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2014 Buick LaCrosse Debut

The Buick LaCrosse gets a very effective mid-cycle update, keeping up with the Jonses

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What's New

The Buick LaCrosse has been a good seller for the GM brand in recent years, thanks to its compelling mix of luxury features and styling, and a reasonable price. Of course, the competition doesn't stand still, so Buick has thoroughly upgraded its sedan for the 2014 model year. The 2014 Buick LaCrosse features updated styling, an improved interior, more features, and a new Ultra Luxury Interior Package that adds faux-suede headliner and real wood trim. A simplified center console makes its debut, as does radar-based collision mitigation, active cruise control, and the Safety Alert Seat from the Cadillac XTS. Put it all together, and it looks like Buick's role of offering Cadillac features at, well, Buick prices remains intact.

Who It's For

Is this the part where we explain for the umpteenth time that Buicks aren't for old people anymore? Or is that message loud and clear? We can't see too many octogenarians being interested in this car. There's lots of technology designed specifically to appeal to a younger audience, such as a swipe-screen navigation system inspired by smartphones. While nobody would mistake the 2014 Buick LaCrosse as a sport sedan, it's certainly no slug with a 304-horsepower V-6 engine and handling that's surprisingly sharp. No, this is a high-end sedan with cars like the Lexus ES350 and 2014 Acura RLX in its sights.

Key Features

The 2014 Buick LaCrosse gets quite a few updates for this model year, although the engine choices--including the eAssist mild hybrid--are the same. Active cruise control. Not only will the 2014 Buick LaCrosse adjust its speed to compensate for traffic, it will completely slow itself to a halt, and restart when traffic clears. Revised interior. We like the idea of a simplified center stack, and more storage. For example, the radio controls now have seven buttons, instead of 17. Improved exterior styling. We thought the LaCrosse was already a good looking sedan, but the 2014 Buick LaCrosse gets new LED-enhanced headlights, revised taillights, a new grille and other bits that class it up even more.

What We Think

Without having seen the 2014 Buick LaCrosse in person, it's hard to tell if it's a hit or miss. It certainly photographs well, and the feature list puts it right in the hunt in comparison to vehicles like the Acura RLX we recently drove. We'll have a better handle on it at the New York Auto Show, and an even better handle after we drive it. But judging simply by its cover, this is a book we're interested in checking out.

Back to Auto Show Coverage: New York 2013