Going & Stopping

All versions of the Enclave are powered by a 3.6-liter V-6 engine that drives a six-speed automatic transmission with a clutchless-manual mode that gives the driver control over shifting. Front-wheel-drive Enclaves get an EPA-estimated 16/24 mpg (city/highway), while all-wheel-drive versions achieve 16/22 mpg using the government's more stringent fuel economy tests that go into effect with 2008-model-year vehicles.

While it won't be mistaken for the kind of V-8 engine that has historically powered large SUVs, the Enclave's V-6 provides good power (275 horsepower) for city driving and acceptable power for high-speed passing and merging. The smooth-shifting automatic transmission is probably more active than it needs to be, as it has a tendency to upshift into a higher gear than necessary. While this is a boon for gas mileage, the transmission has to downshift when you want to accelerate.

The Enclave's brakes give the driver confidence when bringing the crossover to a halt. There's no dead zone in the pedal's travel, and when the brakes engage the pedal has a firm feel to it that makes it easy to apply a little bit more or less force to make a smooth stop. Nicely done.

    See also:

    Safety
    Since our previous review, the LaCrosse has been crash-tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and it performed very well. It's a Top Safety Pick because it scored Good, the top rati ...

    Engine Cooling System Messages
    A/C OFF DUE TO HIGH ENGINE TEMP This message displays when the engine coolant becomes hotter than the normal operating temperature. To avoid added strain on a hot engine, the air conditioning com ...

    Securing a Child Restraint in a Rear Seat Position
    When securing a child restraint in a rear seating position, study the instructions that came with the child restraint to make sure it is compatible with this vehicle. If the child restraint has t ...