DETROIT — Starting with the 2019 model year, Buick vehicles will no longer bear the name in North America.
As each vehicle shifts in the next model year, the company said, the naming badge will disappear.
Ditching the "Buick" script badge first was the 2019 Buick Envision. The badge was conspicuously absent during the premiere of the vehicle's midcycle refresh last month.
"It was a small running change that we didn't view as especially worth announcing to the world, but I've been pretty amazed by the interest in it in the past couple days," Buick spokesman Stuart Fowle said.
The main reason for dropping the script is consistency across marketplaces, according to Fowle. Since launching Buick in China, the only market outside of North America for the brand, the badge has been absent on those vehicles.
But market research Buick conducted revealed that three out of four consumers recognize the tri-shield badge as Buick without seeing the name.
"We are in the minority of brands that have their badge in addition to having their name on the back of the vehicle," Fowle said. "It was like we were saying Buick on the back of the car two times."
Across the industry, Buick found name badges are disappearing more and more from vehicles. The exception, Buick found, is the pickup market, where the badges appear to get bigger and bigger in each model iteration.
Another benefit of losing the Buick script is clearing space for the Avenir name. Buick's upscape subbrand is currently marked on the two front doors of the Enclave and the LaCrosse, though nothing today identifies Avenir from the rear, Fowle said.