EnclaveForum.net: Buick Enclave Online Community banner
1 - 20 of 23 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I purchased the Enclave as a minivan alternative because of looks, minivan stigma, and it's ability to tow 4500 lbs instead of the 3500 lbs an Odyssey can tow. While I fully admit that my towing is extreme (as far as the Enclave goes), it does fall into the design specifications, and the Enclave has been underwhelming.

First the good: pulling a boat out of water with a FWD vehicle is awesome. Plenty of weight on the drive wheels, and they aren't wet so they get plenty of traction. In addition, there is no other vehicle out there that I know of (besides its siblings) that can comfortably seat 4 adults and 3 children, have ample storage room, and tow a 21' boat. Unfortunately that's about all I can really say is good about this vehicle when it comes to towing.

As I detailed in a previous post, I had a service engine soon light come up the very first time I towed the boat to the lake. I've towed the boat 3 times since and not gotten this light.

This past weekend I was on trip 3 and it was around 110 degrees (hottest summer on record in Phoenix, bleh). I had a full 7 people, the AC was on, and I was pulling a boat/trailer combination that weighed 3600 lbs (including fuel/accessories). Even including my body weight the 7 people (3 young children) weighed < 800 lbs which brings my total weight to 4400 lbs give or take a hundred. While pulling the boat up a mild-grade hill I just happened to note the temperature gauge was around 240 degrees; very close to the 260 degree red line. I immediately turned off the AC and just so happened to crest the hill at the same time. With the AC off and coasting down hill the vehicle quickly returned to around 220 degrees.

As all the magazines have pointed out, this vehicle is underpowered -- and that's not pulling anything at all. With a max capacity load it's extremely sluggish. I've owned a Dodge Ram and Chevy Tahoe and both vehicles got pretty similar mileage whether they were towing or not (crappy). My Enclave gets a whopping 9 mpg while towing. The engine has to work too hard to pull the boat out of the water, accelerate, or go up even the smallest of hills to be a proper tow vehicle.

If you're like me and wanted mini-van function with something that can tow a little more weight, bite the bullet and buy a minivan AND a real tow vehicle, because the Enclave will be a disappointment. If you're just towing a motorcycle trailer or a pair of jetskis then this vehicle will probably be sufficient. I really think Buick overrated the towing capabilities of this vehicle. If I had it all to do over again I'd have bought my wife her minivan and sold my M3 and bought a pickup truck. Now I'm probably still going to have to sell my M3 and get a truck because the Enclave has been underwhelming as a tow vehicle. Had I known that I'd be getting a truck anyway, my wife could've gotten her entirely more practical/function minivan instead of the Enclave.

It's not a total loss, the Enclave does look nice, it has the coldest air conditioner I've ever owned, and it's definitely more child friendly than our old Tahoe -- it just can't compare with an Odyssey when it comes to practicality or value.
 
G

·
thanks for the info, im glad im able to keep my yukon, and if dad ever needs to tow somthing (he will, trust me) he can use that, the denali may be able to tow 8600 pounds, it may never see 6 pounds of gear. or have dirty fishermen put in that plush leather, infact i wouldn't want that in the enclave eather.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My boat's a Mastercraft X2 -- purely a wakeboarding boat, no dirty fishermen will be in my vehicle either :). At worst there may be a damp bottom or two sitting on child booster seats :).
 
G

·
pilot said:
My boat's a Mastercraft X2 -- purely a wakeboarding boat, no dirty fishermen will be in my vehicle either :). At worst there may be a damp bottom or two sitting on child booster seats :).
well our big boat, more my dads that mine is our fishing boat, but thats kept at a marina because it is almost 12,000 pounds, my boats is also a skiing and tubing boat, it wights about 4000 pounds total with trailer, but we still have to drive to the marina to go fishing. if we want the big boat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,514 Posts
it just can't compare with an Odyssey when it comes to practicality or value
Huh???? I think you are the first person to state that the Odyssey trumps the Enclave in any way, form or fashion.

By the way, several people over on the Acadia forum have towed close to 4000 lbs and raved about the performance. Below is just ONE of those posts.....similar weight boat to yours, why such different results?

Just got back from a 4 hour trip to Lake George, New York.

I towed a 21' Boat, which I estimate between 3.500 and 4,000 pounds, so I was very close to being at the max weight.

