D a, the Auto Shows in Shanghai and New York, two large trade fairs take place in parallel. And which one is the traditional US brand Buick presenting its new SUV models on? Of course: in the Chinese metropolis Shanghai. That is indicative, after all, China has long been the largest market for the GM subsidiary. Buick also has a better image there: while the manufacturer is perceived as a pensioner brand at home, it has a reputation as a premium manufacturer in China that offers high-quality cars. Building on this, Buick is now presenting two new SUV models in Shanghai: the Encore and the Encore GX.
Design borrowings from the 2018 Enspire study
China is the first - and maybe only one - market in which the newcomer replaces the Buick equivalent of the Opel Mokka. Information about the car is still rare, but the first pictures suggest that little has changed in terms of the dimensions. The Encore should therefore still be in the 4.30 meter class and weigh around 1.5 tons. The GM platform on which the current Mocha is still based will probably be retained as the basis. However, General Motors is making the already somewhat aged platform fit for the future with small modernizations.
When it comes to design, Buick was inspired by last year's study called Enspire, which debuted at the Beijing auto show. This is evident from the narrow headlights with LED daytime running lights in eyebrow design and the radiator grille with a crossbar. The proportions are also significantly more elongated than the current Encore, albeit not quite as coupé-like as the 2018 concept car. However, we find some of its refractive edges and beads on the flanks of the production car. The rear design with gently sloping window, black roof spoiler and narrow lights also brings back memories of the Enspire.
Encore GX: larger dimensions, different platform
It looks like the normal, more dynamically drawn Encore the Encore GX is like a family SUV optimized for comfort and suitability for everyday use. It is longer, taller and wider than its sibling and has an enlarged wheelbase. American trade media believe that this is due to the other platform. The GX is based on the newer VSS-S modular system, and - just like the smaller Encore - it is powered by four-cylinder Ecotec engines. Buick has not yet commented on their technical data. The only thing that is certain is that they are either connected to a nine-speed automatic or aCVT transmissions.
It is not yet known whether the brand will later offer its new SUVs in this form in the USA or adapt them for the home market. According to the US media, it will be the Encore GX that makes the leap to America and replaces the current Encore there. Neither car will come to Europe, that's for sure. And they won't have anything to do with the next mocha either: In future, it will be based on a platform from the new parent company PSA.