2014 Buick LaCrosse steps up to the big leagues with plenty of luxuryWed, 27 Mar 2013 09:30:00 ESTBuick LaCrosse and Regal, the oldest vehicle in Buick's lineup will be the Verano, which was just introduced last year. Having such a fresh product mix bodes well for Buick as it tries to create a new image in the US, and after checking out the amount of luxury being stuffed into the new LaCrosse for 2014, GM's awkwardly positioned brand may finally have the ability to stand out.
Granted, the model unveiled was the all-new, top-of-the-line Ultra Luxury Interior Package, but this package brings top-notch leather and soft suede covering everything above the beltline as well as real ash wood accent trim throughout the cabin. While there was no mention of price, we don't expect this model to come cheap in terms of what we expect from Buick, although it will likely be competitively priced with similarly equipped rivals like the Acura TL or Lexus ES. Adding even more to the LaCrosse's interior, dual eight-inch displays make up the gauge cluster and center stack, and the number of buttons on the center stack have been greatly reduced, creating a cleaner look for the instrument panel.
Another big change is the next-generation of Buick's IntelliLink infotainment system that brings with it all of the recent enhancements of the Cadillac CUE and Chevrolet MyLink systems. Differentiating itself from other GM infotainment systems, the new Buick IntelliLink stands out by allowing users to customize the apps they can add and not just being limited to what GM sees fit.
When the 2014 LaCrosse goes on sale this summer, it will have a fresh, new look that builds on its 2009 redesign with the bulk of the attention focused on the lights and fascias at the front and rear of the car. Speaking of the car's rear, we couldn't help but notice similarities between this Buick and the Hyundai Equus. But don't just take our word for it – browse through the image galleries above and below (we'll try to have better live shots shortly – the press reveal's lighting conditions made better photos difficult), then peruse the press release below.
Buick Introduces the New 2014 LaCrosse
-Elegant sedan featuring refreshed exterior with wing-shape LED lighting
-New interior design with new seats and available Ultra Luxury Interior Package
-New advanced technologies: next-gen IntelliLink, standard eight-inch color display instrument panel, camera- and radar-based safety features that work with General Motors-patented Safety Alert Seat
NEW YORK – Buick today introduced the new 2014 LaCrosse, the evolution of the landmark luxury sedan that established the brand's modern sedan lineup with design leadership and technological innovation.
The full-size LaCrosse offers new interior and exterior design cues, advanced safety technologies and enhanced in-vehicle connectivity. New front and rear styling, featuring signature wing-shape LED daytime running lamps and LED wraparound tail lamps, complements its sculpted exterior design. The interior is more contemporary, with new seats, enhanced materials, redesigned central instrument panel and console – and an all-new, available Ultra Luxury Interior Package. The cabin also incorporates Buick's next-generation IntelliLink infotainment system, with intuitive controls and natural voice recognition.
New radar- and camera-based safety features help surround the new LaCrosse with protection. They include Side Blind Zone Alert, Lane Change Alert, Lane Departure Warning, Forward Collision Alert, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Automatic Collision Preparation. GM's patented Safety Alert Seat works with these features, providing seat vibration pulses indicating the direction of a potential crash threat.
Adaptive Cruise Control is also offered. It senses traffic in front of the LaCrosse to adjust vehicle speed, including stopping the vehicle in heavy traffic and accelerating again.
"We evolved the interior and exterior design, increased luxury amenities and materials, and enhanced the safety and personal technologies to give customers more reasons than ever to rediscover Buick," said Tony DiSalle, U.S. vice president of Buick Marketing.
Globally, LaCrosse sales have exceeded 500,000 since its 2009 introduction and U.S. sales topped 57,000 in 2012, making it more popular than many other full-size luxury sedans, including Lexus ES, Acura TL and Lincoln MKS.
The 2014 LaCrosse is offered in front-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive models and offers two powertrains: a 2.4L engine with eAssist light electrification technology or a 3.6L direct-injected V-6. Each is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission.
All models feature Buick's QuietTuning engineering process that reduces, blocks and absorbs unwanted noise from the LaCrosse's cabin, making it one of the quietest in the segment.
