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FEATURES | 9 out of 10
The standard voice-recognition control and the optional ($795) navigation system require patience and consultation with the owner’s manual.
Car and Driver
Starting at $25,450, the 2013 Buick Encore comes standard with a seven-inch touchscreen interface for its electronics, a rearview camera, Bluetooth connectivity, USB audio input, a power-adjustable driver's seat and 18-inch wheels.
IntelliLink doesn't have flashy graphics or a hip app-based layout, but it's fast, reliable and easy to use. We'll take that every day.
Those wanting all-wheel drive will need to budget $1500 more for the option
the Encore also receives standard Bose Active Noise Cancellation, essentially a white noise generator that relies on three headliner-mounted microphones to detect and counter interior din.
Befitting its premium positioning, even the base 2014 Buick Encore offers plenty of standard features for its sticker price of about $25,000. The main options are all-wheel drive, for $1,500, and then a group of packages that bundle related options together. A fully loaded Encore can almost touch $33,000.
Standard features on all Encores include power windows, locks, and heated mirrors; cruise control; 18-inch alloy wheels; a power driver's seat; cloth upholstery with mock-leather trim; ambient lighting; a rearview camera; the OnStar telematic system; active noise cancellation; and a cargo cover. The Buick IntelliLink system is also standard, letting the driver use voice commands or a controller knob and a 7.0-inch dash screen to manage audio from multiple sources--Bluetooth streaming, mobile apps, satellite radio, or USB-connected devices--along with mobile-phone functions and the optional navigation system.
The Convenience Group package adds automatic climate control, remote start, and fog lamps. The Premium package includes the Bose audio system, parking sensors, and two camera-based safety features: lane-departure warning and forward-collision warning. The Leather package wraps heated front seats and a heated steering wheel in hide, along with the rear seats as well.
Other options include a sunroof and a navigation system that's available on all but the base Encore. The Bose premium audio system can also be specified separately on vehicles equipped with the Convenience or Leather packages.
Noise cancellation keeps the Encore's cabin quiet enough to justify the premium Bose stereo; IntelliLink makes apps easy.