Published on www.automobilemag.com
January 12, 2016
Honey, GMC shrunk the Acadia. The new Acadia loses weight and shrinks in length, as it moves from its old “Lambda” chassis to General Motors’ new “Chi” architecture. In the process, the GMC Acadia now offers both five- and seven-passenger configurations, not just the three-row version from before. We took a closer look at the 2017 GMC Acadia, and picked out five things you might not have heard about GM’s newest crossover.
Rear Seat Alert
The 2017 GMC Acadia packs a unique Rear Seat Alert system as standard, which can warn the driver if he or she forgets a child or important object in the rear seat. While this seems slightly gimmicky, GMC is aiming the feature at reducing the tragic deaths of infants and young children who are inadvertently left in a hot vehicle for too long. The system works by detecting whether the rear doors are opened within 10 minutes of the car being started or shut off. When the driver goes to leave the vehicle, a warning is displayed in the center gauge cluster, along with an audible chime to let them know an item — or child — might have been left behind.
Charge five things at once
That’s right, the 2017 GMC Acadia features five individual USB ports for charging all your family’s devices. Two up front, two for the middle row, and a fifth port for the third-row passenger.
New twin-clutch all-wheel drive system
GMC introduced a new, more capable off-road All-Terrain trim level for the new Acadia, and it comes with an advanced all-wheel-drive system. The new twin-clutch system is share with the upcoming 2017 Buick LaCrosse and the Cadillac XT5, and gives the new All-Terrain Acadia a sharper edge when the paved road ends. The catch? The All-Terrain is only available in two-row configuration, whereas other versions of the Acadia can be had with three rows of seats.
Assembly plant change
With the shift from the old Lambda platform to GM’s Chi architecture, the 2017 GMC Acadia will now be built at GM’s manufacturing plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee, whereas the outgoing model was assembled in Lansing, Michigan. The Acadia’s platform-mates, the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave, soldier on in the Lansing plant for now on the Lambda platform.
Big bump in fuel economy
The 2017 GMC Acadia is much more fuel efficient than before, in part because it’s lighter, but also because the car now offers a 2.5-liter inline-four engine with front-wheel drive in addition to its thirsty V-6. That allows the car to get 22 city mpg and 28 highway, up from the 17 city and 24 highway for the old 3.6-liter front-wheel drive Acadia.
The Acadia was purpose-built for families
With an abundance of storage nooks and crannies, the Acadia is ready for kid hauling. Tri-level storage in the rear doors and a middle-row pull-out drawer (pictured above) for three-row Acadias means the crossover has plenty of room for a growing family.
Continually Variable Dampening system improves ride quality
An optional variable damping system automatically compensates for body roll to ensure the crossover’s ride is as smooth as possible. This trick suspension is available on the top-level 2017 GMC Acadia Denali.