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GMC Canyon Review

The 2016 GMC Canyon ranks 3 out of 4 Compact Pickup Trucks. This ranking is based on our analysis of published reviews and test drives of the GMC Canyon, as well as reliability and safety data.

Reviewers praise the 2016 GMC Canyon for its upscale interior, powerful engines and user-friendly tech features.

The 2016 GMC Canyon features a base four-cylinder engine and a six-speed manual transmission. A V6 engine, a new-for-2016 four-cylinder turbodiesel and six-speed automatic transmission are available. The Canyon gets an EPA-estimated 19/26 mpg city/highway, which is good for the class. Test drivers say that all engines provide good power, but the V6 stands out as the clear choice for towing and hauling. Most critics find that the automatic transmission shifts well and changes gears readily on hills. They add that the Canyon rides comfortably and is composed through corners.[ Ready to buy? Get the best local price on a 2016 GMC Canyon ]

Automotive writers praise the 2016 Canyon for its use of quality materials throughout the interior, which they say impart an upscale feel. They note that the cabin is quiet, even at highway speeds. Some test drivers feel that the front seats lack support on long drives, though others find the front seats comfortable. They add that while extended cab models have cramped rear seats, the crew cab models offer enough rear-seat room for adults to fit easily. Standard features in the Canyon include a USB port, a 4.2-inch display screen and a rearview camera. Available features include Bluetooth, satellite radio, a seven-speaker Bose audio system, automatic climate control, cruise control, lane departure warning, forward collision alert and GMC’s IntelliLink infotainment system with an 8-inch touch screen, Siri Eyes Free and Apple CarPlay. OnStar 4G LTE with a built-in Wi-Fi hot spot is also available. The audio and climate controls are clearly labeled and easily reachable, according to reviewers. They add that IntelliLink is generally straightforward, although some audio functions could be simplified.

  • "Fully redesigned last year, the 2016 GMC Canyon runs circles around the Nissan Frontier and outgoing Toyota Tacoma, its two main pickup rivals, in nearly every respect -- though it remains to be seen whether U.S. truck shoppers will embrace the smaller GM models or instead choose a full-size truck with more capabilities, such as the Chevrolet Silverado or GMC Sierra." -- AutoTrader
  • "With a premium look and feel, and the ability to option in to a very large number of bells and whistles, GMC really is breaking new ground for a truck segment that has mostly existed for value shoppers, thus far." -- Autoblog (2015)
  • "The 2015 has been enlarged to the point where it now measures up well against its chief competition, the Toyota Tacoma and Nissan Frontier. Combined with a more refined interior and the latest technology, it's now the most advanced midsize pickup you can buy." -- Edmunds (2015)
  • "GM says the Canyon is the 'premium truck in the segment,' which, given its distinct lack of competitors, is a bit like saying that Google is a popular search engine. Still, the brand has come to the table with a convincing package that hits all the right marks for a truck in an easy-to-manage package." -- Car and Driver (2015)

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Other Trucks to Consider

Test drivers report that the Chevrolet Colorado delivers a quiet ride and precise steering. They note that the Colorado has an attractive cabin that utilizes top-notch materials.

The Toyota Tacoma offers excellent off-road performance, according to critics. They add that the interior is smartly-designed and features straightforward climate and audio controls.

Compare the Canyon, Colorado and Tacoma »

Details: 2016 GMC Canyon

The 2016 GMC Canyon comes standard with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine and a six-speed manual transmission. A 3.6-liter V6 engine and a 2.8-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel engine are available, as is a six-speed automatic transmission. The Canyon seats four in extended cab models and five in crew cab models and comes in four trims: base, SL, SLE and SLT. The Canyon was reintroduced to GMC’s lineup in 2015 and aside from the introduction of the turbodiesel engine, features no major changes for 2016. As a result, this overview includes applicable research and reviews from the 2015 and 2016 model years.

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