The LaCrosse is a sophisticated and thoroughly modern sedan. Quiet, roomy and luxurious, it offers responsive handling and a steady ride, qualities not normally associated with past Buicks. However, the cockpit is a bit narrow, the dashboard is busy, and styling restricts visibility and access. For 2012, a 2.4-liter four-cylinder mated to a light hybrid system replaced the underpowered 2.4-liter four-cylinder base engine.
Alerts
There are 3 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Reliability

Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how used vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system.

Overall Reliability
Most Common Trouble Spots
Common Trouble Spot
Common Trouble Spot
The 2012 Buick LaCrosse has been recalled 3 times by NHTSA. View Recalls
Research Years *Redesign year
Worse Better
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01
02
03
04
05*
06
07
08
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10*
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17*
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Overall Reliability Verdict
NA
NA
NA
Potential Trouble Spots
Engine Major
NA
NA
NA
Engine Minor
NA
NA
NA
Engine Cooling
NA
NA
NA
Transmission Major
NA
NA
NA
Transmission Minor
NA
NA
NA
Drive System
NA
NA
NA
Fuel System
NA
NA
NA
Electric System
NA
NA
NA
Climate System
NA
NA
NA
Suspension
NA
NA
NA
Brakes
NA
NA
NA
Exhaust
NA
NA
NA
Paint/Trim
NA
NA
NA
Body Integrity
NA
NA
NA
Body Hardware
NA
NA
NA
Power Equipment
NA
NA
NA
In-car Electronics
NA
NA
NA
Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey for about 420,000 vehicles, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how 2000 through 2019 vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system. NA indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.

Learn more about car Reliability.

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2012 Buick LaCrosse owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

What Owners Say

CD player

"cd got stuck"

Jose H., TX (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Radio

"Sometimes the only thing that will play is static. Doesn't matter if it's radio, CD, or aux. sometimes it's fine, no rhyme or reason"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

"Total Display Unit with Radio had to be replaced because it did not work"

Anonymous, CA (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Display screen difficult to see

"Radio started changing stations on its own. It was replaced, then the screen was not as bright as it should be. The service department is still working on this problem"

John S., TN (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

"The display is for the navigation system"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
In-dash navigation system (GPS)

"Does not work because display/radio unit had to be replaced"

Anonymous, CA (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"sometimes it double tracks"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"Display would show only an arrow, pointing in the wrong direction. No streets or anything else, even on an Interstate"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"Had a chip failure which caused the navigation to stop. Also had an issue with the key being recognized by the car which prevented it from starting"

James M., IN (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Headlights

"Right hand Xenon headlight/power supply failure"

Anonymous, WI (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"Water leaked inside of the headlight. The Dealer replaced the headlight under warranty"

Britt C., TX (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Tire pressure monitor

"Passenger side monitors are wired backward so the front tire shows as the rear on the dash screen and vice versa"

Anonymous, FL (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

"valve stems just needed to be reprogrammed - took 5 minutes"

John R., MO (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)
Heated or cooled seats

"Passenger seat heated unit keeps going off after about 3 minutes"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Buick LaCrosse None Unsure)
Interior lights

"When opening a door the interior lights might or might not come on. This is the only car that Buick knows of with this problem"

Anonymous, IA (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Keyless entry

"Key fob has flip-out ignition key. The key had been sticking part way regularly, and the last time I flipped it the rest of the way out, the key fell out on the ground. The theft prevention won't let the car start if the key is not in the fob, so I h"

John R., MO (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

"The system quit working and a new door handle had to be installed and system reprogramed"

Larry L., FL (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"Periodically, the entire electrical system shuts down, preventing us from unlocking the car. Occurs randomly. During this time, the car is "dead", with no lights or any other electrical activity. Since it has electronic ignition, you're stuck"

Steve B., CO (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

"nod need to discuss"

R K., CT (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"Water leaks into trunk, gasket replaced, water still leaks. Tires slowly lose air pressure repeatedly"

Michael L., PA (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Seals and/or weather-stripping

"The weather-stripping had a hole allowing water into the cabin"

Anonymous, MI (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Squeaks or rattles

"When this new car was delivered to me one of the rear shock absorbers was leaking oil all over my driveway. It took two visits to get it fixed"

