General Motors recently made an announcement that should make off-road trucking enthusiasts excited. The popular AT4 off-road trim that is currently on the GMC Sierra full-size truck will now be extended to the new 2021 GMC Canyon midsize truck. In addition, GM is improving the top-of-the-line GMC Canyon Denali. The Canyon is already one of the most popular midsize trucks on the road today. These improvements should only enhance the truck’s consumer profile, as it will provide an additional trim level while improving another one, giving buyers extra options to consider. The 2021 GMC Canyon should be available by late spring or early summer.
The Current Canyon
The current 2020 GMC Canyon has a base MSRP of $29,100 and is very powerful for a midsize truck in its class. It has been rated to have towing capabilities up to 7,000 pounds in conventional trailering. Additionally, the Canyon can get up to 20 miles per gallon in city driving and 30 miles per gallon on the highway when equipped with a 21.8-liter Duramax Turbo-Diesel engine. Drivers can choose between a two-door extended cab and a four-door crew cab, as well as 2X4 and 4X4 drivetrains. These are some excellent options and highly impressive numbers for a truck of its size. However, the folks at General Motors were not satisfied with this and decided to make an even better Canyon for a new decade.
Hitting the Off-Road with the 2021 GMC Canyon AT4
The AT4 is a popular off-road model of the Canyon’s big sister, the Sierra. So, the decision was made to take the same specs and apply them to the midsize Canyon. As Duncan Aldred, the vice president of Global Buick and GMC, explained, “The new 2021 Canyon AT4 broadens the appeal to midsize truck customers who live an active lifestyle. Much like the Sierra AT4 has attracted new customers from outside GMC, the Canyon AT4 will attract outdoor enthusiasts looking for a premium midsize truck to GMC with capability, technology, and refinement they’ve come to expect.”
Let’s face it; there are few things more fun and exciting than going out with your friends to take a well-equipped truck out on the trail, and pushing it to the limit. With the 2021 GMC Canyon AT4, you will have to do some serious pushing to reach those limits. The AT4 will have numerous trim specific off-road features, including 31-inch Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac tires fitted to 17-inch aluminum wheels. There will also be a four-wheel-drive system with Eaton G80 Rear Automatic Locking Differential, 2-speed AutoTrac transfer case, and an off-road-tuned suspension with an advanced hill descent control system to provide greater stability and control. The AT4 will feature a transfer case skid plate to provide protection during off-roading.
Looking the Part
General Motors has made great efforts to ensure the Canyon AT4 has a look to match its abilities. The features will be both rugged and refined, giving you a comfortable interior to go with the tough exterior. The AT4’s interior will feature dark-finish technical aluminum details, AT4 badges, and heated front seats to go along with available premium leather-appointed front seats with Kalahari accents. The exterior will carry through on this theme with front and rear red tow and recovery hooks, and a larger front grille. Vice president Aldred goes on to state that, “This is a truck created with outdoor adventurers in mind. The Canyon AT4 is a perfect complement to the driver’s other passions and appreciation of the details, whether that’s a mountain bike, a snowboard, or their truck.” GMC clearly understands the off-road, sporting lifestyle, and has created a perfect truck for the off-road enthusiast, the 2021 GMC Canyon AT4.
Reach the Summit of Luxury and Performance with the Denali
General Motors is also making improvements to the top-of-the-line Denali trim for the 2021 GMC Canyon. This will include a trim exclusive heroic grille. The new grille design is more layered and sculpted for a more unique look. The designers at GMC have also added 5-inch chrome assist steps, signature chrome accents, and level exclusive 20-inch Diamond Cut aluminum wheels. These exterior changes will give the Canyon Denali a similar look and profile to the Sierra Denali and Sierra HD Denali trucks. As GMC’s director of exterior design, Holt Ware, points out, “Denali represents GMC’s bold design philosophy, and these changes further elevate the Canyon from the mainstream competition, while delivering a modern look for the customer. It features a more distinctive and sophisticated design that has become synonymous with Denali.” GMC knows that if drivers are going to pay a premium for a Canyon Denali, they want a truck that is out of the ordinary and will help them stand out in a crowd.
The new looks of the 2021 GMC Canyon Denali are carried over into the truck’s interior. Further refinements include authentic, open-pore ash wood trim, embroidered front head restraints, aluminum décor, and unique upholstery stitching. GMC’s design team has adopted a new cocoa and dark atmosphere theme color for the Denali, adding to the trim level’s distinctive looks. Standard heated and ventilated front seats with a heated steering wheel complete the package.
Infotainment for On and Off the Road
The 2021 GMC Canyon AT4 and Denali trim will feature a premium GMC infotainment system. This upgrade will allow drivers to download popular apps to the system in their trucks, including the Waze navigation system and The Weather Channel. The infotainment system is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible and will feature available wireless smartphone charging. Finally, the 2021 GMC Canyon Denali will come with a Bose premium audio system, which is an upgrade on the AT4 trim. With all of these technology features, it is almost guaranteed truck owners will find themselves sitting the driveway listening to some tunes.
The 2021 GMC Canyon AT4 and Denali will come equipped with a standard 3.6-liter V-6 engine that has been rated to provide up to 308 horsepower and 275 pounds-to-feet of torque. This features direct fuel injection and variable valve timing to improve efficiency and power, as well as a dual overhead camshaft design. Testing has shown that drivers of the Canyon equipped with this engine can go from zero-to-60 miles per hour in roughly 6.3 seconds. This is one truly powerful and efficient engine for a midsize truck.
General Motors will also offer a 2.8-liter Duramax Turbo-Diesel 4-cylinder engine. This utilizes dual overhead camshafts and direct injection to produce up to 181 horsepower and 369 pounds to feet of torque. This engine is powerful and fuel-efficient, as shown by the figures for the current model Canyon equipped with this engine. The 2021 GMC Canyon AT4 and Denali are expected to feature an 8-speed automatic transmission as well.
2021 Canyon Predictions
While General Motors has not announced information regarding the other 2021 GMC Canyon trim levels, it is believed that they will have some new versions of the SLE, SLT, and SL. It is also predicted that GMC will use the same standard engine for each of the three trim levels, following the current 2020 GMC Canyon. This engine is a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine with dual overhead camshaft design, direct fuel injection and variable valve timing. This engine can produce up to 200 horsepower and 191 pounds to feet of torque.
More information about the engine options, trim levels, and MSRP for the 2021 GMC Canyon will be forthcoming from General Motors. The 2021 year looks like it will be good for midsize truck enthusiasts due to the introduction of the 2021 GMC Canyon, especially the new AT4 and the upgraded Denali trim levels.