The new LaCrosse makes its public debut at the New York International Auto Show, where it will be on display March 29-April 7. It goes on sale this summer.
A more expressive design
LaCrosse's flowing, sculpted styling helped redefine Buick's design language at its introduction in 2009. The 2014 LaCrosse introduces a more expressive interpretation of that successful design, with elements and cues that enhance the car's well-planted, wide stance. Highlights include:
-New front fascia, sculpted hood and more prominent waterfall grille
-Lower front active grille shutters are included on every model and close at highway speeds to reduce aerodynamic drag
-New headlamp designs, with available Bi-Xenon High-Intensity Discharge lamps (HID), Active Forward Lighting and LED wing-shape signature lighting
-New rear fascia design and wraparound tail lamps with LED lighting.
The LaCrosse's new appearance is instantly recognizable as a modern Buick and the LED lighting elements enhance its technologically advanced presence. The headlamp housings, for example, have a more angular appearance and LED signature accents that echo a familial appearance introduced on the 2013 Enclave crossover. They've also been positioned slightly outboard to reinforce the car's presence.
The new Bi-Xenon headlamps incorporate new technology with enhanced brilliance that improves visibility, is energy-efficient and environmentally friendly (mercury-free). Active Forward Lighting is paired with these HID lamps, turning them with the direction of the front wheels to enhance visibility around corners.
At the rear, a full-width chrome accent reinforces the car's stance, while fully enclosed exhaust outlets (3.6L models) are framed with a chrome finish within a new rear fascia. It's a more integrated appearance designed to show Buick's attention to detail. An integrated rear spoiler is incorporated in the trailing edge of the deck lid to help improve aerodynamic performance and new LED taillamps – in all-new, wraparound housings – provide a safety benefit by illuminate more quickly than conventional bulbs when the brakes are applied.
In the front and rear, LaCrosse's new LED lamps continue the wing-shaped signature appearance that distinguishes Buicks day and night.
New interior environment
The 2014 LaCrosse's interior creates a more contemporary ambience and supports the integration of Buick's next-generation IntelliLink infotainment system. Highlights include:
-New instrument panel "center stack" and integrated floor console with more storage
-Configurable eight-inch color touch-screen in the center stack
-Configurable eight-inch color electronic instrument panel display and gauge cluster
-New, more comfortable front seats with four-way adjustable headrests
-New door panels with revised door lock, seat memory and trunk release controls
-New, available Ultra Luxury Interior Package with a synthetic suede headliner and pillars coverings, semi-aniline leather seating, authentic Tamo Ash wood trim and more.
While the LaCrosse's new interior brings more amenities and enhanced personal technology with next-generation IntelliLink, it does so with greater simplicity. The new center stack radio controls, for example, have only seven buttons vs. the previous 17. The large, eight-inch color touch screen is designed to be easier to operate with intuitive controls and smartphone-influenced swipe recognition for easier navigation. Dual-zone climate controls also feature capacitive-touch operation and are framed in chrome.
The rear-seat headrests fold down to enhance rearward visibility, while the new four-way adjustable front headrests are designed to provide a greater range of comfort, particularly for taller drivers.
Four interior color/trim combinations are available for 2014:
-Light Neutral seating/Cocoa accents, offered with cloth or Soleil Keisel leather seats and Kyoto Maple wood-style décor
-Ebony, offered with cloth or Soleil Keisel leather seats and Cellini Wood décor
-Choccachino seating/Cocoa accents, with Soleil Keisel leather seats with contrast stitching and Phantasm Wood-style décor
Ultra Luxury Interior Package
Sangria seating color and Ebony accents, with semi-aniline leather seats and trim, along with Shadow Tamo Ash wood décor, represents LaCrosse's new Ultra Luxury Interior Package.
"The warm color combinations, premium interior materials and advanced technology in the 2014 LaCrosse provide the interior environment our discerning luxury customers are seeking," said Ven Lai, Buick creative designer for color and trim.
The new Ultra Luxury Interior Package features premium semi-aniline leather. It covers the seats, console armrest and door armrests and is complemented by synthetic suede on the headliner and door pillars. The Sangria contrast color with the Ultra Luxury interior is exclusive to LaCrosse.
