$24,280 – $27,780 MSRP
$22,702 – $25,974 Invoice
18 / 23 MPG City/Hwy
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More power and a longer list of standard equipment highlight the changes to the 2006 Buick Rendezvous. Replacing last year's 185-hp, 3400 3.4L V-6 engine is a new 196-hp, 3500 3.5L V-6, which will be standard on all Rendezvous models except for the top-of-the-line CXL Plus. (Buick dropped the Ultra trim level for 2006, leaving the CXL Plus as the premier trim level.) Standard power on the CXL Plus is a more potent 242-hp, 3.6L V-6 VVT (variable valve timing) engine. New standard upgrades include OnStar, an alarm system, rear parking assist, and Buick's noise-reducing QuietTuning feature.
The Rendezvous is a five-passenger (seven with the optional third-row seating arrangement) crossover SUV first introduced in 2002. Buick touts the vehicle as a blend of sedan, minivan and SUV, and it does indeed have characteristics of each. Despite its compact utility vehicle classification, it affords an uncharacteristically generous 109 cubic feet of cargo space when the third row is folded down and the second row is removed.
Rendezvous comes in four trim levels: CX, CX Plus, CXL, and CXL Plus. The new 3500 3.5L engine, which is standard on all but the CXL Plus, is a cast-iron V-6 with cast aluminum cylinder heads and overhead valves. The more powerful 3.6L V-6 VVT, which is standard on the CXL Plus and available on the CXL, has a cast-aluminum block with aluminum cylinder heads and dual overhead cams. The more sophisticated 3.6L is also equipped with variable valve timing and a higher compression ratio. The Rendezvous has a 3,500-pound towing capacity when equipped with the optional trailer package; without the package, towing is limited to 2,000 pounds. All-wheel drive is available on all models, but is not standard.
All Buick models come standard with QuietTuning this year, a multi-faceted noise-abatement feature that makes for a more enjoyable driving experience. Another new standard feature is a two-tier theft-deterrent system: an alarm goes off if the locked vehicle is tampered with, and a coded key is needed to start the engine. Buick has also outfitted the new Rendezvous with four sensors built into the rear bumper to warn drivers of stationary objects behind the vehicle.
The Midsize Conventional Crossover Utility Vehicle segment is one of the fastest growing in the automotive industry; the segment consisted of six models in 2005, with two new models entering the segment later in 2006. No doubt more will follow, driven largely by a growing demand for more fuel-efficient, better-handling utility vehicles.
According to the J.D. Power and Associates Sales Report,SM the Buick Rendezvous recorded a total of 60,589 sales during calendar year 2005. Leading this segment is the Toyota Highlander with 137,409 sales. Next in line is the Chrysler Pacifica at 85,557. Other models in the segment are the Ford Freestyle, Nissan Murano, and Subaru B9 Tribeca. Two new, 2007-model-year entries-the Ford Edge (available in Fall 2006) and Saturn Outlook (available in early 2007)-will continue to grow the segment.
|CX||4 speed automatic||$24,280||195-hp / 3.5L 6-cyl||19/26|
|CXL||4 speed automatic||$24,280||195-hp / 3.5L 6-cyl||19/26|
$24,530–$31,860 Base MSRP
18/24 MPG City/Hwy
$33,030–$39,290 Base MSRP
31/27 MPG City/Hwy
$30,580–$32,580 Base MSRP
15/20 MPG City/Hwy
$27,635–$38,385 Base MSRP
16/19 MPG City/Hwy