The Buick Encore is on its way out, and this might be its successor.
There's an entire world of (arguably) American cars most of us don't know about. Earlier this year, Chevrolet revealed the Seeker, a Chinese-only compact SUV that's part of the joint venture between General Motors and SAIC. The all-new Buick Envista SUV coupe followed shortly after, based on the same platform.
The 2024 Chevrolet Trax is also built on the same platform, but the powertrain differs. Locally, the Trax will be powered by a 1.2-liter turbocharged triple, while the Chinese models above are motivated by a 1.5-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine.
According to GM Authority, Buick is now reconsidering its China-only stance for the Envista and might introduce it as the much-needed replacement for the aging Buick Encore.
The Encore desperately needs to be replaced, as it's an unwanted leftover from the days when GM still owned Opel and Vauxhall. The PSA Group purchased the German brands from GM in 2017, and the poor Encore has been soldiering on ever since, even though its replacement has been available in China since 2020. It's not sold in the USA, as the second-gen Encore was built for emerging markets.
The same is true of the Seeker and the Envista. These vehicles are also aimed at emerging markets if you look at the pricing structure.
The Buick Encore is now only available in Preferred trim, starting at $27,295, not including the destination fee. In China, the Envista begins at $21,450 and goes up to $25,100.
Earlier reports suggested that the Encore would be replaced with the China-only Envision Plus. It seems the plan has changed, as GM has previously stated that there is more than enough room in this particular segment as most of its rivals are pulling out. Like the Ford EcoSport, GM will likely have to spruce the Envista up a bit as Americans aren't particularly fond of vehicles aimed at emerging markets.
"Buick is a global brand with distinct portfolios in the US, Canada, Mexico, and China," Buick spokesperson Mikhael Farah said. "In China, we recently debuted the all-new Buick Envista, a compact SUV tailored for China's young generation and modern families. As with any vehicle, we are always listening to customer feedback and evaluating products for our global markets, but we have nothing to announce at this time."