When shopping for a new SUV, it is easy to get bogged down in the plethora of options available. Each model offers several trim packages and color options, as well as upgrades you may find necessary to fit your day to day lifestyle. Two great options when searching for the perfect SUV are the 2019 Buick Encore and the 2019 Toyota C-HR. Both models offer good efficiency for an SUV, 27 city/33 highway and 27 city/31 highway driving respectively. Seeing as they both offer 27 MPGs in the city, the amount of highway driving you do may be a deciding factor. If not, how do you decide between the 2019 Buick Encore vs 2019 Toyota C-HR? Know what you want and do your research.
While both the Encore and C-HR are athletic, small SUVs, the Buick model offers more in the way of external luxury with its sleek design. With four trim packages to choose from and up to eight color options, the Buick Encore is truly customizable. Each trim package offers a unique wheel design, available moonroof and sport exhaust tip that draws attention in the subtlest of ways. The Buick design comes standard with LED-Accented Taillamps.
The Toyota C-HR, which is the larger of the two SUVs, has a more aggressive, attention-seeking appearance for those who like their vehicle to make a bold statement. Available in only three trim packages, the C-HR may seem less customizable but does offer a wider variety of color options, as well as bolder color choices, allowing drivers to stand out even more. The Toyota C-HR offers both heated outside mirrors and available rear window wipers that are a must in colder climates.
The Toyota model offers dual zone climate control with pollen filter so that all passengers can ride comfortably. Along with heated front seats and a sporty internal design, it offers six-way adjustability and lumbar support for optimal comfort. Additionally, with over 38 inches of headroom and 31 inches of legroom, rear passengers in the five-passenger SUV will fit comfortably. At 36.4 cubic feet of cargo space, the Toyota C-HR already makes traveling a breeze, but the fold flat seats allow for even more cargo space. Keyless entry and pushbutton start give the driver the convenience of a higher-end brand.
The Buick Encore offers a similar interior package but delivers even more flexibility with over ten additional inches of cargo space and the fold-flat front passenger seat, as well as an automatic air-ionizer along with the dual-zone climate control system. However, what it makes up for in cargo space, it lacks in passenger space, which makes sense since it is the smaller of the two SUV options. Depending on your needs, the luxury options available may make up for the lack of space. Available heated steering wheel and front bucket seats, in addition to remote start from the myBuick app make the Encore an outstanding option for cold weather climates.
Performance does somewhat vary between the two models. With three driving modes, Sport, Normal, and ECO, the Toyota C-HR sports a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine and 144 horsepower. However, it only comes in Front Wheel Drive which may or may not work for your lifestyle. Somewhat underpowered for its size, the Toyota C-HR does offer low emissions, but slower get-up-and-go. Plus, the longer body style of the Toyota model creates a larger turning radius, about 17 feet.
The Buick Encore is smaller in stature but offers a sporty performance. It comes standard with a 1.4-liter turbo engine at 138 horsepower. With available all-wheel-drive and the Stabilitrak system, the Buick Encore has a tight turning radius and easier handling, making long trips through the winding mountains feel less treacherous.
Consumer and expert ratings are at odds when it comes to the 2019 Buick Encore and the 2019 Toyota C-HR models. The Buick Encore was rated a 3.9 out of 5 by experts, whereas the Toyota C-HR was rated a 4.4 out of 5. Reversely, the Buick Encore was rated higher by consumers, coming in at 4.6 out of 5. The Toyota C-HR is only scoring a 4.2 out of 5 from consumers. This goes to show it does come down to personal lifestyle choices, which brand and model will best suit your needs.
Both the Buick Encore and the Toyota C-HR offer similar safety packages. Technology like forward collision alerts, lane departure alerts, and rear cross traffic cameras allow drivers to reach their destination more safely than ever before. There are a few features that are not available on both models. The Toyota C-HR offers electric parking brakes as well as hill start assist, making it outperform the Buick in steep climates. The Buick Encore, however, offers available OnStar ensuring that help is deployed quickly in the event of an accident.
As far as safety ratings go, the Buick Encore was rated a 5 out of 5 on crash test ratings, frontal crash, side barrier, and side crash. It only scored a 4 out of 5 stars on rollover ratings, but this is common with SUVs due to the dimensions. Not all safety ratings were available via Kelley Blue Book online for the Toyota C-HR, but it had comparable ratings inside barrier (5 out of 5 stars), side crash (5 out of 5 stars), and rollover rating (4 out of 5 stars).
Features You’ll Love
If you tend to take long trips and want to stretch out a bit more along the way, then you will enjoy the spacious cabin of the Toyota C-HR. It’s bold, attention-grabbing design, while not for the wallflowers, makes drivers standout. You may not enjoy the underpowered, front wheel drive SUV. The stylish small design of the Buick may suit you better if you appreciate a quieter ride as it offers quiet tuning technology with active noise cancellation making the small cabin quite peaceful. For the tech-savvy driver, the Buick may also better suit your needs. It is both Apple CarPlay TM and Android Auto compatible, as well as offers an available built-in navigation system. The Buick Infotainment System (an eight-inch color touch screen) seamlessly connects to the MyBuick app and offers a built-in wi-fi hot spot. The Toyota C-HR does also offer amazing audio packages, with Apple CarPlayTM compatibility, as well as some trial packages of your choice of streaming services. Toyota also offers Toyota Connected Services with Safety Connect with a three-year trial subscription.
2019 Buick Encore vs 2019 Toyota C-HR – The Results
The decision truly comes down to personal preference. The Toyota C-HR offers lower emissions, a more spacious cabin, and bolder design. However, if you are fine with a smaller cabin space, but enjoy a more stylish, classic look that is big on features, the Buick Encore is the way to go. The Buick model has a starting MSRP (Manufactures Suggested Retail Price) of around $23,200, making it a bit pricier than the less efficient Toyota model. If budget is a concern, the Toyota C-HR packages start at around $20,995, allowing you to save a bit of money, unless of course, you add all the available features that may not come standard. Either way, research, and a quality test drive will help you find the small SUV that fits your lifestyle.