William Maley

GMC News: 2017 GMC Canyon Follows Colorado With New V6, Plus New Trims

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William Maley    392

Last week, we brought you the details of the 2017 Chevrolet Colorado and its new 3.6L V6 and eight-speed automatic. As we noted in our story, a similar announcement for the GMC Canyon was likely incoming. That day has come.

Today, GMC has announced the 2017 Canyon would be getting the updated 3.6L V6 and eight-speed automatic. If you want more details on the updated powertrain, we highly recommend checking out our Colorado story. If you want the TL;DR version,

  • 308 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque (up 3 horsepower and 6 pound-feet)
  • Engine boasts a revised direct injection system, updated variable valve timing, and cylinder deactivation
  • Eight-speed automatic (only on the V6) features a higher first-gear and lower rear-axle ratios

Unlike the Colorado, the 2017 Canyon does come with a few more updates. First is a new All Terrain X model. Following in the footsteps of the Sierra All Terrain X, the Canyon variant gets a set of Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac 255/65R17 all-terrain tires, distinctive 17-inch wheels, an off-road suspension, hill descent control, and a few other goodies. 2017 will also GMC launch the Canyon Denali which brings a number of luxury appointments such as leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, heated steering wheel, Bose sound system, and a set of 20-inch wheels.

The 2017 GMC Canyon arrives at dealers late this year.

Source: GMC

Press Release is on Page 2


GMC Canyon Extends Momentum with Broader 2017 Lineup

  • New Canyon Denali, All Terrain X expand choices, offer new propulsion system

DETROIT – Building on the momentum of an 18-percent sales increase so far this year, GMC today announced a broader 2017 GMC Canyon lineup led by the new, range-topping Canyon Denali and new, off-road-inspired All Terrain X.

Like all GMC Denali models, the new Canyon Denali is distinguished by chrome exterior details and unique wheels, along with exclusive interior trim and content. It also features a new 3.6L V-6 engine that’s paired with a segment-first eight-speed automatic transmission.

This new propulsion system is offered across the 2017 Canyon lineup, including the new All Terrain X package, which takes the popular All Terrain model farther down the trail, with Goodyear DuraTrac all-terrain tires, all-weather floor liners and more. 

“Canyon continues to carve out its own niche as the only premium truck in the midsize segment,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of GMC Sales and Marketing. “With a broader 2017 Canyon lineup and the redesigned Acadia, GMC is offering more choices for finding the premium truck or SUV that matches customers’ design preferences and capability needs.”

Additional new and revised features for the 2017 Canyon lineup include:

  • New IntelliLink radio with 7-inch-diagonal color touchscreen
  • Standard Teen Driver Mode through IntelliLink
  • Available heated steering wheel
  • Exterior colors Dark Slate Metallic, Mineral Metallic and Red Quartz Metallic

Canyon Denali
In addition to its Denali-signature chrome grille, the 2017 Canyon Denali features specific wheels — 20-inch ultra-bright machined aluminum with painted accents — along with tubular chrome assist steps, polished exhaust tip (V-6 only) and spray-on bedliner.

Inside, a Jet Black interior features unique leather-appointed, heated and ventilated front seats — exclusive content in the Canyon lineup — along with unique instrument panel and console trim and Denali-logo sill plates and floor mats. Additional standard features include:

  • Heated steering wheel
  • GMC IntelliLink with Navigation and an 8-inch-diagonal color touchscreen
  • 4G Wi-Fi hotspot
  • Automatic climate control
  • Full-color driver information center
  • Remote start
  • Bose® premium seven-speaker audio system
  • Two USB charging ports on the rear of the center console and another inside the console
  • Forward Collision Alert and Lane Departure Warning


All Terrain X
This special version of the popular All Terrain package offered on the SLE model is the most off-road-capable Canyon for those who travel beyond the paved path. The X adds Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac P255/65R17 all-terrain tires and all-weather floor liners to All Terrain content, which includes:

  • Off-road suspension and transfer case shield
  • Body-color grille surround and rear step bumper
  • Unique interior with red stitching and heated front seats
  • Hill Descent Control
  • Unique 17-inch aluminum wheels
  • 3-inch-diameter round step bars
  • Spray-on bedliner
  • Remote start

Automatic climate control and sliding rear window
The All Terrain model requires the new 3.6L V-6/eight-speed automatic propulsion system. The 2.8L Duramax turbo-diesel engine is available.

3.6L V-6 and eight-speed automatic
The new 3.6L/eight-speed propulsion system offers stronger, more confident acceleration and smoother shift performance than the Canyon’s previous V-6/six-speed combination. This new combination focuses on refining everyday driving performance, including accelerating from a stop, passing on the highway and cruising at a constant speed.

