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MSRP: $40,000 - 55,800




Critics' Rating: 8.5
Performance: 8.0
Interior: 8.6
Safety: N/A
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2019 Buick Enclave Review

The 2019 Buick Enclave boasts a polished powertrain and palatial seats. However, this 3-row SUV ends up in the middle of our rankings because its materials quality isn't as refined as those of some rivals.

Pros & Cons

  • Comfortable, quiet, and spacious cabin
  • Impressive set of standard features
  • Lots of cargo space and in-cabin storage
  • Smooth performance and ride quality
  • Interior isn't as posh as some competitors

Is the Buick Enclave a Good SUV?

The Buick Enclave is a good midsize SUV. Its smooth performance and genteel interior are examples of the Enclave' high levels of refinement, and it pampers passengers for less money than most seven-passenger luxury SUVs. We named it a finalist for our 2019 Best 3-Row SUV for Families award because of its strong combination of cargo and passenger space, safety and reliability ratings, positive reviews from automotive journalists, and available family-friendly features 

Should I Buy the Buick Enclave?

You should buy the Buick Enclave if you want a classy SUV with seating for seven people, but you cringe at the price attached to 3-row luxury SUVs such as the Audi Q7 and Volvo XC90. It's important to keep in mind that the Enclave is not an athletic SUV. Though its V6 offers sufficient power and precise handling, the Enclave isn't intended to be driven hard and fast. Doing so will leave you unsatisfied. If your driving style is more spirited, consider the Mazda CX-9. It's energetic and nimble, and its Grand Touring trim offers a level of elegance and features that's similar to the Enclave's.

Compare the Enclave, Q7, and CX-9 »

Should I Buy a New or Used Buick Enclave?

The 2018 and 2019 models belong to the Enclave's second generation. These are generally better than the first-generation Enclaves, which were built between 2008 and 2017. Improvements include the second-gen's new powertrain, which is more powerful and fuel-efficient than the previous engine. The 2018 and 2019 Enclaves also come with more standard features than before (including an enhanced infotainment system), and goodies like wireless phone charging and adaptive cruise control became available. There are no major changes between the 2018 and 2019 model, though, so you may be able to save money on essentially the same car by shopping for a 2018 Enclave.

We Did the Research for You: 18 Reviews Analyzed

Our goal is to make shopping for your next car as easy as possible. You'll find everything you need to know about the Buick Enclave in our comprehensive review. It combines concrete data (like fuel economy estimates, horsepower specs, and cargo space dimensions) with 18 professional Buick Enclave reviews.

Why You Can Trust Us

The Best Cars team – a division of U.S. News & World Report – has been reviewing cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007. With more than 75 years of combined automotive experience, our editors, writers, and analysts rank a wide variety of new and used cars and issue three annual awards: Best Cars for the Money, Best Cars for Families, and Best Vehicle Brands. To keep our recommendations unbiased, we decline expensive gifts from carmakers, and a third party handles our advertising.

How Much Does the Buick Enclave Cost?

Starting prices for the Enclave – a premium-grade SUV – are above those of affordable brands but less than the base prices of most midsize luxury SUVs. MSRPs for the 2019 Enclave start at $40,000 (for the Enclave Preferred) and go as high as $53,500 (for the Enclave Avenir).

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Buick dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Buick deals page.

Buick Enclave Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Buick Enclave or GMC Acadia?

The GMC Acadia and Buick Enclave are both built by GM and share many similarities, but these two vehicles are not just the same SUV with different nameplates. The Enclave comes standard with a more powerful engine, has roomier third-row seating, and offers significantly more cargo space than the Acadia. These advantages are partly why the Enclave places so much higher in our midsize SUV rankings. However, if these perks aren't important to you, consider purchasing an Acadia instead to save a sizable amount of money.

Which Is Better: Buick Enclave or Chevrolet Traverse?

The Chevrolet Traverse – another GM SUV – is nearly identical to the Buick Enclave. Similarities can be found in the amount of passenger and cargo room, the powertrain, the crash test ratings, and the overall scores in our rankings. The Traverse, however, can be outfitted with second-row bench seating, allowing it to carry up to eight people. Though the Traverse doesn't include as many features as the Enclave (it doesn't have a standard hands-free liftgate or heated front seats, for example), its base model can save you around $10,000.

