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2011 Buick Enclave

Source: GM Media

2011 Buick Enclave The Enclave crossover SUV has been changing consumer perception about the Buick brand and about luxury crossovers since it was introduced. Blending style and grace with precision, Enclave delivers comfort for up to eight, plenty of space for cargo and at 24 mpg highway (2WD), better fuel economy than any eight-passenger SUV.

The Enclave also offers a starting price that beats luxury brands by thousands, even though it offers a host of standard equipment and the industry’s best warranty coverage. Its appeal as a premium family vehicle gives it the lowest average age of any Buick model, at 59. Customers also agree that the smart money is on Enclave, because more than half of all owners are college graduates with a median yearly income of more than $100,000.

“Enclave proves you don’t have to spend a lot to get the royal treatment of a luxurious crossover SUV,” said Roger McCormack, director of marketing for Buick. Model year-to-date, Enclave sales are up more than 30 percent over the same period a year earlier, and are up 33 percent for the first quarter of 2010 over 2009.

For 2011, Buick Enclave is available in CX and CXL models with front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive.

Powerful V-6 with direct injection, and six-speed transmission
Buick Enclave features a fuel-efficient 3.6L direct injected V-6 VVT engine that blends power, smoothness, efficiency and technical sophistication for a SAE-certified 288 horsepower (215 kW)* and 270 lb.-ft. (366 Nm) of torque.*

Enclave achieves an EPA-estimated 24 mpg highway for front-wheel drive models and 22 mpg highway for all-wheel-drive models.

The 3.6L direct injection engine is designed to operate with regular unleaded gasoline – which saves money compared to luxury brands that require premium fuel – and produces power similar to many V-8 engines. With direct injection, fuel is sprayed directly to the combustion chamber to create a more complete burn of the fuel/air mixture.

As a result, less fuel is required to produce the equivalent horsepower of a conventional port-injection combustion system, especially at normal cruising speeds. Ninety percent of the Enclave engine’s peak torque is available from approximately 2,500 rpm to more than 6,000 rpm. Also, using unique pistons with the direct injection system helps reduce cold-start emissions by 25 percent.

The 3.6L engine is mated to the Hydra-Matic 6T75 electronically controlled six-speed automatic transmission. Its wide, 6.04:1 overall ratio helps the transmission deliver both performance and fuel economy, enabling up to a 7-percent improvement in performance and up to a 4-percent improvement in fuel economy when compared to front-wheel-drive four-speed automatics. The transmission has been designed so that the Enclave can be flat-towed in FWD and AWD configurations. The Enclave can tow up to 4,500 pounds (2,045 kg) when properly equipped.

True Buick design
Enclave’s fluid lines and curved surfaces create the illusion of a smaller vehicle, while maintaining a roomy interior. Other Buick design cues include a waterfall grille – with a bold tri-shield emblem – and V-shaped portholes. High-intensity discharge (HID) headlamps are standard. For enhanced illumination, especially while cornering, Enclave offers available articulating headlamps.

Nineteen-inch machined flangeless wheels are standard on CX and CXL1 models. CXL2 models are equipped with standard 19-inch chrome-clad wheels, which are new for 2011. A 20-inch chrome-clad wheel is also available on CXL2 models.

For 2011, Cyber Gray Metallic, Dark Ming Blue and Gray Green Metallic join the range of exterior color choices. Also available are White Diamond, Red Jewel, Cocoa Metallic, Carbon Black Metallic, Gold Mist Metallic, Quicksilver Metallic and White Opal.

Roomy, finely crafted interior
Enclave’s interior complements the handsome exterior with a luxuriously appointed, warm and inviting environment, with premium, soft-touch, low-gloss materials. The attention to detail is reflected in the precise fit and finish of all interior elements, including the instrument panel.

Enclave delivers an impressive level of roominess and functionality. With three rows of seats, Enclave comfortably accommodates seven or eight occupants, and still provides 24.1 cu. ft. (682 L) of cargo space behind the third-row seat when the cargo management is removed. That’s the trunk capacity of some large sedans and room that many crossovers cannot match. Enclave also offers 115.9 cubic feet (3,282 L) of cargo room behind the first row when all rear seats are folded – that’s more maximum cargo volume than the Lexus RX350 (80.3 cu. ft.), Volvo XC90 (85.1 cu. ft.), Audi Q7 (72.5 cu. ft.) and Acura MDX (83.5 cu. ft.).

