Buick points to luxury future with gorgeous Avenir concept
Alongside the multitude of expensive, extravagant product launches for high-performance hypercars (we're looking at youFord GT), Buick has used the 2015 North American International Auto Show to quietly launch a beautiful design concept that points to where the brand is headed. Launched with no big press conference or fanfare, the Avenir's classic proportions and carefully-sculpted details have it sitting near the top of Gizmag's list for best-looking car of Detroit 2015.
Designed by a global GM team, the Avenir's long bonnet line and sloping rear deck hark back to Buicks of old – albeit with a modern twist. Like plenty of classic American luxury cars, the Avenir is huge, measuring in at 5.19 meters long (204.5 inches) and 1.93 meters (76 inches) wide. Unlike a lot of old American "luxury" cars, however, the devil is in the details with the Avenir. Up front, the concept's grille debuts a new face for Buick, with a prominent chrome shield that surrounds Buick's badge, which finished in red, silver and blue – a touch not present on the brand's current models.
While the Avenir's exterior might contain hints of the past, inside Buick has focused firmly on the future. The focus on flowing shapes and surfaces from the concept's exterior detailing carries over, with an all-electric instrument binnacle and 12-inch center console screen nestled within the dashboard's curves.
These screens are powered by the latest iteration of Buick's IntelliLink infotainment setup that couples with "driver recognition" software designed to automatically set up the car's infotainment system and dashboard to individual driver preferences when they get in the car. Wireless phone charging and a 4G OnStar Wi-Fi hotspot also make an appearance in the Avenir's cabin, mirroring the increased focus on in-car connectivity that GM has recently displayed through the rollout of OnStar across its range.
Under the Avenir's hood is a direct-injection V6 engine fitted with cylinder deactivation and automatic start/stop for improved fuel economy – something the car's 9-speed automatic gearbox should also help with. Power is sent to all four of the concept's 21-inch wheels, for secure handling regardless of the weather.
So far, there has been no word about whether the concept will make it to production.