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2013 Buick Encore

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2013 Buick Encore Review

Reviewed by Automotive on

Buick has turned around completely in last few years by making well-crafted and revitalized car models to give them a better look. Buick hopes to attract a lot of young new customers. While the Encore can't boast loads of power or features, it is fairly low priced for its class and comes with an incredibly low-volume ride thanks to Bose technology.

New For 2013

The Buick Encore has a strong character line, sweeping lower surface detailing, and a rising beltline that lends the Encore a graceful, sporty look. There have not been many changes in the Buick Encore, but the ones that have been made will definitely create an impact.

  • Small crossover slots below the enclave
  • Available in front-wheel and four-wheel drive
  • New turbo four-cylinder engine provides power and lower fuel economy
  • New automatic transmission to make the ride more comfortable
  • Optional heated steering wheel


Talking of exterior design, the crossover is tiny and compact compared to many others in its class. Buick has given more of a flowing and organic look to the Encore.

The exterior design is distinctly Buick with the blue-accented projector-beam headlights, hood-mounted portholes, and a wide waterfall grille. Contrasting lower body cladding and subtle chrome trim around the base of the windows, the rear plate frame, grille, and fog lights add visual interest without being overly flashy or tacky.

It has extremely short overhang, decreased width, and large 18-inch wheels. Design changes make the Encore more efficient in terms of aerodynamics and overall reduction of drag. Chrome wheels are an available option. The rear lift gate door opens up to the cargo area.

Overall, the exterior is attractive but extremely crunched on size. For the right buyer, this will be a good thing.

Interior & Cargo

The interior of the Encore is filled with rich brown and black, mixed with quality wooden finish and chrome detailing. There are other interior coloring options available as well, which include a caramel-colored hue that is almost identical to the Chocó interior in the Verano with medium-colored wood, a redder version of the Chocó, and an all-black interior with grey wood. There is an LCD on the center top to entertain the back passengers during long trips.

Despite the crunched size of the Buick Encore, the interior is surprisingly roomier than expected. The legroom is more than ample for adults in the rear seats, but the cargo area suffers for it. Once seats are folded down, maximum cargo area is 48.4 cubic feet compared to the standard cargo area of 18.8 cubic feet.

Interior air filtration and dual-zone climate control make temperature control easy and comfortable. The in-car entertainment includes a Bose audio system with an AM/FM/CD radio with MP3 technology.

The interior has decent enough luxury design, but more features could have been added considering the asking price. Also, the styling gives off a very busy tone for the interior. Overall, the interior is solid in terms of size and space, but it could be more attractive.


The Buick Encore features a total of ten airbags, which includes front and rear side airbags, four front and rear airbags, and two knee airbags for the front seats. Anti-lock brakes and an electronic stability system are standard fare as well. Forward collision and lane departure warning systems are available options.

Traction control is also standard fare. The post-collision safety system helps make sure the Encore doesn't continue to roll after an accident, and it ensures responders are on their way as soon as possible. Tire pressure monitoring is also standard and has controls on the dash. An anti-theft alarm system helps deter would-be thieves as well. Overall, the Encore provides all the standard safety features expected in this price range.

Driving Experience

The Buick Encore comes equipped with a 140-hp, 1.4-liter, four-cylinder, turbocharged engine that produces 148 lb-ft of torque. While not extremely speedy, the acceleration is decent, and the Encore can reach zero to 60 miles per hour in about nine or ten seconds.

Overall, the drive is relatively quiet given the small engine size and the use of design to reduce road noise.

The Bose active-noise cancellation system means that the ride is extremely quiet for passengers. The windshield and exterior have been specially treated with noise-cancelling in mind.

Unfortunately, given the small engine, acceleration up hills can be a bit lacking. Due to its weight and small engine, the Encore doesn't present much in the way of towing power either.

The Buick Encore comes standard with a six-speed automatic shiftable transmission that works with front-wheel drive. All-wheel drive is available as well. The standard setup offers fuel economy of 23/30 mpg city/highway.

Key Competitors For The 2013 Buick Encore

  • BMW X1
  • Audi Q3
  • Jeep Patriot
  • Subaru XV Crosstrek

See the New 2015 Encore.

Front & Driver Side View