2021 Buick Encore vs. 2020 Infiniti QX50

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 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 2020/10/30

For enhanced safety, the front shoulder belts of the Buick Encore are height-adjustable, and the rear seat shoulder belts have child comfort guides to move the belt to properly fit children. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages children to buckle up. The Infiniti QX50 has only front height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the Encore and the QX50 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, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all wheel drive, collision warning systems, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Encore the rating of “Top Pick” for 2016, a rating granted to only 192 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The QX50 has not been fully tested, yet.

Warranty

© 1999 - 2020 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 2020/10/30

There are almost 10 times as many Buick dealers as there are Infiniti dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Encore’s warranty.

Reliability

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The Buick Encore’s engine uses a cast iron block for durability, while the QX50’s engine uses an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.

A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Encore’s reliability 22 points higher than the QX50.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Encore third among small suvs in their 2020 Initial Quality Study. The QX50 isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2020 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Buick vehicles are better in initial quality than Infiniti vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Buick 7th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 23 more problems per 100 vehicles, Infiniti is ranked 15th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Buick vehicles are more reliable than Infiniti vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Buick fifth in reliability, above the industry average. With 10 more problems per 100 vehicles, Infiniti is ranked 11th.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Encore gets better fuel mileage than the QX50:

MPG

Encore

FWD

1.4 Turbo 4-cyl.

25 city/30 hwy

AWD

1.4 Turbo 4-cyl.

24 city/29 hwy

QX50

FWD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

23 city/29 hwy

AWD

2.0 Turbo 4-cyl.

22 city/28 hwy

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Buick Encore uses regular unleaded gasoline. The QX50 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

The Encore 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 QX50 doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping

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The Encore stops much shorter than the QX50:

Encore

QX50

60 to 0 MPH

113 feet

126 feet

Motor Trend

Tires and Wheels

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The Encore has a standard space-saver spare tire so you can replace a flat tire and drive to have the flat repaired or replaced. A spare tire isn’t available on the QX50; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed.

Suspension and Handling

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The Encore has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The QX50’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

Chassis

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The Buick Encore may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 550 to 750 pounds less than the Infiniti QX50.

The Encore is 1 foot, 4.3 inches shorter than the QX50, making the Encore easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

Ergonomics

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The power windows standard on both the Encore and the QX50 have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Encore is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The QX50 prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Encore’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Infiniti only offers heated mirrors on the QX50 Essential/Sensory/Autograph.

The Encore Preferred offers an optional 115-volt a/c outlet on the center console, allowing you to recharge a laptop or run small household appliances without special adapters that can break or get misplaced. The QX50 doesn’t offer a house-current electrical outlet.

Economic Advantages

© 1999 - 2020 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 2020/10/30

Insurance will cost less for the Encore owner. The Car Book by Jack Gillis rates the Encore with a number “5” insurance rate while the QX50 is rated higher at a number “10” rate.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Encore is less expensive to operate than the QX50 because typical repairs cost much less on the Encore than the QX50, including $404 less for a water pump, $84 less for a muffler, $304 less for a starter, $210 less for fuel injection, $70 less for a fuel pump, $101 less for front struts, $78 less for a timing belt/chain and $856 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Buick Encore will be $8329 to $18637 less than for the Infiniti QX50.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 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 2020/10/30

The Buick Encore has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

Encore

QX50

Consumer Reports® Recommends

TRUE

TRUE

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

FALSE

The Buick Encore outsold the Infiniti QX50 by almost six to one during 2019.

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

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