General Motors’ GMC Division digs back to the midsize truck market with the 2015 GMC Canyon.
Introduced in 2004, GMC Canyon returns to Professional Grade with new technology, advanced safety equipment and more fuel-efficient engines.
“There is definitely a market for a midsize truck,” says Steven Ogrentz, sales manager for Schepel GMC in Merrillville. “GM lost that buyer for a number of years to our competitors.”
Japanese automakers Toyota and Nissan currently build a midsize truck for the American market.
This fall, the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado pickup arrives along with its corporate twin, GMC Canyon.
According to Ogrentz, Canyon buyers don’t need all that is offered in a full-size pickup, but like the use of a cargo bed and the ability to park their truck in a standard home garage.
The 2015 GMC Canyon comes in SL, SLE and upscale SLT trim levels with two- or four-wheel drive.
Canyon’s base engine sizes up to a 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder that builds 200 horsepower and 191 pound-feet of torque.
Buyers may also opt for a 3.6L V6 engine that cranks out best-in-class 305 hp and 262 lb-ft of torque for towing capability of 7,000 pounds.
Canyon’s I-4 musters an impressive 6,000 lb. towing capacity.
With rear-wheel drive, the 2.5L rates fuel economy of 20 miles per gallon in town and 27 mpg on the open road. V6 versions deliver 18/26 mpg respectively.
Recently, I drove GM’s latest midsize pickup on a 92 miles route through rural Illinois that encompassed 36 miles of Historic Route 66 through the hamlets of Wilmington, Braidwood and Dwight.
The old alignments of pavement there offer an excellent test bed for Canyon’s ride quality and handling.
Every bit a truck, the body-on-frame architecture and leaf spring suspension make for a sturdy ride, but with noticeably less bounce. A tight turning radius makes for easy day-to-day maneuverability.
Inside, well cushioned seats, padded armrests and soft-touch surfaces help to absorb the bumps and grinds of road imperfections.
Improved cabin acoustics offer a pleasant riding environment, though engine noise bleeds into the cabin under acceleration buts tempers down once at speed.
Two cargo bed lengths are offered on the 2015 GMC Canyon.
Extended cab models are fitted with a standard 5-foot, 2-inch box, while four–door Crew Cab models are available with a 5-ft, 2-in or 6-ft, 2-in cargo box.
Both box versions feature a dampened tailgate that lowers slowly so as not to slam down when opened for a flat position.
Rear bumpers have an integrated foot hold for a secure step into the box. A bed light is also provided for nighttime loading convenience.
Canyon Crew Cab has comfortable seating space for three passengers in the rear quarters. The extended cab’s rear bench is best suited for youngsters or indoor storage.
All Canyons offer 4G LTE connectivity. SLE and SLT models receive an 8-inch center touch-screen with GMC’s IntelliLink infotainment system.
The 2015 GMC Canyon SL with two-wheel drive and 2.5L engine starts at $20,955. Add $925 for freight.