2021 Buick Encore vs. 2020 Volvo XC40

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 2020/10/22

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 Volvo XC40 has only front height-adjustable seat belts.

Both the Encore and the XC40 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, 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.

Warranty

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Buick’s powertrain warranty covers the Encore 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Volvo covers the XC40. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the XC40 ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.

There are over 7 times as many Buick dealers as there are Volvo 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 XC40’s engines use 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 12 points higher than the XC40.

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Encore third among small suvs in their 2020 Initial Quality Study. The XC40 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 Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Buick 7th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 60 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 31st, 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 Volvo vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Buick fifth in reliability, above the industry average. With 86 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volvo is ranked 29th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Buick vehicles are more reliable than Volvo vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Buick 6 places higher in reliability than Volvo.

Fuel Economy and Range

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On the EPA test cycle the Encore AWD gets better fuel mileage than the XC40 T5 AWD 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. (248 HP) (24 city/29 hwy vs. 22 city/30 hwy).

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Buick Encore uses regular unleaded gasoline. The XC40 requires premium, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.

Brakes and Stopping

© 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 2020/10/22

The Encore stops much shorter than the XC40:

Encore

XC40

60 to 0 MPH

113 feet

125 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

134 feet

135 feet

Consumer Reports

Suspension and Handling

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The Encore has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The XC40’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For better maneuverability, the Encore’s turning circle is .7 feet tighter than the XC40’s (36.7 feet vs. 37.4 feet).

Chassis

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The Buick Encore may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 450 to 500 pounds less than the Volvo XC40.

The Encore is 5.8 inches shorter than the XC40, making the Encore easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

The Encore uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The XC40 doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

© 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 2020/10/22

The front step up height for the Encore is .9 inches lower than the XC40 (16.8” vs. 17.7”). The Encore’s rear step up height is 1.4 inches lower than the XC40’s (16.8” vs. 18.2”).

Servicing Ease

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J.D. Power and Associates surveys of service recipients show that Buick service is better than Volvo. J.D. Power ranks Buick 8th in service department satisfaction (above the industry average). With a 17% lower rating, Volvo is ranked 14th.

Ergonomics

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To shield the driver and front passenger’s vision over a larger portion of the windshield and side windows, the Encore has standard extendable sun visors. The XC40 doesn’t offer extendable visors.

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 XC40 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 2020/10/22

Insurance will cost less for the Encore owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Encore will cost $195 to $1860 less than the XC40 over a five-year period.

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 2020/10/22

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

Encore

XC40

Consumer Reports® Recommends

TRUE

TRUE

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

FALSE

The Buick Encore outsold the Volvo XC40 by almost six to one during 2019.

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

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