Will it “Enspire” more sales for GM?

Earlier in April, at the Beijing Auto Show, Buick revealed a new high-tech compact crossover concept, called the Enspire, that featured a huge number of exciting features and design cues. Now, it’s looking like that concept will soon hit the production line, but the question is - what will it bring to the table?

Bolstering GM’s Crossover Offerings

New GM Trademark Points to a Production Run for a Recent Sexy Concept
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Note: Buick Enspire Concept pictured here.

This latest update comes to us courtesy of a recent report posted by GM Authority, which sheds light on a recent patent that GM filed to trademark the Enspire name, sparking speculation that the domestic automaker was gearing up to offer a production version of the Enspire Concept we saw earlier in the year.

The trademark was filed on December 11th, and will be used for “Automobiles, excluding motor homes.”

Further details from the filing give us a glimpse of what’s to come from GM, and look to secure the Enspire name for a future product.

According to GM Authority, the new production crossover will utilize the company’s E2 “Epsilon” platform, which has been in use since 2002 with a vast array of different vehicles, from crossovers to sedans.

As such, the production car is expected to have a FWD drivetrain layout, something similar to the Cadillac XT4. It will also carry the Buick badge on its nose and tail.

Beyond that, specifics are a bit murky, but we can still look to the concept for clues.
New GM Trademark Points to a Production Run for a Recent Sexy Concept
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Note: Buick Enspire Concept pictured here.

The design study revealed in China was supremely exciting in terms of exterior styling, with curvaceous body panels and a futuristic aesthetic that took GM’s latest language to all-new heights. Up front, the Enspire Concept comes with ultra-thin headlights leading back to pumped-up fenders and a wide stance. Smoothed-out creases and extra large wheels are found in the flanks, while the rear gets a wide, thin line for the taillights and a short hatch.

New GM Trademark Points to a Production Run for a Recent Sexy Concept
- image 777596
Note: Buick Enspire Concept pictured here.

Inside, the Enspire gets an equally expressive cabin design, with loads of screens and infotainment bits, plus a new, futuristic layout that definitely has our attention.

Interestingly, the Enspire Concept is powered by an all-electric powertrain, with 550 horsepower and AWD for motivation.

Buick says it’ll do 370 miles per charge, and can regain 80 percent of the battery capacity in just 40 minutes.

As for the production version, well, we’re expecting something a little more low-key. For starters, the concept’s exterior style is way too radical for a production model, but some facets could get carried over, such as the thin headlights, big fenders, the intakes in the front fascia, as well as the squared hatch design.

Same goes with the interior, where a more production-friendly iteration would likely use similar shapes for the dash and center console, but with smaller screens and less gloss overall. Some of the high-tech and luxury bits are sure to remain, but not at the same level as the concept.

Finally, the powertrain is probably the biggest question mark. Five-hundred fifty ponies is certainly a fantasy for the production Enspire, but some kind of all-electric powertrain isn’t necessarily out of the question, especially for the Chinese market. Look for GM to toss in the very latest EV tech its got, with something like 200 horsepower and 240 miles per charge looking about right for overseas markets (that’s what you get on the Bolt, after all). Buick will also likely offer a range of internal combustion gas-powered four-cylinders for the U.S. market.

Look for a reveal sometime later next year. When it does drop, the production Enspire will go head to head against the Mercedes-Benz GLA, BMW X1, and Audi Q3.

Further Reading

New GM Trademark Points to a Production Run for a Recent Sexy Concept
- image 777594

Read our full review on the 2018 Buick Enspire Concept.

Source: GM Authority

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