Which Is Better: Buick Enclave or Buick Envision?

The Buick Envision is a 2-row SUV, and you'll give up more than just two seats if you choose it over the Enclave. You'll also get a smaller engine that can occasionally labor under acceleration, and you'll only be able to tow up to 1,500 pounds. The Envision is a decent pick if a smaller, less expensive SUV fits you better, but overall, the Enclave is a better vehicle.

Compare the Enclave, Acadia, and Traverse »

Enclave Interior

How Many People Does the Enclave Seat?

The Enclave is a 3-row SUV with seating for seven. All trims are outfitted with a pair of captain's chairs in the middle row and a bench seat in the third row. The sumptuous cushions, admirable amount of passenger space, and whisper-quiet cabin create a relaxing environment.

Enclave and Car Seats

The Enclave's LATCH hardware includes top tether anchors and lower anchors for securing child car seats. For easier access to the third row, the available Smart Slide second-row passenger seat can move forward even when a forward-facing car seat is installed.

Enclave Interior Quality

Interior materials in the 2019 Enclave are fitting (for the most part) for a premium-grade vehicle, similar to what you'll find in a top-level Chevrolet Traverse or an SUV from luxury brands like Acura and Lincoln. However, with a few lower-grade ingredients, this Buick doesn't quite compete with the opulence of an Audi.

Enclave Cargo Space

Starting with a cavernous 23.6 cubic feet behind the third row, the Enclave has more cargo space than most midsize SUVs. Features like a standard hands-free power liftgate and optional power-folding third-row seats add convenience when loading cargo.

Enclave Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The standard technology in the Enclave covers nearly every base you can imagine. In addition to fundamentals you might already expect (such as a touch-screen display and Bluetooth), every Enclave includes advanced smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. A built-in high-speed Wi-Fi hot spot is also standard, as are Siri Eyes Free and satellite radio. The six USB ports are sprinkled throughout the SUV, providing a charging point for most, if not all, of your family.

Read more about interior »

Enclave Performance

Enclave Engine: Buttery Smooth

The Enclave favors refinement over excitement. In this manner, it performs exceptionally well, aided by a V6 engine and a nine-speed automatic transmission that are respectably powerful and polished in most situations. The 310-horsepower setup provides sufficient acceleration off the line and on the highway.

Enclave Gas Mileage: Average for the Class

According to the EPA, the Enclave earns 18 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. That fuel economy rating is within the normal range for a midsize SUV. With all-wheel drive, each rating drops by 1 mpg.

Enclave Ride and Handling: Calm and Composed

You'll feel confident at the helm of the Enclave, thanks to its precise steering, firm brakes, and well-controlled body movements. The Enclave expertly manages body roll, without making you feel disconnected from the road. All trim levels come standard with front-wheel drive; all-wheel drive is available in all models but the base trim.

Enclave Dimensions and Weight

The Enclave extends slightly over 17 feet. Its curb weight ranges from 4,359 pounds (for the Preferred FWD trim) to 4,685 pounds (for the Avenir AWD).

Enclave Towing Capacity

A properly equipped 2019 Enclave can tow up to 5,000 pounds. That's a typical tow rating for a midsize SUV.

Read more about performance »

Enclave Reliability

Is the Buick Enclave Reliable?

J.D. Power gives the 2019 Enclave a predicted reliability rating of three out of five, which is considered average.

Buick Enclave Warranty

The 2019 Enclave comes with a four-year/50,000-mile warranty and a six-year/70,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Read more about reliability »

Enclave Safety

Enclave Crash Test Results

The 2019 Enclave has a five-out-of-five-star overall safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It earned five stars in the side crash category and four stars in both the frontal crash and rollover categories. No crash test results are available yet from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Enclave Safety Features

The Enclave comes standard with a rearview camera and rear parking sensors. A surplus of advanced safety features is available, including a 360-degree surround-view camera, a rear camera mirror, blind spot monitoring, lane change alert, rear cross traffic alert, forward collision warning, low-speed automatic emergency braking, full-speed automatic emergency braking, front pedestrian braking, a following distance indicator, a Safety Alert seat, automatic high beams, active lane keep assist, lane departure warning, front parking sensors, and adaptive cruise control.

