2021 Buick Envision

2021 Buick Envision

Overview

Buick's efforts to be seen as a premium brand may have finally turned a corner with the 2021 Envision SUV. Set to take on rivals such as the Acura RDX, the Infiniti QX50, and the Lincoln Corsair, this new Envision sports nicely tailored sheet metal and a more upscale interior. A 228-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter powers all models and comes mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission. The list of standard features includes driver-assistance tech such as automatic high-beams, automated emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and lane-keeping assist. A high-end Avenir trim tops the lineup. Its luxurious cabin boasts diamond-quilted leather seats, wireless smartphone charging, and a driver's seat with massage functionality.

What's New for 2021?

Buick has redesigned the Envision SUV for 2021, imbuing it with an eye-catching design that's far more handsome than what the bland 2020 model featured.

Engine, Transmission, and Performance

Buick offers only one engine under the 2021 Envision's shapely hood. It's a 228-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder. It pairs to a nine-speed automatic transmission, and front-wheel drive is standard. Buyers can option all-wheel drive on any of the three trim levels, though. This engine produces slightly less power than the 251-hp mill that motivated the previous-generation Envision, which hit 60 mph in 6.6 seconds. That SUV never managed to feel particularly quick, especially when compared with key rivals such as the Audi Q5 and BMW X3, so the reduction in horsepower for 2021 doesn't bode well for a speedier result. When the 2021 Envision lands at our office for testing, we'll update this story with test results and driving impressions.

Interior, Comfort, and Cargo

We haven't experienced the 2021 Envision's cabin for ourselves, but based on photos, we feel the interior design looks quite snazzy. Of the three trim levels, the Avenir is the one that best competes with rivals such as the Q5, X3, and Mercedes-Benz GLC-class. Although the Preferred and Essence models offer plenty of standard features, the Avenir brings luxuries such as quilted leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, and a massaging driver's seat. We expect the cabin to offer similar amounts of passenger space as the outgoing model, but the Envision's slightly shorter length could mean it has a little less cargo space than before. When we get a 2021 Envision in our garage for testing, we'll stuff it with carry-on luggage and report the results here.

Infotainment and Connectivity

The base trim, called Preferred, has an 8.0-inch infotainment touchscreen, but Essence and Avenir models get a 10.2-inch unit. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration—both with wireless connectivity—are standard across the range. Buick provides a 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot as standard equipment, too, along with SiriusXM satellite radio, a six-speaker stereo, and an active noise-cancellation system. Buyers of the Essence trim receive a seven-speaker stereo but can upgrade to a nine-speaker Bose setup by selecting the Technology package, which also adds in-dash navigation; both of those features are standard on the Avenir.