Buick chooses its best-selling Encore GX to debut its next-generation styling.
Beyond revamping the tri-shield logo, Buick has been gradually preparing for its all-electric transformation. The Wildcat EV concept offered a look into what the new face of the brand would look like, and now we’re seeing it play out in production with the refreshed 2024 Buick Encore GX.
There’s a few different factors at play as to why we’re seeing Buick update its virtually new crossover now, and why the Encore GX is getting the corporate glow-up first. GM remedied some years-long confusion by dropping the smaller and older Encore last year, making this GX the entry-level model.
It’s also the brand’s volume seller, so it’s due for a revamp to further set it apart from its predecessor and broaden its appeal to younger buyers. To that end, it also brings updated interior tech to the party, while also adding the swanky Avenir trim for those seek what Buick calls “functional luxury”.
While the 2024 Buick Encore GX doesn’t change much in the side profile, the front end does bring a pretty radical overhaul. It adopts some of that concept-like styling with a more prominent, angry-looking grille design. Higher up, the daytime running lights are all on their own, with the headlight assembly mounted slightly farther down.
The updated model also changes up the trim options
Apart from the base model, there are two new trim levels — the ST (Sport Touring) and Avenir — each with unique features. The mid-range ST bakes in features from the former appearance package, including a gloss black lower grille, body cladding and mirror caps. It’s not, as its name might suggest, a higher performance variant of the Encore GX, akin to how Ford uses those two letters to distinguish its hotter models. Inside, the ST gets a flat-bottom steering wheel and specially embroidered headrests.
At the top end, the Avenir brings in its own unique interior materials, as well as body-color elements throughout the exterior. No matter which version you buy, the Encore GX will show that large tri-shield grille on the front end, the tailgate and the steering wheel.
Inside, the 2024 Buick Encore GX features an 8-inch digital gauge cluster and 11-inch infotainment screen. Much like its Chevy Trailblazer cousin, GM is keen to ditch analog dials and smaller displays, even on the base models. The center stack houses reworked climate controls, while losing the top row of buttons accommodating the media controls (the new unit does still have a physical volume knob, thankfully).
All models get wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto capability, while the Avenir trim brings in power-adjustable front seats (10-way for the driver and 8-way for the passenger), an auto-dimming rearview mirror, heated steering wheel and air ionizer.
What hasn’t changed for the 2024 Buick Encore GX
As General Motors is preparing to transition most of its portfolio to EVs in the coming years, you may not expect the updated Buick Encore GX to pack brand-new powertrains. And that’s good, because it doesn’t: You still get either a 1.2-liter or optional 1.3-liter engine, depending on which trim you choose.
The lesser engine puts out 137 horsepower and 162 lb-ft of torque, while the larger unit manages 155 horsepower and 174 lb-ft of torque. Front-wheel drive Encore GXs come mated to a CVT, while all-wheel drive variants get a 9-speed automatic transmission instead.
Another piece of good news for the 2024 Buick Encore GX is a price drop for the lower trims. The base GX Preferred model comes in at $26,895 ($300 less than 2023 models). The ST starts off at $28,095 (down $500), while the top-spec Avenir does come in pricier at $33,195 ($1,400 more than the old Essence).
Buick will kick off production for the updated Encore GX in March. Sales are coming later in the spring, while folks will be able to build and configure a car in May.