Having a hard time choosing a new SUV? We don’t blame you, decisions are hard. Choosing new paint for a bathroom remodel, choosing a name for a newborn child, heck, if there are two pizza places within delivery range, somehow people will find a way to turn the choice into a half hour ordeal. Granted, the pizza underground is a high stakes world, and sometimes when the pressure is on, people fold like a New York single slice ($1.50). While the dangers of recreational pizza use should never be made light of, there is one decision that could be considered equally impactful on a person’s life, arguably even more so, and that’s buying a new car. Though with countless models in every class, even if you think you know exactly what you’re looking for you can quickly be derailed by the sheer number of similar options. It’s moments like this that taught us that sometimes the easiest way to find what you need isn’t by broadening your scope, but by narrowing it. That way, rather than getting lost or overwhelmed trying to find one perfect car in a sea of competing models, you can compare just two at a time as a way to isolate the features you like and the models that really stand out. That’s the goal here today, and the matchup we’ve decided on is the 2018 Buick Enclave vs. 2018 Infiniti QX60, so SUV hunter, you’re in luck.
It’s no surprise how similar these two SUVs are, but since a vehicle’s performance stats are some of its more easily measurable characteristics we should be able to nail down a solid winner for this category, whereas others will likely be more influenced by your personal preference. Both vehicles can be equipped with Intelligent All-Wheel Drive systems that detect changes in driving conditions and compensate for them by redirecting power back and forth between the front or rear tires, so if handling is a concern for you then you shouldn’t have a problem with either car. When it comes to what’s under the hood, the QX60 comes equipped with a 3.5L V6 engine that delivers 295 horsepower and an estimated 27 MPG on highways. This year’s Enclave, on the other hand, comes standard with a 3.6L V6 engine and 310 horsepower, though the trade-off for the added power comes in the form of an estimated 26 MPG on highways. If you ask us, though, 1 MPG isn’t such a bad trade for that power boost.
The interior technology features in these two vehicles have a lot less in common than other aspects. While both Buick and Infiniti have their own brand-specific infotainment systems with a lot of similar functionality, Infiniti’s InTouch system is much less intuitive, and the fact that they’ve implemented their own limited version of Bluetooth cellular integration instead of using Apple CarPlay and Android Auto is, unfortunately, a huge mark against the QX60. While the Buick’s system offers compatibility with apps from your phone through official Apple and Android software, the InTouch system offers voice access to only calls, texts, and music. While that seems like nothing to scoff at, when you compare those features to the variety offered by actual Apple or Android integration, it’s easy to see why we would be critical. Despite that major difference, both brands’ systems still offer some of the same features like optional navigation and voice-to-text. However, because the Buick Infotainment System is more user-friendly, a lot of those same features are measurably better for Buick than they are with Infiniti InTouch. Other differences are less comparable, like the Enclave’s available built-in wifi hotspot or the QX60’s available screens to entertain rear passengers, but it shouldn’t be too hard to decide which of those two features you personally value more.
The safety options of these two competing SUVs are almost entirely the same, with the same features offered practically across the board but of course built by different manufacturers. The only safety feature that isn’t present on both cars is actually a blind spot warning and intervention system for the QX60 that alerts you if there’s a vehicle in your blind spot. It can also assume minor control to help keep you from colliding with anything in your blind spot that you may not have noticed. Like we mentioned before, the user interface for Buick’s display screen is generally better than Infiniti’s, so options like surround-view cameras end up functioning interchangeably between vehicles but looking better in the Enclave. To be fair, though, aesthetics aren’t the important part of safety features, but the difference still felt worthy of mention. While hopefully, most people don’t have an active need for collision alerts or emergency braking systems, features like this can sometimes mean the difference between finishing your bowl of cereal while you drive or spilling cheerios all over your pants. Backup collision alerts are available for both the Enclave and the QX60, as well as pedestrian detection for any fans of not maiming people.
2018 Buick Enclave vs. 2018 Infiniti QX60 – What do the Results Mean to You?
When it comes to most cars, only certain aspects can be quantified in ways that leave a clear winner, and most of them are negligible to the average driver. If you asked the Family Feud people to do you a favor and interview 100 people about their car’s horsepower, we guarantee the top answer on the board would be “I don’t know,” followed closely behind by “who cares.” While plenty of people care a lot about those things, the point is that in most comparisons the winner is decided more by personal opinion than anything else. Every person with a car has a reason for owning one, and two people looking at the same car could have vastly different purposes in mind. Hopefully, through this exercise you’ve gained some insight into what those needs are for you, and maybe a more refined shopping process to carry with you into future searches as well.