Best & Worst Buick Enclave Years

The Buick Enclave has stood the test of time, evolving through different years to become a true icon in the world of luxury SUVs. The Enclave’s production has brought with it new features, design updates, and technological advancements that have solidified its place as a top contender in its class.

From performance enhancements to technological advancements, we’ll dissect each year’s strengths and weaknesses to provide the Best & Worst Buick Enclave Years that will empower your purchasing journey.

Buick Enclave Generations

The Buick Enclave has evolved through distinct generations, each bringing notable improvements and innovations. The standout generation is the first one, launched in 2008, offering a spacious cabin, impressive ride quality, and refined design. 

This generation had some drawbacks, such as underwhelming fuel efficiency and a less intuitive infotainment system.

The second generation, introduced in 2018, saw Buick make significant strides in enhancing performance and technology features. This iteration delivered improved fuel economy, advanced safety features, and a more modern interior. 

1st Generation2008-2017
2nd Generation2018-Present

The price increase with this generation may have deterred budget-conscious buyers from fully appreciating its enhancements. Analyzing the best and worst years of the Buick Enclave underscores how each generation has contributed unique attributes while also presenting its own set of limitations.

Buick Enclave: Best, Neutral and Worst Years

The Buick Enclave has seen its fair share of ups and downs over the years, with some models standing out as exceptional, others as average, and a few leaving much to be desired. 

Best & Worst Buick Enclave Years

In terms of best years, the 2013 Buick Enclave stands out for its solid performance, refined interior, and elegant design. It offered reliable driving dynamics and impressive fuel efficiency for a vehicle in its class.

In neutral territory is the 2015 Buick Enclave, which didn’t bring any significant improvements or setbacks compared to previous or subsequent model years.

While it maintained the brand’s reputation for comfort and versatility, it failed to introduce significant innovative features or major redesigns.

The worst year for the Buick Enclave was the 2008 model. Known for various mechanical issues and lacklustre performance, this early iteration fell short in terms of overall reliability and consumer satisfaction. 

Despite attempts at updates from subsequent model years onwards, 2008 remains a low point in the Enclave’s history.

GenerationBest YearsNeutral YearsWorst Years
1st Generation2009
2nd Generation2018

Best & Worst Buick Enclave Years For 1st Generation (2008–2017)

The first-generation Buick Enclave, spanning from 2008 to 2017, has seen its fair share of highs and lows. Among the best years for the Enclave, many enthusiasts point to the 2011 model as a standout. 

Best & Worst Buick Enclave Years

Best years for Buick Enclave: 2009, 2010, 2017

The Buick Enclave’s 2009 and 2010 models showcase the epitome of luxury and performance, featuring a potent V6 engine that delivers exhilarating power while maintaining fuel efficiency. 

The advanced safety technology of these models provides peace of mind for drivers and passengers, with features such as stability control, anti-lock brakes, and a comprehensive airbag system.

The transmission in these years has been known to have some issues, which could potentially detract from an otherwise flawless driving experience.

In the 2017 model year, the Buick Enclave continued to impress with its luxurious interiors and advanced safety features. This year saw some reports about problematic 6-speed transmissions that affected certain vehicles.

The smooth V6 engine remained a standout feature despite this issue, making the overall driving experience highly enjoyable for many owners.

Despite challenges with transmission in specific years, the Buick Enclave continues to be celebrated for its combination of style, performance, and safety advancements throughout its first generation (2008–2017).

The Neutral Years: 2008, 2013, 2015

In the years 2008, 2013, and 2015, the Buick Enclave underwent slight design refreshes that subtly elevated its aesthetic appeal while maintaining its timeless elegance. 

These updates included refined front grilles, sleeker headlight designs, and improved interior materials, demonstrating Buick’s commitment to constant refinement and attention to detail. 

The relatively subtle nature of these changes played a crucial role in keeping the Enclave lineup fresh and appealing to discerning buyers.

Buick’s focus on enhancing overall durability and dependability resulted in continuous improvements to the Enclave’s performance and longevity. 

Significant technological advances such as advanced infotainment systems, safety features, and fuel efficiency enhancements solidified the Enclave’s position as a leader in the luxury crossover segment. 