The 3.6L leverages technologies such as continuously variable valve timing, direct injection and Active Fuel Management (cylinder deactivation) to balance performance and efficiency. It is rated at an SAE-certified 308 hp (230 kW) and 275 lb-ft of torque (373 Nm).

Canyon’s new Hydra-Matic 8L45 eight-speed automatic complements the 3.6L with a technologically advanced design and control system that supports smoother, more refined performance. Smaller “steps” between the gears as the vehicle accelerates allow the transmission to shift quicker, with almost imperceptible upshifts.

The 8L45 eight-speed also has a wider 7.0 gear ratio that enables a numerically higher first gear ratio — helping drivers start off more confidently with a heavy load or when trailering — and numerically lower overdrive ratios that reduce engine rpm on the highway. A lower engine speed has two benefits: It can reduce fuel consumption to enhance efficiency and it reduces engine noise for a quieter cabin.

The new powertrain supports a 7,000-pound max trailering rating that is second in the segment only to the Canyon’s available 2.8L Duramax diesel, which is rated at 7,700 pounds.

The 2017 model year updates, including the new V-6 and eight-speed combination, will arrive at dealerships in the fourth quarter of this year. 


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dfelt    1,771

Happy that GMC and Chevy are rolling out updates far more often and working to stay competitive, but the engine is just Meh to me.

I still am not impressed with over reved V6 engines with little torque in comparison to HP. This is a failure that you have to pay more for the bigger engine that performs less than many Turbo 4 bangers or Electric motors.

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ocnblu    733

Well I love the 4.3... but EVERY OTHER MIDSIZE TRUCK has an OHC engine.  Also, none have an electric motor.  Way too girly.

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smk4565    321

This engine is optional on the Cadillac CT6 and CTS, so if it is good enough to be an option on a Cadillac, I am sure it is good enough to be on a Canyon/Colorado.  I think truck buyers think they need a V6, that is why the turbo 4 isn't in these trucks, even though the turbo 4 has more torque at a lower rpm and would make more sense in a truck that isn't going to be driven at 5500 rpm a whole lot.

 

On a side note, I think GM could make a unibody pickup smaller than the Colorado/Canyon

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oldshurst442    985
2 hours ago, ocnblu said:

Well I love the 4.3... but EVERY OTHER MIDSIZE TRUCK has an OHC engine.  Also, none have an electric motor.  Way too girly.

If you mean "way too girly" as being: Hell Hath No Fury As A Woman Scorned, then yeah....electric powered cars and trucks could be really powerful and scary stuff....

 

 

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ocnblu    733
5 hours ago, oldshurst442 said:

If you mean "way too girly" as being: Hell Hath No Fury As A Woman Scorned, then yeah....electric powered cars and trucks could be really powerful and scary stuff....

 

 

I'm shakin' in my boots there, Sparkles!  :)

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ocnblu    733

Wasn't tryna piss ya off!  Please give me another chance.  :smilewide:

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hyperv6    774

 

 I like the changes and i saw some where they will bring a sun roof option this time too. 

The V6 is more than enough for this vehicle. I have actually driven it several times and even the 3.0 version in out Terrain is a good balance of power and economy even with the 19" wheels. 

As for the 4.3 I am not sure if it would fit or not since many of todays cars are made for the 60 Degree V6 or just the 4 cylinder. 

The one Concern I have is this truck will get stupid expensive even more so than now. A loaded Z71 package now in crew cab can go $48K now. I expect a Denali may be at least $50K in Crew form. There is a limit people will pay and we are close to it now. 


If GM wants people to down size to the smaller more efficient trucks they need to get the price better in line. 

I really expect this truck to replace the half ton in the future. The CAFE breaks are much easier on the 3/4 ton and larger and I expect the Full Size to be move as a 3/4 rating as the primary model and the lighter model will be the mid size. 

As for electric. Well few guys want to plug in a truck and the Volt system would be very expensive in the truck. I expect we will see some form of this in the future but prices have to come down as few bought the Hybrid SUV models and even less would buy a Chevy truck that is not loaded for $80K. Also if they priced it cheaper it would kill the profits per unit and this is the cash cow on the market. 

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dfelt    1,771

GM screwed themselves in the Hybrid of full size SUVs as they gave into oil companies rather than price it as a loss leader to begin to get more sold and get quantity built up to generate long term profits. Those that have the Hybrid Tahoe, Yukon and Escalade love them and how quiet they are.

GM was wrong in their approach of marketing and pushing these rides and only looking at it as a compliance ride.

