Recently, GM Canada arranged a trip whereon a few lifestyle writers briefly got behind the wheel of the Buick Lacrosse CXS. I thoroughly enjoyed this handsome sedan but it there was just this one short test. So I greedily requested another. This is the fallout.
Indulges the driver
For such a smooth ride, the LaCrosse has a surprisingly tightly tuned suspension, making corners at speed irresistible. A 3.6 litre V6 engine with direct injection releases 290 horses at 6,300 rpm. An easy-to-use sport transmission lets you squeeze every spare ounce of sweat from each precision gear.
Using the foot lightly in town, it’s easy to get a feel for it. But the speed can creep up on you after about 40km. The speedometer, reflected in the windshield and always in your line of sight keeps you honest.
Pampers the passenger
Inside it’s a bit like a cruise ship. Not huge and slow, just elegant and designed to put passengers at ease. It’s a smooth and quiet drive – deceptively quiet given the virility of the engine. Consequently the Harman Kardon surround sound stereo doesn’t require cranking to envelop you in sound.
Heated leather seats and dual climate control further promote the passenger’s enjoyment. A thin pink runner light crosses the entire dash at night, providing a calming feeling. Fortunately, there’s plenty to keep the driver awake.
Rather than a rearview camera for reversing, you see three tiny points of light above the back windshield in your mirror. They fire up in succession as you draw closer your neighbour’s fence. When all three are lit, stop. Now!
From the control panel you can raise and lower a shade guard to keep the sun off the two DVD screens. (Sorry, multi-taskers: they’re in the back and not visible by the driver.)
“Your hands need never touch the keys.” If you have the remote on your person, you can open the doors and start the car. Careful! The push-button start/stop will surprise you because the LaCrosse is so quiet. Early in our relationship, I unwittingly exited it while it was still running.