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2011 Buick Enclave

Overview
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2011 Buick Enclave Review

By

Over the years Buick has worked hard to change its image that it's a builder of cars that are long on comfort, but short on excitement. It is a little surprising, then, to encounter the 2011 Buick Enclave, a family-friendly eight-passenger crossover SUV that proves Buick can build an exciting vehicle. The well-established Enclave is Buick's entry into the growing luxury SUV category and competes with such premium brands as Lexus, Acura, Audi and Volvo. With eye-catching exterior styling, a highly usable interior and a remarkably quiet cabin the Buick Enclave has what it takes to be a viable competitor in this hot segment.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you appreciate the refinement of a luxury car but also need the flexibility of a crossover SUV, we think you'll like the 2011 Buick Enclave. It offers the image of owning a luxury vehicle, yet at a more affordable price than many of its competitors.

You May Not Like This Car If...

You may not like the 2011 Buick Enclave if you plan to venture far from paved roads. All-wheel-drive is offered for the Enclave but it is engineered to enhance traction in the more realistic conditions of wet or snowy roads and is not intended for serious off-roading.

What's New for 2011

Changes for 2011 on the Buick Enclave are limited to new nine-spoke, chrome clad 19-inch wheels on CXL2, and two new paint colors.

Driving the Enclave

Driving Impressions The 2011 Buick Enclave is made to carry up to eight passengers in relaxed comfort and it does so with ease. At the same time it also manages to deliver...

engaging, even fun driving dynamics. The steering is light but firms up a bit at speed to give the Enclave a confident feel. The V6 engine provides good if not scorching acceleration and should be up to the task of hauling a full load of cargo or passengers. At cruising speeds Buick's attention to noise reduction pays off with very little wind, road or engine noise intruding into the cabin.

Second-Row Seats
Getting to the rear-most seats in many vehicles can be a hassle. Not so in the Enclave, where the cleverly designed second-row seats, with flip-up cushions and the capability to slide far forward, provide a wide flat space to enter the third-row seating area.

QuietTuning
Buick's QuietTuning method of in-vehicle noise reduction may seem like marketing hype, but it has to be experienced to be appreciated. At higher speeds the interior remains delightfully calm and free of the sounds that fatigue occupants on long drives.

2011 Buick Enclave Details
Interior

The 2011 Buick Enclave's interior features a curvaceous dash design accented by camphor burl wood appliques and chrome trim. High-quality materials, a simple, logical layout and an impressively low level of interior noise make for an extremely inviting cabin. The Enclave is offered in both seven- and eight-passenger versions with slide-and-fold second-row seats that make getting to the third row extremely easy. Cargo space behind the third row is larger than most in this class and, with the second and third rows folded, the Enclave offers a cavernous, flat load area.

Exterior

As one of the few vehicles to make it from concept to production without having its exterior styling diluted, the 2011 Buick Enclave offers a bolder appearance than many crossover SUVs. While large enough to accommodate eight passengers, the Enclave's artful body lines give it the look of a much smaller vehicle. The face of the Enclave features a "waterfall" grille, modern-looking portholes above the fenders and intricately detailed almond-shaped head lamps. Adding some flash to its svelte body are standard 18-inch wheels, chrome-tipped dual exhaust outlets and chrome roof rails.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

There are two trims offered for the 2011 Buick Enclave. The standard equipment list for the base CX trim includes 18-inch wheels, a power liftgate, power front seats and tri-zone automatic climate control. Stepping up to the CXL adds heated power adjustable front seats, leather seating surfaces, stylish 19-inch aluminum wheels and the Driver Confidence package (remote vehicle engine start, a rearview camera and rear parking sensors). Standard safety features on all Enclaves include anti-lock brakes (ABS), stability and traction control, front air bags, front-seat-mounted air bags and three-row side curtain airbags that stay inflated longer in the event of a vehicle rollover.

Optional Equipment

Many of the optional features available for the 2011 Buick Enclave are grouped into packages. The most comprehensive package is the 2XL option, which includes power folding side mirrors, adaptive headlamps, Bose audio, heated/cooled front seats and a power tilting and telescoping steering wheel. Other options include a rear-seat DVD entertainment system, a rear-facing camera, eight-passenger seating, Bose audio, a DVD navigation system and a power sunroof.