The best year Buick Enclave has elegant design and premium features. The practical aspect of everyday utility is where the Odyssey shines brightest. The ample trunk space in the Odyssey provides a welcome convenience for families on the go who need that extra room for strollers or school backpacks.

The Worst Years: 2011, 2012, 2014, 2016

These were the years when electrical system issues and transmission problems plagued many Enclave vehicles. Owners faced disappointing driving experiences as their beloved vehicles struggled to maintain reliability. 

The frustration of facing these recurring issues not only tarnished the driving experience but also left owners feeling let down by the brand they had trusted.

These turbulent years highlighted critical flaws in the design and manufacturing of the Buick Enclave’s electrical system and transmission. This period serves as a stark reminder of how even well-established car manufacturers can experience setbacks with specific models. 

It’s essential for both car manufacturers and consumers to reflect on these challenging times to ensure that similar mistakes are not repeated in future vehicle iterations.

Best & Worst Years for Buick Enclave 2nd Generation (2018–Present)

The Buick Enclave 2nd Generation (2018–Present) stands out in the competitive SUV market with its impressive combination of style, comfort, and performance.

Best & Worst Buick Enclave Years

The Best Years: 2018, 2022, and 2023

When considering the best years for the Buick Enclave, it’s hard to ignore the powerful V6 engine and driver assistance systems that have been introduced in recent model years. 2018 marked the beginning of the second generation, bringing with it a refined driving experience and improved safety features. 

The addition of a rear cross-traffic alert in 2022 further enhanced the Enclave’s positioning as a leader in safe driving technology.

With market trends increasingly focused on driver convenience and safety, these developments are crucial to maintaining competitiveness within the SUV segment. 

The integration of advanced driver assistance systems has not only elevated the driving experience but also highlighted Buick’s commitment to innovation and consumer satisfaction. 

These advancements will continue to shape and define the overall appeal of the Buick Enclave within an ever-evolving automotive landscape.

The Neutral Years: 2019, 2020

The years 2019 and 2020 marked a continuation of the luxury and performance that enthusiasts had come to expect from the automobile industry. A cloud loomed over this otherwise promising period as reports of transmission issues started to surface regarding specific 2020 models. 

Owners expressed frustration with erratic shifting, jerking motions, and, in some cases, complete failure of the transmission system. As a result, what should have been a smooth driving experience turned into a source of anxiety for many.

The saga of the neutral years serves as a reminder that even within periods marked by luxury and excellence, unforeseen obstacles can emerge. 

While these transmission issues undoubtedly tested both manufacturers and consumers alike, the experience served as a catalyst for enhanced communication, transparency, and dedication to prioritizing product integrity in the years ahead.

The Worst Year: 2021

The Buick Enclave years to avoid the year 2021 brought with it a wave of dismay for owners of the Buick Enclave 2nd Generation (2018–Present) due to persistent service brake issues. 

This widespread concern added to an already disheartening narrative, as the model had failed to deliver substantial improvements in comparison to its predecessors.

The recurring brake malfunctions have become a significant headache for drivers, eroding their confidence in the vehicle’s safety and dependability. 

Plague numerous units across different regions, and it has become increasingly evident that Buick’s efforts at rectifying these concerns have not been sufficiently impactful.

Loyal consumers who were eagerly expecting technological advancements and design upgrades found themselves grappling with a sense of disillusionment instead. 

The dissatisfaction stemming from these unaddressed challenges has undoubtedly tarnished what should have been a more positive trajectory for this generation of Enclaves.

Buick Enclave Average Resale Values

The resale value of a vehicle is crucial for potential buyers and current owners looking to understand the long-term investment potential of their purchase. 

The visual representation of average resale values for the Buick Enclave showcases exciting trends that can impact buying decisions.


The Buick Enclave has had both its best and worst years in terms of overall performance and reliability. The 2014 and 2015 models stand out as some of the best years due to their refined design, advanced technology features, and strong safety ratings.

Potential buyers should thoroughly research each model’s strengths and weaknesses before making a purchase decision. Remember to test drive any potential purchase to ensure it meets your specific needs and expectations.


Which Buick Enclave years to avoid?

The 2008 and 2011 model years are commonly cited as ones to avoid due to reliability issues.

What is the average lifespan of a Buick Enclave in terms of reliability?

With proper maintenance, a Buick Enclave can last well over 150,000 miles with good reliability.