I think at the proper price point a hybrid or EV truck can sell just fine.

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ocnblu    733
1 hour ago, dfelt said:

GM screwed themselves in the Hybrid of full size SUVs as they gave into oil companies rather than price it as a loss leader to begin to get more sold and get quantity built up to generate long term profits. Those that have the Hybrid Tahoe, Yukon and Escalade love them and how quiet they are.

GM was wrong in their approach of marketing and pushing these rides and only looking at it as a compliance ride.

I think at the proper price point a hybrid or EV truck can sell just fine.

LOL

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hyperv6    774
On 9/2/2016 at 7:25 PM, dfelt said:

GM screwed themselves in the Hybrid of full size SUVs as they gave into oil companies rather than price it as a loss leader to begin to get more sold and get quantity built up to generate long term profits. Those that have the Hybrid Tahoe, Yukon and Escalade love them and how quiet they are.

GM was wrong in their approach of marketing and pushing these rides and only looking at it as a compliance ride.

I think at the proper price point a hybrid or EV truck can sell just fine.

They gave in to no one. 

At the time hybrids were very expensive in most all types. Add that cost to an already high price SUV and with gas prices low no one cared. 

We will see a return of this but low oil prices as it is still trading cheap is not going to spur it. The fact we have higher CAFE coming will as they have no choice. You can kill all the cylinders with out a back up. 

GM tried to sell them as technology and to be honest people for the most part were "Cool" till they saw the added price and then said I can do with out it. The many folks here with them bought the dealer demo at a discount to where it made sense. 

Lets face it large SUV drivers are not tree huggers or worried about global warming. Selling them higher priced hybrid at the time was like selling beer in a baptist church.  Times are changing as are attitudes and the price of technology. This will be revisited at some point and better accepted also priced. 

 

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dfelt    1,771
16 hours ago, hyperv6 said:

They gave in to no one. 

At the time hybrids were very expensive in most all types. Add that cost to an already high price SUV and with gas prices low no one cared. 

We will see a return of this but low oil prices as it is still trading cheap is not going to spur it. The fact we have higher CAFE coming will as they have no choice. You can kill all the cylinders with out a back up. 

GM tried to sell them as technology and to be honest people for the most part were "Cool" till they saw the added price and then said I can do with out it. The many folks here with them bought the dealer demo at a discount to where it made sense. 

Lets face it large SUV drivers are not tree huggers or worried about global warming. Selling them higher priced hybrid at the time was like selling beer in a baptist church.  Times are changing as are attitudes and the price of technology. This will be revisited at some point and better accepted also priced. 

 

I understand the point your making and know for a fact that the hybrids sold well in the west coast without discounts. Yet GM still failed to market them properly and make people aware of them.

This has been GM's downfall, bring out an outstanding auto, market for a month or two and then move onto something else and forget about it.

I cannot tell you how many people who love their full size SUVs and were not aware GM used to make a hybrid version. Even with the increased cost like a diesel, at least on the west coast, if people were aware of them they bought them.

GM failed and has always failed to proper continue to market auto's after the initial introduction. After all at the price point, many who leased and even those that bought will not trade in in a year or even two but would around year 3 and if they are not having it marketed to them over time, they will forget.

People FORGOT about the Hybrid SUVs due to a lack of marketing.

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hyperv6    774

The problem is California and the other two Starbucks states are not enough. While they sold good for that area the sales of large SUV's are just stronger else where and too few people wanted them or were willing to pay for them.

As for Diesels people do not buy them for the environment. They by them for power, noise and MPG when towing. 

GMs only sin here was like many of their other projects under old GM. They bring something to market too soon and under developed. Like the 8-6-4 it was a great idea but came too early to have the right computer technology to handle it right. Today it is a normal thing and easy to do back then it was not all that great. 

The GM hybrids were expensive and limited in their effectiveness. Today if they can get the price down i think you would have more takers. The price is a stumbling bock though. Also yet the rest of America holds little interest in hybrids if they are buying a large suv. 

Now that Jerry Brown signed California away on the new global warming bill. It will be interesting as to  how many companies react. There has been thoughts about limited models or walking away if they kept up their demands for laws that are difficult to reach and would leave many with products few even there would want. 

I know with my firm we have jumped though many hoops for CARB and even stopped selling some products there as they are just not worth the cost involved to bring to market. 

They have made doing business so difficult on even so many simple products it is ridiculous. 

As for GM's last attempt I saw it more as testing the waters and the fact there just was not much interest. Even now few large SUV models offer any hybrid option from anyone. 

