The 2009 Buick Enclave is a sophisticated up to eight-passenger sport utility vehicle. This model year includes a bump of thirteen horsepower and an optional navigation unit with a real-time traffic feature - perfect for the commuter. Those that aren't impressed with OnStar's turn-by-turn directions provided by a live representative will be pleased with the in-dash navigation unit's digital display and ease of use. Also optional on the 2009 Enclave is Bluetooth capabilities for handsfree calling and a rearview back-up camera. The rearview camera is available on both models that are or are not equipped with the navigation unit, a surprising option. Among Enclave's competitors is the Mercury Mariner, another stylish and luxurious SUV.
The interior of this 2009 Buick comes with power programmable door locks and power windows, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, three rows of comfortable seating, and a trial subscription to XM Satellite Radio. The third row of seating is a flat folding 60/40 split bench seat, so owners can easily accommodate larger cargo in the rear of the model. The auto-dimming rearview mirror is a helpful addition to prevent a harsh glare and provide improved visibility - especially in the dark. Buyers can upgrade to features like power adjustable driver and front passenger seating, heated front seats, and a rear-seat DVD entertainment system - a worthwhile addition for families with small children and teens. Tri-zone automatic climate control is standard on the Enclave, which allows each row of seating to determine their preferred temperature.
Under the hood, the 2009 Enclave is equipped with a restrained 286 horsepower 3.6L V6. However, potential buyers might be disappointed by the lack of engine options. Not only that, with only a six-speed automatic transmission with overdrive available, consumers might turn to a model with a wider selection. Anti-lock brakes, four-wheel independent suspension, and traction control give the Enclave a leg up on the competition, while the 4,500-lbs towing capacity (with Trailering Package) is an impressive feat for a V6 SUV. The base trim gets 17 city MPG and 24 highway MPG, a massive head-butt on other eight-passenger SUVs.
With safety features like a tire pressure monitoring system, dual-stage airbags, and Stabilitrak, it's no wonder that the NHTSA gave the Enclave the highest in frontal and side-impact crash test ratings. The tire pressure monitoring system includes a digital display located in the instrument cluster. It keeps watch on the pressure in all four tires, letting drivers know if a tire has too much or too little pressure. The dual-stage airbags will automatically determine the force with which to deploy in order to avoid further injuries in the event of an accident.
Overall, the 2009 Buick Enclave is a solid SUV built more for families than young consumers. With a base price of $34,130, it is competitive with other similar models. However, those that are on a budget might want to look elsewhere, as the price can jump quickly once available features are added.