Take a pick among General Motors’ line-up of auto brands when it comes to overall popularity and chances are you’d take a while before picking Buick among them. It’s not the most popular brand by any stretch of the imagination, but thanks to a rejuvenation, Buick is looking like it’s going to be a major player in the mid-size luxury sedan with the 2012 Buick LaCrosse.

Taking the reins from the previous LaCrosse model, the 2012 model looks to take the company to the next level with an all new eAssist system that Buick is proclaiming to improve fuel economy by 25 percent. What’s most impressive about the new LaCrosse is that despite the state-of-the-art system that’s been given to the vehicle, Buick is not giving it an added impetus – separate cost from the vehicle – but rather, is putting the eAssist system as a standard feature in all 2012 models of the LaCrosse.

That, in itself, says a lot about Buick and it’s latest mid-size luxury sedan.

Continued after the jump.

  • 2012 Buick LaCrosse
  • Year:
    2012
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    Ecotec 2.4L DOHC I-4
  • Transmission:
    Hydra-Matic 6T40 six-speed automatic
  • MPG(Cty):
    25
  • MPG(Hwy):
    37
  • Energy:
    Gasoline-Electric
  • Displacement:
    2384 cc L
  • Price:
    $30,000
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior and Interior

2012 Buick LaCrosse Exterior
- image 386229

Measuring 197 x 73.1 x 59.2 inches, the 2012 LaCrosse is a little bigger than the 2011 Lincoln MKZ with the interior having just about equal space between the two. The LaCrosse has a seating capacity of five people with the headroom measuring 38 inches in the front and 37.3 inches in the back. The legroom has 41.7 inches in the front and 40.5 inches in the rear. Shoulder room measures 57.4 inches in the front and 56 inches in the back while hip room measures 55.2 inches in the front and 53.9 inches in the rear. Another stark element that should be noted with the 2012 LaCrosse is the trunk space, which, is one of the things that’s been reduced from the 2011 model. By taking into account, the eAssist power pack takes up some space in the truck, reducing the space of storage to just about 10.9 cubic inches. Lastly, the 2012 LaCrosse will come with a set of 17-inch steel rims with P245/50R17 all-season blackwall tires.

Performance

2012 Buick LaCrosse High Resolution Interior
- image 382849

The 2012 Buick LaCrosse’s suspension is a MacPherson strut coil-over-spring; twin-tube dampers with gas-charged valving; hollow direct-acting stabilizer bar.

Beginning with the 2012 LaCrosse, Buick’s new fuel-saving technology, the eAssist System is poised to redefine fuel economy, paving the way for Buick to become a major player in their auto segment for years to come.

The eAssist system is a technology that allows fuel-saving and improves fuel efficiency, the eAssist system on the 2012 LaCrosse will give consumers a vehicle that not only provides the standard high-end luxury and cost-efficient value, but also a car that will completely reshape its market segment, through its class-leading highway fuel economy of 37 miles per gallon on the highway and 25 miles per gallon in the city.

2012 Buick LaCrosse
- image 382851

So how does this the 2012 LaCrosse’s eAssist system work?

By using a state-of-the-art lithium-ion battery system and electric motor-generator, the eAssist system enables the car to perform a multitude of tasks, all of which leads to improving the LaCrosse’s fuel economy by an estimated 25 % compared to the 2011 version.

The vehicle’s eAssist system is mated to a 2.4-liter Ecotec direct injection four-cylinder engine with the Hydra-Matic 6T40 six-speed automatic transmission. Despite the system sharing the same basic belt-alternator-starter configuration of past BAS designs, the former delivers more than three times the power and is much more capable than the latter system.

Going back to the aforementioned connection, the eAssist system uses the power that’s stored in the car’s battery to supply the necessary electrical boost needed to perform optimally in a number of driving scenarios, thereby maximizing both the engine and the car’s transmission. The work being done by the 115 volt lithium-ion battery and the newest 15-kW motor-generator unit allows the car to do a number of things, to help increase fuel economy, which includes providing up to 11 kW of electric power assistance during acceleration and 15 kW of regenerative braking power as compared to the 2kW of power assist and 5 kW of regenerative power that the BAS system was capable of.

2012 Buick LaCrosse High Resolution Interior
- image 382846

The system also automatically shuts off the engine anytime the vehicle is stopped thereby saving fuel that would have otherwise been used. During this time, the car’s motor generator unit continues to spin along with the engine, providing an immediate take-off power then the driver decides to move. As soon as the vehicle comes to a stop, the same motor-generator unit spins then engine, effectively bringing the car to a smooth stop and making it ready for an even smoother re-start.

The eAssist system also features a hill-assist system that significantly reduces the car’s tendency to roll backward when the engine is in its shutdown mode, allowing driver’s to accelerate more comfortably on roads that have steep inclines.

Models of the 2012 Buick LaCrosse with the eAssist technology also comes with an ECO gauge on the vehicle’s instrument panel that consistently responds to a driver’s driving behavior and makes the necessary actions to ensure that the driver enjoys a ride of pure efficiency.