I see it coming back when they have no choice and when the market may be more open to it across the nation. 

 

Edited by hyperv6

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dfelt    1,771

@hyperv6 I see your point but still think if marketing was done better and they blanketed the whole US properly, it would have sold better. The Hybrid SUVs was a system that was never in my mind marketed or had the story of what it got you told properly.

This is much like the GM AWS for full size trucks. GM should have just made it standard on all 1500, 2500 and full size SUVs. AWS is awesome and makes driving a full size truck or suv especially with a trailer so much better. Sadly, GM introduced it and did not bother marketing it or clearly stating the benefits, but you talk to those that have their AWS trucks with this feature and they have no desire to give it up due to the ease of moving a large auto around in tight spaces.

AWS like Hybrid should have been standard on all full size trucks and suvs imho.

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ocnblu    733

Simplicity is key to making a durable truck.  Plus... nobody makes a large hybrid SUV any more because there is no measurable benefit to them.  No one bought them, and not just from GM... from no one.

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hyperv6    774
9 hours ago, dfelt said:

@hyperv6 I see your point but still think if marketing was done better and they blanketed the whole US properly, it would have sold better. The Hybrid SUVs was a system that was never in my mind marketed or had the story of what it got you told properly.

This is much like the GM AWS for full size trucks. GM should have just made it standard on all 1500, 2500 and full size SUVs. AWS is awesome and makes driving a full size truck or suv especially with a trailer so much better. Sadly, GM introduced it and did not bother marketing it or clearly stating the benefits, but you talk to those that have their AWS trucks with this feature and they have no desire to give it up due to the ease of moving a large auto around in tight spaces.

AWS like Hybrid should have been standard on all full size trucks and suvs imho.

Here again it was a great option well before its time again. 

The 4 wheel steering worked great as I have driven it but it removed load capacity and added a lot of weight at a time GM was removing the weight from their trucks. 

Not to mention it was very expensive to add to the truck and even made it wider in the back.  

While it makes the truck easier to drive in tight places it also was not something most truck owners were worried about. 

I would expect to see it again someday if they can make it lighter and with more capacity but till then it matters little. 

By the way GM did market it well as that is how I got to drive one in one of their ride and drives where they were really pushing it and they even had TV spots they had on often. 

If you had made it standard many would have hated the added cost as it was far from cheap and the marketing would have taken a big hit from the others for their more capacity. Finally you would have had a truck as heavy or more than the already over weight Ford. 

4 Wheel steering is not a fix few are asking for anywhere. Even in the cars it has never really done well. 

Also like Blu said people in trucks look for reliability and cost as so many are used in industry and business. They are looking at how long it will last and how much is it going to cost me per month and year to keep on the road.  If their guy has to back up to make a tight turn they are ok with it as long as it did not cost them more. 

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Drew Dowdell    4,988

It came down to cost.  The check-box for the hybrid SUVs cost $10,000 and people just wouldn't spend that kind of money even for what was at the time the most advanced hybrid system in production. (The Pruis system, for all the hype it gets, it ridiculously simple in concept). The technology wasn't wasted though... even though the CT6 PHEV's transmission is a clean-sheet design, it borrows heavily from the original 2-mode hybrid playbook but instead uses the Volt's upgraded battery design. 

The trucks on the other hand, were a different deal. They gave it the interesting option of a 110v outlet that actually had some amperage to it (if I tried to run a power saw off the 110v outlet in my Encore, I'd probably blow a fuse), but then reduced the payload and towing capacities. It could have been a good truck for contractors, but only if they didn't need the full payload capacity of a regular Silverado.... plus... cost. If you had a business where you needed to put a lot of miles on the truck, needed a bed outlet, but didn't haul heavy loads, the Silverado Hybrid was probably the truck for you. 

Cost is the same reason you don't see very many Grand Cherokee Eco-Diesels out there. It's a $4500 upgrade and only available once you've already stepped up to the $37k Limited model. 

 

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ocnblu    733

I've seen a good number of Ram Eco Diesels in base, black bumper trim.  Ppl are willing to give up frivolous things for the economy and long life of a diesel engine.  Maybe the reason the diesel is limited on the Jeeps is manufacturing capacity.  It should be available on the base Laredo, and of course the Wrangler.  Would love to see a diesel Renegade here in the USA.

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Drew Dowdell    4,988
13 minutes ago, ocnblu said:

I've seen a good number of Ram Eco Diesels in base, black bumper trim.  Ppl are willing to give up frivolous things for the economy and long life of a diesel engine.  Maybe the reason the diesel is limited on the Jeeps is manufacturing capacity.  It should be available on the base Laredo, and of course the Wrangler.  Would love to see a diesel Renegade here in the USA.

