2018 Buick Enclave Review
Originally debuting for the 2008 model year, the first-generation Buick Enclave stood out in the three-row crossover SUV segment for its roomy interior and smooth and quiet ride. The redesigned 2018 Buick Enclave aims to continue in that tradition while raising the bar in the style and technology departments.
Equipped with a more powerful 3.6-liter V6 engine this year (302 horsepower and 260 pound-feet), the Enclave should be notably quicker, especially since this year's model weighs hundreds of pounds less. The 2018 Enclave is slightly longer than last year and offers additional legroom for the second-row and third-row passengers. Maximum cargo space is less than before, but there's still a generous 97.6 cubic feet with the second and third rows folded down.
We expect the 2018 Enclave will be an appealing choice for a premium three-row crossover SUV, but we won't know for sure until we get a chance to test one ourselves.
trim levels & features
The 2018 Buick Enclave is available in four trims. They all use the same 3.6-liter V6 engine (302 hp, 260 lb-ft) and a nine-speed automatic transmission. The standard Enclave is available only in front-wheel drive; the remaining trims are available in front- or all-wheel drive. The Essence features additional safety and comfort tech, while the Premium trim adds more luxury and safety amenities. At the top, the Avenir promises tech, safety and comfort features on par with what's offered in the best luxury crossovers. All Enclaves have seating for seven.
Even in base form, the Enclave comes with features that make it competitive in the three-row SUV segment. It comes standard with 18-inch wheels, LED headlights, rear parking sensors, keyless entry and ignition, remote engine start, three-zone automatic climate control, power-adjustable front seats with heating, adjustable second-row captain's chairs and 60/40-split folding third-row seats. Standard in-car technology includes an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system, a rearview camera, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, OnStar communications (with 4G LTE and Wi-Fi hotspot), USB ports (two in front and four for rear passengers), and a six-speaker sound system with satellite radio.
The Essence includes a blind-spot monitoring system with rear cross-traffic alert, a cabin air ionization system and leather seating surfaces. Optionally, you can add all-wheel drive, a heavy-duty tow package that allows you to pull up to 5,000 pounds, a top-down parking camera system and a sunroof.
Premium models add low-speed forward collision mitigation with pedestrian detection, front parking sensors, driver-seat memory settings, a Bose 10-speaker premium speaker system, lane departure warning and intervention, a heated steering wheel, heated seats for outboard second-row passengers, ventilated seats for the front row, and power-folding third-row seats.
Top-trim Avenir models roll on 20-inch wheels and receive a navigation system (optional on the Essence and Premium), a larger driver information display, a rearview mirror with integrated camera display, the sunroof and top-down parking camera system, premium leather upholstery, upgraded interior trim, and a wireless device charging pad. Optionally, you can spec your Avenir with an adaptive suspension and an Avenir Technology package that allows for stop-and-go adaptive cruise control, automatic braking, grille shutters to increase aerodynamic efficiency, and the aforementioned adaptive suspension package.
edmunds expert review process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.