Redesigned Envision strengthens Buick small crossover lineup

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DETROIT — Buick’s redesigned Envision marks another new option in the compact crossover segment.

The 2021 Envision gives Buick a fresh entry in the space, following its success with the smaller 2020 Encore GX. Buick sold 34,942 Envisions in the United States last year, up 5.2 per cent from 2019. The brand notched 44,841 sales of the Encore GX in 2020, its first year in the market.

North of the border, Buick Canada sold 2,123 Envisions last year, down 27.2 per cent as the pandemic kept dealerships closed entirely for weeks at a time or open by appointment only. The Encore GX, meanwhile, was the brand’s second best-selling vehicle with 5,214 sold.

The Envision, imported from China, fits between the Encore GX and the Enclave large crossover in Buick’s lineup. It has 52.7 cubic feet of cargo space behind the first row and 25.2 cubic feet behind the second row.

“The all-new 2021 Envision is a tremendous opportunity for the brand,” Duncan Aldred, vice president of global Buick and GMC, said in a statement. “With strong, differentiated designs, and a combination of advanced technologies and premium appointments, it will stand apart in one of the industry’s most competitive segments.”

The redesigned Envision is lower and wider than the previous generation and includes a revamped interior, more safety features, added infotainment options and a premium trim package. It starts a $37,598 in Canada. The price includes shipping.

“The new Envision’s cabin is welcoming, with a comfortable and premium environment intended to make the driver and passengers feel like every excursion is an occasion,” Rob Cameron, design manager of global Buick and GMC, said in the statement. “All of the elements are designed to celebrate what customers use the most on their drives today.”

The Envision’s interior includes an instrument panel tilted toward the driver for a better view and an available 10-inch touch screen. The retooled console comes with electronic precision shift, rather than a mechanical shift lever, freeing space underneath. It also includes a dual-wing centre armrest, which allows the driver or passenger to access the storage compartment without disturbing the other’s elbow. The crossover also has a covered compartment below the instrument panel to store valuables.

An air ionizer, which debuted on the 2018 Enclave, comes standard on the Envision’s Essence and Avenir trims. Buick also includes an air quality indicator on those trims for the first time to monitor the cabin’s air.

QuietTuning and rear-seat reminders come standard on all trims, and a panoramic power moonroof is available on the Essence and Avenir.

Buick is offering the premium Avenir trim on the Envision for the first time. It has an exclusive mesh grille design, with tinted chrome trim and 20-inch wheels with a Pearl Nickel finish. The Preferred and Essence trims have an available Sport Touring appearance package.

Greg Layson of Automobile News | tomobile.org Canada contributed to this report.

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