Executives at Buick gave the world its first peek at the updated-for-2022 Enclave three-row SUV, a surprise look that was snuck into a briefing focused on the launch of the smaller 2021 Buick Envision. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the refreshed 2022 Buick Enclave seven-passenger SUV appears to adopt many of the cues baked into the newest compact Envision crossover.
In other words, the premium brand’s flagship is about to get better looking. The grille adopts a more jeweled appearance, the stance looks wider, and the SUV’s flowing body sides seem sleeker. The LED headlights are slimmer and, we suspect, the taillights got the same treatment—such was the case with the new Envision, which modernizes its overall lighting with standard LEDs, including their use in sequential and animated lighting.
Even though Buick released several photos of the new Enclave completely uncovered, leaving only the three-row SUV’s interior styling to the imagination, detailed information on the rest of the package is forthcoming. Expect those details, such as any engine, interior, and technology updates for the restyled 2022 Enclave, to land closer to the on-sale date later this year. So, stay tuned.
It’s Part of Buick’s Tricky Transition Year
In a business update, Vice President of Global Buick Duncan Aldred said the brand gained share in its biggest market, China. But Buick has struggled in North America where, in addition to the pandemic, the brand was undergoing a transition year in 2020. Buick went from eight models, including a number of sedans, to a smaller portfolio of only four SUVs (the Enclave among them).
The sort of plus-size Buick Encore, the new Encore GX, proved to be a strong seller, but that will not prompt Buick to kill the smaller, less successful model. Aldred says when the Encore was introduced, the automaker anticipated sales of about 30,000 vehicles and was surprised when it quickly grew to about 90,000 annual sales. So, he is okay with it returning to lower sales but completing its mission as the entry-level vehicle for the brand, acting as the stepping stone to the Encore GX, then the compact Envision, and then the midsize Enclave. It is a nice logical progression and the bones of the current portfolio will be retained, Aldred says.
Buick also has plans for two electric SUVs, which were previewed during a recent GM presentation on its EV future. Aldred would not provide further details on these models.
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