Read more about safety »

Which Buick Enclave Model Is Right for Me?

The 2019 Enclave comes in four trim levels, including the new Preferred base trim. All use the same powertrain, and you can add all-wheel drive to all but the Preferred trim for about $2,000. Options vary by trim level and include a dual-pane moonroof, a navigation system, and an adaptive suspension system.

If you're in search of the best bang for your buck, we recommend starting with the midlevel Enclave Essence. For only $2,000 more than the base trim, the Essence feels more luxurious inside (thanks to its leather seats), and the added safety features keep a watchful eye for any obstacles around the vehicle. We go into more detail on the standard features of each trim below.

Buick Enclave Preferred

The entry-level Enclave Preferred ($40,000) is a plush ride, with heated front seats, tri-zone automatic climate control, active noise cancellation, and a hands-free power liftgate among its standard features. Its infotainment system comes with a wealth of user favorites: an 8-inch touch-screen display, Sirius XM satellite radio, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, six USB ports, and an OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hot spot. The front-wheel-drive Preferred trim also comes with a rearview camera and rear parking sensors. All-wheel drive is not available with this trim.

Buick Enclave Essence

The leather-appointed Enclave Essence starts at $42,000 with front-wheel drive and $44,000 with all-wheel drive. Additional standard features include blind spot monitoring, lane change alert, and rear cross traffic alert.

Buick Enclave Premium

A robust set of safety features is standard in the Enclave Premium ($48,100), including forward collision warning, low-speed automatic emergency braking, front pedestrian braking, a following distance indicator, a Safety Alert seat, automatic high beams, active lane keep assist, lane departure warning, and front parking sensors. Its infotainment system gains a 10-speaker Bose audio system and HD Radio. Also standard are ventilated front seats, heated second-row seats, a power tilting-and-telescoping heated steering wheel, power-folding third-row seats, and a 120-volt household-style power outlet. All-wheel drive is a $2,300 add-on.

Buick Enclave Avenir

The range-topping Enclave Avenir is outfitted with swanky extras such as a dual-pane moonroof, a wood-accented steering wheel, an 8-inch configurable driver display, and unique styling elements. Added technology includes a 360-degree surround-view camera, a rear camera mirror, a navigation system, and wireless smartphone charging. Prices start at $53,500 for the Avenir FWD and $55,800 for the Avenir AWD.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Buick dealership. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Buick deals page.

See 2019 Buick Enclave specs and trims »

The Final Call

The 2019 Buick Enclave stands out in our midsize SUV rankings for its refined handling and serene, spacious cabin. This is a great pick if you're looking for something classier than the Chevrolet Traverse or GMC Acadia – two other midsize siblings from GM – but don't want to fork over the cash that most luxury 3-row SUVs require.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

  • "We like the Enclave's long list of standard features and its high level of in-car technology. … Whichever version you get, know that you'll have a quiet and comfortable cabin that can seat up to seven passengers. … The Enclave doesn't have the road-hugging chops like some of its European rivals, and it's not the least expensive in the segment. But if a comfortable highway ride, a roomy interior and getting lots of features are priorities, take a look at the 2019 Buick Enclave." -- Edmunds
  • "The redesigned 2018 Buick Enclave reinforces its position as the flagship of the division's lineup, bringing fresh styling, a larger footprint and a new upscale trim level. These changes will help solidify the Enclave as a premium 3-row crossover SUV that's a cut above more mainstream offerings and is well-positioned to compete with established luxury models like the Acura MDX and Infiniti QX60." -- Kelley Blue Book (2018)
  • "The 2018 Buick Enclave is one of the best non-luxury three-rows we've ever tested, hands down. It's comfortable, competent and capable. It may not be cheap, but its base equipment justifies a premium price tag." -- Left Lane News (2018)


Expert Advice

Last Updated: June 13, 2019

Low, but Rising Sales: The Buick Enclave is in the lower half in sales among midsize SUVs this year, yet sales have jumped 19.8% compared to the same period in 2018. Its corporate cousin, the Chevrolet Traverse, has outsold the Enclave almost 3 to 1 this year.

Research more buying advice »
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