Buick Electra Concept Teases Brand’s New Look, Electrified Future
Buick made a surprise announcement today in Shanghai revealing the Electra concept. While the concept bears a name that is emblematic of the brand’s past, this new concept has little to do with the original. Today’s Electra Concept Preview is the brand’s new minimalist design language and its electrified underpinnings.
At first glance, the Electra looks like a sleeker, sportier take on the automaker’s 2018 Enspire concept. However, the Electra takes it a step further by mixing the appearance of a four-seater crossover with a sleek GT car. Buick says the inspiration for the Electra’s design came from a space capsule, which pays homage to the Electra’s original space race-inspired appearance. But that’s where the similarities end.
Buick calls its new design language “Potential Energy,” which the automaker says looks like “an arrow being released.” The Electra has a long hood, a straight front end, a sloping windshield and roof, and a stylized rear end. Although the front features thin slit headlights, a narrow grille, and a wild DRL design, it still looks like a Buick. 23-inch wheels, an illuminated Buick badge and those crazy gullwing doors help give the sleek crossover a presence.
The minimalist ethos on the outside also reverberates inside. Buick says the Electra has a “spaceship-like” cradle because of its lack of a traditional dashboard. Instead, passengers see a large, curved screen that sits above the retractable steering wheel for autonomous driving, but customers shouldn’t expect such technology anytime soon from an automaker. The suspended seats help complete the interior’s sparse and airy appearance.
We doubt that the model presented by this concept does not look like this; however, its technology and powertrain can become a reality. The Electra concept includes two electric motors – one on each axle – while rolling on GM’s next-generation modular electric propulsion system. The crossover uses GM’s Ultium batteries which give the Electra over 600 kilometers (372 miles) of range. Maximum power is 435 kilowatts (583 horsepower), which Buick says propels the Electra from zero to 100 kilometers per hour (62 miles per hour) in 4.3 seconds.
The Electra concept is packed with technology, much of which could be filtered into other Buick and GM models. The Electra is capable of receiving live updates, for example, like the new Cadillac Escalade 2021. Buick also claims that the crossover includes an AI intelligent voice assistant and V2X (vehicle to infrastructure) communication technologies.