Buick Encore GX 2024

Buick seems to be becoming the “Made in China” brand of the General Motors automotive group. We were talking about the small Envista coupe SUV, and this week, we reinforce this impression a bit by taking the road aboard the Encore GX, another entry-level small SUV signed by Buick and assembled in the Middle Kingdom.

Apart from their country of manufacture, there are many similarities between the two models, but to quickly differentiate them, let’s just say that the Envista is a coupe SUV, with a slightly more urban vocation than the Encore GX, which is a bit narrower but taller, and despite all that it has a more generous trunk. Buick also includes as standard on the Encore GX the towing equipment necessary to tow a small trailer or caravan.

So let’s say that the Encore GX is a slightly more utility vehicle than the Envista, which would be a bit more sporty if it weren’t powered by a not very powerful 3-cylinder turbo engine.

Note that this engine, with a displacement of 1.3 liters, is the same one that powers the Encore GX. It produces a power of 155 horsepower and a maximum torque of 174 pound-feet, and all of this is transmitted to the driving wheels via a 9-speed automatic transmission. It’s a very good transmission, by the way. It is accompanied by an electronic system that switches from two-wheel drive to four-wheel drive as needed.

You can also activate the all-wheel drive manually, which is particularly appreciated on slippery roads, where you can really feel that the system is working hard. Fuel consumption is around 10 liters per 100 kilometers in all cases, which is nothing spectacular.

Behind the wheel, the driving position is good. The Encore GX does not have a very high ground clearance, but the body is still a bit higher than that of a sedan, which will reassure many people. There are not a ton of distractions on board either, as Buick uses a minimalist multimedia system and a finish that could be described as “simple”, but which in reality deserves to be called “cheap”. Let’s just say it doesn’t have much to offer in terms of originality. At least we have wireless CarPlay and Android Auto interfaces.

Otherwise, it is noticed quite early on that the Encore GX is comfortable for four people, but just barely. It is a small, small SUV, just vertical enough to accommodate tall people, but not too much.

All this, for a retail price that is quite reasonable starting at $34,475 for the base version, and which goes up to almost $40,000 for the Avenir edition, which is probably the most attractive of the bunch.

We would like to say that it is a good deal, a $40,000 Buick Encore GX, but compromises have to be made in terms of driving and performance, as well as comfort and entertainment technologies, so we will keep a little reserve, even if, it must be said, the Encore GX is perhaps one of the few SUVs sold here for less than $35,000.