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2016 Buick Cascada

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starting MSRP

Key specs

Base trim shown


Body style


Combined MPG


Seating capacity

184.9” x 56.8”


Front-wheel drive



The good:

  • Dramatic, attention-grabbing styling
  • Upscale interior materials
  • On-the-go, quick folding roof
  • Folding backseat expands trunk
  • Excellent value
  • Minimal wind buffeting

The bad:

  • Rear legroom is tight
  • Cluttered, old-style dash controls
  • Dated displays and multimedia system
  • Minimal top-down trunk space
  • Touch-screen is too small
  • Boring exterior colors

2 trims

Starting msrp listed lowest to highest price

Wondering which trim is right for you?

Our 2016 Buick Cascada trim comparison will help you decide.

See also: Find the best Convertibles for 2024

Notable features

  • All-new four-seat compact convertible
  • Front-wheel drive
  • Based on European Opel model
  • One engine and transmission
  • Automatic-deploying rollover bars
  • Top can be raised or lowered at speeds up to 31 mph

2016 Buick Cascada review: Our expert's take

By Aaron Bragman

Verdict: The 2016 Buick Cascada is a stylish compact convertible with plenty of power, a smooth transmission and a top that is quick and convenient, but Cascada’s real strength may be its excellent value. Its only real foibles: a center console loaded with obscure buttons and displays that look a few years out of date.

Versus the competition: Most of the cars with which the Cascada would compete are gone, leaving the less comfortable Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro, both aimed at a different buyer than the Buick. The Cascada is larger, better-equipped and significantly less expensive than the BMW 2 Series convertible or Audi A3 Cabriolet.

Meet the new 2016 Buick Cascada, the brand’s first convertible in 25 years, arriving just as the traditional players in the segment have decided to bow out. Buick sees this as an excellent time to bring over a soft-top convertible from its European Opel division to fill a gap in the market, with the hope also of drawing new, younger customers to the Buick brand. The brand already has come a long way in redefining its image among shoppers — but can a new convertible help push Buick further along in its quest to regain relevance?

Exterior & Styling
There’s no denying it, the Cascada is a looker. Based on European Opel designs that frequently are shared with Buick globally, the Cascada is wide, sleek and designed from the outset to be a convertible. Underneath, it shares some mechanical bits with the Opel Astra (what we know in the U.S. as the Buick Verano compact sedan), but its sheet metal and structure are unique. This is no sedan with the roof chopped off; the design work that’s gone into making the Cascada look good top-up or top-down is evident. Slim headlamps flank the Buick grille, with sculptured sides ending in wide, wraparound taillamps that are part of the trunk lid. Even in a jaded convertible market such as South Florida, where Buick invited the media to drive the new Cascada, the droptop turned heads and invited conversation. Put the top up, and the Cascada turns into an attractive coupe with a roofline not that different from the Cadillac ELR. Buick definitely got the styling right on this one.

How It Drives
Powering the Cascada is just one engine-and-transmission combo for the North American market. It features a 200-horsepower, turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine mated to a standard six-speed automatic transmission. It scoots the Cascada away from stoplights with more speed and alacrity than I expected from a nearly 4,000-pound car. There’s a definite turbo whoosh audible when the top is down, but it’s not intrusive and serves to remind you that you’ve got a decently powerful engine on tap. This engine moves the Cascada smartly into traffic or easily past slower vehicles on the highway, and the transmission is well-matched to it. Never once in nearly 200 miles of driving did I feel like the car was underpowered or in the wrong gear for conditions. It delivers on the Cascada’s styling promise with smooth, refined performance.

The Cascada rides well on smooth pavement, but the standard 20-inch wheels with low-profile, 40-series tires transmit plenty of road bumps and judders to the occupants when you take it over broken pavement. Even on those rough patches, however, the Cascada’s structural rigidity is impressive — there is no looseness to the chassis or interior parts at all. The car’s steering is nicely balanced but not overly communicative, and the overall experience of driving one is unhurried and relaxed. This is not a vehicle you’re going to jump into to get your dose of driving kicks — it’s a touring car, one that you buy to enjoy being seen in and taking in the world around you. It can and will dance if you ask it to, but it would rather waltz than rumba.

