When an automaker decides to overhaul a model and replace it with a new one, we often expect the new model to be bigger particularly in the SUV segment. However, GMC did completely the opposite.
The new Acadia has reduced in length and also it has lost significant weight (around 700 pounds). This goes to say that bigger is not always better. The new vehicle is built on GM’s new ‘Chi’ architecture which replaces the outdated ‘Lambda’ chassis.
The new 2017 GMC Acadia is offered in either 5-seat or 7-seat passenger configurations though a 6-seat configuration is offered as an option. The crossover is offered in SLT2, SLT, SLE2, SLE, SL and Denali trim levels.
2017 GMC Acadia Exterior
Extensive use of high-strength steel is what has enabled GMC to achieve the dramatic weight loss. Its reduction in size has also contributed. The new 2017 GMC Acadia is Mid-Size SUV, 193.6 inches long which makes it 7.2 inches shorter than the outgoing model. Its width and height have also been reduced by 3.5 inches and 3.9 inches respectively. The vehicle rides on a 112.5-inch wheelbase which is 7.2 inches shorter than that of the 2016 model.
In addition to the new chassis and reduced weight and dimensions, the new Acadia has a more refined profile. At the front, the new Acadia features a redesigned chromed grille which is flanked by wraparound headlights. Halogen projector headlights are offered as standard but the Denali trim gets HID headlights. All trim levels feature LED DRLs.
The side profile features squared-off and flared wheel arches. At the rear, the vehicle features wraparound windows and dark D-pillars as well as redesigned C-shaped taillights .All trims except the Denali ride on 18-inch aluminum wheels. The Denali trim features a dimensional chrome grille, 6-spoke, 20-inch aluminum wheels and an extensive use of chrome on door handles, on the sides and on the lower rear fascia.
2017 GMC Acadia Interior
GMC has designed the new Acadia cabin to be very functional. While the outgoing models were offered in three rows of seating accommodating 8 passengers, the new Acadia will be availed in either 2 rows accommodating five passengers or 3 rows accommodating either 6 or 7 passengers.
The second-row seats have a split-folding capability and can also slide forward to allow easy access to the third row. The third row has a 50/50 split-folding capability and can be folded flat to increase cargo space from 12.8 cubic feet to 41.7 cubic feet. Folding the second row seats which has 60/40 split-folding capability expands the cargo space to 79 cubic feet.
The vehicle also features a pull-out storage drawer on the rear center console. There is also a new rear seat alert that reminds the driver if an item is left on the rear seats. All three rows get USB charging ports. For connectivity, the Acadia features Android Auto and Apple CarPlay which are integrated with its GMC IntelliLink system and the OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot.
On safety matters, the Acadia adds front pedestrian braking, forward automatic braking (on Denali alone) a Safety Alert Seat, a surround vision camera system, following-distance indicator, IntelliBeam automatic headlights and forward automatic braking (on SLT-2 and Denali trims). These features join the current safety tech package which includes lane keep assist, lane departure warning, forward collision warning, blind-spot alert and front and rear parking assist.
What’s more, the new Acadia also features a Tow Vision Trailering system which uses a camera to help when hitching up to a trailer and also allows the driver to monitor trailer when driving.
The new GMC Acadia will be offered with two drive-train options. The smaller Acadia will be offered with a direct-injected 2.5 L inline-4 engine. The engine comes good with 194 hp and 190 lb-ft of torque. The engine will be offered in both FWD and AWD. The automaker estimates the engine to return 22 mpg in city and 28 mpg on highway drives for FWD models though official EPA ratings are yet to be released.
The 3.6 L V-6 rated at 288 hp on the outgoing models is set to be replaced by a more potent 3.6 L V-6. The new engine is estimated to produce 310 hp and 271 lb-ft of torque. The model is estimated to return 17 mpg in city and 23 mpg on highway drives for FWD models which is a slight improvement from the current models.
Official output and fuel economy ratings will be released later. Models featuring the V-6 are can tow as much as much as 4,000 pounds. Both engines will be paired to a 6-speed automatic transmission system. The models will be offered in FWD as standard and AWD as an option. Further, the vehicle is offered in various driving modes. FWD models are offered in Normal, Snow, Sport and Tow/Trailer modes while AWD models feature 2×4 (AWD disconnect), 4×4, Off Road and Tow/Trailer modes.
Price and release date
GMC has not announced the 2017 GMC Acadia official prices as of this writing. We expect the automaker to shed more light on this information at the Chicago Auto Show which starts on 13th of February to 21st February. However, we don’t expect the price to vary much from the outgoing model which has a starting price of $ 32,000 for the base SLT2 trim.
Whether the new changes will help the model sell more units remains to be seen. The GMC Acadia 2017 will hit dealerships in the second half of 2016.
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