2017 GMC Acadia

Starting MSRP: $29,995 - $45,845

Estimated MPG: 21 city / 26 hwy

2017 GMC Acadia Review

The GMC Acadia once shared its underpinnings with the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave, but that’s no longer the case. The 2017 GMC Acadia is a fully redesigned midsize crossover that rides on its own platform. It offers a lower curb weight than the outgoing model, as well as a new available engine and new safety features.

By Tim Healey
Last Updated 08/23/2016

GMC’s Acadia is completely redesigned for 2017, losing 700 pounds while gaining new safety features and a new base engine. Depending on the trim, it also loses some seating. The previous generation offered room for seven or eight occupants, while this one can seat five, six or seven.

A new four-cylinder is now the base engine, with a larger V6 remaining available. The Acadia is available with front- or all-wheel drive, and it comes in four trim levels: SL, SLE, SLT and Denali.

The exterior is completely redone for 2017, giving the Acadia fresh duds. Inside, the big news is the addition of more connectivity technology, such as Apple CarPlay, and new safety features, like automatic emergency braking and a 360-degree camera.

An All Terrain package offered on SLE and SLT models offers a twin-clutch AWD system that’s meant to maximize traction on all surfaces. Models with this package also get unique exterior and interior trim (such as a body-color grille). All Terrains offer seating for five and a covered cargo area in the floor of the vehicle that replaces the third-row seats.

Exterior

Exterior
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GMC has rounded off the blocky edges of the previous Acadia, making this iteration look far less “trucky” than the 2016 model. The effect makes the Acadia look smaller and sportier than the outgoing model. As it stands, the 2017 Acadia did shrink compared with the previous vehicle, both in wheelbase and overall length. Considering it still weighs nearly 4,000 pounds, this is a good thing. It doesn’t look like a lumbering crossover SUV. Rather, the new Acadia looks svelte and more suited to urban environments.

Taking away the truck influence also has the effect of making the Acadia look like a better fit for the crossover class.

The 2017 Acadia comes standard with exterior features like heated sideview mirrors and 17-inch alloy wheels, while higher trims gain exterior equipment that includes a power liftgate, fog lights and 18- or 20-inch wheels.

Interior

Interior
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GMC has blessed the redesigned Acadia with a cabin that’s not too button-heavy. All controls are legible and within easy reach, and there's no need for an advanced degree in pictographs.

Ahead of the shifter is a handy cubby for smartphone and sunglasses storage, and behind it lies the drive-mode selector. The IntelliLink infotainment system dominates the top of the center stack, with the climate controls right below it. Old-fashioned knobs are present for radio volume and tuning, as well as for the temperature settings for both driver and passenger.

The Acadia provides 40 inches of headroom and 41 inches of legroom up front. In the second row, there’s 39.6 inches of headroom and 39.7 inches of legroom, which means second-row passengers don’t suffer too much in comparison to those up front. On those models equipped with a third row, the numbers come out to 37.2 inches for headroom and 31.1 inches for legroom. That’s a tick less than the Honda Pilot offers in its third row.

With 12.8 cubic feet available behind the third row and 41.7 cubic feet provided behind the second row, the rear cargo storage area is large enough to be plenty handy. With both rows folded, the 2017 Acadia offers up to 79 cubic feet of cargo space.

Performance

Performance
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The Acadia is available with two engines. The base model comes with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder that makes 193 horsepower and 188 pound-feet of torque, while a 3.6-liter V6 that makes 310 horsepower and 271 pound-feet of torque is available. Both come with a six-speed automatic transmission and are available with front- or all-wheel drive.

Our test vehicle came with the V6 and the All Terrain package. Even with over 300 horses and nearly 300 pound-feet of torque, the Acadia still felt big and heavy, even in Sport mode.

It rides well on rough pavement, and acceleration is acceptable if the V6 is kicked hard enough (switching into two-wheel drive helps a tiny bit, too). It handles well for the class, but it’s not going to be a back-road champ anytime soon. That said, the Acadia’s performance is acceptable for a three-row SUV.

Fuel economy is rated at 21/26 mpg city/highway with the four-cylinder and front-wheel drive, and 21/25 mpg with all-wheel drive. The V6 model gets 18/25 mpg with both drivetrain layouts.

Technology

Technology
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The base Acadia comes standard with tech features that include proximity key with push-button start, Bluetooth, a USB port and GMC’s IntelliLink infotainment system with a 7-inch touch screen. IntelliLink supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, making the Acadia class-competitive when it comes to technology.

Satellite radio, navigation, a Bose audio system and an upgraded version of IntelliLink with an 8-inch screen are available.

Safety

Safety
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The 2017 GMC Acadia gets five out of five stars for its overall performance in National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) crash tests.

Every 2017 Acadia comes standard with a rearview camera and General Motors’ OnStar telematics system. There’s also a standard rear-seat alert that reminds the driver to check the second and third rows for passengers before leaving the vehicle.

Available safety equipment includes forward collision warning with automatic braking, as well as rear cross-traffic alert, blind spot monitoring, lane keeping assist, forward collision warning and front and rear parking sensors.

Cost-Effectiveness

Cost-Effectiveness
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The 2017 GMC Acadia starts at $29,070, excluding a $925 destination charge. SLE and SLT models start at $33,375 and $39,275, respectively, while the top Acadia Denali is priced from $45,845.

When kitted out with the All Terrain package ($1,800), a related dealer-installed cargo package ($350), a dual sunroof ($1,400), a premium audio system, IntelliLink, navigation ($495), a trailering package ($650) and special paint ($395), our test Acadia carried a suggested price of $47,465.

Overall

Overall
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The Acadia’s redesign was long overdue, as the previous generation had been on sale since 2007. This new model loses some cargo space in comparison, but the revamped 2017 Acadia offers attractive looks, ample interior space and all the tech and safety features one would expect within the class.

The base Acadia comes well-equipped and is competitively priced with models like the Nissan Pathfinder, Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander. Just be aware that its MSRP can creep up significantly as you explore the options list.