New Powerplant Boosts Fuel Economy & Torque
For 2018, the Buick LaCrosse will expand its engine options and add a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with a side of light electrification. The new powerplant will combine a small electric motor with the new 2.5L engine in order to increase fuel efficiency as well as torque.
According to Buick, the new eAssist hybrid system will have a 19 percent increase in city fuel economy compared to the LaCrosse’s V-6, its former base engine. It will use a compact lithium-ion battery pack to provide benefits such as torque-assisted launch, regenerative braking and smoother stop/start. That should be good for a four mpg boost to last year’s 21 mpg city. The old V-6 was rated at 21 city/31 mpg highway/25 combined. The LaCrosse also will add a new nine-speed automatic transmission.
The mild hybrid eAssist system also increases torque by nine percent, while the battery pack is compact enough to maintain fold-down rear seats and ample trunk space.
This new version of Buicks eAssist system combines a compact electric motor and an advanced 24-cell air-cooled 0.45kWh lithium-ion battery pack. It’s based around GM’s Motor Generator Unit (MGU), which replaces a traditional alternator and acts as an electric motor to assist the engine when needed.
The MGU will also act as an electric generator, drawing from energy stored in the lithium-ion battery pack, as well as play a pivotal role in the system’s other features (assisted launch, regenerative braking and stop/start).
Despite the introduction of the new, more sophisticated power plant, the base price of the 2018 LaCrosse will be lowered to $30,490.