Struggling Buick Hopes the 2022 Buick Enclave Hits in North America
During a recent briefing centered around the launch of the new 2021 Buick Envision, we got a sneak peek at the forthcoming updated 2022 Buick Enclave. The new three-row SUV has a modern look with a wider stance and smooth, flowing lines. Needless to say, there’s a lot of buzz now centered around the premium brand’s flagship vehicle.
What do we know about the latest Enclave? What prompted Buick to take this bold new approach?
A transition year for Buick
Duncan Aldred, Vice President of Global Buick, explained in a recent update that the brand has gained share in China, its largest market. Buick hasn’t, however, done as well in North America in recent years. Between the pandemic and a planned transition in 2020, MotorTrend reported that Buick went from an eight-model lineup with several sedans to just four SUVs including the Buick Enclave.
The new Buick Encore GX, a bigger version of the standard Encore, surprised the brand with strong sales. It wasn’t enough to convince them to stop producing the smaller original version. The original sold around 90,000 units when it debuted, triple what the brand expected.
Buick is fine with leaving the smaller Encore to remain for now as an entry-level model for the brand and a “stepping stone” for the bigger GX. From there the lineup offers the compact Envision and the midsize Enclave.
Two electric SUVs are in Buick’s future plans and were previewed at a recent GM presentation on its EV plans for the future. Aldred didn’t offer further details on those at the time.
The 2022 Buick Enclave
The brand took a long look at the latest Envision crossover when they set about updating the 2022 Buick Enclave. One thing is for certain. The new seven-passenger SUV is a lot better looking.
While it has a wider stance, the flowing lines of the body give it a sleeker appearance. It has slimmer LED headlights and an elegant new grille. If it’s truly like the Envision, the overall lighting scheme will be updated with standard LEDs used in the vehicle’s animated and sequential lighting.
Several exterior shots of the latest Enclave have released, but we don’t yet know a lot about the interior styling. It’s anticipated that it will be updated as well. Intel on what type of engine, technology, and other equipment will likely become available as we get closer to the on-sale date later this year.
What can we expect from the new 2022 Buick Enclave?
A strong competitor for the Acura MDX, Cadillac XT6, Kia Telluride, and Lincoln Aviator, the Buick Enclave is the best three-row crossover SUV produced by GM according to The Car Connection. Redesigned in 2018, the mid-cycle update is expected to include automatic emergency braking as standard. The addition will go along nicely with any new comfort and convenience features.
The team at Car and Driver doesn’t anticipate changes to the Enclave’s standard powertrain with its 3.6-liter V6 engine and nine-speed automatic transmission. They think there’s a possibility that GM may add a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder to the mix. They pointed out that both the Cadillac XT6 and GMC Acadia offer a turbo-four and it might enable them to offer a lower starting price and better fuel numbers.
Car and Driver also mention the images show the top-shelf Avenir trim, and they predict the trim levels will stay the same in 2022. The current Enclave offers Preferred, Essence, Premium, and Avenir models. They do expect some new equipment to be added to the 2022 models.
They also expect the price to rise a few hundred dollars over the base price of the 2021 Buick Enclave which is $41,195.