Under the Hood

Powering the 2011 Buick Enclave is a strong 3.6-liter V6. It delivers energetic performance and excellent fuel economy with the help of modern technologies like variable valve timing and an electronic throttle. The V6 is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. A wide spread of gear ratios helps get the most out of the engine while maximizing efficiency. We did, however, notice some delayed reactions from the transmission and the occasional rough shift. An optional all-wheel-drive system is also available which requires no driver intervention and automatically distributes torque between the front and rear wheels.

3.6-liter V6
288 horsepower at 6300 rpm
270 lb.-ft. of torque at 3400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24 FWD, 16/22 AWD

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2011 Buick Enclave Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.6
Out of 10

Based on 290 Ratings for the 2008 - 2015 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.6/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    8.9/10
    Performance
    8.8/10
  • Comfort
    9.2/10
    Styling
    9.2/10

Very comfortable and easy to drive

By on Monday, August 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 37,500

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Very comfortable to drive especially on long trips"

Cons: "Tailgate height not adjustable"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"My wife and I found the car to be very comfortable especially on long trips. We've never had a problem with it. Only thing is we wish we had rear view camera. Our next car will be an enclave & will have the camera."

6 people out of 10 found this review helpful

I love my Enclave but it's not perfect!

By on Thursday, August 14, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 21,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Stylish, pleasure to drive, comfortable."

Cons: "Poor gas mileage"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I did lots of research before purchasing my 2012 Enclave. I chose it because it was a Buick, it was well engineered, it had excellent leg room for my husband and it could tow and be towed by our motorhome. I have not had issues except the bluetooth and several recalls. I am disappointed that I only get 16 mpg most of the time unless we are on a trip with lots of highway driving. It is very comfortable, has all the bells and whistles and can carry 7 passengers. It has lots of cargo space, especially with the center seats down. It has excellent power, expecially when accelerating, and never knew it was towing a trailer. The only down side I find is the ride. It's very rough over bumps and it definitely doesn't have the ride of my 1955 or 1976 Buicks or my 1993 Lincoln Towncar that my Enclave replaced. I keep a car twenty years and I expect to keep this one that long too."

10 people out of 17 found this review helpful

You paid for luxury and you got it

By on Monday, August 04, 2014

I want this car

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "style, comfort"

Cons: "price of a fill up"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"I traded in my 2012 Verano for the 2013 Enclave. I did so because I was driving across country and needed the larger space. I filled up the Enclave almost to the ceiling, had 2 dogs, and 2 adults. This car drove like a luxury care being loaded down with all this stuff. It drove flawlessly and the v-6 engine always gave me the power I needed. The extra cargo did not cause any slow down or cause any power or performance let downs. I love the styling and I have almost every option you can have. The warning side mirrors are a life saver. My only complaints are there is no front camera warning systewm (now available on the 2014) and the cost at the gas pump. At last fill up it was $80 to fill up. It is luxurious and it drives amazingly. It is just a bit steep at the gas pump/"

20 people out of 35 found this review helpful

Best Car for the Money

By on Saturday, July 26, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "comfort, quiet, gas mileage"

Cons: "dashboard paint"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have had three Enclaves. I drive them all over the country. First one had almost 90K miles. The ride is unsurpassed. The overall efficiency is very good. The space to haul things on long trip is great."

11 people out of 16 found this review helpful

Comfort

By on Friday, July 25, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 86,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "High quality car for 7 adults."

Cons: "None"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"We have thoroughly enjoyed this car. The ride and over all comfort are unequaled. The workmanship inside and outside is high quality. Gas mileage has been 22mpg on Highway, and around 18 in town. Middle row and third row seats can fold flat for a huge cargo area. Would I buy another? In a heartbeat!!"

5 people out of 6 found this review helpful

My favorite car EVER!!!!

By on Tuesday, July 22, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 44,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Beautiful, comfortable and spacious."

Cons: "Gas Hog"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have owned my Enclave for over three years and it is an exceptional vehicle. It is easy to handle, comfortable to drive as well as comfortable for passengers. We drove to the outer banks last summer and it was very spacious and we had three adults two small children and a hundred pound Labrador retriever in my Enclave. Incredible trip. My one and only complaint is the gas mileage. When we bought it the sticker said 16 mpg city, No Way!! I am getting 12 on my best day in the city. But I would definitely recommend the Enclave to everyone. My All Time Favorite car!!!"

4 people out of 4 found this review helpful

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