2020 BMW X1 vs. 2020 Buick Encore

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/14

The X1 has standard City Collision Mitigation, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Encore offers an available collision warning system without the automated brake feature that would prevent or reduce the collision if the driver fails to react.

The X1’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Encore doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the X1 and the Encore have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras and available all wheel drive.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the BMW X1 is safer than the Buick Encore:

X1

Encore

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

187

207

Neck Injury Risk

31%

38%

Neck Compression

68 lbs.

104 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the BMW X1 is safer than the Buick Encore:

X1

Encore

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Hip Force

637 lbs.

672 lbs.

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Max Damage Depth

13 inches

14 inches

HIC

278

382

Spine Acceleration

39 G’s

46 G’s

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, rear impact and roof-crush tests, its standard front crash prevention system, its “Good” rating in the new passenger-side small overlap crash test, and its headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the X1 the rating of “Top Pick” for 2019, a rating granted to only 100 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Encore has not been fully tested, yet.

Warranty

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The X1’s corrosion warranty is 6 years longer than the Encore’s (12 vs. 6 years).

BMW pays for scheduled maintenance on the X1 for 3 years and 36,000 miles. BMW will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Buick only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the Encore.

Reliability

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To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the X1 has a standard 150-amp alternator. The Encore’s 130-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that BMW vehicles are more reliable than Buick vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks BMW 11 places higher in reliability than Buick.

Engine

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The X1’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. produces 90 more horsepower (228 vs. 138) and 110 lbs.-ft. more torque (258 vs. 148) than the Encore’s 1.4 turbo 4 cyl.

As tested in Consumer Reports the BMW X1 is faster than the Buick Encore:

X1

Encore

Zero to 30 MPH

3.5 sec

3.8 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

7.9 sec

11 sec

45 to 65 MPH Passing

4.6 sec

6.7 sec

Quarter Mile

16.3 sec

18.3 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

92.2 MPH

77.1 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/14

On the EPA test cycle the X1 gets better fuel mileage than the Encore:

MPG

X1

FWD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

24 city/33 hwy

AWD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

23 city/31 hwy

Encore

FWD

1.4 Turbo 4-cyl.

25 city/30 hwy

AWD

1.4 Turbo 4-cyl.

24 city/29 hwy

Regenerative brakes improve the X1’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Encore doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.

The X1 has 2.1 gallons more fuel capacity than the Encore (16.1 vs. 14 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.

Environmental Friendliness

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In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the BMW X1 higher (7 out of 10) than the Buick Encore (5). This means the X1 produces up to 8 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Encore every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

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An eight-speed automatic is standard on the BMW X1, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only a six-speed automatic is available for the Encore.

The X1’s launch control uses engine electronics to hold engine RPM’s precisely in order to provide the most stable and rapid acceleration possible, using all of the available traction. The Encore doesn’t offer launch control.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the X1’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Encore:

X1

Encore

Front Rotors

13 inches

11.8 inches

Rear Rotors

11.8 inches

10.6 inches

The X1’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Encore are solid, not vented.

The X1 stops shorter than the Encore:

X1

Encore

70 to 0 MPH

170 feet

175 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

122 feet

126 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the X1 has larger tires than the Encore (225/50R18 vs. 215/55R18).

The X1’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Encore’s standard 55 series tires. The X1’s optional tires have a lower 45 series profile than the Encore’s 55 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the X1 offers optional 19-inch wheels. The Encore’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.

Changing a flat tire near traffic can be dangerous and inconvenient. The run-flat tires standard on the X1 can be driven up to 50 miles without any air pressure, allowing you to drive to a service station for a repair. The Encore doesn’t offer run-flat tires.

Suspension and Handling

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For superior ride and handling, the BMW X1 has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Buick Encore has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.

The X1 has standard front and rear stabilizer bars, which help keep the X1 flat and controlled during cornering. The Encore’s suspension doesn’t offer a rear stabilizer bar.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the X1’s wheelbase is 4.5 inches longer than on the Encore (105.1 inches vs. 100.6 inches).

