The bigger Envision might reach the US, but don't hold your breath for the Verano.
The doors are open to media at the 2021 Shanghai Auto Show, and Buick is there with two new offerings. One is the Buick Verano Pro with tweaked styling and powertrain updates. The other is a stretched version of the Envision called the Envision Plus, which should be a three-row SUV. Details for both offerings are a bit slim, however, which we'll talk more about in a bit.
Our attention falls first to the Verano Pro. The Verano left the US market a few years back and there's no sign it will return, but the small sedan enjoys an extended life for the Chinese market. The latest version still maintains a familiar shape on the outside though you'll find an updated face that Buick says is "airplane-inspired." Opt for the GS package and you'll get a honeycomb-shaped grille with a plethora of black trim, not to mention side skirts and "wing-like features" at the rear.
Inside is a bit more dramatic with a digital makeover that includes dual 10.25-inch screens integrated to form a single display. The automaker's latest Buick eConnect 3.0 connectivity system is included, and a new turbocharged 1.5-liter engine sits under the hood. Buick also says the Verano Pro is rather customizable with owners able to choose between different bumpers, side panels, and rear wings. As for performance, fuel economy, or pricing, Buick doesn't have information available just yet.
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Arguably the bigger news is the new Envision Plus, which was teased earlier in April. In this case, we mean bigger news both figuratively and literally, as it's a stretched version of the midsize SUV that rides on a 111.5-inch (2,833 millimeters) wheelbase. As such, it's significantly longer at 190.75 inches (4,845 mm) compared to 182.5 inches (4,635 mm) for the standard model, so there's likely an extra row of seating at the back. We say likely because GM technically hasn't confirmed this just yet, and it unable to do so at this time.
Gallery: Buick Envision Plus And Verano Pro
A Buick spokesperson told Motor1.com that the Auto Shanghai debut is simply for the exterior of the stretched SUV, and that details regarding the interior will arrive in the coming weeks. As such, key information like legroom, headroom, cargo space, and how many people it will carry – things generally of great interest to SUV buyers – aren't available at the moment.
Buick does tell us the Envision Plus is a 48-volt mild hybrid, using a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine with an electric assist connected to a nine-speed automatic transmission. It also uses GM's VIP electrical architecture with capability for over-the-air updates, and like the Verano Pro, it runs Buick's eConnect 3.0 system.
While the Verano is virtually guaranteed to not see life in the US market, it's possible the Envision Plus with its larger interior could reach the States. As for China, these vehicles are part of GM's plan to introduce 13 new and refreshed vehicles in the world's largest auto market for 2021.