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2011 Buick LaCrosse

$6,605 — $16,421 USED
Sedan
5 Seats
21-24 MPG
(Combined)
Key specs of the base trim
 — 
Compare 3 trims

Overview

Is this the car for you?

The Good

  • Interior quality
  • Comfortable ride
  • Quiet cabin
  • Elegant styling
  • Well-executed navigation system
  • Doesn't need premium fuel

The Bad

  • Small trunk
  • Crowded controls
  • Mushy brakes
  • Backseat too low to the floor
  • Modest acceleration with AWD
  • Numb highway steering
2011 Buick LaCrosse exterior side view

What to Know

about the 2011 Buick LaCrosse
  • 3.0L V-6 dropped
  • 2.4L four-cylinder gets 30 mpg highway
  • Available AWD
  • Standard six-speed automatic
  • Available rear DVD screens

Our Take

from the Cars.com expert editorial team

Vehicle Overview
Although it shares aspects with the Chevrolet Malibu, the Buick LaCrosse is intended to compete with premium or near-luxury models like the Volkswagen Passat. It was designed in the U.S. and China, where Buick has a significant presence.

New for 2011
Buick drops its 3.0-liter V-6 engine and keeps the 3.6-liter V-6 and its more efficient 2.4-liter four-cylinder.

Exterior
Though it's a midsize sedan, the LaCrosse is a bit larger in all dimensions than the Malibu, and a few hundred pounds heavier. The grille is large and bold, and there's a distinctive accent line that runs along the side from headlight to taillight. It's a stronger statement than the previous generation, but Buick hasn't redefined itself to an extent that will turn off traditional buyers.

The three trim levels are distinguished more by equipment than cosmetic aspects. The CX has 17-inch wheels. The CXL has 18-inch wheels and adds fog lights and turn-signal indicators on the side mirrors. The CXS has chrome 18-inch wheels, but 19-inchers are optional. Exterior features include:
  • Optional 19-inch wheels for the CXS
  • Available limited-slip differential
  • Optional real-time adjusting suspension


Interior
The interior is modernized with features such as ambient LED lighting and analog and digital stereo inputs. It doesn't trade the classic interior for anything too edgy. There are wood accents, high-quality materials and contrasting-color stitching. The backseat truly has room for thre...
Vehicle Overview
Although it shares aspects with the Chevrolet Malibu, the Buick LaCrosse is intended to compete with premium or near-luxury models like the Volkswagen Passat. It was designed in the U.S. and China, where Buick has a significant presence.

New for 2011
Buick drops its 3.0-liter V-6 engine and keeps the 3.6-liter V-6 and its more efficient 2.4-liter four-cylinder.

Exterior
Though it's a midsize sedan, the LaCrosse is a bit larger in all dimensions than the Malibu, and a few hundred pounds heavier. The grille is large and bold, and there's a distinctive accent line that runs along the side from headlight to taillight. It's a stronger statement than the previous generation, but Buick hasn't redefined itself to an extent that will turn off traditional buyers.

The three trim levels are distinguished more by equipment than cosmetic aspects. The CX has 17-inch wheels. The CXL has 18-inch wheels and adds fog lights and turn-signal indicators on the side mirrors. The CXS has chrome 18-inch wheels, but 19-inchers are optional. Exterior features include:
  • Optional 19-inch wheels for the CXS
  • Available limited-slip differential
  • Optional real-time adjusting suspension


Interior
The interior is modernized with features such as ambient LED lighting and analog and digital stereo inputs. It doesn't trade the classic interior for anything too edgy. There are wood accents, high-quality materials and contrasting-color stitching. The backseat truly has room for three passengers. Optional interior features include:
  • Navigation system with Bluetooth connectivity
  • Dual-display DVD entertainment system for the backseat
  • Heated and ventilated seats


Under the Hood
The LaCrosse comes with one of two engines: a 182-horsepower, Ecotec 2.4-liter inline-four-cylinder in the CX and CXL FWD, and a 280-hp, 3.6-liter V-6 in the CXL AWD and CXS. Both are direct-injection designs, a relatively new development in gasoline engines that portends good gas mileage for the engines' size and power. Both engines drive the front wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. The middle trim level is eligible for all-wheel drive.

The LaCrosse is tuned for a softer, quieter ride than GM's other midsize sedans.


Safety
The LaCrosse has front- and side-impact airbags for the front seats and curtain airbags that cover all the side windows. Antilock brakes and an electronic stability system with traction control are also standard, as is OnStar communication system with a year's free subscription. Optional safety features include:
  • Adaptive headlights
  • Blind spot warning system
  • Brake assist system


Consumer Reviews

What drivers are saying

4.4
80 reviews — Read All reviews
Exterior Styling
(4.7)
Performance
(4.3)
Interior Design
(4.6)
Comfort
(4.6)
Reliability
(4.3)
Value For The Money
(4.3)

Read reviews that mention:

(4.0)

Most reliable and best car I've owned

by Kristy 61 from Slidell on November 11, 2018

I love my car it has such a smooth ride much leg room and a nice size trunk and I get so many compliments on the exterior and interior style Read full review

(5.0)

Great sporty looking car

by Jo from Marysville MI on October 25, 2018

Love this car!!! Nice looking inside and out. I have a black crx and although I have owned it for years it still looks sporty. Read full review

Safety

Recalls and crash tests

Recalls

The 2011 Buick LaCrosse currently has 2 recalls


Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2011 Buick LaCrosse CX

IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
good
Overall Rear
good
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
good

Moderate overlap front

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Left Leg/Foot
good
Overall Front
good
Restraints
good
Right Leg/Foot
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Other

Roof Strength
good

Side

Driver Head Protection
good
Driver Head and Neck
good
Driver Pelvis/Leg
good
Driver Torso
good
Overall Side
good
Rear Passenger Head Protection
good
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
good
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
good
Rear Passenger Torso
good
Structure/safety cage
good
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers.

Warranty

New car and certified pre-owned programs by Buick

New Car Program Benefits

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    48 months / 50,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    60 months / 100,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    60 months / 100,000 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)

  • Powertrain

    6 years/100,000 miles

  • Dealer Certification Required

    172-point inspection

  • Roadside Assistance

    Yes

  • View All CPO Program Details

Latest 2011 LaCrosse Stories

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The LaCrosse received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

What is included in Roadside Assistance?

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker