New Model News

Redesigned 2021 GMC Yukon is refined, loaded with tech, off-road capable

The GMC Yukon has been completely redesigned for the 2021 model year.

Photo courtesy of GMC

On the heels of a banner sales year for GMC, a division of General Motors, the GMC Yukon has been completely redesigned for the 2021 model year. While the model's exterior takes definite design notes from the 2020 GMC Sierra, the interior is a refined, tech-filled example of balancing quality with durability.

"GMC Yukon is the full-size premium SUV that's made to be used," said Duncan Aldred, vice president, Global Buick and GMC. "The new Yukon delivers what customers value most – premium features, purposeful technology and all-terrain capability."

2020 GMC Yukon Denali The Denali trim level includes chrome accents. Photo courtesy of GMC

That starts at the front where the new Yukon has an even more commanding presence than before. Show first in the Denali trim, the 2021 GMC Yukon has plenty of chrome accents to win over the luxury market. Its headlights feature LED daytime running lights and vertically orientated fog lamps that ride low with chrome accents surrounding them.

The redesigned Yukon has a longer wheelbase than the 2020 model and a new chassis. This likely translates to a more comfortable ride and less body lean around corners. Fourth-generation Magnetic Ride Control will also help keep the Yukon stable on the road. It also means that cargo capacity is up 30 percent in the new model.

2020 GMC Yukon The Yukon XL holds size big duffle bags across its load floor. Photo courtesy of GMC

For 2021, the Yukon will be available with an Active Response 4WD System, which combines different types of technology to allow the vehicle's suspension to continuously adjust to changing terrain in an effort to deliver the best ride possible for its occupants. The system includes an electronic limited slip differential.

2020 GMC Yukon GMC will once again offer the Yukon in an extended wheelbase format. Photo courtesy of GMC

The Yukon Denali is driven by a standard, new 6.2-liter V8 engine that delivers 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque. That's the same power output of the 2019 model. Other models come standard with a 5.3-liter V8 or an available 3.0-liter inline-six turbo-diesel engine. All engines are paired with a ten-speed automatic transmission.

GMC will sell the Yukon with an adaptive air suspension that allows for four inches of vertical height adjustment, the ability to lower the vehicle at speed to achieve better fuel economy, and a self-leveling feature.

2020 GMC Yukon The interior of the Yukon takes after the GMC Sierra and Sierra HD. Photo courtesy of GMC

The interior of the 2021 Yukon's cabin follows suit with what was in the 2020 GMC Sierra and Sierra HD. Likely, it's going to be a controversial decision to install a new type of shifter in the model, on the dashboard, next to the wheel and infotainment system. The pull-push button and lever system is one that needs tested to see if it works better than the button-centric woefully executed system GM installed in the Chevrolet Traverse.

Additional technology highlights include a high definition surround view camera, 15-inch multicolor head-up display and rear pedestrian alert.

2020 GMC Yukon A 15-inch head-up display is available. Photo courtesy of GMC

The Denali model gets a unique cabin, filled with the most premium appointments in the GMC lineup. It's also exclusive to the Denali brand, not just unique accents as in the past. Four color themes will be available and consist of real wood finishes, leather surfaces, and hand stitched patterns.

2020 GMC Yukon Denali grades have hand stitched surfaces.Photo courtesy of GMC

It has new sliding second row seats. The Yukon is also home to a power-sliding center console between the driver and front passenger seat that can move forward and backward up to 10 inches. With the console moved back, passengers have access to an underneath storage bin that is big enough to hold a purse.

2020 GMC Yukon The center console moves up to 10 inches forward and backward. Photo courtesy of GMC

GMC will be offering the Yukon for the first time in an AT4 trim level. The model features off-road ready equipment like in other AT4 grade models in the GMC lineup.

The all-new 2021 Yukon and Yukon XL go on sale this summer at General Motors' Arlington, Texas assembly facility. Pricing and additional specs will be announced closer to the model's on-sale date.

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Toyota is mobilizing, putting its money where its mouth is to help Texas affected by severe winter weather.

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

Winter Storm Uri impacted nearly every single one of Texas's 254 counties. North Texas-based Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) has pledged $1 million in relief for those affected by the storm. The aid is slated to serve both Toyota and Lexus customers and a variety of Texas-based non-profit organizations.

Over 60 Texas counties were part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) recent Texas Severe Winter Storms (DR-4586-TX). It is currently categorized as an active disaster.

"We take our role as community leaders seriously, so when winter storms affected millions right in our back yard, our top priority became helping Texas get back on its feet after this ordeal," said Sean Suggs, group vice president of Social Innovation, TMNA. "Texans have supported our company in myriad ways, and we want to help our neighbors emerge from this storm stronger than ever."

The $1 million relief effort includes:

North Texas/DFW Metroplex

  • United Way of Metropolitan Dallas, in support of North Texas Cares and West Dallas nonprofits to quickly distribute funds to grassroots organizations: $450,000
  • North Texas Food Bank: $100,000
  • The Family Place and Genesis Women's Shelter to fund hotel rooms, food, and transportation for their clients: $30,000
  • Toyota employees will be able to support the needs of four North Texas community partners significantly impacted by the storms by purchasing items from their Amazon Wish Lists.

San Antonio

  • SAWS Community Pipe Repair Fund, through the San Antonio Area Foundation to assist individuals and families stay in their homes safely with funds for plumbing repairs: $100,000
  • Let's Help SA Fund to provide food, water and shelter: $200,000

Houston

  • United Way of Greater Houston to support the Greater Houston 2021 Winter Storm Relief Fund that supports local home repairs: $50,000
  • Houston Food Bank: $50,000
  • CrowdSource Rescue to provide food, water and fuel: $20,000

Additionally, Toyota will match up to $10,000 in individual employee contributions to nonprofit organizations recovering from the storm.

Toyota and Lexus Financial Services customers who are looking for loan and lease payment relief, and were impacted by the storm, may be able to receive assistance under a new Toyota program that has a variety of options for clients.

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Vonlane typically runs luxury bus service to multiple high-priority locations in Texas and beyond.

Photo courtesy of Vonlane

Texas-based luxury bus company Vonlane is back on the road following the winter storm, offering limited routes to travelers among Houston, Dallas, and Austin.

"Upon conducting road tests around the state, we are confident that we can now deliver our normal exceptional travel experience," the Dallas-based company said in a February 19 email to customers.

A quick check of the schedule online shows it's possible to book one-way and roundtrip travel from the Houston Downtown Hyatt Regency to Dallas Doubletree at Love Field or the Austin Hyatt Regency, beginning Friday, February 19.

Rates are $105 each way.

Routes to and from Fort Worth, San Antonio, and Oklahoma City are not yet available.

Vonlane buses are operating with a number of COVID-19 protocols, including blocked seats for social distancing. Face masks and temperature checks are required.

Vonlane launched its high-end bus service in 2014 to cater to business travelers. Each bus, which holds fewer than two dozen passengers, features amenities like WiFi, satellite TV and radio, snack and drink service, and leather seats.

Reservations can be booked online, and may be canceled and fully refunded up to 24 hours before departure.


The original version of this story can be found on AutomotiveMap's sister site, CultureMap.

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