For 2007, Buick’s entry-level Allure – known as the LaCrosse in the U.S. market – remains basically the same, with some trim and option upgrades.
There’s a new “Directions & Connections” OnStar plan featuring turn-by-turn navigation; new cluster graphics with red pointer gauges; new steering wheel with tri-shield emblem; a tire pressure monitoring system standard on all trim levels; new Harvest Burl interior wood trim; and heated front seats are available on cloth seats. The CX trim line receives new Grey and Cashmere cloth seat fabric. New 17-inch, 10-spoke chrome tech wheels are available on the CXL, and there are two new 17-inch wheels on the CXS. New exterior colours include Midnight Blue Metallic, Stone Gray Metallic, Midnight Amethyst Metallic and Red Jewel Tintcoat.
The Allure comes with a choice of two powertrains: the CX and CXL use a 200-hp 3.8-litre V6, while the performance-oriented Allure CXS uses a 3.6-litre V6 with variable valve timing that delivers 240 hp.
The base CX and mid-line CXL are similar, with standard front bucket seats that can be optioned to a 55/45 divided front seat for six-passenger seating. Both come with air conditioning, four-wheel disc brakes, cruise control, power windows and locks with keyless entry, 16-inch wheels, tilt wheel, six-way power driver’s seat and six-speaker CD stereo system.
The CXL also includes a theft alarm, remote starter, aluminum wheels, automatic dual-zone air conditioning, driver information centre, tilt and telescopic wheel and 60/40 folding rear seats, all of which are available as options on the CX model.
Both models can be optioned with the Driver Confidence Package, which includes wheel-mounted radio and temperature controls, universal transmitter, self-dimming inside rearview mirror, dual heated power mirrors, six-way power adjustable front passenger seat, rear parking assist and rear passenger interior reading lamps.
The CXS adds traction control, anti-lock brakes, Magnasteer magnetic speed-sensitive variable-assist steering, fog lights, 17-inch wheels and leather heated seats with six-way passenger power adjuster.
The Allure represents good value: it’s extremely comfortable, even for long-distance drives; thanks to generous use of laminated steel and foam-filled structural gaps, it’s remarkably quiet; its engines are strong and smooth and well-suited to the car; and fit and finish are extremely good for the price. In addition to its more powerful engine, the CXS also features a tighter suspension that makes it fun to drive. The Allure is not quite as large as the Lucerne, but it’s worth comparing the two: its smooth ride and numerous features, combined with a lower price-tag, make it a viable candidate.