The X1 xDrive28i handles at .87 G’s, while the Encore pulls only .82 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The X1 xDrive28i executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 2.8 seconds quicker than the Encore AWD (26.8 seconds @ .65 average G’s vs. 29.6 seconds @ .54 average G’s).

For greater off-road capability the X1 has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Encore (7.2 vs. 6.2 inches), allowing the X1 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Passenger Space

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/14

The X1 has 8.4 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Encore (101.2 vs. 92.8).

The X1 has 2.3 inches more front headroom, 1.4 inches more front shoulder room, .6 inches more rear headroom, 1.2 inches more rear legroom and 2.7 inches more rear shoulder room than the Encore.

For enhanced passenger comfort on long trips the X1’s available rear seats recline. The Encore’s rear seats don’t recline.

Cargo Capacity

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The X1 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Encore with its rear seat up (27.1 vs. 18.8 cubic feet). The X1 has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Encore with its rear seat folded (58.7 vs. 48.4 cubic feet).

The X1’s cargo area is larger than the Encore’s in every dimension:

X1

Encore

Length to seat (2nd/1st)

35.1”/69”

28.5”/55.8”

Max Width

51.5”

39.5”

Min Width

39.5”

36”

Height

33”

31.8”

A standard locking glovebox (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the X1. The Encore doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the X1 has a standard power liftgate, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button, or optionally by just kicking your foot under the back bumper, completely leaving your hands free. The Encore doesn’t offer a power liftgate.

Servicing Ease

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The X1 uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The Encore uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

Ergonomics

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The X1 offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Encore doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The X1’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Encore has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.

The X1’s front and rear power windows all open or close with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside of the car. The Encore’s passenger windows don’t close automatically.

If the windows are left open on the X1 the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Encore can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The X1 has a standard locking fuel door with a remote release located convenient to the driver. A locking fuel door helps prevent vandalism, such as sugar in the tank and fuel theft. The Encore doesn’t offer a locking fuel door.

The X1’s rain-sensitive wipers adjust their speed and turn on and off automatically based on the amount of rainfall on the windshield. This allows the driver to concentrate on driving without constantly adjusting the wipers. The Encore’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the X1 detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Encore doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

To help drivers avoid possible obstacles, the X1 offers optional cornering lights to illuminate around corners when the turn signals are activated. The Encore doesn’t offer cornering lights.

The X1 offers optional automatic dimming rear and side view mirrors which automatically darken quickly when headlights shine on them, keeping following vehicles from blinding or distracting the driver. The Encore offers an automatic rear view mirror, but its side mirrors don’t dim.

The X1 has a standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. Dual zone air conditioning is only available on the Encore Essence.

Both the X1 and the Encore offer rear vents. For greater rear passenger comfort, the X1 has standard rear air conditioning vents to keep rear occupants cool in summer or warm in winter. The Encore doesn’t offer rear air conditioning vents, only heat vents.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the X1 offers an optional Active Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Encore doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the BMW X1 offers an optional wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Encore doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

The X1’s optional Parking Assistant can parallel park by itself, with the driver only controlling speed with the brake pedal. The Encore doesn’t offer an automated parking system.

Economic Advantages

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/14

Insurance will cost less for the X1 owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the X1 with a number “3” insurance rate while the Encore is rated higher at a number “5” rate.

The X1 will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the X1 will retain 43.17% to 43.84% of its original price after five years, while the Encore only retains 36.57% to 40.02%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the X1 is less expensive to operate than the Encore because typical repairs cost less on the X1 than the Encore, including $80 less for front brake pads.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/14

The X1 was chosen as one of Car and Driver’s “Top Five/10Best Trucks” for 3 of the last 3 years. The Encore has never been a Car and Driver “Top Five/10Best Truck” pick.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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