Every vehicle is designed by a team of people who are attempting to solve an issue. One issue that was solved pretty recently as far as vehicle history goes was the one of providing enough seating for a growing family while also leaving enough space for everyone’s necessary items like tools, groceries, shopping bags, backpacks, and suitcases. The 2023 Buick Encore GX is Buick’s solution to this issue, but where did the inspiration come from? Did the designers model it after something? Or did they combine a multitude of preferences to create this compact crossover? How long has it been around? Where is it going in the future? Let’s take a look and see. What we found might surprise you.
In the Beginning, There Was a Plant
Yes, you read that right. The mysterious origin of the Buick Encore GX starts with a plant. A plant that people use every day, often more than once. No, it isn’t one you eat. It’s one that is used to create a drink that keeps Americans going day and night. Give up? It’s the Arabic coffee bean. It might seem strange that a compact crossover SUV got its inspiration from a tiny bean, but the most popular coffee bean strain in the entire world has struck a chord with many for its delicious taste, even way back to the 1600s. With such a rich history, this humble little coffee bean can’t help but inspire.
Hundreds of years after the Arabic coffee bean became popular, a car company, General Motors, decided to take inspiration from the shape of the bean to create what was known as the Opel Mokka, “Mokka” being the German word for “Mocha.” The Opel Mokka was made in European countries like Spain and Russia, as well as in Asia, most notably South Korea and China. It became incredibly popular upon its release in 2012, with over 100,000 units being sold in just the first three months. The design by Carsten Aengenheyster is still popular worldwide. However, unless you spend a lot of time in Europe, you probably aren’t familiar with Opel or the Mokka. That’s because here in America, this vehicle is sold by Buick as the Encore.
The Move to Buick
Given the popularity of the model, it’s astonishing that the Encore was the very first subcompact crossover from Buick. It was launched in an attempt to appeal to Gen X and Millennials rather than just cornering the Baby Boomer market, but it has proven popular with all ages. Buick’s successful entry into the subcompact crossover market with the Encore speaks to Buick’s determination to provide options to a multitude of drivers, no matter their age or their requirements for a dependable, fashionable vehicle.
The Encore has its larger cousins, the Buick Enclave and Buick Envision, but for many people, a smaller crossover has plenty of room. The Encore can seat up to five individuals and still has room for their sports equipment, a kayak, camping gear, or even the family pets without having to deal with fewer parking options and a gas-guzzling engine. Though it was popular right from the very beginning, the newest iteration––the Encore GX––promises to be even better than previous years. So along with taking a long look back at its beginnings, we’re going to take a peek at the present and see what is in store for the 2023 model.
Back To The Future
While the original Encore has remained in the Buick lineup, the more modern Buick Encore GX launched in 2020, taking this popular subcompact model to the next level. With a sharper aesthetic, more efficient powerplants, and additional room in the cabin, the Encore GX was a worthy successor to the original model. From the inspirational Arabic coffee bean to the German Opel Mokka to the Buick we all know and love, the Encore GX has had a long journey to fruition. What’s new for the 2023 model, and what can we expect in the future?
With high safety ratings from both the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it’s safe to say that Buick has retained its reputation for high-quality vehicles. The 2023 Encore GX comes with standard safety features and plenty of optional ones––the standard equipment includes such features as lane keeping assist, automatic emergency braking, and automatic high beams. The optional features include things like adaptive cruise control and a head-up display.
Up-to-date technology is becoming more and more important, and the Encore GX delivers. Along with the safety tech suite, the Encore GX also comes equipped with plenty of other useful, desirable technology, including a Wi-Fi hotspot that comes standard and the ability to pair with either Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. Other standard features include noise cancellation, ensuring a quiet cabin, and less chance of being overwhelmed by outside noise like traffic, inclement weather, or construction. Available remote start allows those who have to drive in snow, rain, or sleet to let the vehicle warm up before they brave the open road. If you’re interested in more tech, you can also add the optional Bose sound system and wireless charging. But is this enough to keep the Encore GX at the forefront of Buick’s inventory?
It is known that Buick has made the decision to start producing more electric models, which means its vehicles will be less expensive to operate and much more convenient now that chargers are going up all across America, even in smaller towns. It remains to be seen whether the Encore GX will become an electric vehicle in the future. However, it stands to reason that Buick will include it, as it is one of the newer, more popular models, especially with the younger set of drivers, who tend to prefer adaptable vehicles that are more eco-friendly. There is the possibility that the Encore GX or higher trim levels will be retooled expressly for this purpose, but as of yet, we have no confirmation that it will make Buick’s list of potential eco-friendly vehicles.
Buick’s Reputation Remains Strong
With Buick’s track record of providing high-quality, comfortable vehicles, and its promise to introduce more eco-friendly options in the near future, it’s easy to see why Buick is so popular, not only with returning customers but with new drivers as well. I’m eager to see where the brand takes the Encore GX from here. Hopefully, it will show up down the line as an electric option and, eventually, maybe even as a self-driving car. Who knows? The future holds plenty of possibilities, particularly for a vehicle manufacturing company that seems resolute in its resolve to continually improve upon its products rather than sitting on its laurels.
If the 2023 Encore GX interests you, as a Buick fan, a family needing a smaller SUV, or simply as someone who enjoys driving fun, luxurious vehicles, you may want to check if there are any models available at your local dealerships. Take one for a test drive and see if it works for your life on the road. See how it feels to be driving toward the future. It’s quite an exciting journey. Does the Buick Encore GX make your list of new vehicles to take for a spin?