Large car; Built in USA
  • 4-door sedan
  • transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive
Good condition price range: $8,800 – $29,800*

2010 Buick LaCrosse front

2010 Buick LaCrosse rear

2010 Buick LaCrosse interior

2010 Buick LaCrosse front

  • Acceleration (CXS)
  • Quietness
  • Ride
  • Acceleration (CX, CXL)
  • Cargo room
  • Steering/handling (non-CXS models)

Buick claims to target both the Acura TL and Lexus ES 350 with LaCrosse, but in reality it is only the Lexus that has been successfully challenged. Though lacking the TL’s sporty nature, LaCrosse matches the more sedate ES in cabin and drivetrain refinement, and it surpasses it in available passenger space. LaCrosse is an excellent choice, with the CX and a modestly equipped CXL representing our top picks in this lineup.


Redesigned for 2010, Buick’s LaCrosse earned freshened styling, new engines, and new features. LaCrosse was a four-door family sedan that came in CX, CXL, and CXS trim levels. The 2010 model had about a 1-inch-longer wheelbase and was about 1 inch shorter overall than the 2005-09 LaCrosse. CX models came with either a 182-horsepower 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine or a 255-horsepower 3.0-liter V6 engine. CXL versions had the 3.0-liter V6. The CXS got a 280-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 and replaced the V8-powered Super as the top LaCrosse model. All used a six-speed automatic transmission. All-wheel drive was newly available, but only on the CXL with the V6 engine. Standard safety features included antilock braking, traction control, an antiskid system, curtain-side airbags, and front-side airbags. Blind-spot alert also was offered. CXL models had standard leather upholstery, while CXS sedans added heated and cooled front seats. Among the available features were a navigation system with rearview camera, xenon headlights, DVD entertainment, and a head-up display. Note that LaCrosse was sold in Canada as the Allure. Large-car competitors included the Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger, Ford Taurus, Hyundai Azera, and Toyota Avalon.

Yearly Updates

2011 LaCrosse
The LaCrosse saw a few changes following its redesign for the 2010 model year. Buick’s 3.0-liter V6 engine was discontinued, leaving the direct-injected four-cylinder engine and the CXS’s 3.6-liter V6.
2012 LaCrosse
Some significant changes marked the 2012 version of the Buick LaCrosse. The standard 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine gained GM’s eAssist mild-hybrid system, which not only improved fuel economy, but raised horsepower output from 182 to 197. Meanwhile, the 3.6-liter V6 gained 23 horsepower to 303. Furthermore, trim-level designations changed. The former CX and CXL were replaced by Base, Convenience, Leather, Premium 1, 2, and 3, and Touring.
2013 LaCrosse
After receiving the new eAssist system for 2012, LaCrosse gets a slightly simplified model lineup for 2013. The Convenience and Premium 3 trims have been dropped. All versions now include Buick’s IntellLink infotainment system and a new rearview mirror designed to improve visibility.
2014 LaCrosse
For 2014 LaCrosse got revised styling and some new safety features that included forward-collision warning and rear-cross-traffic alert.


transverse front-engine/front- or all-wheel drive

A 182-horsepower 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine powered the base CX model. In 2012, that engine added GM’s eAssist “mild hybrid” system, which boosted output to 197 hp. Standard in early CXLs and optional for the CX was a 3.0-liter V6 rated at 255 horsepower (252 in the CXL with all-wheel drive). That engine disappeared after the 2010 model year. The CXS sedan held a 3.6-liter V6 developing 280 horsepower, or 303 starting in 2012. AWD was only offered in V6 models. All LaCrosse models have a six-speed automatic transmission.

dohc I4
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.4/145
Engine HP 182
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 172
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic



dohc I4/electric
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 2.4/145
Engine HP 197
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 172
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic



dohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.0/183
Engine HP 252-255
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 215-217
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic


dohc V6
Engine Size (liters/cubic inches) 3.6/217
Engine HP 280
Engine Torque (lb-ft) 259
Avail. Trans. EPA MPG (city/hwy) MPG avg. as tested
6-speed automatic



