Buick Avenir concept spawns dedicated sub-brand

\'Avenir\' models will borrow the show car\'s grille, with unique seat and trim details.

General Motors has decided to use Buick's Avenir trademark for a dedicated sub-brand.

A French word that translated to 'future,' Avenir was used for the stylish concept car that Buick revealed last year at the Detroit auto show. The sleek sedan boasts a long hood, a tapered tail and a mesh grille borrowed from 1954's Wildcat II concept.

GM suggests the new sub-brand is focused on accommodating Buick's evolving customer base. The brand is said to have experienced a significant uptick in interest from female buyers, while half of all current buyers are coming from rival brands.

Many new customers are also interested in higher levels of quality, with 90 percent of Enclave buyers opting for one of the top two trim levels.

The Avenir sedan and the more recent Avista concept coupe will guide Buick's design language in the coming years. The Avenir sub-brand will likely represent flagship packages for each model, similar to the Denali brand for GMC vehicles.

From the outside, the configurations will be distinguished by a common grille mesh borrowed from the Avista. On the inside, Buick designers will implement unique seat details and enhanced trim materials.

"Through the first half of 2016, Buick has been the industry's fastest-growing major international brand, and Avenir is key to future growth and delivering on the high expectations of new customers coming to our showrooms," says Buick marketing VP Duncan Aldred. "Avenir will be Buick's signature. The highest expression of the luxury experiences we're delivering now and in the future."

The company has not disclosed a time frame for launching the Avenir lineup.

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