Things did not seem too bright for General Motors, the appeal of the brand Buick in the Chinese market has however, saved the brand from peril. Pontiac had seen the darkest of times, but Buick was smart enough to redeem itself. General Motors, since then has been giving the Chinese market much needed attention. Owing to that, the Buick La Crosse HEV that just made its global debut at the 2016 Buick Day event held at Shanghai took its dibs. In addition, Buick also released the new “Buick Blue” logo, which is prominently displayed on the LaCrosse HEV’s rear deck lid.
The Executive Director of Global Propulsion Systems, Larry Nitz says, “GM’s leadership in electrification technologies, now and in the future, are coming to Buick in China. In fact, over the next five years, we will roll out more than 10 new energy vehicles in China, including several models for Buick. That includes full hybrids, plug-in hybrids, and extended-range electric vehicles.”
Getting into the Hybrid division has been quite exponential for Buick. It’s now clear with the company’s eco-friendly models such as LaCrosse eAssist and La Crosse Eco-Hybrid that the HEV is a sure shot success.
The new LaCrosse HEV shares pretty much the same style and design cues as the all-new Lacrosse in the US. However, the new Lacrosse features a specific power train and some other electric goodies that help it achieve excellent gas mileage. So, with that said, let’s dive on in and review the newest hybrid from Buick.
The Lacrosse HEV is pretty much an identical twin to the Lacrosse. The vehicle features the same grille that was inspired by the Avenir and has a gorgeous looking sculpted hood. That said, the car also includes little vents on the fenders and the chrome-cladding strip on the doors. In fact, the only real difference on the outside is Buick’s new “Buick Blue” logo and the “HEV” badge it is connected to on the rear deck.
Considering it has all of the standard car’s good looks, but an energy-efficient drive train, it should do pretty well on the Chinese Market. The similarities in the design aside, the vehicle’s performance is better than its predecessor.
Step inside and the cabin gets the same Avenir-inspired cabin that was presented in the Lacrosse that made its debut in the U.S. The car has a wraparound dash that features plenty of curves and a unique padding structures that make the car even more comfortable and luxurious. The insert on the passenger side of the dash looks to be an ash-colored wood, with the grain running horizontally to give the cabin a wider feel. The same inserts are used on the doors around the door handle. The trim inserts on the center console, and around the infotainment display are painted flat black.
Its seats, door pull handles, padding on the center console as well as the padding on its lower portion of the dash are all wrapped in white leather. This adds to the upscale looks of the HEV. The infotainment system in this car is equipped with Buick’s latest IntelliLink system that comes with an 8-inch display as Apple CarPlay & Android Auto. It also has other goodies such as acoustic-laminated windshield as well as front side windows, triple-sealed doors as well as noise path sealing.
The Lacrosse HEV comes powered by a 1.8-liter SIDI engine that is connected to an electric variable transmission. The engine is mated to a 1.5 kWh high-performance lithium battery unit. The vehicle can achieve a fuel economy of 4.7 liters per 100 km.
Since Buick is keeping some secrets about the car for now, it’s no surprise that the price details are yet to be revealed. The 2017 Lacrosse base model is expected to fetch approximately $ 32,000. The current, 2016 LaCrosse eAssist model claims $34,500.
For the Chinese market, the Buick Lacrosse happens to be a big deal. The advantage this vehicle has over the others is that the Lacrosse has better fuel economy and better performance than other hybrids. It’s no surprise that this model broke cover in China, considering the Chinese market seems to express more interest in hybrid vehicles than in the U.S. Both the Buick LaCrosse HEV and the Buick Avista Concept will be making another appearance at Auto China 2016 in Beijing on April 25th, at which time further information about Buick’s new Hybrid vehicle will be revealed. More updates coming soon, stay tuned for more. J