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Buick Encore: Jalopnik's Buyer's Guide

Illustration for article titled Buick Encore: Jalopnik's Buyer's Guide

The entire subcompact CUV segment owes its existence to the Buick Encore and it’s still one of the most popular cars in the little world it created. What do you need to know before you buy a Buick Encore? Don’t worry, we’ll tell you everything right here in our Buyer’s Guide.


Someone at Buick is a genius for seeing the possibilities in the small crossover market. While a few brands make small premium crossovers overseas none of them had deigned bring them over here until one (or multiple) bright minds had the idea of rebranding a European hatchback as a Buick.

The concept is fairly simple and one that you’d have thought Acura would have come up with before Buick. It’s small but nice and it looks rugged and offers some premium options like blind spot monitoring and WiFi as well as available AWD.

It’s now having to compete with vehicles that offer more performance or options, but the Buick Encore is still one of the most interesting and well-packaged cars in the market. Think of it as an XV Crosstrek for people who watch Fox News instead of MSNBC.

What’s New About The 2015 Buick Encore

Illustration for article titled Buick Encore: Jalopnik's Buyer's Guide

The Buick Encore launched along with its overseas sibling, the Opel Mokka, for the 2013 model year. 2014 brought a few safety gizmos like Rear Cross Traffic Alert and blind spot monitoring, while 2015 brought a new OnStar system with 4G LTE and Wi-Fi hotspot capability. Otherwise, the short little Buick is pretty much unchanged from the model that launched three years ago.

Which One We’d Buy

Like its twin the Chevy Trax, there’s only one engine and one transmission. Unlike the Chevy Trax, the options available are pretty good so we’d add the convenience group package which gives you dual zone air-conditioning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, a better sound system, and fog lamps. The total cost is $27,080 with a $925 destination fee if you go with the front-wheel-drive model which you probably should if you’re not driving on snowy roads.


[Build Your Own]

Important Facts At A Glance:

MSRP: $24,065 - $30,360 Max Advertised Towing Capability: Not Recommended

MPG: 25 city/ 33 hwy / 28 combined Engines: 1.4-liter turbo I4

Curb Weight: ~3,200-3,400 pounds (estimated) IIHS Rating: Top Safety Pick

Transmissions: 6-speed automatic transmission

Drivetrain Layout: Front engine, FWD/AWD

Photo credit: Buick




Newbie here, is there a general or post where I can post questions and get feedback on purchasing certain cars? I’m looking at a couple used vehicles and would like to draw upon the wisdom of the Jalops. Thanks in advance.