When Buick decided to offer its first minivan, it attempted to minimize the kid-hauling stigma by labeling the Buick Terraza, a badge-engineered General Motors minivan, a "luxury crossover sport van." Buick marketing-speak translated, the Buick Terraza is a minivan featuring a taller stance, an elongated nose and available all-wheel drive.
While it shares a platform with several corporate siblings such as the Chevrolet Uplander, the Buick Terraza offers a few distinguishing characteristics and styling tricks that lend an upscale feel in comparison. A generous helping of nicely finished leather and wood trim in the uplevel versions provides an elegant ambience not seen in the Buick Terraza's more lowbrow relatives, and there are more standard features as well.
The Buick Terraza minivan is available in three trim levels -- CX, CX Plus and CXL. The well-equipped Buick Terraza CX offered the expected popular amenities, while the Buick Terraza CX Plus added a sport-tuned suspension, dual-zone climate control and auto-leveling rear suspension. The top-of-the-line Buick Terraza CXL provided alloy wheels, rear air-conditioning, rear parking assist and eight-way power front seats.
The Buick Terraza shines inside, comfortably accommodating up to seven people and carrying lots of stuff -- its second- and third-row seats fold down to provide up to 137 cubic feet of space. However, unlike most other minivans, the Buick Terraza's third row does not fold completely into the floor, though it can be removed. The rest of the cabin is luxurious thanks to convincing faux wood and double-stitched leather seats with contrasting piping.
The Buick Terraza is available with first- and second-row side airbags inside and the more powerful 3.9-liter V6 under the hood of front-wheel-drive models. Rear DVD entertainment was made standard, and those wanting more choices could opt for the PhatNoise digital media system.