AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
This week on AutoGuide Now, we’re driving some high-class GM crossovers, blasting off in a 550-hp Mercedes and covering all the latest reveals over in Geneva. See what we’re up to and chime in on Twitter or in the comments section below.
SUV + MPG
There was a time when shopping for an SUV meant giving up fuel economy in exchange for extra interior room and cargo space. While that still may be the case for some models, there are plenty of fuel efficient crossovers and SUVs available in today’s marketplace, some of which get over 30 MPG on the highway.
Compared to last year’s Top 10 list, fuel economy has gone up across the board. Just a year ago the most fuel efficient SUVs had a worst combined MPG rating of 25 while the best vehicle saw 30 MPG combined. This year, the most fuel efficient model stickers for 31 MPG combined while even models at the bottom of the list are posting a 2 MPG improvement to 27 MPG.
So if you’re in the market for a fuel efficient crossover or SUV then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve listed the Top 10 most efficient models, based on their combined city/highway rating.
Which Crossovers and SUVs are the Most Reliable?
The crossover and SUV segment is one of industry’s fastest growing, and if you’re in the market for one, chances are you’ll want to know which ones are the most reliable out there. J.D. Power has compiled data collected from surveying thousands of vehicle owners to determine this year’s list of most reliable new crossovers and SUVs not in the luxury segment. Here they are listed in alphabetical order.
The automotive industry is a global business that is constantly evolving and growing, and we here at AutoGuide know it can be hard to keep up sometimes. So here is a summary of the top stories you may have missed this week:
It appears that this Chevy crossover will be a little more than a foot shorter than the current Chevy Equinox model and has the possibility of making its way to the U.S. because it doesn’t really have a currently-viable competitor to popular crossovers like the Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4.
Few details were released on the new crossover, but L’Automobile Magazine hints that this new crossover could be part of the new partnership between Citroen and GM.
GALLERY: Chevrolet Crossover Patent Filings
[Source: L'Automobile Magazine]
Looking like a jacked-up hatchback, Buick has unveiled its newest model today at the Detroit Auto Show today. Called the Encore, it’s part of the GM premium brand’s plan to move further down-market in search of added sales – an area it’s actually been very strong in recently with two full years of gains.
An entry level offering sitting next to the new Verano compact, the Encore is designed to evoke the style of the larger Enclave, which is easily Buick’s volume model.
The Encore is a surprisingly small crossover, at 168 inches in length it’s actually two steps down from the Enclave, leaving space for yet another model in the brand’s growing lineup. Still, despite its compact size, it boasts 18.8 cu-ft of cargo room, or a total of 48.4 cu-ft with the rear seats folded flat. This out-does both the Audi Q3 and BMW X1, a strong hint that at least Buick sees these two models as rivals.
Power is adequate, at best, with a 1.4-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder making 140-hp and 148 lb-ft of torque mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission.
Standard equipment includes 18-inch wheels as well as a 7-inch LCD screen with Buick’s new IntelliLink system and 10 airbags, while optional goodies include navigation and a back-up camera, heated seats and steering wheel, remote start and memory seating. Other available features include a forward collision alert and lane departure warning.
Buick continues to push its Quiet Tuning philosophy and takes it a step further with the Encore, adding noise canceling technology that uses the car’s speakers to counteract sounds coming into the cabin..
The Buick Encore will arrive at dealers in early 2013.
GALLERY: 2013 Buick Encore
We’re 75 percent there! Well not really, you can probably guess what’s hiding behind the last square in Buick‘s little puzzle-style picture of their Encore small SUV. In case you’re missing the joke, it’s a wheel.
GM hasn’t released details about the Encore yet, though we can make a couple of educated guesses to tide you over until the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, where it will officially debut.
We do know that it will take advantage of the sub-compact Chevrolet Sonic‘s architecture. We are expecting to see GM’s new 1.4-liter and maybe 1.6-liter turbocharged four cylinder engines, as well as options for front- and all-wheel drive choices.
We’ll be in Detroit for the show, offering up-to-date information starting a week from today. Until then, see AutoGuide’s complete Detroit Auto Show Preview here.
It’s that time of year when lots of car companies are about to unveil new model’s at various auto shows around the world. Buick is no exception, and it will use the 2012 North American International Auto Show to unveil its latest creation, the Encore CUV.
Before the veil is fully lifted off this new model, Buick is using the same trick many other car companies have used, by releasing styling details one piece at a time. Well now they have shown us a lot more than before, by showing the entire greenhouse of the vehicle.
Their latest leak did not come courtesy of some spy shot or a car magazine that went to the printer a little early. No, this time it was Buick themselves who posted a half-revealing shot of the Encore on the Facebook page.
From what we can see, the vehicle looks quite attractive. No technical details are available at the moment, but since the official debut is on January 10th, you don’t have to wait too long to find out.
General Motors will be busy at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show in January, announcing the reveal of the important new Cadillac ATS, as well as an all-new compact crossover for the Buick brand. Called the Encore, it is based on the same architecture as the Sonic sub-compact and as a result will be a size-down from other GM compact crossovers like the Chevy Equinox.
In recent conversations with a GM insider, AutoGuide was told that while it technically fits in the same category as the MINI Countryman and Nissan Juke, it will have a more conventional SUV look (along the lines of the Enclave) and will be focused on more traditional Buick values.
To help build interest, Buick will launch a new Encore tab on its Facebook page later this week, where it will slowly reveal sections of the new SUV.
Tentatively named Encore, Buick is expected to get an innovative sub-compact crossover in the near future, but will Chevy get a version as well? That’s the question product planners at GM continue to debate,
Currently Chevy offers both the Traverse and smaller Equinox crossovers, although since the introduction of cars like the Nissan Juke, it’s thought that there’s space for a mainstream high-riding sub-compact model from the bowtie brand. Based on the same platform as the Chevrolet Sonic the new model could be powered by a range of engines, ranging from the turbocharged 1.4-liter making 138-hp and 148 lb-ft of torque to a peppy 181-hp 1.6-liter turbocharged engine currently offered overseas.
GALLERY: 2012 Chevrolet Sonic
In 2012 Buick will expand its lineup further down-market, introducing the Verano compact below the Regal. Riding on the same architecture as the Chinese Buick Excelle (and Chevy Cruze), several engines are possible. For starters it could be offered with the Cruze’s 1.4-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder, but a more likely candidate is the 181-hp turbocharged 1.6-liter currently offered on the Excelle GT in China.
After this model debuts we’ll see Buick unveil a compact crossover called the Encore. The basis for this vehicle is not entirely known, with different sources claiming it will be based on the Cruze architecture, while others suggest it will run on the upcoming Aveo platform – suggesting it will be a small vehicle indeed.
In related Buick news, before 2012 we’re set to receive a hybrid version of the LaCrosse and past 2012 GM has indicated plans to build a new Buick flagship based on the same platform as the upcoming Cadillac XTS.
[Source: Motor Trend]
Buick has just unveiled its new Excelle GT model in China, which is set to go on sale in the U.S. next year. When it does arrive here the baby Buick may be badged as the Verano. Based on the same compact-car platform as the European Opel Astra and Chevrolet Cruze, the Excelle GT joins the recently unveiled Excelle XT – a five-door hatchback that Buick insists is a coupe-like sedan.
In China the base engine is a 138-hp 1.8-liter 4-cylinder, while a more potent version gets 181-hp from a turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder.
With Buick just having launched the Regal in North America, the Verano represents the next step for the brand, searching to find customers as it expands into new segments, offering luxury in the compact segment. Reports have suggested Buick will also build a compact crossover based on the Verano, possibly naming it the Encore.