The towing was amazing. At 65, you did not even know you had a trailer behind you. It did struggle a little on the long climbs, but only because I did not want to let the motor rev at 3,500 rpm constantly, so I slowed down.

A few notes to consider.

1. The last shift (I think from 3rd to 4th) takes a long time to come, usually not until you were going 60 - 65.

2. If you really want to improve your mileage, turn off the "tow mode" going downhill, the RPMs drop to 1,500 or less.

3. The braking was flawless

4. I had NO PROBLEM pulling the boat out of the boat ramp.

5. Average Mileage was about 14.8 - 15.


JB
 
G

·
three factors he does not mention though,

1. how loaded the acadia was

2. how hot it was out side

3. ac running or not.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,514 Posts
True. :thumb:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
86 Posts
ccaats said:
Huh???? I think you are the first person to state that the Odyssey trumps the Enclave in any way, form or fashion.
I have given some examples of where an Odyssey is better than the Enclave. Beyond being much more practical and functional as Pilot notes, the entertainment system, handling, and seat comfort are better in the Odyssey IMO.

If we could have only one vehicle, the Odyssey wins hands down due to value, more functional, and the fact that we are not bothered by the minivan stigma - just as we got over the Buick one. Good thing we have both the Odyssey and Enclave
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,514 Posts
dfc, you got the best of both worlds :thumb: However, my wife and I were tiring of the minivan scene, wanted something to fit this description - "luxury sport sedan with the room/versatility of a minivan".....thus we found it in the Enclave.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,999 Posts
You're using the Enclave at it's max, and it does the job. Admittedly, not as well as a dedicated specialty truck, but adequate. My neighbors Odessey has MUCH more wind/road noise than the Enclave. Doesn't ride as nice either, but handles well for a minivan. He wants to take our Enclave all the time!

Unfortunately his '04 Odessey is at the dealer w/a blown tranny (68K miles) and they told him it's out of warranty. Guess what he's trading it in for? the 2nd row Capts. and excellent highway mileage (for a 7 passenger, tall crossover) have sold him.

That's what makes "horse races" I guess. :) Enjoy your Enclave and thx for looking at American!
:cheers:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
978 Posts
This may be a stupid question, but did you have your towing mode on?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6 Posts
I'm worried! I bought a used Enclave 7-8 months ago, and it came with a towing package. It's so exciting, b/c I can actually tow something! Anyway, I've been looking for a pontoon and am being told that in no way nor now how, is my front wheel drive Enclave going to pull it out of the water. I've down-sized my pontoon aspirations from 24 ft to 18 to 22 ft (maybe?). Still positive and hoping :) 'Will update when I find my boat. I am so hoping that she can pull it!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,002 Posts
Good luck. Looking forward to your findings. I agree, I would be skeptical about a FWD towing compared to an AWD towing. Better traction and 4 wheel gripping.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
419 Posts
pilot said:
My boat's a Mastercraft X2 -- purely a wakeboarding boat, no dirty fishermen will be in my vehicle either :). At worst there may be a damp bottom or two sitting on child booster seats :).
You sure about that weight? Is this your boat? http://www.mastercraft.com/boat/detail/x2
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,693 Posts
small batch said:
You sure about that weight? Is this your boat? http://www.mastercraft.com/boat/detail/x2
You evidently don't realize you are asking a question on a thread from 2007, and that the OP hasn't been active since September of 2007. I don't think you are going to get an answer.......
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
419 Posts
BadAV said:
You evidently don't realize you are asking a question on a thread from 2007, and that the OP hasn't been active since September of 2007. I don't think you are going to get an answer.......
Nope :happy: :cheers:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,433 Posts
People should realize that it's nice to have the right tool for the job, this is not the right vehicle to tow. It's already got powertrain issues, why compound them? Also, the capacity is so low, that many things are over the capacity (I'm gonna guess 3500?)

The best thing to do with that hitch on the back is to put a bike rack to disguise the license plate and beat the red light cams! (I can't see how legislation hasn't caught up) :thumb:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
261 Posts
I never thought the Enclave as a tow vechicle. The Acadia and Traverse yes but not the Buick
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
419 Posts
SCBEARS FAN said:
I never thought the Enclave as a tow vechicle. The Acadia and Traverse yes but not the Buick
:hilarious:
 
1 - 20 of 23 Posts
Top