2020 GMC Terrain vs. 2019 Buick Envision

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Terrain are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Envision doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests front crash prevention systems. With a score of 6 points, IIHS rates the Automatic Emergency Braking optional in the Terrain as “Superior.” The Envision scores at most only 4 points and is rated only “Advanced.”

Both the Terrain and the Envision have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

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




5 Stars

4 Stars



5 Stars

4 Stars




Neck Injury Risk



Neck Stress

190 lbs.

271 lbs.

Neck Compression

10 lbs.

27 lbs.



5 Stars

4 Stars

Chest Compression

.6 inches

.7 inches

Neck Injury Risk



Neck Stress

153 lbs.

170 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

264/236 lbs.

230/563 lbs.

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


The Terrain’s standard 1.5 turbo 4-cyl. produces 11 lbs.-ft. more torque (203 vs. 192) than the Envision’s standard 2.5 DOHC 4-cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Terrain gets better fuel mileage than the Envision:




1.5 turbo 4-cyl.

26 city/30 hwy

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/28 hwy


1.5 turbo 4-cyl.

25 city/28 hwy

2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

21 city/26 hwy



2.5 DOHC 4-cyl.

22 city/29 hwy


2.5 DOHC 4-cyl.

21 city/27 hwy

Premium 2.0 turbo 4-cyl.

20 city/25 hwy

The Terrain has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Envision doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

The Terrain stops shorter than the Envision:



60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

136 feet

153 feet

Consumer Reports


The GMC Terrain may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 300 pounds less than the Buick Envision.

Passenger Space

The Terrain has 2.6 cubic feet more passenger volume than the Envision (103.2 vs. 100.6).

The Terrain has .2 inches more front shoulder room and 2.2 inches more rear legroom than the Envision.

Cargo Capacity

The Terrain has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat up than the Envision with its rear seat up (29.6 vs. 26.9 cubic feet). The Terrain has a much larger cargo volume with its rear seat folded than the Envision with its rear seat folded (63.3 vs. 57.3 cubic feet).


Maximum trailer towing in the Buick Envision is limited to 1500 pounds. The Terrain offers up to a 3500 lbs. towing capacity.


The Terrain’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge - which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The Envision does not have an oil pressure gauge.

On a hot day the Terrain’s driver can lower all the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Envision can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the GMC Terrain Denali has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Envision doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

Economic Advantages

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Terrain is less expensive to operate than the Envision because typical repairs cost much less on the Terrain than the Envision, including $605 less for front struts and $192 less for a power steering pump.


The GMC Terrain outsold the Buick Envision by almost four to one during 2018.

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

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