2011 LA Auto Show Preview: Buick LaCrosse GL Concept

Article by Christian Andrei, on November 11, 2011

Buick’s design study on the LaCrosse GL concept vehicle will be unveiled at the upcoming L.A. Auto Show. Expect to see a palette of cabernet red, dark cocoa brown and caramel choccachino. Buick’s designers were inspired by the burnished metal of antique jewelry, ombré patina on vintage guitars and flocked lining of keepsake boxes.

GL’s French-stitched premium leather seats were inspired by the subtle elegance of classic club chairs and the outlines of windswept sand dunes. Its headliner uses smooth suede and it also features a set of machine-face, satin-finish 20-inch rims.

The cabernet red exterior paint of the LaCrosse GL goes well with the brushed and tinted chrome accents on the grille, door handles, deck lid, windows, taillights and headlights. The interior has backlit Buick-emblazoned sill plates. The seats are very luxurious and have flowing sculptural surfaces that feature a rich blend of warm-hued materials.

These provide soft-touch refinement and some surprising details. Its seats, doors and instrument panel surfaces have a contrasting dark cocoa brown and caramel choccachino leather finish.

Its seat cushions’ pillowed surfaces are reminiscent of windswept sand dunes while the ice-blue French stitching along their seams complement Buick’s signature ambient lighting. A rich choccachino suede headliner could be found overhead. The steering wheel uses a very enticing butter-soft material.

David Lyon, executive director of design, remarked that the new Buick LaCrosse GL concept is an expression of Buick’s human kind of luxury, which is not only warmly inviting, but is also elegant and refined. He added that the GL amplifies the design cues that mark the production LaCrosse like premium leather-upholstered seats, soft touch surfaces and ice blue ambient lighting.

According to Magdalena Kokoszynska, creative designer on LaCrosse GL, the car’s brushed-and-tinted chrome trim provides more subdued looks than bright chrome -- resulting to an overall appearance that is in line with Buick’s confident aesthetic. Inside, the instrument cluster and center stack controls are provided with metal accents in darker yet warmer hue.

This warm design is furthered by the wooden trim on the steering wheel and dash, thereby evoking the ombré patina fade seen on classic Gibson Les Paul guitars.

The interior likewise features leather-surged and accent-stitched floor mats as well as an array of storage compartments. Kokoszynska quipped that Buick crafted the interior of the LaCrosse GL, knowing that while its customers enjoy the finer things in life, they don’t show it off.

Press Release

LaCrosse GL Concept Refines Buickā€™s Signature Style

When designers set out to capture the essence of Buick luxury for the LaCrosse GL concept vehicle, they looked to the fine cuisine, heirloom objects and enriching experiences the brand’s customers savor. The design study is on display at the L.A. Auto Show through Nov. 17.

Buick’s color and trim designers worked from a palette of cabernet red, dark cocoa brown and caramel choccachino. They took inspiration from the burnished metal of antique jewelry, ombré patina on vintage guitars and flocked lining of keepsake boxes. For GL’s French-stitched premium leather seats, the designers looked to the understated elegance of classic club chairs and contours of windswept sand dunes. And their use of smooth suede for the headliner is designed to invite one’s touch like a favorite pair of gloves.
“The LaCrosse GL concept expresses Buick’s distinctly human kind of luxury – one that is as warmly inviting as it is elegant and refined,” said David Lyon, executive director of design. “The design cues that already distinguish the production LaCrosse – such as the premium leather-upholstered seats, ice blue ambient lighting and soft touch surfaces – are amplified in the GL and serve as inspiration for future Buick models.”

LaCrosse GL’s cabernet red exterior paint is complemented by brushed and tinted chrome accents on the grille, door handles and deck lid, as well as around the windows, taillights and headlights. Machine-face, satin-finish 20-inch rims fill the wheel wells for a firmly planted appearance.

“The brushed-and-tinted chrome trim gives the GL a more subdued appearance than if we had used bright chrome. The overall effect is more in keeping with Buick’s quietly confident aesthetic,” said Magdalena Kokoszynska, creative designer on LaCrosse GL.

Open the GL’s doors and backlit Buick-emblazoned sill plates invite one to enter like illuminated welcome mats.

Take a seat and one is ensconced in luxury, enveloped by flowing sculptural surfaces finished in a rich blend of warm-hued materials. They offer soft-touch refinement and surprise-and-delight details. The seats, doors and instrument panel surfaces are finished in contrasting dark cocoa brown and caramel choccachino leather. The seat cushions’ pillowed surfaces evoke windswept sand dunes, and the ice-blue French stitching along their seams harmonize with Buick’s signature ambient lighting.

Overhead, one finds a rich choccachino suede headliner – a material and usage rarely seen in anything but the most luxurious automotive interiors. This butter-soft material also accents the steering wheel, inviting one’s touch.

Like the GL’s exterior trim pieces, the interior metal accents on the instrument cluster and center stack controls are a darker, warmer hue, and are complemented by the swirling grain of wood trim on the steering wheel and dash that evokes the ombré patina fade found on classic Gibson Les Paul guitars.

Attention to detail also is evident underfoot, where leather-surged and accent-stitched floor mats offer further refinement. Likewise, the storage compartments are flocked like the interior of a jewel box.

“Every surface in the interior of the LaCrosse GL has been crafted with the knowledge that Buick customers enjoy the finer things in life, but don’t need to flaunt it,” Kokoszynska said.

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