The 2020 Buick Enclave has a lot to offer. Most review sites agree that it is a good midsize SUV. It is an ideal choice if you’re looking for an SUV with generous passenger and cargo space, packed with infotainment features, and offers a gentle ride and an energetic powertrain. But it isn’t as athletic and as luxurious on the inside compared to some of its class rivals.
This three-row SUV can seat seven people. Cloth upholstery, heated and power-adjustable front seats come standard. You can upgrade to heated second-row captains, a heated steering wheel, leather upholstery, ventilation, massage functions for the front seats, and a power-folding third row.
The first two rows provide comfortable seats with plenty of headroom and legroom. The second row can slide forward, allowing easy entry to the back. The third row can accommodate two adult passengers but it is recommended for short trips only. That space is best left for children on longer trips.
The cargo space is at 23 cubic feet behind the third row, which is very good for a midsized three-row SUV. Behind the second row it has 58 cubic feet of cargo space and can expand to a maximum capacity of 97.6 cubic feet. All figures are above average for its class.
Enclave Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation
The base trim already has a myriad of tech features, and this is one of the strengths of the 2020 Buick Enclave. It comes standard with an infotainment system that has an 8-inch touch screen, an OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot, a smartphone connectivity through Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, satellite, Siri Eyes Free, six USB ports, a six-speaker stereo and satellite radio. A premium 10-speaker Bose sound system, a dual-pane moonroof, navigation, 8-inch driver display, and wireless device charging are available as options.
The Enclave’s interface is user-friendly and has crisp graphics. You’ll find it easy to use as it comes with plenty of physical controls for typically used functions plus the touch screen responds fast to inputs. You’ll also find some comfort and convenience amenities such as the tri-zone automatic climate control, a noise cancellation system called QuietTuning, push-button start, proximity keyless entry, and a remote start.
Strong and Smooth Engine
The Enclave has a 3.6 liter V6 engine producing 310 hp and 266 lb-ft of torque. It provides more than enough power for everyday driving, and you won’t find it hard to get up to speed on the highway. The engine is paired with a 9-speed automatic transmission. The Enclave can boast of a peppy engine, smooth transition and a swift acceleration. You’ll barely notice the standard engine stop-start system as it engages with minimal disruption.
The Enclave has a typical gas mileage for a midsize SUV at 18 mpg in the city and 26 on the highway. If you go for an all-wheel drive you’ll get less than 1 mpg per figure.
Ride and Handling
This SUV provides a gentle ride on most roads. Its suspension is able to absorb bumps and potholes well before they can nudge the driver and the passengers. You can cruise most road flaws with minimal disruption. Also, it has responsive and precise steering, firm brakes and minimal body lean so the Enclave stays composed even on turns and winding roads. Front-wheel drive comes standard while all-wheel drive is available as an option.
The 2020 Enclave gets a 3.5 out of five predicted reliability rating from J.D. Power which is slightly above average.
Crash Test Results
The 2020 Enclave got a five out of five stars overall safety rating from the National Highway Highway Traffic Safety Administration. It got five starts in the side crash evaluation and got four stars in both the frontal crash and rollover tests.
For the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) evaluations, the 2020 Enclave got the top rating of Good in five crash tests. However, it only received the second lowest rating of Marginal for its headlights’ performance in illuminating the road ahead. The IIHS utilizes a different scale for testing collision avoidance features. The Enclave got the top rating of Superior for its vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention and received the second highest rating of Advanced or the highest rating of Superior which depended on trim level and packages.
The only standard safety features of the 2020 Buick Enclave are a rearview camera and rear parking sensors. But there are plenty of driver aid aids available including adaptive cruise control, lane keep assist, lane departure warning, lane change alert, rear cross traffic alert, front parking sensors, forward collision warning, blind spot monitoring, pedestrian detection, low-speed forward automatic emergency braking, a rear camera mirror, high-speed emergency braking, a surround-view parking camera system, a following distance indicator, and automatic high-beam headlights. A safety alert seat that alerts drivers of potential hazards by vibrating is also available as an option.
The 2020 Buick Enclave price starts at $40,000 which is higher than many midsize rivals but lower than many luxury rivals.
Should You Buy the Buick Enclave?
The Enclave is a good choice if you want a sophisticated three-row SUV that is less expensive than other luxury options like the Audi Q7. However, there are plenty of appealing class rivals like the Mazda CX-9 that provides more athletic handling than the Enclave, and it has a more luxurious cabin.
2020 Buick Enclave Trim Levels
The Enclave comes in four trim levels namely, Preferred, Essence, Premium and Avenir. All trim levels have the same 3.6-liter V6 engine and their main difference is their features. The base models already have rich features which make them a good pick. But if you are looking for more safety features, all-wheel drive or leather upholstery then you should go for at least the Enclave Essence, as this is the first trim that has them as options.
