Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A black 2023 Buick Envision is shown from the front at an angle.

How to Choose the Right Buick Envision For You

Close your eyes and picture this… Actually, don’t close your eyes; you can’t read with your eyes closed. Just close them metaphorically and picture the following… You go to a car dealership—a note of undeniable confidence in your every step—and you walk right up to the vehicle you want, with all of the options and features you need, point to it, and tell the salesperson, “That’s the one I’m buying.” Nice, right? That kind of confidence comes down to a simple thing: knowing exactly what you want in a vehicle. Sure, there are more things to consider, like how to get the right price for the vehicle you want, but it all starts with knowing what you plan on driving away in.

This comes down to doing your research, so you have a sense of all of the options available and already know what you need. With the 2023 Buick Envision, this relies on looking at the full range of options and taking things one step at a time to decide on the perfect combination. It can seem intimidating at first glance, but it’s honestly quite simple as long as you focus on a single piece for each step of the way. Let’s look at the Envision and what’s available on it to decide on which model is right for you.

Simple Things You Don’t Have to Worry About

Before looking at your options, it’s a good idea to quickly consider the easiest stuff: things that you can’t change. For example, there’s just one engine offered on the 2023 Envision, which is a 2.0L Turbo four-cylinder that delivers 228 hp and comes with a nine-speed automatic transmission. That’s it; there’s no need to worry about which engine is right for you, so just take that right off the table.

While we’re at it, there’s also just one configuration here: the Buick Envision is a compact crossover model with two rows of seating for up to five passengers, whether you like it or not. Seriously though—this isn’t like a GMC truck, where you need to consider different cab sizes and bed lengths; it’s just one option, so getting the most appropriate version of the Envision is even more uncomplicated. Every model comes with just over 25 cu.ft. of rear cargo volume to utilize, with more than 52 cu.ft. of total cargo space behind the front seats—so, again, put that overanxious mind at ease.

A black 2023 Buick Envision is shown from the rear at an angle.

Choose the Right Drive Type

Now let’s talk about some things you do need to decide on: one of the best places to start with the Envision is considering the drive type that’s right for you. The 2023 Buick Envision comes with front-wheel drive (FWD) standard, though all-wheel drive (AWD) is available on all three trims (more on them in a moment). This means you can decide on these things independently of one another, making it easier to get what you need and end up with a crossover model you love. The standard FWD setup is just fine and fun to drive; if you’re worried about traction in rain or slush, or you tend to drive on a lot of dirt and gravel roads, then AWD is a better choice. This really comes down to your preferences and what you need from your vehicle, so consider your daily driving habits and then decide on the right one.

Consider the Trims – Envision Preferred

Now then, the Buick Envision has three different trims available, and the differences between them can be pretty significant, so this is a great place to focus on once you’ve made other decisions—or even beforehand. The basic “Preferred” trim comes with an eight-inch Infotainment display, with support for Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, plus a six-speaker sound system. It also has cloth seating with leatherette details, an eight-way power driver’s seat, and a six-way manual front-passenger seat.

You’ll find a leather-wrapped steering wheel in the Preferred trim, with a 4.2-inch Driver Information Center, single-zone manual climate control, Keyless Open and Start, and standard cruise control. The Preferred comes with Buick’s standard Envision Driver Confidence package, which includes a Forward Collision Alert with Automatic Emergency Braking and Front Pedestrian Braking. It also features a Lane Keep Assist system with a Lane Departure Warning, a Following Distance Indicator, and IntelliBeam automatic high beams that can turn off on their own when oncoming traffic is detected, to avoid blinding other drivers.

Consider the Trims – Envision Essence

So far, so good with the Preferred model—now onto the “Essence,” which builds on the Preferred in a number of ways. For starters, the Essence features a 10.2-inch Infotainment display, a seven-speaker enhanced audio system, and perforated leather-appointed seating. You’ll find that both front seats are eight-way power adjustable in the Essence, plus they’re heated, and the driver’s seat has memory settings for multiple drivers. The Essence features an eight-inch Driver Information Center, Remote Start functionality, and dual-zone automatic climate control. You’ll also find a hands-free power programmable liftgate on the rear of the Envision Essence, whereas the Preferred model’s liftgate is manual.

Consider the Trims – Envision Avenir

Now we come to the “Avenir” trim—the pinnacle option for the Envision, representing an expression of Buick’s focus on luxury and sophistication. For example, while other Envision models have 18-inch wheels, the Avenir comes with 20-inch wheels for a bolder, more powerful stance. The Avenir has a panoramic power moonroof and LED headlamps with enhanced functionality (like cornering). Buick has loaded up the Avenir with safety features like Enhanced Automatic Emergency Braking, which utilizes radar along with cameras; HD Surround Vision, which gives you a digital overhead image of your vehicle and surroundings; and an Enhanced Automatic Parking Assist that can get into or out of parking spots for you.

Inside, the Avenir includes numerous upgrades, such as added Navigation functionality for the 10.2-inch Infotainment system, a Bose premium nine-speaker sound system, and HD Radio. The front seats of the Avenir are heated and ventilated, while the rear seats are also heated, plus there’s a heated leather-wrapped steering wheel. You’ll also find in the Avenir a wireless charging pad, Adaptive Cruise Control, and a Heads-Up Display (HUD) that projects critical information onto the windshield.

The interior of a 2023 Buick Envision Avenir is shown from the driver's seat.

Extra Options and Packages

As you’re considering these trim levels, it’s important to remember that there are additional options and packages available for even further amenities. For example, while the Preferred comes with manual climate control, the available Comfort and Convenience Package adds Remote Start functionality, dual-zone automatic climate control, the larger 10.2-inch Infotainment system, and much more. Once you’re up to the Avenir trim, there aren’t many additional options—however, even the Essence has things like Navigation and the Bose sound system as available features that you can add.

Final Decisions to Consider

So what do you do with all of this information? Well, simply start with the big-picture stuff and make the most important decisions, narrowing your view of the ideal Buick Envision until all your needs have been met. Choose the right drive type, then consider the pros and cons of the three trims as they fit your budget and lifestyle. If there are one or two features from a higher trim that you like, but you don’t really want everything included with it, look at the options and packages you can choose on a lower trim to see if you can customize it to be more like the crossover that you see in your dreams. Lastly, you can ponder the exterior color and similar aesthetic touches, which won’t affect your overall experience, in order to get the vehicle you’ll love to drive and brag about for the years to come.