Buick Encore GX

Editors' Review

Crossovers accounted for 90% of Buick's US sales last year, and with statistics like that, it makes sense that Buick will soon stop selling sedans altogether. But before that happens, Buick needs to bolster its SUV lineup. That's where the Encore GX comes in.

It might sound like just a trim level of the subcompact Encore crossover, but the GX is in fact an entirely new vehicle, riding on a platform shared with the Chevrolet Trailblazer -- for better or worse. It squeezes in between the ever-so-slightly smaller Encore and the ever-so-slightly larger Envision, the latter of which will be replaced by a sharply styled successor in early 2021.

The GX is certainly more handsome than the little potato that is the Encore, with standard 18-inch wheels and LED headlights. The version you see here wears Sport Touring duds -- a $1,100 package that adds body-colored side moldings, unique bumpers and a whole bunch of red accents in the grille. I could absolutely do without the red stuff, but the rest of the Sport Touring getup is actually rather nice. Still, you're likely better off skipping this package and saving some money; I think the Encore GX is just as attractive with its standard gray exterior trim.

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The Good ~ Great infotainment tech is standard ~ Ample passenger space ~ Powerful engine and nicely tuned suspension

The Bad ~ Interior materials aren't great ~ Rough engine vibration at idle ~ More expensive than larger, more efficient competitors

The Bottom Line The Encore GX is another utility vehicle, and Buick needs those right now. But it's no better than the smaller Encore, nor is it a step above non-luxury subcompact competitors.

Editors' Rating
  • Performance 6.5
  • Features 7
  • Design 7
  • Media 8

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