LaCrosse's use of Buick's unique QuietTuning engineering defines Buick quality, sound and vibration characteristics and refinement by following a three-point strategy of reducing sounds at their source, blocking sounds from entering the cabin and absorbing any remaining sounds.
LaCrosse's specific QuietTuning features include acoustical laminate on the windshield and front side glass; steel laminate on the front-of-dash body area; expanded baffles in the roof pillars; extensive use of melt-on sound deadeners throughout the entire lower body structure; and sound-absorbing material throughout LaCrosse's engine, passenger and cargo compartments.
Buick's next-generation IntelliLink infotainment system debuts on the 2014 LaCrosse. It offers more features designed for intuitive, easy-to-use functionality and incorporates a higher level of wireless connectivity and customized options building on the safety and security of OnStar.
In addition to easily identifiable icons covering everything from navigation to phone to music apps such as Pandora, next-generation IntelliLink is designed to accommodate new features and enhancements and be highly customizable. It also features natural language voice recognition, which allows customers to safely place calls, enter destinations, browse media, play music and control other functions simply by telling the vehicle what to do.
The system can store up to 60 favorites, including radio stations (AM/FM/XM), contacts, destinations and music from other media. This feature is convenient for those who travel to the same destination regularly and want to save locations such as hotels and restaurants.
On its eight-inch screen, customers can "fling" through lists, swipe and drag just as they would on a tablet or smartphone. Users with compatible smartphones can pair them with IntelliLink using Bluetooth or a USB connection. This gives customers the ability to play passengers' music or other media through the vehicle.
Another feature allows customers whose LaCrosses are equipped with available embedded navigation to enter destinations in a single step, without having to enter the state, city, street number and street name in successive efforts. City-by-city weather reports are also provided.
OnStar customers can access the service via the screen display or by the traditional Blue button.
A new audio system conveys the music and radio selections called up through IntelliLink's myriad of infotainment options. Featuring seven standard speakers – including strategically placed tweeters and a subwoofer – the system was developed to complement LaCrosse's quiet, acoustically optimized interior with rich sound. An 11-speaker Bose Centerpoint Surround Sound system is available.
New safety features
The 2014 LaCrosse employs new safety features with carefully developed directional alerts that help drivers quickly identify potential crash situations so they can react. They include radar- and camera-based features offered in two Driver Confidence packages:
-Driver Confidence 1 package includes Forward Collision Alert, Lane Departure Warning, Lane Change Alert, Side Blind Zone Alert, Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, High-Intensity Discharge headlamps with Active Forward Lighting, fog lamps and Head-Up Display.
-Driver Confidence 2 package adds radar-based Forward Collision Alert, Collision Preparation (with Collision Mitigation Braking), full-speed-range Adaptive Cruise Control and the Safety Alert Seat.
The Collision Mitigation Braking feature can intervene in certain crash-imminent situations, automatically triggering emergency braking if the driver fails to respond to a previous alert. The Safety Alert Seat vibrates on the left or right side, or both sides simultaneously, depending on the direction of the crash threat.
The LaCrosse is one of the first vehicles to offer Lane Change Alert, which warns the driver of fast-approaching vehicles in the next lane that are up to 230 feet (70 meters) behind the car.
LaCrosse's safety features also include eight standard air bags, including rear-seat thorax air bags, StabiliTrak, traction control and four-wheel disc brakes with ABS and Intelligent Brake Assist. A rear-vision camera is available.
Efficient, refined driving experience
The LaCrosse is equipped with a choice of two efficient engines: the standard 2.4L four-cylinder engine with eAssist light electrification technology, rated at 182 horsepower (136 kW); and an available 3.6L V-6 rated at 304 horsepower (227 kW). Both are mated to six-speed automatic transmissions.
LaCrosse with eAssist uses a lithium-ion battery system and electric motor-generator to enable regenerative braking capability. Instead of providing all-electric propulsion, the system provides power assistance to the internal combustion engine. The eAssist system also allows the engine to shut down fuel delivery in certain deceleration situations, which saves additional fuel.