Anonymous, NJ (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

"Rattle when starting, squeeks when turning. Dealerships have not found causes"

Anonymous, WI (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Wind noise

"the noise starts when I roll down the windows front and back... I can not keep front and rear windows open when I drive. the noie is very loud"

R K., CT (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Master cylinder

"The master cylinder had to be replaced in Feb 2017"

Walter S., CT (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Squeaking

"Right front wheel bearing went out @ about 45,000, four years old"

Anonymous, KY (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"When the car is started and first moved (frontward or backward) there is a loud and VERY ANNOYING squeaking or squealing noise coming from one or more of the wheels. It lasts several minutes before quieting down. I have reported this numerous times to the dealer and nothing is done. This issued started shortly after delivery"

Anonymous, NJ (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)
Normal routine brake wear

"Replace brake pads"

Anonymous, WI (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

"The silver decorative trim at the rear of the vehicle wore away"

Anonymous, MI (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"paint coming off of lower part of all 4 doors"

Dennis D., MI (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

"This year 2017, in April I had to have a rusty section removed,repaired and painted near the left rear door"

Anonymous, KY (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Loose interior trim or moldings

"loose kick plate"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Wheel bearings

"Had to replace wheel bearing at 34k miles"

Tyler P., CO (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"The car was making the noise associated with wheel bearing failure. The dealership replaced the wheel bearings for one side but now the same noise has recurring"

Brock H., MI (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

"Experienced a grinding sound. Both front bearings went bad. Diagnosed by dealership immediately and fixed under warranty. Runs perfectly now"

David J., OH (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Transmission leaks

"fluid line small leak"

Anonymous, CO (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)
Slipping transmission

"Buick was slipping in 1st gear. I had to have the service department work on it twice. Also had to have leak checked twice, it seems to be ok now"

Ronald M., SC (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Transmission computer

"When shifting to a lower gear to accelerate the transmission will sometimes delay the shift or pause between gears rather than selecting a lower gear immediately. This cam be dangerous when trying to get through an intersection"

Gregory H., IN (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Pipes

"All the 4 cyclinder tail pipes are too short. The result is a constant smudge and exhaust mark on the rear body. Common on all 4 cyclinders. Told GM dealer twice...no response. Ugly"

David W., AL (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)
Other/unsure

"Tire air pressure sensor.Now fixed"

Anonymous, IN (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"This encompasses the entire unit; after a bout of extremely cold weather, nothing worked, no voice commands the phone didn't pair, then the volume slider would just appear on the screen without me touching anything to prompt it to. Also it froze on m"

Jo-Ann K., PA (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

What Owners Say

A/C compressor

"failure of compressor and replacement required"

Anonymous, MN (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"The electronics went out in the compressor"

Anonymous, TX (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)
Automatic climate control

"There is an outstanding TSB on my car about the climate control having issues with mold buildup. My car reeks when I first turn it on in warm weather and I have to open all of the windows to flush the air out of the car"

Gregory H., IN (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Battery (not hybrid or electric)

"Need a new battery, this was the second new battery, it was not covered under warranty"

Larry L., FL (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"Battery failed at 29 months, disabling car"

Christopher W., CO (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Oil leaks

"Timing chain cover had a leak"

Eric S., UT (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Engine knock or ping

"Wife had issue that she could not accelerate and had shaking in wheels, she cannot remember what it was"

Michael M., NJ (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

What Owners Say

Water pump

"Water pump went bad was covered under warranty"

Larry L., FL (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

"For a car with so many warning lights & bells, there was no warning of a problem. 2 times in a week the car continued to make a (shortlived - maybe 10 to 20 seconds)humming/running sound after I shut off the ignition. Then 1 day after running a few short errands as I returned home bells were ringing and messages were appearing 0n the dashboard that the car was overheating!!! engine heat indicator was all the way over to HIGH!! I was afraid it would blow. I had scanned the dash while driving"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

What Owners Say

Doors or sliding doors

"drivers side door molding worn and torn"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)
Seat controls - movement

"Replaced track - roller bearings loose"

Anonymous, NY (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 3.6-L V6)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

Driveshaft or axle

"I lost a passenger/front wheel bearing"