Road Test

Though smooth, the base 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine is barely adequate in terms of power output. The eAssist version that arrived for 2012 is quite a bit better, providing a much stronger jump from a stop. A LaCrosse with 3.0-liter V6 isn’t particularly snappy at low speeds and feels strained when passing or merging. The 3.6-liter V6 is substantially more robust, with plenty of reserve power. Regardless of the engine, the transmission is silky smooth. Shift behavior is generally good with the four-cylinder, though some occasional lurching may occur while downshifting. With the V6, it is sometimes hesitant to downshift when more power is needed.

In Consumer Guide testing, a 2.4-liter four-cylinder model averaged 26.2 mpg in city/highway driving during an extended-use test. One with eAssist averaged 27.5. A CXS with the 3.6-liter V6 averaged 21.6 mpg in a mix of city/highway driving, while another avaraged 26.4 in mostly highway travel. All engine use regular-grade gas.

Ride quality may be LaCrosse’s most impressive quality. With the standard suspension and 17-inch wheels, the four-cylinder CX ranks among the best in class, delivering a great combination of comfort and control. CXL versions, riding on 18-inch wheels, are a bit firmer, but not annoyingly so. Most bumps are smothered with ease, and a solid body structure prevents the LaCrosse from feeling floaty on the highway. Available only on the CXS, the Touring Package includes larger wheels and tires with a driver-selectable “sport mode” that, when engaged, tweaks the steering, transmission, and suspension for more-spirited driving. Ride quality suffers in sport mode, as larger road irregularities register with pronounced thuds.

No LaCrosse feels sporty, but all handle well, with assuring competence. Even in standard form, the car is more nimble than you’d expect, given its size. Some drivers may find the steering overboosted on all but CXS with the Performance Package. A CXS with the Touring Package leans less in corners, but the incremental agility gain is a poor trade-off given the package’s detrimental impact on ride quality.

Every LaCrosse is impressively hushed. All models are nearly free from wind noise, while CXL and CXS models are subject to only slightly more road noise than the CX. The Touring Package’s tires are the loudest of the bunch. Both V6 engines sound refined during acceleration, but the four-cylinder is a bit raspy. Each engine fades into silence while cruising.

Large gauges and dials are well marked and easy to read at a glance. Controls are mostly large and clearly marked, though some less-frequently-used buttons look alike and can be difficult to decipher at a glance. The available navigation system absorbs audio functions. Its large, clear graphics are helpful, but some functions are not as intuitive as they should be. LaCrosse’s handsome cabin is finished in rich, well-textured materials with apparently careful assembly. Unfortunately, CX’s fuzzy cloth upholstery looks cut-rate, and feels out of place in what is otherwise a premium environment.

Most folks will have plenty of front-seat space, though headroom is tight for those much over 6-feet tall. Seats lack side bolstering, though given LaCrosse’s lack of sporting pretense, that may not be much of an issue. Visibility is okay rearward, but thick front pillars obscure vision to the corners.

Rear-seat legroom is generous for most adults, though knee space is limited behind taller front-seat occupants. Headroom is marginal for 6-footers, and low-cut door openings mean taller passengers have to duck deeply to enter or exit the rear compartment. Doors are fairly long, which can make access a bit difficult in tight parking spaces.

A small trunk opening and high liftover restrict access to an otherwise deep and spacious storage area. Rear seatbacks are split 60/40 and include a center pass through for skis. Interior storage falls short. The center console is quite small, and front-door pockets are all but useless.


Model Tested: 2011 Buick LaCrosse CXL 4-cyl.

Ratings values are on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the best. With the exception of Value, these numbers reflect how the vehicle compares against the universe of vehicles, not just against rivals in its class.