New 18-, 19- and 20-inch tires, along with revisions to some chassis and suspension elements, contribute to stronger handling across the model range, while new wheel designs – including LaCrosse's first 20-inch wheel – match driving experience with style. LaCrosse is also available with an advanced Haldex all-wheel-drive system with electronic limited slip differential (eLSD) that automatically decides how to distribute torque based on vehicle speed, throttle position and individual wheel slip. It also contributes to a refined driving experience, with minimal torque transferred to the rear wheels when all-wheel-drive traction isn't required, for a quieter, smoother ride.
The LaCrosse Touring Package – available on 3.6L front-wheel-drive models with 19- or 20-inch wheels – includes real-time damping and Sport Mode Selectivity, which uses four electronically controlled dampers to constantly "read" the road and make adjustments within milliseconds. It also features Buick's HiPer Strut front suspension, which enhances ride and handling by reducing torque steer, delivering more linear and communicative steering through improved camber control and delivering improved impact isolation on bumps and rough surfaces.
Electric power steering is standard on models with the 2.4L engine, as well as 3.6L-equipped front-drive models. This technology helps save fuel by drawing energy only when the wheels are turned. It also contributes to the LaCrosse's driving experience with variable assistance at different vehicle speeds.
Buick is a modern luxury brand offering vehicles with sculpted designs, luxurious interiors with thoughtful personal technologies, along with responsive-yet-efficient performance. Buick is attracting new customers with its portfolio of award-winning luxury models, including the Enclave crossover, LaCrosse sedan, Regal sport sedan, Buick Verano sedan and the all-new 2013 Encore crossover. Learn more about Buick cars and crossovers at www.buick.com, on Twitter @buick or at www.facebook.com/buick.
2014 BUICK LACROSSE PRELIMINARY SPECIFICATIONS
Model: 2014 LaCrosse FWD/AWD
Body style / driveline: front-drive/all-wheel-drive, front-engine, four-door, five- passenger sedan
EPA vehicle class: midsize sedan
Manufacturing location: Fairfax (Kan.) Assembly
Key competitors: Acura TL, Lexus ES350, Lincoln MKZ
Type: 2.4L DOHC I-4 3.6L V-6 VVT DI
Displacement (cu in / cc): 145 / 2384 217 / 3564
Bore & stroke (in / mm): 3.46 x 3.85 / 88 x 98 3.7 x 3.37 / 94 x 85.6
Block material: precision sand-cast aluminum cast aluminum
Cylinder head material: cast aluminum cast aluminum
Valvetrain: DOHC with four valves per cylinder; continuously variable valve timing DOHC with four valves per cylinder; continuously variable valve timing
Ignition system: individual coil-on-plug individual coil-on-plug; individual cylinder knock control
Fuel delivery: direct injection and electronic throttle control direct injection
Compression ratio: 11.2:1 11.5:1
Horsepower (hp / kW @ rpm): 182 / 136 @ 6700 rpm SAE certified 304 / 227 @ 6800 SAE certified
Torque (lb.-ft. / Nm @ rpm): 172 / 233 @ 4900 rpm SAE certified 264 / 358 @ 5300 SAE certified
Recommended fuel: regular unleaded regular unleaded or E85 (E85 capability not available in Northeast states with PZEV emissions)
Emissions controls: close-coupled, catalytic converter; continuously variable valve timing; positive crankcase ventilation evaporative system; supplemental air injection system, partial zero emissions vehicle capable (eAssist) dual close-coupled catalysts and single underfloor catalyst; variable valve timing, evaporative system
