2017 Buick Encore Reviews and Ratings

AWD 4dr Preferred

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J.D. Power Verified Consumer Reviews (16)
Overall Rating
  4.4 / 5
Reliability
  4.4 / 5
Interior
  4.3 / 5
Exterior
  4.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
  4.4 / 5

By Linda 10/5/2017 12:27:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
  4.4 / 5
Love my Buick Encore. It is the second one I have leased . The gas mileage is great and the comfort is wonderful. The additional technological features are really nice. Love the Apple Car Play !!!
Reliability
  4.5 / 5
Interior
  4 / 5
Exterior
  4.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
  4.5 / 5

By Anonymous 8/31/2017 4:59:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4 / 5
Nice Vehicle. Best Features - Handles nice. Pleasure to drive.
Reliability
   4 / 5
Interior
   4 / 5
Exterior
   4 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4 / 5

By Kathy 8/30/2017 2:51:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
I needed a vehicle that was safe, handled well and got good gas mileage for commuting to my daughters, dancing events. It's comfortable for traveling, is reliable and holds a reasonable amount of luggage. The OnStar and GPS system is a plus.
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Anonymous 8/26/2017 5:14:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
This has been a great car to get around town and run errands with using little gas. The car has a lot of power for a smaller SUV and can turn on a dime. We have a teen that is learning to drive and this car has been great for that as well. We have plenty of room inside the car. We are very happy with our Encore and highly recommend it to anyone looking for a smaller SUV.
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Donald 8/23/2017 8:58:00 AM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
Seats are very comfortable; Good visability. Excellent drivability. Best Features - Seats and visability and drivability
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By STEPHEN 8/23/2017 8:12:00 AM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4 / 5
GREAT CAR BUT THERE SEEMS TO BE A BLIND SPOT OVER THE LEFT SHOULDER. THE ONSTAR AND SIRIUS RADIO ARE A PLUS.
Reliability
   4 / 5
Interior
   4 / 5
Exterior
   4 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4 / 5

By Terri 8/21/2017 1:51:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
I love the Buick Encore. It is sporty, and I love driving around in it. It is a stylish and practical vehicle.
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Sarah 8/21/2017 12:41:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
My encore is awesome to be so small, It is excellent on highway trips and gas mileage. It is easy to handle and has all of the amenities that I need!
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Anna 8/21/2017 8:58:00 AM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   2.9 / 5
Because I leased it right before summer I am not sure how it handles in the Northeast Snow. Best Features - Fast take off, I am 6 ft tall and feel perfectly comfortable driving or as a passenger...very smooth ride and quiet! Worst Features - I have no sunroof...Again, I am not sure how it handles in the snow yet
Reliability
   2.5 / 5
Interior
   3 / 5
Exterior
   3 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   3 / 5

By Sharon 8/18/2017 10:36:00 AM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   3.2 / 5
It's all about expectations for me. I expected a smooth, comfortable, easy driving machine. Technology is always a plus and this car has enough to connect all your devices and charge them too. Wifi a great feature along with On Star. You should check your transmission to see if you are getting the more sporty version with a selection of M on your shifting panel. That is a good feature for a younger person but unnecessary for pure ride joy. There is trunk space for small shopping trips and vacation for two. My car is built for the driver, passengers rough it. Heated seats and auto trunk are not standard so don't just think they will be there for you. I have had no issues with my Buick to date and don't expect to encounter issues.
Reliability
   4 / 5
Interior
   2.5 / 5
Exterior
   4 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   2.5 / 5

By Glenn 8/17/2017 9:21:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.1 / 5
Our Encore is fun to drive. It is quick and responsive. It is small and easy to glide into tight spaces. It is probably better suited for a family of two than for larger families. The cab is quiet and comfortable. We have enjoyed our vehicle and will recommend it to others.
Reliability
   4 / 5
Interior
   4 / 5
Exterior
   4 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4.5 / 5

By Garnet 8/17/2017 11:31:00 AM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.5 / 5
Outstanding exterior design. Bright, wide back-up camera. Easy in/out parking in tight spaces. Love
Reliability
   4.5 / 5
Interior
   4 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4.5 / 5

By Cathy 8/4/2017 9:47:00 AM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
Driving in my Buick feels safe and looks incredible!
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Hilda N 7/27/2017 4:07:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   5 / 5
I love my Encore
Reliability
   5 / 5
Interior
   5 / 5
Exterior
   5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   5 / 5