Acceleration - 3
Fuel Economy - 7
Ride Quality - 8
Steering/Handling - 6
Quietness - 8


Controls/Materials - 7
Room/Comfort Front - 8
Room/Comfort Rear - 7
Cargo Room - 4


Value - 10

Total: 68


4-door sedan
Wheelbase (in.) Length (in.) Width (in.) Height (in.) Weight (lbs)
111.7 197.0 73.1 59.2
Cargo Volume (cu/ft) Payload Capacity (cu/ft) Fuel Capacity (gal.) Seating Capacity
13.3 18.4 5
Headroom Legroom
Front Rear Front Rear
38.0 37.3 41.7 40.5
Safety Ratings

Model Tested: 2010 LaCrosse 4-door sedan


(5 is the highest rating)

Front Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
Front Passenger Injury - 5

Side Impact Test

Driver Injury - 5
Rear Passenger Injury - 5


(A score of 100 is average. Lower is better)

Collision N/A
Injury N/A
Theft N/A

Trouble Spots

Engine knock and oil leak
Description: Main bearing could fail resulting engine noise or failure. (2014)
Engine noise
Description: Growling or whining noise from engine compartment may be caused by power steering lines contacting body. (2010)
Oil leak
Description: 2.4-liter engine may have high oil consumption or oil leak because of frozen positive crankcase ventilation system.
Steering problems
Description: At extremely low temperatures, the power steering pump may make noises or leak. (2013)
Suspension problems
Description: AWD LaCrosse may have vibration when accelerating from a stop because of an improperly seated front axle shaft. (2014)
Vehicle noise
Description: Clicking sound may come from front axle when shifting between reverse and drive (or under hard acceleration) unless a shim is installed on the end of the axle shaft. (2010-11)
Vehicle noise
Description: A buzzing sound (dial tone like) may be heard on the receiving end of a call when using a Bluetooth (except with 3G and 4G phones) unless the hands-free microphone has been replaced. (2009-11)
Description: Power windows may be misaligned and move slowly or not at all. (2008-14)
Transmission problems
Description: Faulty transmission pump may leave car stationary. (2014)
Check-engine light
Description: Engine may run at reduced power and the check engine light may come on, especially when driving in rain or after a carwash, unless the instrument panel wiring harness connector has been sealed. (2005-11)

Recall History

2011 LaCrosse
Description: Software in electronic climate-control module may disable the ability to adjust the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems.
2011 LaCrosse
Description: The software in the electronic climate control (ECC) module may disable the ability to adjust the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system settings. If this happens, the driver will not be able to control the heating, cooling, and ventilation for the vehicle. If this condition affects the defrost system when it is required, it may decrease the driver’s visibility, and could possibly result in a crash.
2011-12 LaCrosse
Description: The bolt that secures the front seat height adjuster may fall out resulting the seat unexpectedly dropping.
2012 LaCrosse with heated steering wheel
Description: Improperly installed steering-wheel fastener could cause the steering wheel to loosen or separate from the steering column.
2012 LaCrosse
Description: A fault in the antiskid system could cause sudden changes in the cars handling.
2012-13 LaCrosse w/eAssist
Description: The Generator Control Module could be faulty resulting in loss of battery charge. The engine could stall or fail to start. In addition, there could be a fire in the trunk.
2013 LaCrosse
Description: A software problem may cause the transmission to inadvertently shift to Sport mode resulting in the loss of engine braking.
2014 LaCrosse
Description: A wiring break could result in the loss of warning chime to remind the driver that a door is open while the key is in the ignition. Additionally, the retained accessory power could stay active for ten minutes.
2014 LaCrosse
Description: Incorrect brake rotors may have been installed resulting in brake pads detaching from the caliper.
2014 LaCrosse
Description: The transmission-shift-cable adjuster may disengage from the shift lever. A shift lever in Park may not engage Park for the transmission.

Equipment Lists

Equipment lists are only viewable on larger screen sizes.


Used-car pricing varies widely depending on local market conditions. Therefore, we recommend visiting websites that list used cars for sale to get a better idea of what a specific model is selling for in your area.

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