Trucks are a different matter and the Ram EcoDiesel is the only truck in the segment to carry a light duty diesel at the moment.   Truck buyers are generally different than SUV drivers. 

Of course I'd like to see the diesel being offered in lower trims; I'd like to see the hemi being offered in lower trims too.... but that 'taint the way it is.  Any Jeep you can get with an EcoDiesel you can get for $4500 less without the diesel.... and for an SUV buyer, it is likely as not to be less important when there is only a 5mpg difference highway between the Ecodiesel and the Pentastar.  Unless you plan to be towing 7500lbs, there is no economic point to the Ecodiesel. 

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daves87rs    327
On 9/10/2016 at 4:54 AM, ocnblu said:

Simplicity is key to making a durable truck.  Plus... nobody makes a large hybrid SUV any more because there is no measurable benefit to them.  No one bought them, and not just from GM... from no one.

 

 

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      The Summit begins at $50,495 for two-wheel drive and $53,495 for four-wheel drive. Our test vehicle came to an as-tested price of $60,675 with the leather package, skid plates, and 20-inch wheels. The upside to the Summit is you get most everything as standard such as navigation, premium audio system, sunroof, heated and ventilated front seats, and a power liftgate. Personally, I would skip all of the options as fitted to our test vehicle and get a base Summit.
      Now on to the Durango. This one is the GT which can be best described as the R/T minus the V8. This means you get similar exterior tweaks such as a body color grille surround, black mesh inserts, LED daytime running lights, and 20-inch wheels finished in black. Our model came with the Brass Monkey appearance package which adds brushed bronze wheels and blacked-out badges. This makes for a mean looking crossover that doesn’t break the bank - the Brass Monkey package will only set you back $595. The GT is also quite confident in the bends with minimal body roll and nicely weighted steering. 
      Downsides? The Durango is starting to show its age inside. Various materials and the plain design put the Durango towards the back of the pack of the current crossover crop. Also, the value equation for the Durango can go downward with the number of options you add. The test Durango seen here comes with an as-tested of $49,660 with most the option boxes ticked. Not an absurd amount for a three-row crossover, but the Durango is missing out on features that many models feature such as adaptive cruise control, automatic braking, and compatibility for Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
      You may have noticed that I haven’t mentioned the powertrain. That’s because both models feature the same 3.6L Pentastar V6 producing 295 horsepower and paired with an eight-speed automatic. I have written a lot about this powertrain on both models before and my opinion hasn’t changed. The engine offers strong low-end power and minimal NVH levels. The automatic transmission, for the most part, does a decent job of being in the right gear at the right time. Though we found the transmission to be somewhat slow to respond whenever heavy throttle was suddenly applied. Fuel economy for both models landed around 20 mpg.
      Both the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Dodge Durango are still competitive in their respective classes, despite getting up there in age. Just be careful with your option selection as it can make both models very poor values.
      Disclaimer: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Provided the Vehicles, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Dodge
      Model: Durango
      Trim: GT
      Engine: 3.6L 24-Valve VVT with ESS
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 295 @ 6,400
      Torque @ RPM: 260 @ 4,000
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 18/25/21
      Curb Weight: 4,987 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Detroit, Michigan
      Base Price: $40,095
      As Tested Price: $49,660 (Includes $1,095 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Premium Group - $2,395
      Rear Entertainment System- $1,995
      Safety/Security and Convenience Group - $1,195
      Second-Row Captain Chairs - $995
      Trailer Tow Group IV - $995
      Brass Monkey Appearance Group - $595
      Second-Row Console - $300
      Year: 2017
      Make: Jeep
      Model: Grand Cherokee
      Trim: Summit
      Engine: 3.6L 24-Valve VVT with ESS
      Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 295 @ 6,400
      Torque @ RPM: 260 @ 4,000
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 18/25/21
      Curb Weight: 4,952 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Detroit, Michigan
      Base Price: $53,995
      As Tested Price: $60,675 (Includes $995 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      Signature Leather-Wrapped Interior Package - $4,995
      Summit California Edition - $995
      Skid Plate Group - $295
    • By William Maley
      The Volkswagen Jetta is an outlier in the compact class. Whereas other automakers have been stepping up with sharper designs, more tech, and improved driving dynamics, Volkswagen went in a completely different direction by offering the biggest amount of interior space for not that much money. But to accomplish this, Volkswagen made a number of sacrifices in terms of design, materials, and mechanical bits. This put the Jetta way behind the pack of the fresh competition. 
