Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A dark blue 2021 Buick Encore GX is parked next to a lake with two kayaks mounted on the roof racks.

When You Need Reliability, You Need a Buick

It’s a cold winter’s day, and you need to get your kids to school. You step into your car and turn the ignition, but the engine won’t turn over. You’re driving home from a party late at night when the Check Engine light suddenly comes on. We’ve all been there before. We all depend on our vehicles to get us places we need to go, whether driving to work, picking up the kids, taking us on vacation, or towing a trailer for work. That’s why it’s time to check your Buick dealer, and see why a Buick is perfect for almost any situation.

So, is Buick a reliable brand? The answer to that question is an emphatic “yes.” Buick currently offers four well-equipped SUVs in its lineup, the Encore, Encore GX, Envision, and Enclave. Each is designed to maximize passenger safety while providing exceptional reliability, so you and your friends and family can get where you are going safely and efficiently. This is not just our opinion but is the objective opinion of several independent agencies that review vehicles for dependability, reliability, and safety.

A Lineup of SUVs Known for Safety

Buick introduced the Encore GX in time for the 2020 model year, expanding its SUV lineup to 4 vehicles to choose from. The Encore GX has two excellent engines to choose from, a 1.2-liter turbocharged engine and a 1.3-liter turbocharged engine, as well as either all-wheel drive or front-wheel drive. But one of the most exciting things about the Encore GX is that it has plenty of standard active safety features like front pedestrian braking, lane keep assist with lane departure warning, following distance indicator, IntelliBeam automatic high-beam headlights, a rear vision camera, and automatic emergency braking. That attention to safety is also a major reason why you can rely on Buick.

This even extends to the Envision compact SUV, which will be fully redesigned for the 2021 model year. This model will feature an assortment of standard safety and driver-assistance features as part of the Buick Driver Confidence system. It is called confidence because that is how you will feel when you drive a Buick Encore, Encore GX, Enclave, or all-new Envision.

Tested By the NHTSA

Buick is already one of the highest-rated automakers based on testing by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA). The NHTSA is the top independent safety evaluation entity that rates vehicles for rollover resistance and frontal and side crash resilience. The goal is to allow consumers to find out which new cars, trucks, vans, and SUVs exceed the safety requirements mandated under Federal law. The tests are performed on the new vehicles, which are then categorized into vehicle class based on type (passenger car, SUV, pickup truck, and van) based on cub weight.

All of the four Buick SUVs, the 2021 Enclave, 2021 Encore, 2021 Encore GX, and 2020 Envision, received five-star ratings from the NHTSA. A 5-Star Safety Rating from the NHTSA means that the vehicle in question has performed exceptionally well in frontal, side, and rollover crash tests. The more stars a vehicle receives, the safer the car will be for you and your passengers.

The black interior is shown from the back seat on a 2020 Buick Enclave.

Tested By IIHS

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) also does safety testing for most new cars. Buick is no exception. The IIHS tests for crashworthiness, crash avoidance and mitigation, each of the child anchor LATCH systems, and other standard safety features. Most Buick models have received top scores from the IIHS for crashworthiness and optional active crash prevention systems. This gives you the additional peace of mind that you can rely on your Buick to keep you safe.

Reliability Is About Knowing Your Car Will Function as Needed

As previously stated, you need to know when you get behind the wheel of your Buick that everything will work as you expect. The engine will start regardless of the outside weather and temperature, the headlights will turn on, and the windshield wipers will work. The climate control will properly adjust to keep you and your passengers comfortable. The doors and windows will seal to keep sound and wet weather outside of the passenger compartment. The infotainment system will properly link to your smart devices so you can take advantage of all the features they have to offer, whether you are using Bluetooth, Android Auto, or Apple CarPlay. In short, you want to make sure your vehicle works.

Each year, J.D. Power does a survey of over 80,000 owners of 3-year old vehicles. They ask these drivers about any problems they experienced in their cars, trucks, SUVs, and vans during the previous 12-month period to determine the number and type of such problems. These results are then tabulated, with the vehicles receiving the fewest complaints in their vehicle class being named the most dependable.

For the 2020 class of vehicles, both the 2017 Buick Encore and 2017 Buick Regal got awards from J.D. Power for dependability. The 2017 Buick Encore won the small SUV category, while the 2017 Buick Regal was the most dependable midsize car. Among compact SUVs, the 2017 Buick Envision finished fourth in its category, with only the front-running 2017 Chevy Equinox getting a higher overall rating. Among midsize SUVs, only the Toyota 4Runner and Kia Sorento finished ahead of the 2017 Buick Enclave.

These third-party reports from groups like the NHTSA, the IIHS, and J.D. Power show that Buick vehicles are reliable from an objective standpoint. This puts aside anecdotal evidence that can often be biased and unreliable and focuses solely on the analytics of vehicle safety and dependability. On an overall basis for its entire line of vehicles, J.D. Power found in its latest study that Buick owners experienced only 103 problems per 100 vehicles, the lowest amount for any American automaker. The only automakers to outpace Buick for this study were Korean luxury automaker Genesis with 89 problems per 100 cars and Japanese luxury brand Lexus with 100 problems per 100 vehicles. As you can see, if you are looking for a safe, reliable SUV, your best bet is Buick.

A red 2020 Buick Envision is parked in the city after leaving the Buick dealer.

Choose a Buick SUV

Choosing your next vehicle can be one of the most important decisions you make during the year. Not only will it most likely represent one of your greatest expenditures for the year, but it will also be critical to your lifestyle. Our cars are not just transportation; they are a big part of who we are and what we do.

Not every vehicle is going to work for every person. Some people need compact cars to save on gas prices. Others need a larger vehicle to help them carry cargo for their work or hobbies. Some folks need the added seating of a large SUV for their large family. One size does not fit all. But, we all are united in our need for a vehicle that we can rely upon. So, when you buy your next vehicle, if you choose a Buick, you can be satisfied in the knowledge that you have chosen one of the safest and most dependable vehicles on the road today. This means that not only will you get to wherever you are going, but that you will also go with confidence in your Buick SUV.