All told, the eAssist power pack comes with the lithium-ion battery pack, an integrated power inverter, and a 12V power supply. The system can be found housed in a compartment just between the LaCrosse’s rear seat and trunk with an electric fan that cools it by drawing air from a vent located in the package tray just behind the rear seat. Weighing around 65 pounds, the system is light enough that it still allows access to the trunk through the split-folding rear seats. The downside, if you can handle it, is that the overall trunk space of the 2012 LaCrosse is slightly smaller, yet it still has enough space – 10.9 cubic feet worth of space – to fit large amounts of items inside it.

As for the eAssist system’s electric motor-generator, the item is mounted to the engine in the usual space reserved for the alternator, providing motor assist and electric-generating functions through an engine belt-drive system.

Pricing

2012 Buick LaCrosse Exterior
- image 386235

The 2012 Buick LaCrosse, together with the eAssist system as standard equipment, is expected to be priced at somewhere around $30,000, which, if you factor in the car’s size, comfort, and state-of-the-art technology, is a pretty affordable prize for a car.

Competition

2012 Buick LaCrosse Exterior
- image 386226

Since it belongs to an auto segment that doesn’t lack competitors, the 2012 Buick LaCrosse figures to have its work cut out for it, even if it comes with the new eAssist system. That’s just how the nature of the best works. That being said, the LaCrosse’s biggest competition figures to be the Acura TL, the Lincoln MKZ, and the Lexus ES350.

Source: Buick

What do you think?
Show Comments

20 comments:

  (714) posted on 01.27.2012

This car is amazing and looks luxurious in and out. I would give a big salute to the technology and engineering that went into this car, it is the best.

  (858) posted on 12.20.2011

Another good-looking hybrid vehicle! Well, I really wonder if why they are kept on producing a very unreliable vehicle like this? Anyway, I’m just only fascinated with the decent look of it.

  (256) posted on 12.12.2011

I love the side rims of this LaCrosse! It looks so sexy and elegant on that. Moreover, I have to agree that it really looks very masculine on its body paint. Anyway, I’m quite wondering on its engine?

  (484) posted on 11.10.2011

The side rim of this LaCrosse is truly looks so striking on it, and I must say that it is already looking great and very decent on its sleek metallic body paint. Well, I just only hope that its engine will be quite good enough for it.

  (619) posted on 10.18.2011

Buick LaCrosse is very similar to Acura TL, but I must say that I would still prefer this one than Acura. smiley LaCrosse is a very satisfying and cool car for me despite of having a simple platform and styling.

  (630) posted on 10.3.2011

The 2012 Buick LaCrosse’s seems very efficient on its engine system. Working and made with highly configured materials. Connection, performance and appearance all good components of the car.

  (399) posted on 09.29.2011

It looks so boyish in its sleek body paint, and the side rims and car lines look very elegant but knowing that it is an electric car I will not be so impressed with this.

  (415) posted on 09.5.2011

The metallic paint that they used is really suited for the image of this car. It is quite impressive for me, the decency is there even the sophisticated and luxurious image.

  (831) posted on 07.29.2011

I love the color of this Buick it gives the impression of an elegant car. I would love to have a car like on this one, simple but very appealing. I must say that the design is really impressive at all.

  (372) posted on 07.28.2011

I admit Buick is one of the famous creators of mid-size Sedan. I do like the few changes they have made on this one. Although it looks like their older version of LaCrosse, it still looks different.

  (302) posted on 07.26.2011

Most of their cars are similar in designs but pretty gorgeous and also the power of this car is impressive. By the way, they have a lot of concepts being revealed now.

  (939) posted on 04.4.2011

Nice! It seems that GM has a consecutive released during this past few weeks. I bet they are actually competing with the hybrids’ car that threatens their sales. 

  (309) posted on 02.6.2011

Aside from its good looks,the car has the ability to perform well in a very smooth and effective way.

  (939) posted on 01.19.2011

Models of the 2012 Buick LaCrosse it ensures the high power effectively bringing the car to a smooth stop and making it ready for an even smoother re-start...

  (571) posted on 01.18.2011

Verano is distinguished by luxury and technology, including 10 standard air bags, an available heated steering wheel,..this makes the ability to attract the customers expectations regarding their designs,performances and modern techniques.

  (340) posted on 01.17.2011

Since it belongs to an auto segment that doesn’t lack competitors, the 2012 Buick LaCrosse figures to have its work cut out for it..

  (321) posted on 01.16.2011

The modern version of Buick LaCrosse gives the out most popularity and consider to be the mid-size luxury sedan with the 2012 Buick LaCrosse. ..

  (504) posted on 01.13.2011

I like the silvery color in this type of model.. Buick is improving the high quality of engine. that will effectively bring the market in its good cost of value.

  (815) posted on 01.12.2011

Take a pick among General Motors’ line-up of auto brands when it comes to overall popularity and chances are this type of model which is like the partnership of the mercedes-Benz.
It is much impressive because of the despite the state-of-the-art system that’s been given to the vehicle.

  (692) posted on 12.28.2010

For that price, I’d definitely go for Hybrid. No, I am not really an Environmentalist, but I have a massive commute.

Car Finder: