The 2023 Buick Enclave and Ford Explorer stand out as two strong contenders in the midsize SUV segment, offering a blend of style, comfort, and performance that caters to diverse needs and preferences.
In this detailed comparison, we will explore the various aspects of these two popular SUVs, delving into the details that make each vehicle unique. By examining their features and capabilities, we aim to provide valuable insights to help you make an informed decision when choosing between these exceptional vehicles.
The 2023 Buick Enclave showcases a sophisticated and refined design, with smooth lines and elegant curves that emphasize its upscale image. The prominent grille, accented by the brand’s signature winged badge, gives the Enclave a distinct presence on the road. The LED headlamps and taillamps provide a modern touch, while the available 20-inch aluminum wheels enhance the overall aesthetic appeal.
In contrast, the 2023 Ford Explorer embraces a more rugged and athletic design. Its bold front grille, accompanied by LED headlights and sharp lines, communicates strength and durability. The available blacked-out trim package adds a sporty flair, and the optional 20-inch wheels further accentuate its aggressive stance. The Explorer’s design is a statement of its capability and adaptability.
Inside the Enclave, drivers and passengers are greeted with a luxurious and spacious cabin, featuring high-quality materials and soft-touch surfaces. The available leather-appointed seating, wood accents, and ambient lighting contribute to a serene and upscale atmosphere. The intuitive layout of the dashboard and center console ensures that all controls are within easy reach, enhancing the driving experience.
The Ford Explorer’s interior is designed with functionality and comfort in mind. The cabin offers a generous amount of space, with an emphasis on storage solutions and easy-to-use controls.
Available leather-trimmed seats, along with optional heated and ventilated front seats, provide a touch of luxury, while the configurable digital instrument cluster and large infotainment screen allow for seamless integration of technology.
The Enclave comfortably seats up to seven passengers, with ample headroom and legroom in all three rows. The standard second-row captain’s chairs provide easy access to the third row, while the available power-folding third-row seats allow for quick and convenient reconfiguration. Heated and ventilated front seats are available, as well as heated second-row outboard seats, ensuring comfort in any climate.
The Explorer offers seating for up to seven passengers as well, but with a slightly more spacious third row, making it more accommodating for adult passengers. The second-row bench seat can be replaced with optional captain’s chairs for increased comfort and accessibility. Like the Enclave, the Explorer offers available heated and ventilated front seats, along with heated second-row seats.
The Enclave boasts an impressive 23.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row, which expands to 58 cubic feet with the third row folded down. With both the second and third rows folded, the Enclave offers a maximum cargo capacity of 97.6 cubic feet. The hands-free power liftgate, available on select trims, simplifies loading and unloading.
While the Explorer provides slightly less cargo space behind the third row at 21 cubic feet, it compensates with a larger maximum cargo capacity of 87.8 cubic feet when both rear rows are folded down. An available hands-free foot-activated liftgate offers added convenience for loading and unloading items.
The 2023 Enclave is powered by a 3.6-liter V6 engine that delivers 310 horsepower and 266 lb-ft of torque. Paired with a smooth-shifting 9-speed automatic transmission, the Enclave provides a refined and confident driving experience. The standard front-wheel drive can be upgraded to an intelligent all-wheel drive system for enhanced traction and stability in various road conditions.
The Explorer comes standard with a 2.3-liter EcoBoost 4-cylinder engine, producing 300 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. For those seeking more power, a 3.0-liter EcoBoost V6 engine is available, generating up to 400 horsepower and 415 lb-ft of torque in the high-performance ST trim.
All engines are mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission, providing smooth and efficient gear changes. Rear-wheel drive is standard, with the option to upgrade to an intelligent 4-wheel drive system.
The 2023 Enclave boasts an EPA-estimated fuel economy of 18 mpg city, 26 mpg highway, and 21 mpg combined for the front-wheel-drive model. Opting for the all-wheel-drive version results in a slight reduction in efficiency, with ratings of 17 mpg city, 25 mpg highway, and 20 mpg combined.
With its standard 2.3-liter engine, the Explorer achieves an EPA-estimated 21 mpg city, 28 mpg highway, and 24 mpg combined in the rear-wheel-drive configuration. The optional 3.0-liter V6 engine yields a slightly lower fuel economy, while the 4-wheel drive models experience a further reduction in efficiency.
The 2023 Enclave comes equipped with a suite of standard safety features, including forward collision alert, automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, and rear cross-traffic alert. Additional safety features, such as adaptive cruise control and a surround-view camera, are available in higher trim levels or as part of optional packages.
The Ford Explorer also offers a comprehensive array of safety features, with its standard Ford Co-Pilot360 suite. This includes pre-collision assist with automatic emergency braking, lane-keeping assist, blind spot information system, and rear cross-traffic alert. Higher trims or optional packages add features like adaptive cruise control, evasive steering assist, and a 360-degree camera system.
The 2023 Enclave is available in four trim levels: Preferred, Essence, Premium, and Avenir. The base Preferred trim comes well-equipped with a power liftgate, tri-zone automatic climate control, and an 8-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Higher trims add features such as leather-appointed seating, a Bose audio system, and advanced safety features.
The Explorer offers five trim levels: Base, XLT, Limited, ST, and Platinum. The base model includes LED headlamps, a power liftgate, and an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system. Upgrading to higher trims adds features like leather seating, a B&O sound system, and performance enhancements in the ST trim.
The 2023 Enclave starts at $41,195 for the base Preferred trim, while the top-of-the-line Avenir begins at $55,495. Pricing for other trims and optional packages will increase the cost accordingly.
The Explorer’s base price is slightly lower, starting at $33,470. The top Platinum trim starts at $54,940, while the performance-oriented ST trim comes in at $53,375. Additional options and packages will also affect the final price.
While the 2023 Buick Enclave and Ford Explorer share similarities as midsize SUVs, there are key differences that set them apart. In this section, we will highlight the major distinctions in performance, fuel efficiency, and pricing, which might influence a buyer’s decision when choosing between these two vehicles.
The Enclave is powered by a single engine option, a 3.6-liter V6 producing 310 horsepower and 266 lb-ft of torque. Paired with a 9-speed automatic transmission, the Enclave delivers a smooth and refined driving experience.
The Explorer offers more engine options, starting with a 2.3-liter EcoBoost 4-cylinder engine generating 300 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque. For those seeking higher performance, a 3.0-liter EcoBoost V6 engine is available, with up to 400 horsepower and 415 lb-ft of torque in the ST trim. The Explorer comes with a 10-speed automatic transmission, providing smooth and efficient gear changes. This wider range of engine options makes the Explorer more versatile in terms of performance.
The Enclave has an EPA-estimated fuel economy of 18 mpg city, 26 mpg highway, and 21 mpg combined for the front-wheel-drive model. The all-wheel-drive version sees a slight reduction in efficiency.
The Explorer offers better fuel efficiency with its standard 2.3-liter engine, achieving an EPA-estimated 21 mpg city, 28 mpg highway, and 24 mpg combined in the rear-wheel-drive configuration. However, opting for the more powerful 3.0-liter V6 engine or the 4-wheel drive models results in lower fuel efficiency.
The base price of the Buick Enclave starts at $41,195, while the top-of-the-line Avenir trim begins at $55,495. The Enclave targets buyers who are willing to pay a premium for additional luxury and refinement.
The Ford Explorer has a lower starting price at $33,470, with the top Platinum trim starting at $54,940 and the performance-oriented ST trim at $53,375. This more competitive pricing structure may appeal to buyers looking for a balance of features, performance, and affordability.
After examining the 2023 Buick Enclave and Ford Explorer across various aspects, it becomes evident that both vehicles have their unique strengths and characteristics. The Enclave offers a more luxurious and sophisticated driving experience, while the Explorer delivers versatility, better fuel efficiency, and a competitive price point. Ultimately, the choice between these two SUVs will depend on individual preferences and priorities. By considering the key differences highlighted in this comparison, prospective buyers can make a well-informed decision that aligns with their lifestyle and requirements.
Buick Enclave Features:
- Exterior Design:
- Sophisticated and refined design
- Prominent grille with signature winged badge
- LED headlamps and taillamps
- Available 20-inch aluminum wheels
- Interior Design:
- Luxurious and spacious cabin
- High-quality materials and soft-touch surfaces
- Available leather-appointed seating and wood accents
- Ambient lighting
- Comfortable seating for up to seven passengers
- Ample headroom and legroom in all three rows
- Second-row captain’s chairs
- Available power-folding third-row seats
- 23.6 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row
- Maximum cargo capacity of 97.6 cubic feet
- Hands-free power liftgate (available on select trims)
- 3.6-liter V6 engine with 310 horsepower and 266 lb-ft of torque
- 9-speed automatic transmission
- Standard front-wheel drive, optional intelligent all-wheel drive
- Fuel Efficiency:
- EPA-estimated 18 mpg city, 26 mpg highway, 21 mpg combined (FWD)
- EPA-estimated 17 mpg city, 25 mpg highway, 20 mpg combined (AWD)
- Standard forward collision alert, automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist, and rear cross-traffic alert
- Available adaptive cruise control and surround-view camera
- Trim Levels:
- Four trims available: Preferred, Essence, Premium, and Avenir
- Base Preferred trim starts at $41,195
- Top-of-the-line Avenir trim starts at $55,495
Ford Explorer Features:
- Exterior Design:
- Rugged and athletic design
- Bold front grille and LED headlights
- Available blacked-out trim package
- Optional 20-inch wheels
- Interior Design:
- Functional and comfortable cabin
- Generous amount of space
- Available leather-trimmed seats
- Configurable digital instrument cluster
- Seating for up to seven passengers
- Slightly more spacious third row
- Optional second-row captain’s chairs
- 21 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row
- Maximum cargo capacity of 87.8 cubic feet
- Hands-free foot-activated liftgate (available)
- Standard 2.3-liter EcoBoost 4-cylinder engine with 300 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque
- Optional 3.0-liter EcoBoost V6 engine with up to 400 horsepower and 415 lb-ft of torque (ST trim)
- 10-speed automatic transmission
- Standard rear-wheel drive, optional intelligent 4-wheel drive
- Fuel Efficiency:
- EPA-estimated 21 mpg city, 28 mpg highway, 24 mpg combined (2.3L RWD)
- Varying efficiency for other engine and drivetrain configurations
- Standard Ford Co-Pilot360 suite, including pre-collision assist, lane-keeping assist, blind spot information system, and rear cross-traffic alert
- Available adaptive cruise control, evasive steering assist, and 360-degree camera system
- Trim Levels:
- Five trims available: Base, XLT, Limited, ST, and Platinum
- Base model starts at $33,470
- Top Platinum trim starts at $54,940
- Performance-oriented ST trim starts at $53,375