Buick Envision Concept

From Buick press: The Envision merges Buick’s global design language with Chinese aesthetics for the SUV segment. Inheriting the essence of Buick’s “fluid dynamics and peaceful comfort,” it incorporates GM’s world-leading PHEV plug-in hybrid system. Its forward-looking and people-oriented technology and equipment are destined to change people’s perceptions of SUVs.

“The Envision was developed jointly by Shanghai GM and the Pan Asia Technical Automotive Center (PATAC),” said Shi Hong, Director of Buick Marketing at Shanghai GM. “It introduces the development direction for Buick’s future SUV products for the market.”

According to Ed Welburn, GM Vice President of Global Design, “The Envision has inherited Buick design DNA and taken the Buick global design language to a new height. It makes a significant statement for Buick styling and technology, and will influence upcoming models from the brand.”

Speed and power, lightness and strength, and elegance and foresight contrast with each other yet retain a sense of harmonious interplay in the Envision. The design carries forward Buick’s tradition of grand elegance, blending it with dynamic lines, sharp angles and curved shapes. Its dynamic coupe-like body and multifunctional space offer a hint of Buick SUVs to come for the Chinese market.

The Envision features a two-layer traditional Buick waterfall grille, which regulates air intake to meet the demand of the power system and achieve optimized aerodynamic performance. The front-end design also incorporates Buick’s tri-colored shield insignia, reinforcing the Envision’s refined and forceful sense of styling. Headlamps and fog lights are inspired by traditional Chinese patterns. Porcelain-like daytime LED lamps house five “Chinese pillar-like” LED bulbs for a reserved elegance with bright illumination.

Sharp lines start from above the headlamps, spreading out and submerging into the body of the vehicle. They reappear at the rear, running powerfully through the taillamps and showcasing the traditional Buick double sweep spear. Wheel arches above powerful-looking 22-inch tires offer a strong contrast. The one-piece roof is shaped like an arching bridge. It allows the continuous flowing side lines to form a graceful curve above the windows before being integrated in the back end. The Buick’s rearview mirror and side window trims are lined up across from the A-pillar and C-pillar, serving as the perfect finishing touches for the side view of the vehicle. The Envision has scissor-style doors with sensors, adding a sense of luxury while making entry and exit more convenient.

The Envision has shed the chunky rear of traditional SUVs. Multiple ridge lines form layers like a modern sculpture. Slim, sharp porcelain-like taillamps are integrated with gleaming LED lights. The design is applied to the rear fog lights and exhaust as well. The ice-peak silver body color reflects the strong, athletic pose of the Envision.

The Envision comes with 22-inch doubled-layered aluminum alloy wheels. Silicon sports tires feature an asymmetrical unidirectional tread. This reduces resistance, noise and energy consumption while ensuring the safety expected from an SUV.

The Envision is equipped with GM’s breakthrough PHEV plug-in hybrid system, which offers unprecedented high-efficient performance that sets a benchmark for future hybrid technology. The 2.0-liter SIDI intelligent direct injection turbocharged engine is complemented by a pair of electric motor generators in the Envision’s dual automatic/manual eight-speed transmission. A high-performance lithium battery and a solar energy roof with optical equipment serve as an alternative energy source independent from the engine.

The plug-in hybrid system, which effectively leverages standard fuel as well as electricity, can produce more power than pure electric cars or gasoline vehicles. When the vehicle is being started, parked and running at low speeds, the Envision runs solely on electric power. When the vehicle needs more power or the battery is running low, the engine automatically kicks in to provide a Smart Charge for the battery. When greater power is required, such as during sudden acceleration and uphill driving, the engine serves as the main power source, with the generator providing additional power. The vehicle can be plugged into a standard outlet to recharge the battery. Additional electricity for the battery is produced by the solar roof.

Gallery: Buick Envision Concept