      But Volkswagen has been working to try and right some of the wrongs of the Jetta. A couple of years ago, Volkswagen updated the model with a new front end, new dashboard, and a turbocharged 1.4L four-cylinder to take place of the decrepit 2.0L. It salvages the Jetta’s reputation somewhat.
      The current Jetta is slightly better in terms of looks. A new front end with a larger grille and headlights with LED daytime running lights help make the model look more interesting to look at. Sadly, the rest of vehicle is as nondescript as before with nothing that jumps out at you. If you were to ask a small kid to draw a car, it would most likely look like the Jetta. If you ever wanted a master class of in how not to do an interior, the Jetta is a perfect candidate. Whereas most compact sedans show marked improvements in design and materials, the Jetta is like stepping back a decade or so. Our mid-level SE came with a large amount of cheap and hard plastics that you don’t see most compacts now - aside from the base models. The mostly black interior makes for a dreary experience. On the upside, Volkswagen has improved the dash by taking some ideas from the Golf. A new instrument cluster and revised center stack layout helps make the Jetta not feel as cheap as the previous model. It also makes for an easier time to find various controls and reading things at a quick glance. All Jettas get Volkswagen’s Car-Net infotainment system. The base S makes do with a 5-inch touchscreen, while the SE and higher trims use a 6.3-inch screen. Car-Net is one of the best infotainment systems on sale today thanks to a sharp interface, simple layout of the various functions, and the ability to use Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Space is the Jetta’s key selling point. The back seat alone dwarfs most compacts and even gives some midsize sedans a run for their money. Sitting back here, I could stretch out with no issue. The trunk is also huge, offering up 15.7 cubic feet. I do wish the front seats were a bit more comfortable. Most of the week found me constantly adjusting the seat to try and find a position that wouldn’t cause me to ache after a drive. The SE comes with a turbocharged 1.4L four-cylinder offering 150 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. Our test vehicle came with the standard five-speed manual, but a six-speed automatic is available.  On paper, the 1.4T should be a strong engine as it offers the same torque figure as the larger 1.8T at a lower rpm (1,400 rpm vs. 1,500 rpm). In the real world, this doesn’t happen. You’ll need to get the engine above 2,000 rpm to wake it up. At first, I thought we were dealing with a bad case of turbo lag. But further investigation revealed the five-speed manual is at fault. Volkswagen used taller gearing to make up for a missing sixth gear and improve fuel economy. I can’t help but wonder if the six-speed automatic alleviates this issue. Once you figure this out, the 1.4T is a surprising performer. Speed comes on at a rapid rate once your above 2,000 rpm. The engine is also very smooth and makes a pleasant noise when accelerating. The manual is somewhat difficult to work as the gear linkage feels somewhat stiff when moving through the gears. The clutch is light and it’s easy to find the take-off point. EPA fuel economy figures for the 1.4T manual stand at 28 City/40 Highway/33 Combined. I saw an average of 35 mpg that was a mix of 70 percent city driving and 30 percent highway driving. The automatic sees a slight drop in fuel economy to 28/38/32. One item we’re glad to see the lesser Jetta models get is a multilink rear suspension - replacing the rear beam axle of previous models. This makes a huge difference in ride and handling. On rough roads, the Jetta provides a compliant and comfortable ride. Handling is almost similar to the Golf Wolfsburg I drove earlier in the year - little body roll and excellent steering response. The SE seen here came with an as-tested price of $21,795 with destination. That includes 16-inch alloy wheels, heated front seats, blind spot monitoring, keyless entry, push-button start, cruise control, and a power sunroof. The 2017 Volkswagen Jetta is much better than the model that was launched only five years ago. But that isn’t saying a lot considering how much the compact class has moved up in this time frame. Price may be the Jetta’s ultimate strength as it offers a lot of features for the money with the 1.4T engine and interior space running slightly behind. Everywhere else, the Jetta is outmatched. Disclaimer: Volkswagen Provided the Jetta, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Volkswagen
      Model: Jetta
      Trim: SE
      Engine: Turbocharged 1.4L 16V TSI Four-Cylinder 
      Driveline: Six-Speed Manual, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 150 @ 5,000 
      Torque @ RPM: 184 @ 1,400
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 28/40/33
      Curb Weight: 2,939 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Puebla, Mexico
      Base Price: $20,895
      As Tested Price: $21,715 (Includes $820.00 Destination Charge)
      Options: N/A
    • By William Maley
