Buick Enclave Test Drive
I recently upgraded from my 1999 Mazda Protege to a 2018 Buick Enclave Avenir for a couple of weeks. Unlike my Protege, the Enclave actually fits my entire family of six. Even with us all buckled up, there's plenty of room.
That's the biggest difference. The Buick Enclave Avenir is super roomy. I thought of removing the seats, building a podcast studio and bringing my services on the road. Instead, we planned a couple of road trips and puttered around town.
How roomy was it? I was able to drive three of my kids with room for my bike in the back.
There were some safety features with this Buick that blew my mind. There's this bird-eye camera view they call "surround vision" that's just magic.
I also like the dashboard displaying the speed limit of the road I'm on. There were times driving back from Cambridge I was sure the limit was 100 but saw on the dashboard it was actually 80. I'm sure that saved me a ticket or two.
When the Buick left me for Oshawa, and I drove my Protege again, I felt like I was sitting on the road. You get used to the height of an SUV, and you get used to the powerful 3.6 L DI V6. Not to mention the infotainment system, Bluetooth streaming, touchscreen navigation, 4G LTE Wi-Fi, etc....
I'm in the market for a car that seats at least six. For the past couple of weeks, I've been test driving a new Buick Enclave which seats seven comfortably. It's been absolutely ideal.
My youngest is now three months old, so at some point I'm going to have to make an actual decision and buy something. In the meantime, we make do by picking destinations some of us can bike to. My oldest two have been racking up the cycling KMs lately.
The Buick Enclave is a large automobile that doesn't drive like a large automobile. I like that. It's also nice that, once the two car seats are installed, my other two kids can easily access the back row of seats without having to climb over anything. There's a convenient path for them to follow.
I'll admit, by the time the two weeks was up, I had forgotten I didn't actually own this car and had to return it. One reason I've delayed making a final decision is that there are several excellent options for one looking for a car with three rows of seats.
I'm planning a road trip for the whole family in August. We're finally going to head east and experience the Maritimes. For that trip, I'm driving a GMC Acadia.
We decided to take a road trip to Gatineau this past long weekend. This isn't as easy as it sounds now that we're a family of five. We needed more room, and a Buick Enclave that comfortably seats 7 was ideal.
This Buick Enclave isn't just roomy, it's a dangerously smooth ride. I say "dangerously" because I kept having to remind myself the speed limit is still 100 on the 401 and 416. You could cruise at 140 in the Enclave and it's as smooth as butter.
It was also nice to have a modern car with Bluetooth and satellite radio for a road trip this long. A good playlist does wonders when you're on the road for five hours. Throw in a fresh coffee and we're all set.
When my third kid was born, family trips suddenly required five seats. Sure, our little Mazdas have five seatbelts, but that doesn't leave much room for camping gear or playpens or coolers..
Last Friday, we took baby Jarvis on his first road trip to Muskoka The good people at GM Canada hooked me up with a 2015 Buick Enclave, which comfortably seats seven. That's five seats for passengers and two seats for cottage and baby gear. It was perfect.
In addition to being extremely roomy, it's ridiculously smooth and powerful with IntelliLink and all the tech you'd want in a modern SUV. It also has a whack of driver alert features, like Side Blind Zone Alert, Lane Departure Warning and Forward Collision Alert. Not to mention the rear vision camera.
I'm returning the 2015 Buick Enclave tomorrow, but I'll miss it. My car doesn't have Bluetooth or a single USB port.
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