The GMC Yukon and Yukon XL are all new for the 2021 model year. The redesigned SUV's are larger inside and out, providing significantly more space for both occupants and any luggage they might have. In addition to the extra space, GMC has also packed the new Yukon full of technology, including available features such as a huge head up display and up to nine different camera angles that make maneuvering the SUV far easier in parking lot situations. Also new for 2021 are the off-road focused AT4 models. GMC has recently introduced the AT4 model line as a sort of alternative to their upscale Denali badge, with AT4 vehicles featuring not just four-wheel drive, but a host of trick features to massively boost the off-road ability of these vehicles.
The Yukon is powered by one of three engines. The base engine is a 5.3L V8 engine producing 355 horsepower. An optional 6.2L V8 produces 420 horsepower and comes standard on Denali models. For those interested in using their Yukon for towing, a 3.0L in-line 6-cylinder diesel option is also available and while it makes 277 horsepower, it makes a stout 460 lb-ft of torque. All engines send power to the rear wheels via a 10-speed automatic transmission, while four-wheel drive is available as an option on all models except the AT4 where it comes standard.
There are two basic body styles available on the Yukon, the short wheelbase standard version and the long wheelbase XL. Unlike most large SUV's offered in two sizes, both versions have roomy third row seats, with even the standard Yukon advertising nearly 35 inches of legroom for 3rd row occupants, more than what was available last year in the longer XL variant. This year's XL adds a bit more 3rd row legroom, but the back seats were already spacious so most of the extra room can be used for cargo, where the Yukon XL one ups the standard version by about twenty cubic feet.
GM Estimates that about sixty percent of buyers opt for the Denali version of the Yukon and so they've put real effort into making it its own distinct entity. For the first time, the Yukon Denali gets its own interior, including a unique instrument panel, unique seats, four distinct color schemes and of course its own selection of interior materials. Outside, Denali versions are easy to recognize thanks to their unique grille and LED lighting. Inside, the Denali comes with a surround vision camera with nine different views, a huge 15-inch head-up display, front pedestrian alert and Magnetic Ride Control, which means adjustable suspension that is capable of firming up in a fraction of a second. Optional items available on the Denali include a huge panoramic sunroof, Air Ride suspension that can be raised and lowered at the push of a button and of course, 22-inch wheels.
Alternatively, buyers can opt for the new AT4 trim. Like the Denali, it also gets its own unique front fascia, though this one looks rugged rather than slick, with lots of body colored, rather than chrome accents. Four-wheel drive comes standard, as does a two-speed transfer case, 20-inch all terrain tires, Hill Descent Control, skid plates and a Traction Select System which includes an off-road mode. Inside, the AT4 also gets a few unique features such as a Jet Black interior theme. Standard features include a heated steering wheel, heated and ventilated front seats and heated second-row outboard seats.