      The Volkswagen Jetta is an outlier in the compact class. Whereas other automakers have been stepping up with sharper designs, more tech, and improved driving dynamics, Volkswagen went in a completely different direction by offering the biggest amount of interior space for not that much money. But to accomplish this, Volkswagen made a number of sacrifices in terms of design, materials, and mechanical bits. This put the Jetta way behind the pack of the fresh competition. 
      But Volkswagen has been working to try and right some of the wrongs of the Jetta. A couple of years ago, Volkswagen updated the model with a new front end, new dashboard, and a turbocharged 1.4L four-cylinder to take place of the decrepit 2.0L. It salvages the Jetta’s reputation somewhat.
      The current Jetta is slightly better in terms of looks. A new front end with a larger grille and headlights with LED daytime running lights help make the model look more interesting to look at. Sadly, the rest of vehicle is as nondescript as before with nothing that jumps out at you. If you were to ask a small kid to draw a car, it would most likely look like the Jetta. If you ever wanted a master class of in how not to do an interior, the Jetta is a perfect candidate. Whereas most compact sedans show marked improvements in design and materials, the Jetta is like stepping back a decade or so. Our mid-level SE came with a large amount of cheap and hard plastics that you don’t see most compacts now - aside from the base models. The mostly black interior makes for a dreary experience. On the upside, Volkswagen has improved the dash by taking some ideas from the Golf. A new instrument cluster and revised center stack layout helps make the Jetta not feel as cheap as the previous model. It also makes for an easier time to find various controls and reading things at a quick glance. All Jettas get Volkswagen’s Car-Net infotainment system. The base S makes do with a 5-inch touchscreen, while the SE and higher trims use a 6.3-inch screen. Car-Net is one of the best infotainment systems on sale today thanks to a sharp interface, simple layout of the various functions, and the ability to use Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Space is the Jetta’s key selling point. The back seat alone dwarfs most compacts and even gives some midsize sedans a run for their money. Sitting back here, I could stretch out with no issue. The trunk is also huge, offering up 15.7 cubic feet. I do wish the front seats were a bit more comfortable. Most of the week found me constantly adjusting the seat to try and find a position that wouldn’t cause me to ache after a drive. The SE comes with a turbocharged 1.4L four-cylinder offering 150 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. Our test vehicle came with the standard five-speed manual, but a six-speed automatic is available.  On paper, the 1.4T should be a strong engine as it offers the same torque figure as the larger 1.8T at a lower rpm (1,400 rpm vs. 1,500 rpm). In the real world, this doesn’t happen. You’ll need to get the engine above 2,000 rpm to wake it up. At first, I thought we were dealing with a bad case of turbo lag. But further investigation revealed the five-speed manual is at fault. Volkswagen used taller gearing to make up for a missing sixth gear and improve fuel economy. I can’t help but wonder if the six-speed automatic alleviates this issue. Once you figure this out, the 1.4T is a surprising performer. Speed comes on at a rapid rate once your above 2,000 rpm. The engine is also very smooth and makes a pleasant noise when accelerating. The manual is somewhat difficult to work as the gear linkage feels somewhat stiff when moving through the gears. The clutch is light and it’s easy to find the take-off point. EPA fuel economy figures for the 1.4T manual stand at 28 City/40 Highway/33 Combined. I saw an average of 35 mpg that was a mix of 70 percent city driving and 30 percent highway driving. The automatic sees a slight drop in fuel economy to 28/38/32. One item we’re glad to see the lesser Jetta models get is a multilink rear suspension - replacing the rear beam axle of previous models. This makes a huge difference in ride and handling. On rough roads, the Jetta provides a compliant and comfortable ride. Handling is almost similar to the Golf Wolfsburg I drove earlier in the year - little body roll and excellent steering response. The SE seen here came with an as-tested price of $21,795 with destination. That includes 16-inch alloy wheels, heated front seats, blind spot monitoring, keyless entry, push-button start, cruise control, and a power sunroof. The 2017 Volkswagen Jetta is much better than the model that was launched only five years ago. But that isn’t saying a lot considering how much the compact class has moved up in this time frame. Price may be the Jetta’s ultimate strength as it offers a lot of features for the money with the 1.4T engine and interior space running slightly behind. Everywhere else, the Jetta is outmatched. Disclaimer: Volkswagen Provided the Jetta, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: Volkswagen
      Model: Jetta
      Trim: SE
      Engine: Turbocharged 1.4L 16V TSI Four-Cylinder 
      Driveline: Six-Speed Manual, Front-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 150 @ 5,000 
      Torque @ RPM: 184 @ 1,400
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 28/40/33
      Curb Weight: 2,939 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Puebla, Mexico
      Base Price: $20,895
      As Tested Price: $21,715 (Includes $820.00 Destination Charge)
      Options: N/A

