The Buick Enclave is getting a substantial refresh for 2022 that includes an overhaul of the interior and a new front fascia.
During a media roundtable Wednesday, Duncan Aldred, vice president, Global Buick and GMC, said the changes to the Buick flagship are designed to reinforce the Enclave’s “premium” image as well as carrying through with Buick’s effort to deliver a range of SUVs equipped with the latest technology.
Buick is not posing as a luxury brand, but instead a premium offering occupying the ground between luxury and mainstream brands. The strategy is helping Buick win new buyers, he added during the briefing for reporters. Approximately 73% of the Buick buyers are coming from outside the brand and many of them are “moving up” from more mainstream brands such as Ford, Toyota and Honda.
At the same time, the Enclave, with a plush interior and sharp styling, has been critical to Buick’s efforts to hand on to loyal, returning customers, Aldred said. In addition, 25% of Enclave customers opt for Avenir, which is the Buick’s top trim level, much like the Denali models now key to the GMC line-up, he added.
Getting new features
For 2022, the Enclave comes with a sharpened version of Buick’s design language and a “Buick Driver Confidence Package” that includes nine standard active safety features, such automatic emergency braking, front pedestrian braking, lane-keeping assist, lane-change and blind-spot detection, rear park assist, forward-collision alert, rear cross-traffic alert and intelligent high beams.
The Enclave also gets a new center console as well as wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. “You can do away with those wirers,” Aldred said.
The Avenir features continuous damping control active suspension technology, adaptive cruise control, head-up display, a unique grille design and Avenir accent pieces throughout the interior as well as unique badges on the exterior.
The Enclave also is equipped with a 3.6-liter V-6 and 9-speed automatic transmission that produces 310 horsepower.
Hitting the basics, but better
Aldred emphasized that the 2022 Enclave adheres to the Buick’s efforts to keep its line-up of SUVs simple.
The Buick Encore and Buick Encore GX are proving very popular with buyers, chalking up big sales increases the spring as had the Envision. Buick also has decided to bring on an Avenir version of its imported-from-China Envision for buyers looking for something more.
Buick has not added an electric model to its portfolio yet, Aldred acknowledged, but noted that Buick is selling an electric vehicle in China and GM is committed to bringing on 30 new electric models by the middle of the decade. “Stay tuned,” he said. Meanwhile, Buick’s retail sales in U.S. have been very strong in May, topping 20,000 units, which is the best performance. The strong sales have stretched inventories and dealers now only have a 30-day supply in stock and some dealers have run out of Buicks altogether, Aldred said.