Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com
GM-Trucks.com was invited to a quick-drive event including the all-new GMC Terrain SLT this past week. The new Terrain and the Chevy version, the Equinox, are two of GM’s most important vehicles. There is no larger automotive segment in the U.S. market than compact crossovers. Yes, individual truck models (The F-150 and Silverado) outsell the top compact crossover, but more crossovers are sold each month.
GM was a little late to see the emerging formula, and the outgoing Equinox and Terrain grew long in the tooth. Nissan’s Rogue, Toyota’s RAV4, and Honda’s CR-V began to outsell the GM twins by huge margins. In response, GM has now closely adopted the size, and specifications of the top sellers. Sales are responding, and the Equinox was coming danger close to third place ahead of the CR-V – until the Equinox plant in Canada went on strike for a month.
Our short drive took us over all forms of roads including a short stretch of highway. The drive answered a lot of questions for us, but the Monroney (window sticker) raised new ones. Here’s our take.
2018 GM Terrain AWD SLT – The Drive
The new Terrain drives well. The new 2.0-liter turbocharged engine is responsive and plenty powerful to compete with the best engine in the class, Honda’s 1.5-liter turbo introduced 15 months ago. The 2.0-liter is one of two options GMC will sell alongside the volume engine the new 1.5-liter turbo. The other is the new 1.6-liter diesel engine. The optional 2.0-liter turbo adds $1,895 to the cost of the Terrain. In combination with the 9-speed auto, the Terrain felt good in all situations.
Handling was tight and steering sharp. The Terrain is also relatively comfortable over bumps.
2018 GM Terrain AWD SLT – Interior and Comfort
The interior quality is better than most of the Terrain’s competitors in our opinion. Materials and craftsmanship are above the mainstream class, and below the luxury class. The seat was high-up in the Terrain. By that we mean we felt it was higher up than other crossovers its type. This is a just a “seat of the pants” observation.
2018 GM Terrain AWD SLT – Pricing and Value
The hard part for us was the difference in price between the Terrain SLT with the options our tester had and the CR-V AWD Touring, the top-spec Honda. The CR-V is a $35K vehicle with everything. The SLT Terrain we drove was priced at $42,045. $7K is a big delta in this segment and a 20% gap is hard to justify. However, GMC does have other trims that will be priced lower and so too does Chevy.
The next item we noticed of concern was fuel costs. The Terrain AWD’s combined fuel economy is 23 MPG with the 2.0-liter engine, and 26 MPG with the 1.5-liter engine. Honda’s CR-V is 29 MPG. The Terrain we drove was rated with Premium, which we feel is crazy for any mainstream vehicle. We did a little more research and found that the diesel Terrain has the same annual fuel costs as the gasoline CR-V. We know from having asked GM that the deisel Terrain's 0-60 MPH time is about 10 seconds. Pretty slow for a modern compact crossover.
GMC may well have found a sweet spot just above the level of the mainstream sales leaders in the compact crossover segment. We hope that is the case.
2018 GM Terrain AWD SLT – Safety
Safety is a key consideration for compact crossover buyers. Our Terrain tester had added in $1,335 for active safety systems like forward collision prevention and lane keeping assist. The top sellers, RAV4 and Nissan Rogue, now include these systems on all trims at no added cost. Honda’s CR-V includes it on all trims but the base model. We suspect the new Terrain will score high on the IIHS testing.
2018 GM Terrain AWD SLT – Conclusions
Without a full week of testing, we can’t say whether the new GMC Terrain AWD SLT is now the best mainstream compact crossover. Based on our short time with the new Terrain, we can say for sure that the look of the Terrain SLT AWD 2.0T is attractive and the perceived quality is competitive with the best. The drive may well be better than the CR-V, due in part to the optional engine. We hope we have the opportunity to do a full test and review soon. The Terrain is an exciting new vehicle in the largest segment and deserves a close look.
Welcome to the all new forum section dedicated to General Motor's next generation D2XX Architecture as it applies to the 2018+ Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain compact crossovers.
More information on these two vehicles can be found here:
Chevy's All-new 2018 Equinox With Optional Diesel Power Announced GMC Shows Off All-New 2018 Terrain
Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com
GMC showed off its all-new 2018 Terrain today in Detroit. From the images and information, it appears that GMC is sticking with a two-row desing, rather than follow the Nissan Rogue and offer a compact third-row option.
The new Terrain follows the recently revealed 2018 Chevy Equinox' lead mechanically, with the same engine choices. Those choices are the 1.5L turbocharged base engine, a 2.0L turbocharged higher performance option, and an intriguing 1.6L turbo diesel. The new nine-speed automatic transmission will feature a new gear-shift-less operation.
GMC says "GMC’s new Electronic Precision Shift enables more storage room in the center console by replacing the conventional transmission shifter with electronically controlled gear selection consisting of intuitive push buttons and pull triggers." We added the red arrow to the above image to draw attention to the area that GMC made mention of.
Being smack dab in the middle of the largest non-truck segment, a segment that is dominated by family buyers, GMC has wisely upped the ante on available safety. A quick list of the available features includes:
-New Surround Vision
-New Forward Collision Alert with Following Distance Indicator
-New Low-Speed Forward Automatic Braking
-New Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning
-Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert
-Rear Cross Traffic Alert
-New Safety Alert Seat
-New Rear Seat Reminder
- New Teen Driver Modes
The teen driver system includes an in-vehicle report card to rat out your speeding teen. I use Cell Control in the compact crossover used by my teen son (new driver) and it has been a setup he tolerates well, and that gives me peace of mind. GM bringing this system directly into the vehicle is an interesting move. The system also allows for a parent to set controls, though GM has not elaborated yet. It would be interesting to see if some sort of anti-texting technology was included.
The new 2018 Terrain from GMC will appear in dealerships this spring. Trims will include SL, SLE, SLT and Denali models. We think the new Terrain looks fantastic. What are your thoughts on the styling GM-Trucks.com members?
I have a 2016 Denali and 2016 SLT grille that I would like to trade for either an All Terrain or Elevation Grille with black surround.
Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com
General Motors will recall 2013 Chevy Equinox and GMC Terrain crossovers because their windshield wiper systems are not compatible with water. The NHTSA recall notice states that "In the affected vehicles, the ball joints in the windshield wiper module may corrode and wear over time, possibly resulting in one or both of the windshield wipers becoming inoperative."
To see if your vehicle is part of this recall, please visit this link. There is no hurry to get to a dealer. GM has not yet found a solution according to the NHTSA information. There is also a recent recall for Equinox related to the key becoming stuck in the ignition. You can read the full details of both here.
GM is not the first major crossover manufacturer to recall its vehicles because water can harm the windshield wipers. Toyota recently Recalled the RAV4 for a similar issue.
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