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Buick plays the name game with the refreshed Encore Avenir for 2024. It replaces the former Essence as its top-of-the-line small SUV. That means more premium features, which also means a higher MSRP. For the 2024 Avenir, that would be just under $35,000. That’s about $10,000 more than a base Encore. So let’s look at what you get for that premium price.

The Avenir comes with all-wheel drive, spinning a turbocharged 1.3-liter three-cylinder engine with 155 hp. For the standard Encore, there’s a turbocharged 1.2-liter with a lower 137 hp. So there’s more power and cubes going with the Avenir trim. With torque peaking at 1,600 rpm, at least you’re not having to wing it up to achieve any umph. 

How premium is the Buick Encore Avenir cabin?

2024 Encore Avenir
2024 Buick Encore Avenir SUV | GM

All of this three-cylinder wonderfulness spins a nine-speed automatic transmission. The combo is definitely not a hot rod, but getting the torque curves right and spiking performance with a turbo helps. However, we wish there were more horses under the hood for the price. And where is the electric version?

Inside the Avenir, leather abounds. Plenty of new safety and tech features add to the premium vibe. You’re face to face with two screens, an 11.0-inch touchscreen, and an 8.0-inch instrument display. The front seats fold flat, helping with the compromised cargo space. And the load floor is adjustable, with further versatility from a removable shelf. New features include a heated steering wheel and an inductive charging pad. 

What did Buick change in the Avenir design?

2024 Encore Avenir
2024 Buick Encore Avenir SUV | GM

The refresh features a redesigned grille, slim headlights, and new bumper covers front and rear. All Avenirs lose the GX’s black lower body and wheel arches for body color. Unfortunately, it emphasizes the SUV’s chunky proportions and adds fussy design elements that aren’t noticeable with the GX’s black paint breakup. 

Combined, the 2024 design is an improvement on earlier Encore crossovers. But it looks like a mashup of several SUVs in this category, like the Honda HR-V, Toyota Corolla Cross, Mazda CX-30, and Volvo XC40. The new front fascia is distinctive but attached to a conventional crossover body. On the plus side, it was No. 1 with U.S. female drivers.

Does the Encore Avenir break out from the compact SUV crowd?

Blue Buick Encore Avenir
2024 Buick Encore Avenir SUV | GM

Another feature touted by the Avenir is its new Buick logo, the first Buick to display it. Buick needs more to toot their horns over than a freshened-up logo. But as small of a highlight as it actually is, at least it, too, is an improvement. 

Overall, Buick does a nice job trying to shine up a rather conventional crossover with the Encore Avenir. But a styling breakthrough, less fussy interior design, and more power are needed to really break out of the crossover malaise. For that, you may have to look at something like the Mercedes-Benz GLC300, but then, you’ll also have to pony up a lot more dough.


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