As our long term 2014 Buick Enclave closes in on the 20,000-mile mark, it has distinguished itself as one of our favorites when it comes to people moving. The Enclave is the go-to vehicle when out-of-town visitors arrive or there's any sort of children's activities that include sporting equipment.

The beauty of the Enclave is that it offers all the utility of a minivan without looking like one, thanks to its easy pass through to the third row between the second row bucket seats and its conventional back doors. Combining the stylishness of a luxury SUV with comfortable quarters for up to eight people is a neat trick. Spending time with others in the Enclave also underscores the effectiveness of Buick's Quiet Tuning which uses laminated glass on the front and side windows as well as extra sound insulation-this allows for easily heard conversation between front and rear passengers.

Also: The Class of 2015 -- New Vehicles Ready to Roll

Ambient lighting not everyone's cup of tea

The Enclave's interior is well-executed with a great blend of wood accents, chrome brightwork and leather seating surfaces. However, at night the ambient lighting, which includes a cool-looking soft blue hue that rings the front of the cockpit, can be found to be distracting by some. Fortunately, there is a well-labeled control to the left the steering wheel that allows you to vary the intensity or turn it off altogether. Kudos to Buick for making the switch so easy to find, there's plenty of cars out there where you have to resort to the manual to figure out how to configure interior illumination.

During my time with the Enclave from Thanksgiving to the Christmas holidays, I covered over 1,300 miles. Fuel economy was fairly decent coming in at almost 20 mpg (19.9 actually), which is almost a full mpg better than the EPA 19 mpg combined the vehicle gets from its 17 mpg city/24 mpg highway rating. That's not bad considering that the Enclave offers the passenger seating of full-size V8-powered truck-based SUVs. However, unlike those full-size SUVs with their massive fuel tanks, the most I was able to put in was about 18.5 gallons, which was good for about 330 miles between fill-ups but still less than the 22 gallons indicated on the spec sheet. Also, you really need to attend the refueling process because something with the fill-neck doesn't agree with the auto shutoff feature; usually it starts tripping the pump valve from about a half tank on.

Still, the 2014 Buick Enclave is working well for us, providing ample comfort and convenience in getting around town or cross country with style.

See Past Reports for our Long-Term 2014 Buick Enclave...

Introduction

Long-Term Update: The Design Brief

Long-Term Update: A Recall Moment

More Buick Enclave...

Our Buick Enclave Editor's Page is your informative gateway to all things Enclave. Or check out our Midsize Luxury SUV Buyer's Guide to become an instant expert on all your category options. 

 

 

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