The Buick Envision is a mid-size luxury crossover SUV built by Buick.
The car was first introduced publicly in China on July 1, 2014, with a photo of the car under a cover and placed between a Buick Encore and a Buick Enclave. On July 21, some specifications and the first official photos, as well as its Chinese name “Ang Ke Wei” (昂科威), were made public. The car is produced in China by Shanghai GM and went on sale in late 2014.
As of October 2016, it is available in China, the United States, Canada, and Mexico. An Opel-badged version is expected to be marketed in Europe in 2016, as a successor to the Opel Antara.
On December 4, 2015, Buick confirmed that the Envision will go on sale in the United States starting in the summer of 2016, making it the first Chinese-built GM vehicle to be sold in America. It will only be offered as an all-wheel drive, but would add a front wheel drive option after the 2017 model year. The Envision made its American debut at the North American International Auto Show on January 11, 2016, as a mid-size CUV, sharing the segment with a second generation GMC Acadia and a future Chevrolet equivalent that is being planned for 2017.
The North American version of the Envision will feature the turbo-charged 2.0L LTG four-cylinder engine SAE certified at 252 horsepower (186 kW) and 260 lb-ft of torque (353 Nm), paired with a third-generation six-speed transmission, seven active safety technologies, and On-Star/Intellilink connectivity. For the 2016 model year it will only be available in the premium level trim but with two options. The trims will expand to five for the 2017 model year, when Buick sets the MSRP for the Envision at $34,990 (USD) for the base trim.
The announcement about selling the Chinese-built vehicle to American consumers has drawn opposition from the United Auto Workers, who had just finalized a contract agreement with GM and had wanted the automaker to build the Envision Stateside: “Today’s announcement by General Motors that they are importing the Envision from China is a slap in the face to U.S. taxpayers and the men and women who worked so hard to save GM during its darkest time,” UAW President Dennis Williams and Vice President Cindy Estrada, who head the GM department for the union, said in a joint statement on December 4, 2015. On the other hand, Buick spokesman Stuart Fowle defended the decision to keep production in China and import it rather than having it built in the United States because it made sense from a business point of view: “We have production already going (in China) and adding a second manufacturing facility for the volumes that we would expect in the U.S. just wasn’t feasible,” he said. “We wanted to take advantage of the manufacturing already in place. We’re very confident in the vehicle.”