Monday, May 27, 2024
Should-you-buyShould You Buy a 2024 Buick Envista?

Should You Buy a 2024 Buick Envista?


  • The 2024 Buick Envista starts at $23,495 in the U.S. and at $28,999 in Canada, freight and delivery charges included.

  • Good looks, easy-to-use infotainment system, decent interior space.

  • Fat front pillars obstruct visibility, stiff ride, seats lack lateral support.


It may be just a passing fad or the norm moving forward, but new cars and trucks have increased in price to the point where there are very few affordable models left on the market. Inflation, the elimination of base trim levels and a consumer shift from passenger cars to crossovers all played a role in the decline in vehicle affordability. On the other hand, there are still a handful of thrifty new models to choose from, including the 2024 Buick Envista.

The Envista may not look like an entry-level model, but it is, as it indirectly replaces the old Buick Encore sold during the 2013 to 2022 model years. Subjectively speaking, Buick’s design team did a fantastic job of transposing the Buick Wildcat EV Concept’s looks to this new subcompact crossover coupe. It looks upscale, elegant and sophisticated inside and out, more so than most of its competitors. Again, that’s just our subjective opinion.

The 2024 Buick Envista was dropped in what we call the urban crossover segment, the one in which we can also find the Chevrolet Trax, the Hyundai Venue, the Kia Soul and the Nissan Kicks. All these models are equipped with front-wheel drive, with no available AWD. We could also see the Envista in the subcompact crossover category, but the Buick Encore GX already covers that ground.

2024 Buick Envista Avenir

The Envista is equipped with a turbocharged 1.2L three-cylinder engine that develops 137 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque, managed by a six-speed automatic transmission. Nothing spectacular or innovative here, but nothing too complex either to keep the price down.

The Buick shares its architecture and powertrain with the Trax, which is slightly less costly, but not as luxurious, and not as quiet inside. The 1.2L engine is also shared with the base trim levels of the Chevrolet Trailblazer and the aforementioned Encore GX, but they get a continuously variable automatic transmission instead of the Envista’s conventional gearbox.

Three trim levels are available in both Canada and the United States. The base Preferred is equipped with 17-inch alloy wheels, heated outside mirrors with integrated turn signals, automatic LED headlights, single-zone automatic climate control and an attractive floating dash panel housing an 8-inch digital driver instrument cluster and an 11-inch infotainment system touchscreen. We get wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration is also included, as are four USB ports, Bluetooth connectivity for two phones at once, SiriusXM compatibility and six speakers. We also get three years of OnStar Remote Access to remotely start, lock or unlock the vehicle through a mobile app.

The base Envista also features many active safety features, such as autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning and lane keep assist and automatic high beams, while blind spot monitoring is just an option package away, as the Advanced Safety Package also rounds up rear park assist, adaptive cruise control and rear cross traffic alert. There’s also the Convenience I Package which bundles a power driver’s seat, the front seat heaters, a heated steering wheel and an intelligent key with built-in remote start. The Advanced Safety Package and Convenience I Package are standard in Canada.

2024 Buick Envista Avenir

The mid-grade 2024 Buick Envista Sport Touring is similarly equipped, but boasts a racier appearance with gloss black mirror caps and bodyside mouldings as well as 18-inch black-painted aluminum wheels. The Envista Avenir piles on stuff like a rear center armrest, wireless phone charging, a power liftgate, an auto-dimming driver-side rearview mirror, body-color mouldings, shiny 19-inch alloys and, on the Canadian model, a power sunroof that’s optional in the U.S. The Avenir also gets a fancier Watts Link System rear suspension that’s optional on the Sport Touring.

City/highway/combined (mpg)City/highway/combined (L/100 km)
Turbo 1.2L I3 Engine28/32/308.4/7.4/7.9

 

Since there’s only one powertrain and transmission combo available, fuel economy figures are easy to sum up. The Envista and the Trax are slightly less efficient than the other three models in its segment, the most frugal being the Kicks at 33 mpg or 7.2 L/100 km in combined driving. During our winter test, we managed 30 mpg or 7.9 L/100 km—exactly on target with the official numbers.

Pricing for the 2024 Buick Envista ranges from $23,495 to $31,885 including freight and delivery charges it the United States. The more-equipped Canadian-spec Envista starts at $28,999 and tops out at $34,599 including freight.

2024 Buick Envista Avenir


Why You Should Buy a 2024 Buick Envista

  • Well, because the Envista is affordable. Not only that, but its list of standard features and low-cost options make even more interesting.
  • The turbo three-cylinder engine is surprisingly peppy, as torque peaks from 2,500 to 4,000 rpm for quick lift-offs. The six-speed automatic also does a decent job of keeping engine revs low while cruising or downshifting when the driver mashes to go-pedal. The engine’s noise, vibration and harshness are low as well, as three-cylinder mills used to have a tendency to shake, moan and be generally unrefined. Not the case here.

2024 Buick Envista Avenir

  • The Envista’s Avenir trim level looks and feels like a more expensive product. It’s true, upon closer inspection in some areas, we’ll notice a few hard plastic panels, but the general atmosphere sends off luxury vehicle vibes.
  • For such a small vehicle, there’s a decent amount of space. The rear-seat area boasts a flat load floor, so no fighting for foot space. That being said, it’s a subcompact vehicle, so three occupants across the bench seat may be a challenge.
  • The Envista’s infotainment is a charm to use, even while driving, and it has a complete set of features baked in.

2024 Buick Envista Avenir


Why You Shouldn’t Buy a 2024 Buick Envista

  • With the 19-inch wheels wrapped in 245/45R19 rubber, the Envista’s ride is stiff. It should be better with the Preferred’s 17-inchers.
  • The front pillars are wide, and slanted just enough to obstruct our view of city street intersections. We have to watch out for pedestrians crossing the street while we’re turning left or right. The lack of rear-quarter windows also diminishes rearward visibility, and there’s no rear wiper to keep the window clean.
  • The 2024 Buick Envista’s seats lack lateral support. They feel a little overstuffed. Maybe they’ll soften up over time. Maybe not.

  • We like the overall appearance inside the Envista, but the gloss black trim on the center console was already scratched in our test vehicle, which had only 455 miles or 733 km on the odometer.
  • The engine is torque-rich and there’s sufficient power for the daily commute, to the point where owners might forget it’s a three-cylinder engine. However, once we get past the torque peak at 4,000, it feels out of breath. Not a big deal, but this little turbo engine offers no performance or fuel economy advantage over the naturally aspirated four-cylinder engines in the Venue, the Soul and the Kicks.


Final Word

We like the 2024 Buick Envista. It’s stylish, luxurious in Avenir trim and well-equipped for the money. It may not offer exhilarating driving dynamics or spectacular fuel economy, but it’s the most refined and opulent model in its segment, and makes us look like we paid a lot more than we actually did.

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