By Jim 7/27/2017 2:48:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   3.9 / 5
My Encore is small but has enough room for me and my wife. We use cargo storage for beach trips shopping and family activities with our grandchildren. The performance is adequate for our driving style (a 50/50 split of highway and city) and averages 30 mpg. Some reviews criticize the lack of power but I have had no problem accelerating from entrance ramp onto interstate highways to 70+ mph. You won't get whiplash but you're not rocking back and forth trying to urge the vehicle to go faster. I like the styling and the 18' tires make the ride feel as solid as a bigger car. The blue tooth features work easily with my cell phone. My only complaint is that the front side panels separate from the body near the headlamps. They apparently clip on to the framework; I can push them back in but once the car moves again they pop out about 1/4 to 1/2 inch. I need to make an appointment with the dealer's service department to have this looked at but am confidant the fix will be under warranty.
Reliability
   4 / 5
Interior
   4 / 5
Exterior
   3.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4 / 5

By Dawn 7/27/2017 1:29:00 PM J.D. POWER VERIFIED OWNER REVIEW
   4.5 / 5
This vehicle drives really well for a smaller SUV. We recently drove down to Texas and back and it actually got better gas mileage than it was rated to get so we were very surprised. We only had one problem and that is the little tab that you use to pull to get to the spare tire is a little too long and if you are not careful when you close the back hatch it gets in the way of the latch. We thought the back hatch was closed but apparently it wasn't and in the morning our battery was drained and Buick had to come out and break into our vehicle and jump us. We kept an eye on that after that and never had another problem. We love this car and probably will keep it when the lease is up.
Reliability
   4.5 / 5
Interior
   4.5 / 5
Exterior
   4.5 / 5
Driving Dynamics
   4.5 / 5


Expert Reviews ( 1 )

2017 Buick Encore
New Car Test Drive

Introduction

Essentially based on an economy car, the subcompact Chevrolet Sonic, Buick Encore is a small crossover SUV with premium features. When it debuted as a 2013 model, Encore was one of few small crossovers. Today, that niche has grown quite crowded.

The 2017 Buick Encore gets a fresh front end, revised interior with an 8-inch touchscreen and pushbutton start. Buick will offer its stronger engine in all trim levels, except the base model.

Standard engine is a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder, developing 138 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of torque. It mates with a 6-speed automatic transmission. Considering Encore’s 3,200-pound weight, it’s no surprise that performance falls short of stimulating. Acceleration to 60 mph takes a sluggish nine seconds, while gas mileage isn’t so thrifty for a small vehicle.

Adding direct injection boosts output to 153 horsepower and 177 pound-feet, which eases passing and merging. For good daily drivability, the optional four-cylinder makes more sense.

For what amounts to a tall wagon on a short wheelbase, handling is about as good as any rival’s. Optional all-wheel drive helps with harsh-weather traction.

Because the Encore is narrow, front passengers might bump elbows now and then. Headroom is more abundant, and average-size adults can fit comfortably into the back seat.

Despite its premium fittings, the Encore’s interior is more versatile and flexible than expected. Both the rear seat and the front passenger seat may be folded down. Bose noise cancellation helps keep the ride quiet, and information appears on a large central touchscreen.

Safety features and standard equipment are among the Encore’s primary attractions. All versions have 10 airbags, a rearview camera, OnStar’s 4G LTE data connection, and can run smartphone apps via Bluetooth, Apple Car Play, and Android Auto. Buyers can add leather upholstery, all-wheel drive, premium Bose audio, and safety options including lane-departure and forward-collision warnings, as well as blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert.

Making the rearview camera standard was wise, because over-the-shoulder and rearward visibility are dreadful. Some active-safety systems seem a little too cautious, but most warnings signal a valid concern.

Encores have scored well in crash-testing. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave it five stars overall, rating five-star in every category except rollover. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rated Encore Good in three tests, warranting a Top Safety Pick award.

Model Lineup

The 2017 Buick Encore comes in one model, with front- or all-wheel drive, and a choice of four option packages.

Encore comes with an 8-inch touchscreen, power windows/locks and heated mirrors, cruise control, cloth upholstery with simulated-leather trim; power driver’s seat; ambient lighting; rearview camera; OnStar telematics, IntelliLink infotainment, and 18-inch alloy wheels.

Convenience includes dual-zone automatic climate control, remote start, blind-zone and rear cross-traffic alerts, and foglamps. Leather adds a heated steering wheel, heated front seats, and leather-appointed seating. Premium features Bose audio, parking sensors, plus lane-departure and forward-collision warnings.

