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FEATURES | 8 out of 10
When a high-res, high-contrast screen can be found on a $200 base Garmin or TomTom navigation system, a pixelated display that looks like a refugee from a ’70s calculator is inexcusable in any car with upmarket aspirations.
Car and Driver
A Harman Kardon audio system makes music sound beautiful
The available navigation system absorbs audio functions...some functions are not as intuitive as they should be.
Depending on whether you go with a Base or Convenience model, or a top Premium or Touring model (the old CX, CXL, and CXS trims have been retired), the feel of the LaCrosse, as well as the equipment list, varies greatly. Base models don't feel any more extravagant than a mid-range Chevy (albeit with somewhat more stylish design)—and with the new features this year, GM has raised base prices by several thousand dollars, to about $30k. But the upper models can feel like entry-level Cadillacs, with an upgraded instrument panel, hard-drive navigation, and a Harman Kardon sound system.
Wheel configurations are one of the key differences, and ranging from standard 17-inch steel wheels with plastic covers in the base CX up to large 18- and 19-inch machined, painted, or chrome-plated alloys, they can significantly change the LaCrosse's look.
All LaCrosses feature hands-free Bluetooth phone connectivity, remote start, eight-way adjustable seating, and dual-zone climate control. IntelliLink, a new option for 2012, allows streaming Pandora or Stitcher audio, through a paired smartphone, as well as hands-free calling or easy connectivity to media players.An available Heads-up Display (HUD), and a 40-gigabyte hard-drive-based navigation and entertainment system can also be fitted, pushing the LaCrosse into the high-tech realm. The LaCrosse CXL and CXS get a standard Harman Kardon sound system that sounds pretty great no matter what the music.
The 2012 Buick LaCrosse has a feature set that's close to that of a Cadillac—but with a price tag not much more than a well-equipped Chevy.