Premium cloth seats are standard on CX models; perforated and heated leather seats are standard on CXL models. The first row includes two bucket seats, while the second-row comes standard with two captain’s chairs. A second-row 60/40-split bench (three passengers) seat is available.

Enclave’s second-row seats feature GM’s Smart Slide system, a popular feature that allows easy entry to the third row with the pull of one handle. With Smart Slide, the second-row seat cushion flips up while the seatback slides forward, compressing the space occupied by the seat. The seats also have fore/aft adjustment. When adjusted rearward, the second-row seat provides more legroom for taller passengers; when adjusted forward, it provides more storage space or additional legroom for third-row passengers.

The third row features a standard 60/40-split bench seat that can accommodate three adult passengers.

Peace and quiet
Enclave is the only crossover in its segment equipped with QuietTuning, Buick’s exclusive engineering process to reduce, block and absorb unwanted noise from entering Enclave’s cabin. Noise-reducing components include an acoustic-laminated windshield, laminated safety glass for front doors, triple door seals, flat-blade windshield wipers, and outside rearview mirrors. In addition, strategically placed sound-deadening material is applied in more than two dozen locations throughout the vehicle. The tires are also engineered to minimize noise.

The result is a library-quiet interior that allows passengers seated in the third row to hear a conversation between first-row occupants without interference.

SUV capability meets luxury car ride
Credit for Enclave’s car-like driving experience is attributed to its stiff structure, its purpose-built suspension and aerodynamic shape.

Enclave’s smooth and controlled driving feel features standard variable-effort power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering supported by independent front and rear suspension designs. The front suspension features a MacPherson strut design, with a direct-acting stabilizer bar that helps provide a more immediate feel during turns. The tops of the struts are mounted to the chassis through isolated mounts, with ball bearings that reduce steering friction. The inboard pivot points of the lower control arms are mounted to a rigid engine cradle that is fully isolated from the chassis to reduce the level of road noise into the cabin.

An available, intelligent all-wheel-drive system provides full-time function. The system automatically decides how to distribute torque based upon vehicle speed, throttle position and individual wheel slip. The AWD system is integrated with Enclave’s electronic traction control to provide outstanding capability in inclement weather.

Safety features
Buick Enclave has a comprehensive safety system designed to protect passengers before, during and after a crash. The 2010 Enclave achieved the top federal frontal crash rating of five stars for driver and front-seat passenger, and the top federal side-impact crash test score of five stars for rear occupants.

Safety-enhancing features include four-wheel anti-lock brakes, StabiliTrak electronic stability control system with rollover mitigation technology and GM’s tire pressure monitoring system are standard. Traction control also is standard on all models.

Enclave is equipped with six standard air bags: two dual-stage frontal air bags, two seat-mounted side-impact air bags in the first row and two roof rail air bags that cover all three seating rows. Complementing the air bags is GM’s rollover sensing system, which activates the roof rail air bags if sensors determine an impending rollover. Because rollover crashes typically last longer than non-rollover crashes, the roof rail air bags stay inflated longer to provide increased occupant protection and containment. Additionally, first-row positions feature safety belt pretensioners, which activate at the moment of a crash to take up any slack in the safety belt and hold the passengers in place.

Enclave also includes a Panic Brake Assist feature. When an emergency braking maneuver is detected, the system automatically develops additional brake pressure to more quickly engage ABS, potentially reducing overall stopping distance by eliminating the delay that can occur if a driver does not brake hard enough and/or soon enough.

All Buicks, including Enclave, are equipped with segment-exclusive OnStar (including a six-month Directions and Connections plan), which features the Advanced Crash Response System. If a crash activates an air bag, the OnStar system automatically notifies an OnStar advisor, who immediately calls the vehicle and/or summons emergency help.

Buick Enclave is priced less than luxury competitors and is backed by the industry’s best warranty – a four-year, 50,000-mile, bumper-to-bumper warranty, as well as five-year, 100,000-mile powertrain coverage.