Sport Touring gets the direct-injected engine, a rear spoiler, stop/start technology, front/rear park assist, and special 18-inch alloy wheels.

Options include navigation and a sunroof.

Walkaround

The Encore is as much small hatchback as it is crossover SUV.

Revisions for 2017 give the front end a more appealing appearance. LED headlights and the hood has a cleaner look, while the latest grille abandons the previous waterfall-style bars, substituting a wing-shaped chrome strip. Portholes are gone, and the hood has a single line down its center. Lower air intakes aren’t as prominent now.

The rear half of the Encore looks less jaunty and more traditional than the front. An S-shaped curve extends through each door panel. A spoiler atop the tailgate extends the roofline slightly.

Interior

Despite its small size, with a cabin that feels narrow, space is fairly generous. Adding the new touchscreen for 2017 made the control layout more user-friendly, and the interior seems less cluttered.

Soft-touch surfaces and metal trim help impart an upscale, premium feel, complementing the comfortable seats. Active noise cancellation helps keep engine sounds in check, but some tire and wind noise enters the cabin. Still, the cabin stays way calmer than a typical subcompact.

Up front, passengers might feel a bit fenced-in by the narrow interior, but the driver gets a fine position, enjoying a commanding view past the short front end. A low dashboard and tall roof boost the sense of spaciousness, even though shoulder room is lacking and the wide central console might contact passenger knees.

Front seats are comfortable, helped by nicely shaped seatbacks, though bottom cushions are a bit short on support. The back seat can readily hold two adults, but a third is basically out of the question. Knee room is passable, helped by modest depressions formed in the front seatbacks. A folding armrest contains cupholders. Folding the back seat expands cargo capacity from 18.8 to nearly 50 cubic feet.

Driving Impressions

Driving an Encore is a pleasure. The standard engine strains to get the Encore underway, but the 153-horsepower version provides more appropriate vigor. Passing on two-lane roads and merging onto expressway is significantly easier.

Buick’s automatic transmission tends to upshift too soon. With the milder engine, in particular, accelerating at even a modest pace typically requires more than one downshift.

Despite relatively large wheels and a short wheelbase, the Encore delivers impressive ride comfort. Urban potholes and other trouble spots produce a little choppiness, but less than expected in such a small vehicle. Electric power steering does its job well, too.

Unlike some competitors, operation of Buick’s automatic Stop/Start system is barely noticeable. When accelerating hard, though, either engine emits troublesome booming noise. Optional all-wheel drive not only improves traction, but improves ride quality.

Fuel economy is about average: less thrifty than expected. With the base engine and front-drive, the 2016 Encore was EPA-rated at 25/33 mpg City/Highway, or 28 mpg Combined. All-wheel drive drops the estimate to 23/30 mpg City/Highway, or 26 mpg Combined. With the optional engine, a front-drive model is EPA-rated at 28/34 mpg City/Highway, versus 26/32 mpg City/Highway with all-wheel drive.

Summary

Buick was something of a trailblazer when first introducing the Encore, which still doesn’t feel quite like a typical Buick. Well-equipped, with a quiet cabin, the Encore boasts some luxury-vehicle features, and is priced at premium level for its category. An attractive-looking small crossover/hatchback, the Encore promises substantially greater driving satisfaction with the more powerful optional engine.

Driving impressions by Kirk Bell, The Car Connection. James M. Flammang contributed to this report.


J.D. Power Rating
Overall Quality 4 / 5
Overall Quality - Mechanical
5 / 5
Powertrain Quality - Mechanical
5 / 5
Body & Interior Quality - Mechanical
5 / 5
Features & Accessories Quality - Mechanical
3 / 5
Overall Quality - Design
3 / 5
Powertrain Quality - Design
3 / 5
Body & Interior Quality - Design
5 / 5
Features & Accessories Quality - Design
3 / 5

Overall Dependability Not Available
Powertrain Dependability
Not Available
Body & Interior Dependability
Not Available
Feature & Accessory Dependability
Not Available

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J.D. Power Rating Legend
Among the Best
5 / 5
Better than Most
4 / 5
About Average
3 / 5
The Rest
2 / 5

* The J.D. Power Ratings are calculated based on the range between the car manufacturer or car model with the highest score and the car manufacturer or car model with the lowest score. J.D. Power generates a rating of a five, four, three, or two. If there is insufficient data to calculate a rating, “Not Available” is used in its place.

J.D. Power Ratings may not include all information used to determine J.D. Power awards, visit the Car Ratings page to learn more about awards and ratings.