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      Equinox, Acadia, Envision and XT5 Achieve Best July Ever
      Crossover and trucks account for 80 percent of sales for best monthly mix ever July incentive spending as a percentage of ATP below industry average, driving ATPs up nearly $1,000 Commercial sales up 40 percent for best July since 2007 Lowest daily rental sales mix of any full-line automaker DETROIT — General Motors (NYSE: GM) today reported July U.S. retail sales of 202,220 vehicles, down about 14 percent from strong sales in July 2016. In July, GM’s crossovers and trucks account for 80 percent of sales for the company’s best monthly mix ever.
      While the U.S. market continues to moderate, sales of GM’s newest crossovers were strong in July:
      Chevrolet Equinox - up 4 percent for its best July ever. Chevrolet Bolt EV – 1,832 Bolts were sold in July for the best month ever. August will be the first month the Bolt EV is available on a national basis. GMC Acadia - up 30 percent for its best July ever. Buick Envision - up 89 percent for its best July ever. Cadillac XT5 - up 6 percent for its best July ever. GM’s July incentive spending as a percentage of average transaction prices (ATP) was 11.5 percent, more than 1 full percentage point below the industry average, and 0.5 percentage points below GM’s 2016 calendar year average. Some of GM’s competitors, without strong truck and crossover businesses, are offering significantly higher incentives across their entire portfolios, according to J.D. Power PIN estimates.
      In addition, GM’s ATPs were about $36,000, up nearly $1,000 from July 2016.
      “We have strategically decided to reduce car production rather than increase incentive spending or dump vehicles into daily rental fleets, like some of our competitors,” said Kurt McNeil, U.S. vice president of Sales Operations.  “We are working hard to protect the residual values of our new products and growing quality retail and commercial sales, and July’s ATPs reflect that discipline.”
      GM’s U.S. commercial vehicles sales were up 40 percent from last July, the best July since 2007, led by strong large van sales (up 89 percent), small utilities (up 61 percent) and large pickup sales (up 21 percent).  Year to date, GM commercial sales are up 11 percent. U.S. daily rental sales were down more than 11,200 vehicles or 81 percent in July, as planned. In July, GM’s daily rental sales accounted for only 1 percent of GM’s total sales.  GM continues to have the lowest U.S. rental mix of any full-line automaker at about 7 percent of total sales year to date.    
      GM’s July total sales were 226,107 vehicles, down about 15 percent from strong levels last year.
      “Changing customer tastes have driven us to refocus our business on higher margin, faster growing segments, like the crossover segments. We are launching the most all-new crossovers in our history to take full advantage of the changes occurring in the U.S. marketplace,” added McNeil. “Our newest crossovers are performing very well in the marketplace and we’ll build on that momentum with the all-new Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Terrain, Buick Enclave and the introduction of the Regal TourX through the second half of 2017.”
      By the end of 2017, GM will offer customers the U.S. industry’s newest and broadest lineup of crossovers.
      “U.S. auto sales continue to moderate from last year’s record pace, but key U.S. economic fundamentals remain supportive of strong vehicle sales,” said Mustafa Mohatarem, GM chief economist. “Under the current economic conditions, we anticipate the second half of 2017 will be much stronger than the first half.”
      July Brand Retail Highlights (vs. July 2016 unless noted)       
      Chevrolet
      Colorado was up 22 percent. Both Camaro and Cruze were up slightly. Crossovers best year to date: Equinox, Traverse and Trax. Volt has best year to date. Volt and Bolt EV July sales combined for more than 3,300 deliveries. Silverado LD double cab was up 4 percent. Buick
      Best year to date retail sales since 2005, up 2 percent. July ATPs are highest since December 2015. SUV mix is highest ever at 85 percent. GMC
      ATPs are the highest ever, up 8 percent from last July. Sierra boasts the highest ATPs in the full-size pickup segment. Sierra HDs up 6 percent in July and year to date up 9 percent, the best in a decade Yukon up 4 percent. Yukon had its best July since 2007. Cadillac
      CT6 up 7 percent. Year to date, XT5 retail sales are up 10 percent vs. combined SRX and XT5 sales a year ago. July ATPs up more than $3,000 and lead the luxury market and more than $3,000 higher than its closest competitor. Guidance on U.S. Vehicle Inventory Levels
      We anticipate we will end 2017 at or below last year’s level, with fewer cars and more trucks, crossovers and utilities in the mix. Pickup, crossovers and utility sales, GM’s strength, are expected to be stronger in the second half of 2017 vs. the first half of the year. We continue to monitor the marketplace and will make additional production adjustments if needed.
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