Buick Enclave Preferred
The base trim, Preferred, price starts at $40,000. It comes standard with an eight-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, a Wi-Fi hot spot, a satellite radio, a six-speaker stereo, Siri Eyes Free, six USB ports, Bluetooth, power-adjustable front seats, cloth upholstery, heated front streets, remote start, tri-zone automatic climate control and proximity keyless entry. Rear parking sensors, a hands-free power liftgate and a rearview camera come standard. There are a few packages available but they only add exterior styling tweaks like chrome grille or roof rails. All-wheel drive is not available for this entry-level trim.
Buick Enclave Essence
The Essence trim comes with these added features: leather seats, blind spot monitoring, lane change alert, and rear cross traffic alert. Price starts at $42,000. All-wheel drive is available as an option and you’ll need to add $2,000.
On top of the available packages being offered for the Preferred trim, the Essence model can be outfitted with a moonroof which costs $1,400. Add $825 and you can have a rear camera mirror and surround-view parking system. The Sound and Sites package comes at an additional cost of $1,395 and adds a 10-speaker Bose stereo, navigation, and a 120-volt household-style power outlet.
Buick Enclave Premium
The Buick Enclave MSRP base price is $48,400 and adds a 10-speaker Bose stereo, a heated steering wheel, a 120-volt household-style power outlet, ventilated and massaging front seats, a power-folding third-row, heated second-row seats, front parking sensors, automatic high-beam headlights, forward collision alert with automatic braking, lane departure warning, a following distance indicator, a safety alert seat, and a following distance indicator. Several of the same packages and options from previous trims are available. All-wheel drive costs $2,300 with the Premium trim.
Buick Enclave Avenir
The top-of-the-line Avenir starting MSRP is $53,800. It comes with the several options listed above plus an eight-inch customizable driver display, a wood-trimmed steering wheel and wireless device charging. All-wheel drive comes at an additional $2,300 for Avenir trim. The technology package is exclusive to the Avenir trim, offering an upgraded emergency braking, a retuned chassis and suspension, and adaptive cruise control. This package costs $2,095.
The 2020 Buick Enclave is not as luxurious or athletic like many of its competitors, but it’s a decent pick. The Enclave has many attractive features, however, other midsize SUVs also have the same offerings and many of which have more to offer overall and come at a lesser price. So you might want to look at other options. Such as the following:
Other Alternative Options to Buick Enclave
2020 Chevrolet Traverse
The Chevy Traverse is another GM SUV and shares many features as the Enclave. Both have the same powertrain, similar cargo capacity and passenger space. Even though the Buick Enclave comes with more standard features and a higher-quality cabin than the Chevy Traverse, the Enclave is $10,200 more expensive than the Chevy. If you do not mind the extra luxury, then the Traverse is the more economical option. When it comes to their top-of-the-line trims, the Chevy Traverse High Country is about as nice as the Enclave Avenir with slight differences in the quality of materials.
2020 Hyundai Palisade Limited
The Palisade Limited is one of the best choices, if not the best, instead of the Enclave Avenir. At a more affordable price than the top-of-the-line Enclave Avenir, you get a seven-seat SUV that offers a lot more for its weight class which means it is a lot nicer and better equipped than what its cost would suggest. It has a roomy cabin, a fully digital dash, a vastly superior multimedia system, Nappa leather that truly feels premium, a smooth drivetrain, and a lot more standard safety and driver-assist equipment. And if that isn’t enough, a loaded Palisade, with all its advanced equipment and opulent interior, only costs at around $48,000 with all factory equipment.
2020 Kia Telluride SX
The Telluride comes with almost the same features as the Palisade as what you can expect since Kia is a sister brand to Hyundai. The two SUVs share similarities in terms of mechanics, amenities and interiors, with major differences in styling. They also cost almost the same, so you can enjoy a loaded Telluride with an interior that’s fancier than the Enclave Avenir for less money. The only downside to the Palisade and the Telluride is they’re both scarce due to high demand.
2020 Volvo XC90 T6 Momentum
The Buick Enclave would be ashamed of its interior design and quality when compared to the interior of the seven seater stylish Swedish SUV, the 2020 Volvo XC90 T6 Momentum. The Volvo is smaller than the Buick Enclave and has tighter passenger space. But with almost the same passenger space, you would have a sophisticatedly finished European luxury SUV that definitely feels more expensive than it is. The T6 is more expensive than the T5, but the latter only has a 250-hp, turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that isn’t as appealing as the T6’s better-performing 316-horsepower motor. The least expensive XC90 comes at less than $50,000 but the one that is most comparable in equipment to the Enclave is the all-wheel drive T6 Momentum trim, starting at $57,295 with destination charge.
2020 Mazda CX-9 Signature AWD
In its goal to be among the more premium brands, Mazda has upgraded the interior of its top-of-the-line trim models. This means beautiful cabin designs, top quality leather and even some more interesting color combinations being offered. The CX-9’s multimedia system can still improve for the better, and it’s smaller than several of its rivals (especially in the third row), but the driving dynamics of this SUV are definitely impressive and the cabin feels luxurious for its price. A trim which can be compared to the Enclave Avenir is the Signature AWD that comes with a torquey turbocharged four-cylinder engine and Nappa leather. And all of that comes at only $48,000.