|2015 GMC Canyon All Terrain SLE Extended Cab Short Bed Click to enlarge.
GMC revealed the new 2015 Canyon midsize pickup on the eve of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Based on a proven global architecture, the new Canyon will initially offer two engines, with a Duramax 2.8L turbodiesel engine coming in the 2016 model year.
The standard 2.5L I-4 is estimated at 193 horsepower (146 kW) and 184 lb-ft of torque (253 N·m), with approximately 90% of the peak torque available from 2,000 rpm to 6,200 rpm. The 3.6L V-6 engine is estimated at 302 horsepower (224 kW) and 270 lb-ft of torque (366 N·m). SAE certification of the power ratings is pending. Both engines feature direct injection and variable valve timing.
An aluminum block, forged-steel crankshaft, dual-overhead camshafts and jet-spray piston cooling are featured on both engines. The 2.5L incorporates a two-stage variable-displacement oil pump, for greater efficiency, as well as a balance shaft located in the oil pan, for greater refinement.
All models are matched with a six-speed automatic transmission that complements the truck-tuned engines with features that make hauling and trailering easier and more comfortable, including auto grade braking and a tow/haul mode. A six-speed manual transmission is also available with the 2.5L engine in base extended cab/2WD models.
The Canyon will also offer what GMC said its the segment’s best payload of at least 1,450 pounds (657 kg), and the best maximum trailering rating (when properly equipped) of at least 6,700 pounds (3,039 kg).
From a refinement standpoint, the Canyon features triple-sealed doors inlaid in the body sides, like the 2014 Sierra, for improved aerodynamic performance and a quieter interior. And to help keep overall mass down and improve the front-to-rear weight balance, the Canyon features an all-new aluminum hood.
It also features the segment’s only active aero grille shutters, which close at certain highway speeds to enhance efficiency through improved aerodynamics.
Like the full-size Sierra, Canyon is built on a fully boxed perimeter frame. A coil-over-type front suspension features aluminum knuckles that are low in mass and high in strength contributing to a more responsive, immediate feel to driver inputs, as well as efficiency. The 2015 Canyon also features the segment’s first application of electric power steering, which enhances efficiency because it is not driven by the engine.
Canyon is available with an automatic locking rear differential known by its G80 option code. Introduced by General Motors more than 40 years ago, it gives drivers a traction advantage when needed and everyday comfort when it’s not. It is available on SLE and SLT, and standard with the All-Terrain package.
AutoTrac automatic four-wheel drive is also a segment-first feature, which employs an electronically controlled transfer case that allows the driver to shift from 2WD to 4WD. The driver can select four modes, 2WD, Auto, 4WD HI, or 4WD Lo. By selecting ‘Auto’ mode, the transfer case will operate in 2WD and will automatically apply traction to the front wheels (4WD) when the vehicle senses wheel slippage.
Canyon’s technologies include available OnStar 4G LTE connectivity with a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot and expected segment-first available driver alert features such as forward collision alert, lane departure warning and a standard rear-vision camera.
A standard 4.2-inch-diagonal color driver information screen is in the instrument cluster; an eight-inch-diagonal color touch screen and multiple USB ports are available, as is Siri Eyes Free Mode for iPhone users.
Canyon models with an eight-inch IntelliLink screen will also feature a new in-car app marketplace: GMC AppShop. It allows customers to download apps directly to their IntelliLink system and organize, update or delete them throughout the life of the vehicle. Available apps will connect drivers to music, news, weather, travel information, vehicle data and more.
Additionally, RemoteLink Key Fob Services allow owners to lock and unlock their vehicle, flash the lights and honk the horn, and, on equipped models, even remotely start the engine using the RemoteLink smartphone app. The service is free for five years. Additional OnStar services and data plans will be available with a paid subscription.
Canyon also features the segment’s only standard projector beam headlamps and GMC’s signature C-shaped LED daytime running lamps on all models. Three body configurations are offered: An extended cab model with a six-foot bed, a crew cab with a five-foot bed and a crew cab with a six-foot bed. With the tailgate down, the six-foot bed allows eight-foot-long items to be hauled within the vehicle.
Canyon is offered in base, SLE and SLT models, in 2WD and 4WD models, and with an aggressively styled All-Terrain package offered on SLE models. It includes 17-inch painted aluminum wheels covered by all-terrain tires, a body-color grille surround with horizontal chrome bars and specific suspension tuning.
GMC has manufactured trucks since 1902; the brand is evolving to offer more fuel-efficient trucks and crossovers, including the Terrain small SUV and Acadia crossover. GMC’s highest-volume vehicle, the Sierra pickup, is the most powerful light-duty pickup on the market, and the first full-size pickup to receive the highest-possible five-star Overall Vehicle Score for safety since the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration changed its New Car Assessment Program for the 2011 model year.