Among subcompact crossovers that aim for good gas mileage in a practical, city-friendly size, the 2014 Buick Encore stands alone in its more traditional approach to luxury. Buyers who want a small but luxurious car that mixes elements of hatchback and crossover, and offers all-wheel drive may find the Encore the best of several options that exist on the market. With room for five, the Encore should accommodate most needs, and its turbocharged engine is both peppy and easy on fuel.
In addition to the benefitting from Buick's highly-efficient Quiet Tuning regimen, the Encore introduces a new element to the mix: Active Noise Cancellation circuitry that effectively filters out low-frequency engine sounds to ensure an even more serene passenger compartment. The interior of the 2014 Buick Encore shows significant thought went into both its design and detail, with the same upscale ambiance found in Buick's larger sedans and SUVs. A large hatch provides easy access to its 18.8-cubic-foot cargo bay, which expands to 48.4 cubic feet with the aft seatbacks folded.
Every version of the Buick Encore for 2014, whether front-drive or all-wheel drive, shares the same basic powertrain. The engine is GM's familiar 1.4-liter turbocharged EcoBoost 4-cylinder that makes 138 horsepower and 148 lb-ft of torque. Here, it's paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission that features manual-style shifting capabilities via a lever-mounted rocker switch on front-drive Encore models. The combination yields respectable acceleration and impressive EPA figures for a vehicle of its type, with front-drive Encores earning 25 mpg/33 mpg stats on the city/highway cycles and AWD models netting 23/30 mpg numbers.
The 2014 Buick Encore could be the perfect package, containing all of the most modern automotive technology and contributing to a smooth and comfortable ride.