Five people with luggage for five days. That was the plan for our family road trip to Mont Tremblant. Finding the right vehicle for that many people can be a challenge. Most cars are too small and smaller SUVs or crossovers wouldn’t work either. We needed a larger SUV with plenty of storage space. We decided to try the 2018 Buick Enclave for space, comfort, and amenities. Find out what made it the best family road trip vehicle for our trip to Mont Tremblant.
What Makes Buick Enclave the Best Family Road Trip Vehicle?
You can’t have the best family road trip vehicle without plenty of space. The 2018 Buick Enclave provides 23.6 cubic feet of space behind the third row and 58 cubic feet with the third row lowered. The Enclave also comes standard with an underfloor storage area that provides 3.1 cubic feet of capacity.
With one back seat folded down, there is ample space for four adults and one child. We also fit two large suitcases, three small suitcases, two backpacks, and a cooler. Plus, the hands-free power liftgate makes it easy to store luggage in the back without needing to put everything down to open the gate. It isn’t just space that makes the Enclave the best family road trip vehicle; it’s how the space is distributed.
The Enclave has seats for seven in three rows and the cabin is very spacious regardless of where you sit. The second row captain’s chairs make you feel like you’re riding in the front. Even the third row is adult-friendly. Getting into the back is easy thanks to the gap between the second row seats, as well as the available passenger-side SmartSlide seat. And it comes with automatic tri-zone climate control that allows all passengers to have freedom of choice when it comes to selecting cabin temperature.
Despite having ample seating space that’s both comfortable and stylish, the Enclave doesn’t feel like you’re driving a huge SUV or a tank. It handles exceptional well and the assistive driving features make parking and driving a breeze.
This Buick comes with an impressive lineup of technology including satellite radio, a rearview camera, rear parking sensors, and an 8-inch color touchscreen. Also, all models come with a WiFi hotspot that facilitates 4G LTE connectivity. There’s nothing better for a family road trip than a WiFi hotspot. Athena sat in the back row and watched movies on her iPad during the trip to Mont Tremblant. During the two hour drive, we didn’t hear from her once. She put on her headphones and watched quietly during the drive. When we arrived, the movie had just ended and she was ready for adventure.
Even more helpful for the driver, the Enclave comes with a rearview camera and rear parking sensors. I utilized the parking cameras in tight spots like the parking garage. I would have normally needed assistance fitting in the tight parking spots but the cameras take the guesswork out of parking the Enclave.
Equally helpful was the Adaptive Cruise Control. The system maintains the set speed and a following gap — the time between your vehicle and a vehicle detected directly ahead — by accelerating or braking automatically. This system makes the vehicle practically self-driving. Once I reached the highway, I set the cruise at the speed I wanted and when I approached a vehicle, I didn’t need to worry about adjusting the cruise or resetting it. It’s ideal for highway driving.
Another driver-assistive features that deserves special mention is the rear camera mirror that gives the driver an expanded view of the landscape behind the vehicle. This feature allows drivers to use the rearview mirror either as a mirror or as a display screen that feeds images from cameras mounted to the vehicle’s tail end. This feature works to broaden the driver’s rear field of vision by 300 percent.
The Enclave has stepped up the game when it comes to upscale technology and driver-assistive features. We were wrapped in comfort with the ability to adjust temperature and seat position and the assortment of safety features made the experience smooth and effortless. With generous cargo room and strong fuel economy, the Enclave works for your family regardless of the size. It was the perfect way to ride is style and comfort as a family.