2008 Buick Enclave Washington DC
2008 Buick Enclave
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Buick Enclave - 2008 Review: As kids, Cracker Jack was a favorite treat. It was delicious and you got a prize, which was sometimes a really cool toy. As adults, we always look for a vehicle that is in its own way delicious and comes with a prize. Such is the case with the new Buick Enclave. Attractive on the outside and the prize isn't on the inside, it is the inside. GM has struggled for several years, on different fronts. The Enclave demonstrates the General's improvement on the product front. Not just a "good as GM cars go" vehicle, the new crossover is crackerjack.
What We Drove
Buick provided us with a pre-production Enclave CXL with front-wheel drive. Among the big crossover's standard features are variable-assist power steering, stability and traction control, side impact and head curtain airbags, tire-pressure monitoring, power liftgate, tri-zone climate control, fog lamps, and auto-dimming mirror. They added a few options, including 20-inch chrome wheels; an Entertainment Package with six disc CD/MP3 changer, rear seat audio, Bose speakers; a Driver Confidence Package with remote start, ultrasonic rear parking assist and heated windshield washer fluid. Starting price for the CXL is $34,990, including $735 destination charge; with options our test vehicle came to $37,780.
While a little more power would be nice, the 3.6 liter V-6 delivers its 275 horsepower and 251 lb.-ft. of torque early and smoothly. The six-speed transmission works well in Drive and the only hunting trips took place in very demanding situation: a couple of uphill, slow hairpin turns. Manual shift mode isn't set up the same as other "sport" shift automatics. The console lever is placed in L, a thumb-actuated rocker switch changes gears. All shifting is up to the driver; this transmission neither upshifts nor downshifts by itself in manual mode.
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