Despite the gradual shift to crossovers and SUVs in a bid to satisfy changing customer tastes, good ol' sedans and minivans are still going strong in China. Lest we forget there are bespoke long-wheelbase saloons built and sold in the People's Republic where you can also buy a handful of luxury-oriented minivans. The Lexus LM, essentially a fancy Toyota Alphard / Vellfire, is one of them and was launched as a response to this – the Buick GL8.
The GL8 Avenir used to serve as the range-topping version of the people mover, but not anymore as it’s making way for the Century. The trim level's name will probably make you think of Toyota's Japan-only fullsize luxury sedan, used here on a minivan with a glitzy headliner à la Rolls-Royce. It boasts a massive screen that doubles as a divider between the first and second rows of seats.
2023 Buick GL8 Century
It's actually a folding screen you control by using the touch panel mounted on the center console. Its size has not been revealed, but its sheer size must be comparable to the 31.3-inch Theatre Screen of the new BMW 7 Series G70 / i7. Coincidentally, that one too folds when not in use.
Since we mentioned the rear seats, they now have some of the widest headrests we've ever seen and incorporate Bose speakers. Being a large luxury minivan, the individual rear seats have long footrests and you get Maybach levels of legroom to really stretch out. The cozy ambient lighting, sun blinds, and posh leather add to the cabin's sophistication to offer a limo-like experience.
The Buick GL8 Century is quite large, stretching at 5,230 millimeters (206 inches) long, 1,980 mm (78 in) wide, and 1,867 mm (73.5 in) tall. It gets a two-tone paint job in the same vein as the most luxurious sedans out there and has received a bold new face for 2022. Despite the high-end amenities, it's still a minivan at its core, complete with sliding rear doors on a tall and wide body to maximize interior space.