Buyer's Guide

2021 GMC Yukon
Select a Different Model (14 Available): AT4 4WD
Zero to 60 $ 7.2 seconds
Fuel Economy 16 / 20 mpg
Cargo (Std/Max) 26/123 cu.ft.
Seating (Std/Max) 8/7
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2021 GMC Yukon MODEL OVERVIEW

Pros

  • More attractive than a Tahoe
  • Air Ride adaptive suspension
  • Spacious inside

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Interior could be better
  • A couple ergonomic issues

As the largest SUV in GMC's lineup, the new 2021 Yukon is available in standard or long wheelbase iterations. Closely related to the Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban, the GMC Yukon retains its body-on-frame underpinnings; however, the new architecture has been modernized to maximize interior space and improve ride quality. To further distinguish the Yukon model from its Chevrolet and Cadillac platform mates, GMC has crafted a unique dash layout for the Denali trim, complete with a different touchscreen placement.

What's New

  • New SUV features a new platform, the latest infotainment system, and an independent rear suspension
  • Off-road-oriented AT4 model joins the lineup
  • A diesel engine is now available

What We Think

The redesigned Yukon largely succeeds in its efforts to differentiate itself from the Chevrolet Tahoe/Suburban and Cadillac Escalade with which it shares its underpinnings, something previous Yukons have struggled to achieve. It's a more conservatively styled SUV than its brethren and all the better for it. In our SUV of the Year competition coverage of the Yukon, one staffer called the styling the best reason to consider the GMC over the Chevys or the Cadillac. In that same evaluation, we were pleasantly surprised with the responsive new 10-speed automatic that pairs with the 5.3-liter V-8. The Yukon Denali is also the most affordable way to score GM's magnetic shocks and air ride suspension.

As strong as the exterior design came out, the cabin is underwhelming on non-Denali trims. Button placement feels haphazard throughout and for our money, the GMC's fit, finish, and interior quality seems below par compared to rivals from Mercedes-Benz and BMW. As we mentioned inĀ our Yukon Denali interior review, the GMC lacks its Cadillac sibling's acres of OLED displays, but sufficiently swaddles its passengers for less than you'd spend on an Escalade, and youngsters will be pleased with the available rear seat entertainment setup.

Performance and Fuel Economy

Two gas V-8 engines are available on the 2021 GMC Yukon. SLT models get a 5.3-liter with 355 hp and 383 lb-ft of torque while the range-topping Denali features a 6.2-liter rated at 420 hp and 460 lb-ft. A 3.0-liter turbodiesel I-6, rated at 277 hp and 460 lb-ft, is also now available. All engines are paired exclusively to a 10-speed automatic transmission.

EPA fuel economy estimates are 16/20 mpg city/highway for the standard wheelbase 2021 Yukon SLT regardless of drivetrain configuration, and the rear-drive Yukon XL SLT. The 4WD-equipped Yukon XL SLT is slightly less efficient at 15/19 mpg. Standard wheelbase Denali models are EPA-rated at 15/20 mpg in rear-drive guise or 14/19 mpg with 4WD. Yukon XL Denali models, on the other hand, check in at 14/20 mpg for RWD examples or 14/19 mpg if you opt for one with 4WD.

Safety

All 2021 GMC Yukon models get the GMC Pro Safety Plus suite standard. This bundles together forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, following distance indicator, automatic high beams, lane keeping assist, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and lane departure warning. Rear pedestrian detection is available on the SLT trim via the SLT Luxury package or as standard on the Denali. Adaptive cruise control is only offered on the Denali trim as part of the Advanced Technology package, which also contains an enhanced automatic emergency braking system.

Cargo Space and Towing

With all seats up, the 2021 GMC Yukon has 25.5 cubic feet of cargo space. Capacity increases to 72.6 cubic feet with the third row folded or 122.9 cubic feet with the second and third rows down. The long wheelbase Yukon XL has even more capacity at 41.5 cubic feet with all seats in place, 93.8 cubic feet when the third row is down, or 144.7 cubic feet with the second and third rows folded.