The upside to that relaxed pace is fuel economy that’s fair, though not thrilling. The Cascada is rated at 20/27/23 mpg city/highway/combined, which is not unexpected given the car’s hefty weight penalty. Convertibles aren’t really about chasing fuel efficiency anyway — once you drop the top, you ruin the aerodynamic flow completely, but the trade-off is entirely worth it.

Where the Cascada struggles a bit is inside, but not with cabin comfort or materials. Slip into the seats that were redone for North American backsides, and it’s easy to get comfortable up front. The car is wide, and feels like it has much more room between the doors than an Audi A3 or BMW 2 Series, despite being similar in dimension. I had no problem sitting side by side with a passenger, never once coming close to touching. Material quality is good, with soft-touch materials and authentic stitching on the padded dash for a touch of class and a choice of two attractive (if muted) colors. The backseat is cramped but serviceable for adults. Width is not the issue, but legroom is a challenge — the Cascada is not long, so front-seat occupants likely will need to move their chairs up a bit to accommodate anyone in back.

Wind management in the Cascada is top-notch. Driving with the top down is extremely pleasant — there’s little wind buffeting, even with the windows down. At 70 mph on the highway with the windows up, it’s easy to carry on a conversation without raising one’s voice. If you decide to put the top up (which takes just 17 seconds and can be done at speeds up to 31 mph), the noise and thermal insulation keep things quiet and serene in the cabin, almost as if it were a hardtop coupe.

Ergonomics & Electronics
The issue I have with the interior is with the controls — namely that this is not the latest generation of Buick interiors. It is saddled with dozens of buttons and controls in the center console, which looks like Buicks did at the start of this decade. I counted 42 buttons on the console alone, controlling the climate functions, audio system, navigation and more, some of which I had no idea as to their purpose. The latest Buick Regal corrected this situation two years ago by reducing the number of buttons to just 25, a vast improvement in usability. But the Cascada is a 3-year-old design introduced in Europe in mid-2013, so it employs the old-think Opel/Buick design. The touch-screen is just a 7-inch unit that’s mounted too far forward, and the secondary display screen between the gauges is a monochrome red LCD. It’s all attractive, it’s all comfortable, but it’s all dated. When the Cascada shows up in showrooms alongside the slick new LaCrosse sedan and Envision SUV later this year, it immediately will look like it needs an interior refresh — which it does.

Cargo & Storage
Being a convertible, the Cascada’s trunk is necessarily compromised by the folding convertible top. When it’s up there’s decent room inside, with 13.4 cubic feet of room in the trunk, besting the 9.9 cubic feet in the Audi A3 Cabriolet, the 11.8 cubic feet in the BMW 228i or even the 11.4 cubic feet in the Ford Mustang. But in order to lower the top, you have to put a special divider in place, which cuts available trunk space in half. You can carry your golf clubs to the course, but if you want the top down, those clubs will have to go in the backseat.

The new Cascada has not yet been crash-tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration or the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, but Buick truly wants it to be. It has been improved structurally to the point where Buick is petitioning the federal government to test it, confident that a five-star safety rating is achievable. That would be a first for a convertible, partly because the government or other testing agencies simply do not test most droptops.

Being a bit older than some of the latest additions to the Buick-GMC showroom, the Cascada doesn’t have some of the safety features that are offered on newer vehicles. It does feature a standard backup camera, forward and rear parking sensors, and available forward collision warning and lane departure warning. But there’s no push-button start, no keyless access, no automatic emergency braking and no blind spot warning system available. See the Cascada’s standard features here.

Value in Its Class
Where the new Cascada truly shines may be in its value. Starting price for the base trim level is $33,990, including a $925 destination fee. A completely loaded Premium trim (there are only two trims and no stand-alone options for simplicity’s sake) will cost $36,990 out the door. Add $395 if you want metallic paint. That’s a screaming deal for the content, performance and style of the Cascada, made even more appealing when one realizes that the Cascada really no longer has any direct midsize competitors. Build one your way here.