Fuel economy (city / hwy): TBD TBD
Type: Hydra-Matic 6T40 six-speed automatic Hydra-Matic 6T70 six-speed automatic
Application: 2.4L four-cylinder 3.6L V-6
Gear ratios: (:1):
First: 4.58 4.48
Second: 2.96 2.87
Third: 1.91 1.84
Fourth 1.45 1.41
Fifth: 1.00 1.00
Sixth: 0.75 0.74
Reverse: 2.94 2.88
Final drive ratio: 2.64 2.77
Electric Drive System (for eAssist)
Type: belt-driven, liquid-cooled motor/generator unit and lithium-ion battery system; air-cooled power electronics and battery pack
Maximum electric generating power: 15 kW @ 1570-3180 rpm
Maximum electric motor torque (cranking): 110 lb.-ft. / 150 Nm
Maximum electric motor torque (electric assist): 79 lb.-ft. / 107 Nm @ 1,000 rpm
Maximum electric motor power (electric assist): 15 hp / 11.2 kW @ 1,000-2,200 rpm
Lithium-ion battery: 115V, 0.5-kWh, 15 kW peak power
Chassis / Suspension
Suspension (front): MacPherson strut coil-over-spring; twin-tube dampers with gas-charged valving; hollow direct-acting stabilizer bar (eAssist and 3.6L FWD/AWD without Touring Package);
HiPer Strut coil-over-spring; twin-tube dampers with gas-charged valving; hollow direct-acting stabilizer bar; real-time damping and Sport Mode Selectivity (3.6L FWD with Touring Package)
Suspension (rear): four-link (eAssist and 3.6L FWD without Touring Package); H-arm (3.6L AWD); H-arm with real-time damping and Sport Mode Selectivity (3.6L FWD with Touring Package)
Steering type: electric variable-effort power steering (eAssist and FWD V-6); power variable-effort: (AWD models)
Steering ratio: 15.2:1
Steering wheel turns, lock-to-lock: 2.75
Turning circle (ft / m): 36.8 / 11.2 (eAssist); 38.8 / 11.75
Type: split, dual-circuit four-wheel-disc with power assist
Rotor diameter x thickness (in / mm): V-6: front: 12.6 x 1.2 / 321 x 30 (vented)
rear: 12.4 x 0.9 / 315 x 23 (vented)
eAssist: front: 11.7 x 1.2 / 296 x 30 (vented)
rear: 11.5 x 0.47 / 292 x 12 (solid)
Wheels / Tires
Wheel size and type:
17-in machined alloy (std w/ eAssist)
18-in machine-faced alloy, painted (std on 1SB, 1SL, 1SP FWD V-6)
19-in painted, machined alloy (std on 1SL, 1SP AWD V-6)
19-in chrome alloy (std on 1SP FWD V-6, and opt on 1SL FWD V-6)
20-in alloy (std on 1SR)
Tires: P235/50R17 low rolling-resistance all-season (std w/ eAssist)
Wheelbase (in / mm): 111.7 / 2837
Overall length (in / mm): 197 / 5001
Overall width (in / mm): 73.1 / 1857
Overall height (in / mm): 59.2 / 1504
Track (in / mm): front: 61.7 / 1567
rear: 62 / 1575
Curb weight (lb / kg): 3765 / 1708 (eAssist – estimated)
3906 / 1772 (3.6L V-6 – estimated)
Seating capacity: 2 / 3
Headroom (in / mm): front: 38 / 965
rear: 37.3 / 947
Legroom (in / mm): front: 41.7 / 1059
rear: 40.5 / 1029
Shoulder room (in / mm): front: 57.4 / 1459
rear: 56 / 1423
Hip room (in / mm): front: 55.2 / 1402
rear: 53.9 / 1369
EPA interior volume (cu ft / L): 99 / 2805
Passenger volume (cu ft / L): 101.7 / 2878
Cargo volume (cu ft / L): 10.8 / 306 (2.4L eAssist)
13.3 / 376 (3.6L V-6)
Trailer towing maximum (lb / kg): 1000 / 454 (3.6L V-6)
Fuel capacity (gal / L): 15.7 / 59.4 (eAssist)
18 / 70 (3.6L V-6)
Engine oil (qt / L): 5 / 4.7 (2.4L)
5.5 / 5.2 (3.6L)
Cooling system ( qt / L): 9.6 /12 (2.4L)
7.6 / 7.2 (3.6L)
Note: Information shown is current at time of publication.
By Jeffrey N. Ross
See also: 2014 Buick Regal gets the party rolling in NY, Restyled 2014 Buick Regal adds AWD, Regal GS loses power, 2014 Buick LaCrosse updated with new styling, tech.