018 Buick Enclave Front View Driving Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Rear View Driving Buick

The ride is smooth and unflustered on most road surfaces and top Avenir trim get adjustable dampers that can help improve handling levels. Active noise cancelling aids in keeping the cabin quiet at highway speeds.

2018 Buick Enclave In Motion Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Steering Wheel Buick

What about the performance?

The new Enclave makes 310 horsepower and 266 lb-ft of torque from its 3.6-liter V6, mated to a new 9-speed automatic transmission, performance levels are a step up from the previous model. The 0-60mph time is in the low 7-second range and the Enclave feels eager and responds enthusiastically to throttle inputs.

Front-wheel drive is standard with all-wheel drive optional on higher trim levels, fuel economy ratings are almost identical with a combined 21mpg on FWD models, dropping one mpg for AWD versions.

2018 Buick Enclave Front Grill Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Front View Driving 1 Buick

What are my options?

The base 1SV trim comes relatively well equipped and you get some notable standard features such as an 8-inch infotainment system with Bluetooth and smartphone compatibility, keyless entry and start function, rear parking sensors, LED headlamps, heated power adjustable front seats and 18-inch wheels. This trim is FWD only.

2018 Buick Enclave Infotainment System 1 Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Dashboard Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Trunk Open Sensor Buick

Essence trim adds leather seats and a driver confidence package which includes lane change alert with side blind zone alert and rear cross traffic alert. AWD is optional and a Trailering package can be specified as well.

2018 Buick Enclave Front View 1 Buick

Premium trim further improves safety levels with front parking sensors and luxury levels are elevated with ventilated front seats, heated second row seats, power-folding third row seats and a premium Bose audio system. A Buick Experience Package adds dual sunroofs, 20-inch rims and includes the aforementioned trailering package.

The Avenir trim level includes all of the above and adds an upgraded infotainment system with navigation, dual sunroof, surround vision with full display inside rearview mirror, unique styling elements and 20-inch alloy wheels. You also get a chestnut/ebony interior color scheme with contrasting seat stitching and piping.

2018 Buick Enclave Infotainment System 2 Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Interior Overview 1 Buick

The Avenir Technology package adds adaptive cruise control, forward automatic braking, active grille shutters and a premium suspension package.

2018 Buick Enclave Navigation System Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Central Console 1 Buick
2018 Buick Enclave Badge Buick

The Verdict

The 2018 Buick Enclave is a much improved mid-sized three row SUV and offers a thoroughly modern design with luxury levels that approach far pricier European rivals.

A range of trim levels offer shoppers a variety of equipment and luxury options although opting for the top trim pushes pricing levels uncomfortably high. Stick to the mid-range Essence or Premium trim, choose FWD unless you really need the extra traction and the Enclave is a highly competitive luxury SUV.

2018 Buick Enclave Front View 2 Buick
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