It’s not easy being a Buick SUV. This lineup of premium utility crossovers straddles two highly competitive categories: affordable subcompact SUV and luxury subcompact SUV. Somehow, the 2022 Buick Encore GX manages to give competitors in both categories a run for their money, occupying a top spot on the affordability list without compromising high-end luxury and refinement.
If your plans include buying or leasing a small SUV, but your budget demands restricting your search to the lower end of the price spectrum, the Encore GX is going to make your day. From supple leather seating surfaces to an available HD Surround Vision camera, this little ute competes confidently with vehicles priced thousands of dollars more. Safety features abound, making the Encore GX a practical choice for young families or anyone looking for peace of mind while on the go.
Additionally, Buick backs up its quality promise with a long warranty coverage period and even throws in a bit of complimentary maintenance to sweeten the practicality pot. With all the benefits of Encore GX ownership, it begs the question: why would small crossover buyers choose anything else?
One glance at the 2022 Buick Encore GX, and it’s clear that this is no ordinary SUV. The Encore GX boasts sporty, athletic exterior styling with a hearty helping of refinement, and with many different colors to choose from, customization to buyers’ specific tastes is easy. Those bold exterior lines pair nicely with LED headlights and taillights and hint at the cabin’s comparative elegance. Once inside, it doesn’t disappoint.
With three interior color schemes to choose from, including a luxurious black and rich brown two-tone option, the Encore GX aims to provide drivers with an oasis from exterior noise. Buick thoughtfully outfits the Encore GX with features designed to keep occupants entertained and comfortable, including dual-zone automatic eliminate control and an air ionizer to keep the cabin air fresh and clean.
Buick incorporates its QuietTuning technology throughout the Encore GX. The systems all work together to minimize wind and road noise, which optimizes audio sound quality and makes long drives much less draining. QuietTuning includes Active Noise Cancelation, extra insulation in the doors and dash, and special acoustic laminated glass in the windows and windshield. Add the available heated steering wheel, heated front seats, and panoramic moonroof, and you have all the makings of a high-end luxury environment.
With three trims to choose from – the Preferred, the Select, and the Essence – as well as a Sport Touring edition, Buick prices an Encore GX for just about every buyer. It includes QuietTuning technology, aggressive 18-inch wheels, an 8-inch infotainment touchscreen with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, and a slew of standard driver-assist safety technology designed to help drivers stay alert and safe in all different driving conditions.
The Encore GX Select is a mid-range option that adds a bit more to the MSRP and adds more driver-assist systems, as well as heated front seats, a remote start capability, and automatic dual-zone climate control. It’s just enough extra equipment to justify the additional price and a great bridge between the base model and the more expensive top-of-the-line Essence trim.
The Essence features luxury equipment commonly only found in far more expensive European luxury imports. You’ll find leather seating with memory settings (for the seats and outside mirrors), LED exterior lighting, a heated steering wheel that’s also wrapped in soft leather, a cabin ionizer, and a power 8-way fold-flat passenger seat, which is perfect both to keep front passengers comfortable and for hauling oversized cargo.
Any luxury SUV is incomplete without a great performance story. The 2022 Encore GX offers drivers plenty of ways to enjoy a thrilling Sunday afternoon drive, whether the sun is shining or the roads are slick from an unexpected rainstorm. That’s thanks to the available all-wheel drive drivetrain and turbocharged 1.3-liter direct injection engine that pumps out 155 horsepower, more than enough for the Encore GX’s diminutive subcompact stature.
The available Sport Touring Package adds a handful of exterior styling equipment designed to bring out the Encore GX’s sporty alter ego. These include body-color moldings, a unique grille, front and rear bumpers with fiery red accenting, special 18-inch glossy wheels, and badging that identifies it as a special edition. The Sport Touring Package is a perfect add-on for Encore GX trims with all-wheel drive. You can even add special brushed metal brake and gas pedals.
Every Encore GX includes Buick Driver Confidence, a suite of advanced safety systems that rely on sensors, radar, and cameras to keep drivers alert and aware of constantly changing road and traffic conditions. The suite includes Automatic Emergency Braking, Front Pedestrian Braking, Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning, Forward Collision Alert, Following Distance Indicator, and IntelliBeam automatic high beams.
Adaptive Cruise Control is also available on the Encore GX as an add-on and works by sensing the distance between your vehicle and the car ahead, automatically adjusting speed up or down to maintain a safe distance. Similar to IntelliBeam, Adaptive Cruise Control is designed to remove a repetitive (and mundane) task from the driving experience, allowing the vehicle’s operator to not only stay more alert but also enjoy the drive without the hassle of manually switching between high and low beams or constantly adjusting highway speed to meet traffic flow.
Buick offers Automatic Parking Assist with Braking exclusively on the Encore GX Essence. This intelligent parallel parking system can actually search for and locate a parking space - both parallel and perpendicular - and provide the steering and braking necessary to help park the vehicle without having to reset and retry. The system takes the guesswork out of tricky parking situations and is especially helpful during stressful parallel parking in busy urban environments.
The 2022 Encore GX could just as easily exist far into the future just as it is because Buick has equipped it with forward-thinking technology that focuses on accomplishing three major goals: occupant comfort, connectivity, and next-level entertainment. Starting with the standard 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot and Buick’s advanced infotainment system, you can stream playlists and podcasts, communicate with home smart devices, and even review vehicle diagnostics, all from the onboard 8-inch touchscreen.
The infotainment system features wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, plenty of USB ports, including one for streaming content to the vehicle’s audio system, and the capability of connecting two phones simultaneously. Both the Select and Essence trims offer available built-in navigation, and buyers can opt for a Convenience Package for the Essence, which features a wireless charger, among other safety and comfort features.
An HD Surround Vision camera, offered as optional equipment on the Select and Essence, gives drivers a 360-degree bird’s eye view of the area surrounding the vehicle, perfect for helping with parking or navigating tight spots. Choosing the Select or Essence trim also unlocks access to the available Head-Up Display, which projects key information right at the driver’s line of sight, so it’s easy to keep track of speed and navigation cues without taking your eyes off the road.
No matter which Encore GX trim you choose, Buick Connected Access services are available. This app-based connectivity feature turns your smartphone into a remote key and data center. Via a subscription-based service with the legendary OnStar system, drivers can lock and unlock doors, sound the horn, and locate their Encore GX in an overcrowded mall parking lot with the simple touch of a button.
Connected services also provide helpful vehicle data, like fuel levels and time until the next required maintenance or service. In addition, the app is where drivers can activate a data plan to make use of the onboard Wi-Fi hotspot. For budget-minded owners, Buick offers complimentary basic connected access, which features vehicle diagnostics and a Smart Driver feature to track driving habits.