The GMC Canyon is a midsize two to four-door pickup truck in production from 2004 through the present. It is identical to the Chevrolet Colorado in every respect except the GMC grille, logo, and very minor aesthetic details. They are jointly designed by GM North America, GM Brazil and by Isuzu who is involved in the design, planning, and assembly of many GMC and Chevrolet models. Isuzu also tried to offer an identical North American midsize truck under its own name, the i-Series line, but has since quit sales in North America. The GMC Canyon, along with its doppelgangers, are known for their convenient dimensions, reliability, and as a highly capable work truck for its size.
The GMC Canyon replaced the GMC Sonoma starting with the 2004 models, taking over the midsize truck slot. Though categorized midsize it is the smallest truck from GMC. The Canyon is still in its first generation but the yet to be released 2013 models may mark a new generation for both the Canyon and the Colorado. Models have remained virtually the same since taking over the GMC Sonoma spot. One of the hallmarks of the line is the massive number of starting options available to buyers before they begin to choose the various options available for each model. Engines include a 2.8-liter four-cylinder, 2.9-liter four-cylinder, 3.5-liter five-cylinder, 3.7-liter five-cylinder, and a 5.2-liter V-8. These are paired with a five-speed manual transmission or a four-speed automatic transmission. In terms of style older models features a more angular body, flatter front and tight angles. Later models saw slightly more curves, new grille and headlights, and body-color cladding. Other than these changes they stayed practically the same throughout these model years.
In 2011 a 2013 Colorado was unveiled and it was slated to begin a new direction for the Colorado but no corresponding Canyon model was unveiled. The Shreveport, Louisiana GM plant was later closed, which was a main plant for the Canyon and the Colorado, but in 2012 at the Buick-GMC conference a whole new GMC Canyon was announced by Tony DiSalle, VP of marketing for Buick/GMC. It is thought that these new models will be released late in 2013. They are being called quicker and more efficient by GMC marketers, and early photos of the Chevy Colorado showed rounded and sleek truck that could be described as “futuristic” in some of the styling cues, veering fairly far from the traditional boxy truck profile, but still easily identified as a Chevrolet Colorado by those who are familiar with them.
The GMC Canyon is known as a capable work truck but with convenient dimensions for urban driving. It is a very common to see it in use by local law enforcement, security details, various contractors, and more. Traditionally it has also been a very popular consumer vehicle. Its first three years of production saw North America sales over 100,000 when combined with the Chevrolet Colorado (though Colorado models consistently outsell GMC models. GMC produces far fewer Canyon models). Since 2006 there has been a steady decline in sales. In 2011 only 31,000 Colorado models and 9590 Canyon models.
The 2012 GMC Canyon offers three engines, the 165-hp, 2.9-liter four-cylinder, the 242-hp, 3.7-liter five-cylinder, and the 300-hp, 5.3-liter, V-8, flex-fuel model. These are paired with either a four-speed automatic transmission or a five-speed manual transmission. They range from 14/19 mpg city/highway to 18/25 mpg city/highway and rate very low in area when compared to similar models from makers like Nissan, Toyota, and Honda. There are four trim levels; Work Truck, SLE1, and the SLE2 and the SLT. Base trims come as a 4x2 or a 4x4 with a regular, crew, or extended cab. The top line SLT model only offers a 4x4 crew cab. Price ranges from $17,490 to $31,790. Exterior features include 17 or 18-inch wheels and a two position tailgate. Inside it has standard cruise control but little else in the way of modern features standard. Upper trim levels may add options like navigation and satellite radio. Safety features include front and side curtain airbags, antilock brakes, and electronic stability control.
Since its introduction in 2004 the GMC Canyon has seen very little changes outside of a slightly rounded body style. Most of the layout and power options remain the same as when sales of the Canyon first began and even the two or four-door, regular, extended, and crew cabs have remained basically unchanged in that period.