Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A silver 2023 Buick Enclave Avenir is shown from the front at an angle.

Buick Enclave: Get to Know Your Options

If you’re shopping for a midsize SUV, then you have a lot of options available to you—no, seriously, a lot, perhaps too many. Narrowing all of these down to figure out which one is right for you is tricky enough, but even if you’ve decided on something like the Buick Enclave, then you still have more options to look at, consider, and choose. It’s easy to overlook some of this stuff and assume you’ll figure it all out on-site at a Buick dealer, but this is setting yourself up for a lot of frustration and a much longer car-buying trip than you need to be making.

It’s much easier, instead, to look at these options while doing some research ahead of time and figure out what you want and need. That way, once you reach out to a dealership or head to one in-person, you’ll already know what you’re looking for and everything becomes a lot simpler when you’re there. This also makes it easier to act quickly if a dealership has what you want, so you don’t have to wait for another model to come in since inventory can still be spotty right now. Let’s take a look at the 2023 Buick Enclave to see what it brings to the road, while paying special attention to the trim levels that are available to you.

Buick Enclave Basics

Before we start digging into some specific options, particularly what you get and have available to you with the three trim levels for the Enclave, let’s take a moment to look at some basic stuff that’s true for all Buick Enclave models. This is a midsize SUV with three rows of seating inside, giving you room for up to seven passengers: two up front, two in the middle, and three in the back row. You get lots of room inside with more than 157 cu.ft. of total passenger volume and up to 97.4 cu.ft. of total cargo volume available behind the front seats. Every Enclave is powered by a 3.6L V6 engine that delivers 310 hp and 266 lb-ft of torque, which comes paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission.

One important choice to consider is separate from the trim level, which is the drive type that you prefer in your SUV. The Enclave comes with Front-Wheel Drive standard, but you can choose All-Wheel Drive for added traction and control when things get tough—this is true for all three trims. You have numerous exterior colors available to you for the Enclave including Summit White, Ebony Twilight Metallic, Cherry Red Tintcoat, and Moonstone Gray Metallic. Inside, you can choose between a Dark Galvanized interior for a warm and comfortable look or Whisper Beige if you prefer something brighter.

a silver 2022 Buick Enclave Avenir is shown from the rear at an angle after leaving a Buick dealer.

The Enclave Essence

The first of three trims for the Enclave, the Essence is the starting option and it comes with a wide range of standard features for you to enjoy. With the Essence trim, you get 18-inch aluminum wheels wrapped in all-season tires, along with heated, power-controlled outside mirrors with body-color styling. You’ll find LED headlamps on the Essence with IntelliBeam auto high beams that can turn on and off automatically based on surrounding traffic. The Essence also has body-color door handles, an acoustic laminated windshield, and a hands-free power programmable rear liftgate for easy access to cargo space behind the third row.

Inside the Essence, you’ll find an 8-inch Infotainment display with support for Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which makes streaming your favorite audio content easy. This trim has a standard six-speaker sound system, numerous USB ports, and perforated leather-appointed seating. Speaking of which, you’ll find an eight-way power driver’s seat and six-way power front-passenger seat in the Essence, with heated front seats and a heated, leather-wrapped steering wheel. There’s a 4.2-inch color Driver Information Center inside the Essence, along with Keyless Open and Start functionality, Remote Start, cruise control, tri-zone automatic climate control, and a wireless phone charger.

The Essence is an incredibly safe option thanks to the standard Enclave Driver Confidence suite of safety features, which features a Forward Collision Alert with Automatic Emergency Braking to help you avoid a crash. You also get a Following Distance Indicator, which warns you when you get to close to the vehicle in front of you, plus Front Pedestrian Braking to help protect anyone who suddenly steps out in front of your vehicle. The Essence includes a Lane Change Alert with a Side Blind Zone Alert to help you avoid changing lanes into someone hiding in your blind spot, plus Lane Keep Assist with a Lane Departure Warning to alert you if you start to drift from your lane.

The Enclave Premium

You’ll find a number of upgrades to the Buick Enclave when you choose the Premium, both inside and out. For starters, the Premium trim includes heated, power, driver-side auto-dimming, power-folding outside mirrors—activating the rear defogger will heat the side mirrors to clear them of ice, snow, or frost; while the push of a button will fold the mirrors in. For advanced safety, the Premium trim includes an HD Surround Vision system that gives you a virtual overhead view of the area around your vehicle while maneuvering at low speeds, along with a Rear Pedestrian Alert to warn you about pedestrians while you’re in reverse.

There are also numerous upgrades to the Enclave’s interior such as a 10-speaker Bose performance-enhanced premium sound system. The Premium comes with heated and ventilated front seats, with heated second-row seating, plus an 8-inch Driver Information Center. You also get a head-up display with this trim to provide you with vehicle information projected onto the windshield so you can keep your eyes on the road, plus the front seats include power lumbar and massage functionality.

The white interior of a 2023 Buick Enclave Avenir is shown from above the center console.

The Enclave Avenir

Finally, we have the Avenir, which represents the pinnacle experience for the Buick Enclave and provides you with an exceptional vehicle. The Avenir features 20-inch Avenir Pearl Nickel finish wheels, a front power sliding moonroof and rear fixed skylight, Rainsense automatic wipers, and puddle lamps featuring the Buick Tri-Shield logo that illuminate the ground by the driver and front-passenger side mirrors. Safety is taken further with the Avenir thanks to Enhanced Automatic Emergency Braking, which adds radar support to the camera functionality of standard Automatic Emergency Braking. You also get Adaptive Cruise Control with the Avenir that can adjust your vehicle’s speed automatically to maintain a safe distance with traffic around you.

Which Option Has What You’re Looking For?

You can see that some of the differences between one trim and another can be pretty minor when viewed individually, but they quickly add up. It’s worth pointing out that some of the upgrades from moving to a higher trim are available as options for lower trims, but you’d need to pay more for them—at a certain point, you’re better off jumping up a trim level and getting more bundled together rather than trying to put together the SUV you want piecemeal. Taking a little time to look at each of these trims and the features they bring to the road can make it a lot easier to decide on which Buick Enclave is right for you, and to stick to that when you head to a dealership. Knowing what you want is one of the best ways to avoid being talked into something that’s too much vehicle or outside your budget, so figure things out ahead of time, and then you can shop with confidence while working with a dealer.