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All-New GMC Yukon: Has Been Manly SUV Gains More Refinement



An all-new Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon are now on the scene. GM’s large SUVs are virtually identical, but for the manly man, it’s all about the one that makes the biggest statement — the Yukon.

Compared to the Tahoe’s less cohesive styling (it has a face only a mother could love. See here), the Yukon has a more stately appearance. You have to love GMC’s new face, which is characterized by a chrome-accented grille matched with the brand’s signature C-shaped light-emitting diode lighting motif. High-end Denali models are distinguished by their signature chrome grille and unique exterior appointments, including exclusive high-intensity discharge headlamps.

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Overall, the exterior is sleeker and more aerodynamic, enhancing fuel efficiency on the highway and contributing to a quiet ride.

Inside, the Yukon’s new interior puts the previous one to shame, thanks to the use of authentic, soft-touch materials and the availability of a long list of premium infotainment features. All models come standard with an eight-inch-diagonal color touchscreen radio with enhanced IntelliLink, a Bose sound system, seats with dual-firmness foam and an ambient air vent, while optional tech goodies include an eight-inch-diagonal customizable driver display with an available head-up display (Denali models), a Blu-ray/DVD rear-seat entertainment system with dual screens, and a conversation mirror in the overhead console that provides a panoramic view of the rear seats. Denali models utilize active noise cancellation technology to make the interior even quieter than it already is.

GM has finally done what it should have done with past models — make the second- and third-row seats fold flat, thus enhancing cargo capability and convenience. While you can do the folding yourself, there is an optional power-folding feature can automatically do it for you.

Powering this stately SUV is a direct-injected, 5.3L V8 that produces 355 horsepower and 383 lb-ft (519 Nm) of torque. Denali models use a more powerful 6.2L engine rated at 420-horsepower and 450 lb-ft (610 Nm). Regardless of engine, a six-speed automatic is the only available transmission.

The new GMC Yukon — by that we mean the standard Yukon, extended-wheelbase Yukon XL and flagship Yukon Denali — not only looks the part but also delivers greater capability, refinement and power. Always a manly SUV, it will likely give buyers everything they asked for, and then some. Sales begin in the first quarter of 2014.

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