The Toyota Solara, Volvo C60 and Chrysler 200 convertibles all have been discontinued, leaving the door open for a car like Cascada to come in and collect all the buyers looking for a premium convertible value. The Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet is available, but it’s not a premium experience. Ditto for the VW Eos, which has ceased production but still is being sold as a 2016 (remaining inventory appears to be in the hundreds rather than thousands of cars).

Price-wise, the Audi A3 starts where the Cascada leaves off, and optioning one up to match the Buick’s level of equipment easily pushes the sticker price for the small  German luxury convertible to thousands of dollars more. Same deal for the BMW 2 Series convertible. The Ford Mustang and Chevrolet Camaro convertibles might be able to compete on price, but they are no match in comfort or passenger-carrying ability. Compare the Buick with its not-quite-apples-to-apples competitors here.

So for now Buick has this segment largely to itself. Buyers seeking an attractive, well-priced, well-equipped convertible are likely to be pleased.

Photo of Aaron Bragman
Detroit Bureau Chief Aaron Bragman has had over 25 years of experience in the auto industry as a journalist, analyst, purchasing agent and program manager. Bragman grew up around his father’s classic Triumph sports cars (which were all sold and gone when he turned 16, much to his frustration) and comes from a Detroit family where cars put food on tables as much as smiles on faces. Today, he’s a member of the Automotive Press Association and the Midwest Automotive Media Association. His pronouns are he/him, but his adjectives are fat/sassy. Email Aaron Bragman

Consumer reviews

Rating breakdown (out of 5):
  • Comfort 4.6
  • Interior 4.4
  • Performance 4.1
  • Value 4.4
  • Exterior 4.8
  • Reliability 4.7
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Most recent consumer reviews


Buick Casada Problems

Purchased this 2016 Casada for wife in 2019 with 23,000 miles, found out real quick that the car was under-powered even with TURBO 4 cyl. Car shifter locks key in steering wheel often and must turn key on and move shifter many times to free key...Not a steering wheel position lock problem, Dealer says shifter problem at over $600.00 repair cost. Water leak at pass. windshield top where top locks, Bent wheel for road debre cost over $600.00 x 2 wheels. Found that the positive battery cable has a WIERD cable connec tion that gets corrosion and will not allow the car to start, Had to clean metal strips and bend metal for secure connection.. These cars were made only 2016 - 2019 and parts are hard to find. Wish we had our 2005 Toyota Solara Conv. back - lt got twice the gas mileage with a 6 cyl. engine and much less problems with 130,000 miles. ( gave it to our granddaughter for college) Shame - Buick was a great car, many years ago.


Awesome vehicle

Awesome driving experience. I love this car! Fun to drive. Great handling. Fast, fun and the convertible is amazing! I recommend this car to anyone.


2016 Buick Cascada - off to a great start!

We just recently purchased this used Cascada in great condition, so I have no long-term comments yet. But the observations from other reviewers are apt. Keep in mind that the Cascada is "a cruiser, not a bruiser". It's a great value compared to the few other 4-seat convertibles still available out there. It's very attractive, comfortable to drive and ride in, has an excellent insulated soft top and mechanism, comes loaded with many great features, has more interior room and trunk space then most others in its class, and overall it's a very nice ride. I have owned other recent Buick's, so hopefully all the infotainment buttons and controls will become familiar to me again soon. My main nitpick is I would prefer the wheels be a somewhat smaller profile size than 20-inch, but at least these are attractive. Will have more to share at a later time, but am very pleased so far.

See all 26 consumer reviews


New car and Certified Pre-Owned programs by Buick
New car program benefits
48 months/50,000 miles
48 months/50,000 miles
72 months/70,000 miles
Roadside assistance
72 months/70,000 miles
Certified Pre-Owned program benefits
Maximum age/mileage
5 model years or newer/up to 75,000 miles
Basic warranty terms
12 months/12,000 miles bumper-to-bumper original warranty, then may continue to 6 years/100,000 miles limited (depending on variables)
6 years/100,000 miles
Dealer certification required
172-point inspection
Roadside assistance
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