Reviews

2018 Buick Encore Walk Around


Buick Encore’s overall shape is cohesive, not too hippy and not too edgy. Subtle curves in the sheetmetal. It doesn’t shout anything, it just states class.

Encore looks as much like a small hatchback as it does a crossover. It got better looking with a facelift for 2017, although we’re not so sure about the chrome strip like a glider’s wings, added to the waterfall grille. With LED headlamps, the hood looks clean. Small spoiler over the liftgate looks right.

Interior

Being tall, the Encore offers good head room. Being narrow, it’s pinched on shoulder and elbow room, even in the front. And the wide center console might squeeze the front occupants’ knees. But the driver gets a fine position, enjoying a commanding view past the short front end. Although not over the shoulder, making that standard rearview camera a wise move. A low dashboard and tall roof bring back a sense of spaciousness.

The front seats are comfortable, with nicely shaped seatbacks, although the bottom cushions are short on support.

The back seat can easily carry two adults, and there are seatbelts for a third passenger in the rear; but it won’t be three adults. Knee room is livable, helped by slight scoops in the front seatbacks. There’s a folding armrest with cupholders, drops down to better the fill the space than a center passenger would.

Soft-touch surfaces and metal trim give the cabin a premium feel, while it is also versatile and flexible. Both the rear seat and the front passenger seat fold down. Folding the back seat expands cargo capacity from 18.8 to nearly 50 cubic feet.

Active noise cancellation keeps the engine noise down, and while some tire and wind noise comes in, and the info flashes on an 8-inch touchscreen in the center of the dash, the cabin stays surprisingly calm for a subcompact.

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