Maximum towing capacity is 8,400 pounds for the 2021 GMC Yukon SLT in RWD guise or 8,200 pounds with 4WD. Denali models are rated to tow 8,200 pounds in RWD configuration or 8,000 if you opt for 4WD. The long-wheelbase Yukon XL SLT can pull 8,300 and 8,000 pounds for RWD and 4WD models, respectively. Yukon XL Denali variants are rated to tow 8,100 pounds for RWD examples and 7,900 pounds with 4WD.

Technology

The 2021 GMC Yukon features the brand's latest infotainment system with a 10.2-inch touchscreen, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, a nine-speaker Bose audio system, and an 8.0-inch gauge cluster display. The Denali trim offers a rear-seat entertainment system, built-in navigation, 14-speaker surround sound audio system, and head-up display.

Trim Levels (Interior and Exterior Options)

2021 GMC Yukon SLT

Exterior: LED headlights and fog lights, 20-inch alloy wheels, front and rear parking sensors, hands-free power liftgate
Interior:
Heated and ventilated 12-way power front seats, leather upholstery, 10.2-inch touchscreen, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, nine-speaker Bose audio system, 8.0-inch gauge cluster display, keyless entry/start, remote start, three-zone climate control, wireless charging
Safety:
Forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, rear cross-traffic alert, lane keeping assist, lane departure warning, blind-spot monitoring, automatic high beams

2021 GMC Yukon Denali

Exterior: 360-degree view parking camera system, 22-inch alloy wheels
Interior:
Built-in navigation, 14-speaker Bose surround sound system, heated second-row seats, driver's side memory settings, power steering column adjustment, power-folding second- and third-row seats, heated steering wheel
Safety:
Rear pedestrian detection
Performance:
Magnetic Ride Control dampers, adaptive air suspension

Packages

SLT Luxury package: 360-degree view parking camera system, memory function for driver's seat, power steering column adjustment, heated steering wheel, heated second-row seats, power-folding second- and third-row seats, rear pedestrian detection
Rear Media and Nav package: Rear-seat entertainment system, built-in navigation
Max Trailering package: Trailer brake control, hitch view and guidance, onboard trailering app, blind-spot monitoring that includes the trailer
SLT Luxury Plus package:
SLT Luxury package, Rear Media and Nav package, Max Trailering package, panoramic sunroof
Denali Premium package: Panoramic sunroof, power retractable side steps, 22-inch alloy wheels, wheel locks, Advanced Technology package
Advanced Technology package: Adaptive cruise control, enhanced automatic emergency braking, rearview mirror with integrated camera

More on the 2021 Yukon

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2021 GMC YUKON SPECIFICATIONS
OVERVIEW
FEATURES
WARRANTY/RECALL
SAFETY
Engine Name
Engine: V8 5.3 Liter EcoTec3
Transmission Name
Transmission, Hydra-Matic 10 Speed Automatic Mode Select with Manual Mode (10L80)
Trim
AT4 4WD
Class
Premium Full-Size Utility
Horsepower
355@5,600
Standard MPG
16/20
Body Style
SUV/Crossover
Drivetrain
4WD
Fuel Type
Unleaded Regular
Seating Capacity
8/7
Package Invoice Retail
Show Full Specs
Corrosion Warranty Miles
100,000
Maintenance Warranty Months
12
Corrosion Warranty Months
72
Powertrain Warranty Miles
60,000
Full Warranty Miles
36,000
Powertrain Warranty Months
60
Full Warranty Months
36
Roadside Assistance Miles
60,000
Maintenance Warranty Miles
12,000
Roadside Assistance Months
60
IIHS Best Pick
0
NHTSA Rating Front Driver
Not Rated
IIHS Front Moderate Overlap
N/R
NHTSA Rating Front Passenger
Not Rated
IIHS Front Small Overlap
N/R
NHTSA Rating Front Side
Not Rated
IIHS Overall Side Crash
N/R
NHTSA Rating Overall
Not Rated
IIHS Rear Crash
N/R
NHTSA Rating Rear Side
Not Rated
IIHS Roof Strength
N/R
NHTSA Rating Rollover
Not Rated