DETROIT -- Buick plans to launch its new 2016 Envision compact crossover in June with only two high-end trim levels, starting in the low $40,000s-range, while waiting until the '17 model year to introduce lower-priced versions.
Two upper-trim models of the China-built Envision will be sold for an abbreviated '16 model year (June-to-October): Premium I, which will start at $42,995 including destination; and Premium II, starting at $45,635, Buick spokesman Stuart Fowle confirmed. Both will be all-wheel drive and be powered a 2.0-liter turbo rated at 252 hp.
The lineup will expand when ’17 models roll out by late fall with three other trim levels, starting with a base model priced at $34,990, including destination. That version and two others -- the Preferred and Essence models -- will come with a 2.5-liter, four-cylinder engine rated at 197 hp.
The Envision’s base sticker price will be roughly in line with what Buick executives believe will be the crossover’s main rivals, including the Acura RDX ($36,310); Lincoln MKC ($34,185); Infiniti QX50 ($35,445) and Lexus NX ($35,960).
The top-end Premium II package will include cooled seats, a head-up display, a 360-degree panoramic view and sliding, and heated rear seats that recline. Shopping site CarsDirect.com on Monday reported details of the Envision’s pricing and trim levels.
General Motors announced in December its plan to import the Envision from China, where its sales soared to about 150,000 units in 2015, its first full year on the market. GM executives say the crossover will round out Buick’s U.S. lineup -- positioned between the subcompact Encore and large Enclave -- and help the brand court import-leaning buyers.
Buick’s U.S. sales rose 7.5 percent in the first quarter, better than the industry’s 3.3 percent gain.