Capable and comfortable. The 2019 GMC Canyon can tow and haul more than many competitors, has decent fuel efficiency and is easy to drive.
This mid-size pick-up is an upscale cousin to the Chevrolet Colorado. Both trucks have the same platform and towing and hauling capabilities but the Canyon has more features and costs a bit more. The Canyon got a makeover for the 2015 model year and gets some additional features for 2019 including an updated infotainment system.
The Canyon is available in six trims: SL, Canyon, SLE, SLT, All Terrain and Denali. It can seat 2 to 5 passengers depending on the configuration. Rear-wheel-drive is standard and all-wheel-drive is available. Note that not every engine, cab and bed is available on each one. Starting prices range from $21,400 to $44,200.
The standard powertrain is a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 200 horsepower and 191 pound-feet of torque paired with a six-speed manual transmission. If you’re planning to use your Canyon for towing and hauling, you’ll want one of the other two engine choices: a 2.8-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel that generates 186 horses and 369 pound-feet paired with a six-speed automatic, or a 3.6-liter V6 that makes 308 hp and 275 pound-feet mated with an eight-speed automatic.
My tester has the V6 which has plenty of power for most driving situations. It’s fairly quick off the line and there’s enough juice for merging and passing at freeway speeds. The Canyon is pleasant to drive with a smooth ride and handles like a smaller vehicle.
EPA mileage estimates for my tester are 17 mpg city and 24 mpg highway with a combined rating of 19. I got 19 mpg during my week with a mix of city and highway driving.
The Canyon can tow up to 3,500 pounds with the four-cylinder engine and up to 7,700 pounds with the diesel—that’s excellent for the class. It can haul up to 1,605 pounds with the V6.
The interior is pleasant with mostly upscale materials. The front seats are roomy and comfortable, although you may wish for more support on long trips. My tester has the crew cab which can technically fit three passengers in the second row, but two will be more comfortable.
Standard features include a rearview camera, vinyl upholstery, power-adjustable driver’s seat, six-speaker audio system, Bluetooth, two USB ports, the updated GMC Infotainment system with a seven-inch touchscreen, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, and Teen Driver, the system that lets you set things like speed and audio volume limits for your teenagers.
The infotainment system is user-friendly. Menus are logical and the system responds quickly to touch and voice commands. There are also large knobs that are easy to reach and use.
Available features include cloth or leather upholstery, automatic climate control, leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated steering wheel, heated and ventilated front seats, seven-speaker Bose audio system, satellite radio, HD radio, more USB ports, eight-inch touchscreen, navigation, Wi-Fi hotspot, wireless phone charging. Available driver assistance technologies include lane departure warning, rear parking sensors and forward collision warning.
The Crew Cab and Extended Cab models have a 6-foot-2-inch bed. A 5-foot-2-inch bed is also available on the Crew. An EZ Lift-and-Lower tailgate is available that lets you open and close the tailgate with just one hand.
Interior space can be tough to utilize efficiently. The rear seats fold easily enough, but there’s not enough room for large or bulky items.
Rivals include its cousin the Chevy Colorado and the Honda Ridgeline, Nissan Frontier and Toyota Tacoma.
Available in several configurations
Easy to drive
Can tow and haul more than rivals when properly equipped
Decent fuel efficiency for the class
User-friendly infotainment system
Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are standard
Few available driver assistance technologies
Interior cargo space is limited
My tester starts at $43,800. 20-inch Aluminum wheels are $2,395. Trailer brake controller is $230. Chrome recovery hooks are $200. All-weather floor liners are $190. Techno Steel interior trim kit is $180. Trailer hitch tow ball cover is $35. Destination charge is $995 bringing the grand total to $48,025.
The 2019 GMC Canyon with the V6 or diesel engine can tow and haul more than many rivals and is available in a number of configurations so you can get the truck that’s right for you. If you’re shopping for an upscale midsize truck, you’ll want to consider the Canyon.