Car Reviews

The all-new 2021 GMC Yukon offers new trims and new features

An upgraded Denali and a rugged new AT4.

The 2021 GMC Yukon. GMC

The all-new 2021 GMC Yukon made its debut in Vail, Colorado with updated styling, new features, and improved capability. As the flagship SUV in the GMC lineup, the Yukon and long-wheelbase Yukon XL are premium SUVs designed to deliver a comfortable ride along with all-terrain capability.

The interior of the new Yukon includes premium details and features a power sliding center console. Available on the Denali, AT4, and SLT trims, the storage console between the front driver and passenger seats slides back up to 10 inches. This provides more space for a bag in front of the console as well as access to a hidden drawer beneath the storage bin.

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There’s an available air ride adaptive suspension system for increased comfort over rough terrain or uneven pavement. It lets the driver raise the body up to two inches for greater ground clearance and can also lower it two inches to make stepping into the vehicle easier. Further improving capability is the new Active Response 4WD system, which has a variety of features including magnetic ride control and a new electronic limited slip differential that manage rough road surfaces to provide a smoother ride for passengers.

Driving the Yukon in tight quarters is easier than ever with up to nine available camera views. That’s more than any other vehicle in the segment. Views include a rear camera mirror and GMC’s ProGrade trailering system that takes the stress out of hooking up and driving with a trailer. There’s also a 15-inch multi-color head-up display that keeps information including speed, navigation, and safety features within easy view, so your attention stays focused on the road.

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Inside, the Yukon offers more room for passengers thanks to an increased wheelbase. There’s 41 percent more third-row legroom and 66 percent more cargo volume behind the third row than in the outgoing model. Access to the third row, which can be a challenge in many vehicles, is now easier with second-row seats that slide forward 5.5 inches.

This new generation of the Yukon marks the debut of an all-new Denali trim. The Denali is a sub-brand within GMC that’s reserved for its most premium trims. It has a Galvano chrome grille that’s larger and more detailed with over 10,000 reflective surfaces. The Yukon Denali also shows off advanced lighting technology with LEDs used for the daytime running lamps, headlamps, tail lamps, and fog lamps.

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There’s an exclusive interior with a new instrument panel, unique seats, and a choice of four specialized color themes. The Denali also gets premium materials including real wood trims with a natural look and feel.  Standard leather surfaces throughout are cut and stitched by hand in a unique Denali pattern.

Those looking for increased capability will find it in the first-ever Yukon AT4. Like the Denali, the AT4 is a sub-brand within the GMC lineup, but this one is focused on off-road capability. It’s styled with a bold front fascia and dark accents rather then the chrome of the Denali.

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Standard features for the Yukon AT4 include a two-speed transfer case, 20-inch Goodyear all-terrain tires, Traction Select System with off-road mode, hill descent control, and skid plates for underbody protection. Inside, there are AT4-exclusive leather seats, a Jet Black and Brandy color scheme, heated steering wheel and second-row outboard seats, and heated and ventilated front seats.

Power for the new Yukon comes from a choice of three engines. These include an all-new 5.3-liter V8 that’s standard or an available all-new 6.2-liter V8 with 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque. There’s also an all-new 3.0-liter 6-cylinder turbodiesel. All three engines are paired to a 10-speed automatic transmission. Fuel economy figures are still forthcoming.

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The GMC Yukon offers a wide range of improvements designed to appeal to customers who want an upscale, three-row SUV. An improved Denali trim, the new off-road-ready AT4, and upgraded technologies are sure to help the Yukon maintain its popularity.

The all-new 2021 GMC Yukon is set to go on sale later this summer. Pricing and additional details will be released closer to the start of production.

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