Differences Between the 2021 Buick Encore and 2021 Buick Encore GX
Although the 2021 Buick Encore and 2021 Buick Encore GX share similar names, these two models are anything but twins. From powertrains and exterior colors to trim levels and safety tech, they have their share of differences.
The 2021 Encore only offers two trim levels: Encore and Preferred. Both come standard with front-wheel drive, but all-wheel drive is available on the Preferred trim level. The latest model of the Encore no longer offers the Sport Touring and Essence trims.
The Encore GX gives you a little more selection — it offers three trims: Preferred, Select, and Essence. While all three models have front-wheel drive by default, you can opt for all-wheel drive on any of them.
There’s only one powertrain available for the 2021 Encore, and that’s the 1.4-liter Turbo that provides 138 horsepower and 148 lb-ft of torque. It’s paired with a six-speed automatic, which enables it to get up to 32 mpg on the highway.
The Encore GX is equipped with a 1.2-liter Turbo engine, which is comparable in power to the Encore’s mill. It delivers 137 horsepower and 162 lb-ft of torque. The available Ecotec 1.3-liter Turbo dynamo is a bit more spirited, with 155 horsepower and 174-lb-ft of torque, and a fuel efficiency rating of up to 31 mpg on the highway when equipped with front-wheel drive.
Want a Classy, Affordable Crossover? Check out the 2021 Enclave
When it comes to exterior features, the Encore offers limited customization options. It has a fairly standard set of six paint colors: Ebony Twilight Metallic, White Frost Tricoat, Summit White, Dark Moon Blue Metallic, Cinnabar Metallic, and Quicksilver Metallic.
On the other hand, the Encore GX sports a new front and rear fascia for 2021, as well as a host of exclusive colors. These include Deep Azure Metallic, Burnished Bronze Metallic, Black Currant Metallic, and Chili Red Metallic, in addition to the white, silver, and black hues featured on the Encore.
The 2021 Buick Encore is the smaller of the two models, with 18.8 cubic feet of room behind the second-row seating. Thanks to its folding seats, you can expand the cargo bay to 48.4 cubic feet. The Encore GX offers a bit more room for gear, with 23.5-cubic-foot cargo bay that can expand up to 50.2 cubic feet.
While the Encore and the Encore GX both come standard with smartphone connectivity, only the GX has wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for compatible phones. The Encore GX also has a standard 8-inch touch screen, while its smaller sibling only offers a 7-inch display. And while the Encore offers SiriusXM satellite radio, only the Encore GX offers a free trial of SiriusXM with 360L.
Want Wireless Connectivity? Choose the 2021 Buick Encore GX
When it comes to safety tech, the Encore comes standard with the basics — nothing more, nothing less. It’s equipped with a Rear Vision Camera, the Tire Pressure Monitoring System, and the LATCH system, which makes it easier to install child safety seats. You can upgrade for more driver-assist technology, including Forward Collision Alert, Front and Rear Park Assist, Lane Departure Warning, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert. But the Encore GX offers a few more smart safety perks, such as Automatic Emergency Braking, Following Distance Indicator, and IntelliBeam auto high-beam assist
The Encore starts at $23,200, while the bigger Encore GX is just $1,000 more, at $24,200. Both models are now available.
If you’d like to learn more about how the Encore GX stacks up against the rest of the Buick lineup, check out our comparison between the Encore GX and the Enclave.
Kimiko Kidd is a native Daytonian. She graduated from Wright State University with degrees in environmental science and sociology. She loves her trusty old Honda Civic, but dreams of owning a 1974 Ford Falcon XB with a custom paint job and a vintage Kawasaki Z1000. In her free time, Kimiko can be found watercolor-painting, baking muffins, collecting rocks, playing old-school Nintendo games, writing her novel, sewing stuffed animals, and cosplaying as her favorite Mad Max characters. See more articles by Kimiko.