Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A black 2020 Buick Encore is shown parked near a mountain.

Two Packages That Make A 2019 Or 2020 Buick Encore Even Better

For those who were lucky enough to snag a Buick Encore before the manufacturer discontinued the model at the end of 2022, you know what a unique vehicle it is. The Encore is essentially the perfect subcompact SUV. It has dimensions that are so close to those of a sedan that parking an Encore in a tight parallel parking spot on a busy city street is actually not so bad. In those moments when you watch large SUVs take on 18-point parking jobs with their rears sticking out in the road, you certainly identify more with the sedans in your Encore. On the other hand, when you want to see what’s up ahead over a sea of traffic, the increased driving height of the Encore will make you feel like you’re in an SUV. That’s the beauty of this versatile subcompact SUV.

Now that it’s discontinued, online searches for “used Buick Encore for sale” are increasing. Like so many great things, the Encore is something people appreciate more now that it’s “gone.” Of course, it’s not gone— you’ll just need to snag a pre-owned one if you want this subcompact SUV today. If you’re currently shopping around for a used 2019 or 2020 Encore but enjoy having advanced features, there are two packages to look for in the models you test drive: The Safety Package II and the Experience Buick Package. Here’s a closer look at why these two packages make driving an Encore even better.

The Safety Package II

The Safety Package II is a terrific package if you live and drive somewhere with highly congested roads and aggressive drivers. If you spend your days in highly congested areas, where rush hour traffic leads to road rage incidents and tensions can run high when two drivers approach the same parking spot, this package is for you. If you live somewhere sparsely populated, where the roads are always open, and everyone is polite, well, you should share with the rest of us where that is. Otherwise, you wouldn’t necessarily need this package as much as city dwellers, but it’s nice to have.

A blue 2019 Buick Encore is shown parked near a building after viewing a used Buick Encore for sale.

Parking Assist To Help You In And Out Of Tight Spots

The Safety Package II, when found on 2019 or 2020 models, will have front and rear park assist. This park assist system contains sensors in the front and rear bumpers that activate when driving at low speeds. It can detect items up to six feet behind your vehicle and up to four feet in front of it. If you often need to squeeze into tight parking spots and worry about scratches and dings, this is a highly useful feature to have.

Accident Prevention Systems

The Safety Package II will also have a forward collision warning, which will alert you of a potential collision with a vehicle in front of you that has stopped abruptly or slowed significantly. It can also notify you if you’re tailgating a vehicle in front of you too closely. This package additionally gives drivers a lane departure warning system, which notifies a driver when they are drifting from their lane.

Automatic And Condition-Responsive Windshield Wipers

Rainsense wipers are another great feature of the Safety Package II. These smart wipers detect raindrops on the windshield, automatically activating the wipers. It can also determine how heavy the rainfall is and adjust the wiper speed accordingly. They can even determine when you’re driving fast, driving slow, or at a stop and will adjust the speed of the sensors accordingly.

Having your windshield wipers operating at the appropriate speed for the level of rainfall is an essential element of safe driving in the rain. This rain-sensing system relieves drivers of constantly having to manually adjust their windshield wipers in changing weather conditions. It’s the type of feature that, once you’ve experienced it, you’ll never want to live without it again.

An Ionizer That Cleans The Cabin Air

The 2019 Safety Package II uniquely features an air ionizer that was unfortunately removed from the package with the 2020 model year. This ionizer removes particles from the air, creating a fresher feel in the cabin. Some experts even believe that air ionizers can eradicate airborne viruses and bacteria. If you live in an area with high pollution levels, this feature can help you breathe more easily in your vehicle.

The Experience Buick Package

The Experience package gives drivers a suite of features that can keep them entertained, help them get where they’re going, and stay connected with friends, family, and coworkers on the road.

Hands-Free Correspondance

The Experience Buick Package has the Buick Infotainment system, which, when paired with Bluetooth, allows drivers to make hands-free calls and send hands-free texts. So when you’re driving and realize you forgot to give your dog dinner, you can just speak to the system and have it text your neighbor asking them to feed Fido. If you need to make a call, you can do so with simple one-button and voice commands, too.

A black 2020 Buick Encore is shown parked near a red house.

Built-In Navigation

The Experience Package additionally has an excellent navigation system. It will show you points of interest along your route, like coffee shops or restaurants. You can even create location “favorites” for your system to remember.

Today, many drivers use navigation apps on their smartphones, but some like having a built-in navigation system in case their phone dies or they enter a poor service area. So this is a great feature to have if you live somewhere with notoriously bad service, or you never know where your life will take you one day to the next, and poor service areas could be in your future.

Also, note that you can create different profiles in the Infotainment system. This is ideal for drivers who share the vehicle with others, as it lets you keep your preferences like seat position and preset radio stations in your profile.

A Power Sliding Moonroof

The Experience package also gets a tilt power-sliding moonroof. When you want some fresh air in the cabin, use the tilt feature to open the moonroof slightly. Its power-sliding function means you can let in natural light when you want it or close the roof up when you don’t.

Add Unique Packages To Your Encore To Enhance Your Drive

The Encore is a fun, fuel-efficient, and easy-to-handle subcompact SUV. Even brand-new models boast affordable price tags, so when you shop for a used 2019 or 2020 model, you can find amazing deals on this peppy model. It’s a terrific commuter vehicle and really worth a look for anyone wanting great technology and comfort features packed into compact dimensions.

Part of the reason the Encore is so affordable is that Buick keeps the base-level trim without customizations pretty simple. You only pay for extra perks if you want them, so drivers have the freedom to pick and choose what features matter to them and only pay more for those.

The Safety Package II and Buick Experience Package are definitely worth a look if you drive in congested areas or spend a lot of time in your vehicle. The Safety Package II can help you avoid some of the more common accidents and incidents on busy streets, and the Buick Experience Package makes long rides more enjoyable.