Matt B., ME (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

"The transmission would stop shifting at times while driving. For example, the car would not shift into gear to move after stopping at a traffic light. Not sure of the exact problem, but the dealership said that the entire transmission needed to be replaced"

Anonymous, TN (2012 Buick LaCrosse None 2.4-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

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This score shows whether the model had more or fewer problems overall than the average model of that year, calculated from the total number of problems reported by subscribers in all 17 trouble spots.
Recalls
PROVIDED BY
SEATS:FRONT ASSEMBLY:POWER ADJUST
Jul 23 2014
If the driver's seat unexpectedly drops, the distraction and altered seat position may affect the drivers' control of the vehicle, increasing the risk of a crash.
Summary:
General Motors LLC (GM) is recalling certain model year 2011-2012 Buick LaCrosse, Regal and Chevrolet Camaro, as well as certain 2010-2012 Cadillac SRX, Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain vehicles, equipped with power height adjustable driver and passenger seats. In the affected vehicles, the bolt that secures the driver's and passenger's power front seat height adjuster may fall out causing the seat to drop suddenly to the lowest vertical position.
What should you do:
GM will notify owners, and dealers will replace the height adjuster shoulder bolts, free of charge. The manufacturer distributed interim letters to owners on September 11, 2014. The recall began on December 26, 2014. Owners may contact GM customer service at 1-800-521-7300 (Buick), 1-800-458-8006 (Cadillac), 1-800-222-1020 (Chevrolet), or 1-800-462-8782 (GMC). GM's number for this recall is 14271.
For more information:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 14V447000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 414333
ELECTRICAL SYSTEM
May 06 2013
If the vehicle is continued to be driven, the engine may stall and/or the vehicle may not start. In addition, there may be a burning or melting odor, smoke, and possibly a fire in the trunk.
Summary:
General Motors (GM) is recalling certain model year 2012 and 2013 Buick LaCrosse and Regal, and model year 2013 Chevrolet Malibu Eco vehicles equipped with eAssist. These vehicles may have a condition in which the Generator Control Module (GCM) may not function properly. This could cause a gradual loss of battery charge and the illumination of the malfunction indicator light.
What should you do:
GM will notify owners and dealers will test the GCM and replace it, as necessary, free of charge. The recall began on June 11, 2013. Owners may contact GM at 1-800-521-7300. GM's recall campaign number is 13136.
For more information:
Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 13V173000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 42904
ELECTRONIC STABILITY CONTROL
Aug 03 2011
THE IMPROPER DIAGNOSING MAY CAUSE THE ESC TO FALSELY ACTIVATE, RESULTING IN SUDDEN CHANGES IN VEHICLE HANDLING AND DECELERATION, PARTICULARLY AT HIGHER SPEEDS, WHICH MAY CAUSE THE DRIVER DIFFICULTY IN MAINTAINING THE VEHICLE'S DESIRED PATH OF TRAVEL AND DESIRED VEHICLE SPEED, AND COULD RESULT IN A CRASH WITHOUT WARNING.
Summary:
GM IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 2012 BUICK LACROSSE PASSENGER VEHICLES MANUFACTURED FROM JUNE 9, 2011, THROUGH JULY 2, 2011, FOR FAILING TO CONFORM TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 126, "ELECTRONIC STABILITY CONTROL SYSTEMS (ESC)." THE STABILITRAK SYSTEM HAS AN INCORRECT CALIBRATION THAT MAY CAUSE THE SYSTEM TO NOT PROPERLY DETECT IF A SENSOR WERE TO MALFUNCTION, AND THE WARNING LIGHT INDICATING THAT THE SYSTEM IS NOT OPERATING WOULD NOT ILLUMINATE, AS REQUIRED IN THE SAFETY STANDARD.
What should you do:
GM DEALERS WILL REPROGRAM THE ELECTRONIC BRAKE CONTROL MODULE FREE OF CHARGE. THE SAFETY RECALL BEGAN ON SEPTEMBER 12, 2011. OWNERS MAY CONTACT BUICK AT 1-866-608-8080.
For more information:
GM'S SAFETY RECALL NUMBER IS 11222.OWNERS MAY ALSO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY TRAFFIC SAFETY ADMINISTRATION'S VEHICLE SAFETY HOTLINE AT 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), OR GO TO <A HREF=HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV>HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV</A> .
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V404000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 4077
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