Inside Look at the 2019 GMC Terrain

The second generation of the 2019 GMC Terrain sticks to the go-to formula found in most compact SUVs in its class. Between an array of optional features and the ability to choose front-wheel or all-wheel drive, there’s a lot to like about this stylish, two-row luxury SUV.

If you’re looking at purchasing the 2019 Terrain, keep reading. We’ve gathered everything you need to know.

Performance Specifications

There are three powerplants available on the 2019 GMC Terrain. First is a base 1.5-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder capable of making 170 horsepower and 203 lb-ft of torque. The second is a 2.0-liter turbocharged of the same cylinder count, with 252 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. Finally, GMC offers a 1.6-liter turbodiesel four-cylinder that only makes about 137 horsepower and 240 lb-ft of torque. Engines can either be mated to a six-speed or a nine-speed automatic transmission, depending on which you choose.

The 2019 GMC Terrain is available in both front-wheel and all-wheel drive. Depending on the powertrain package you choose, this model is capable of towing up to 3,500 pounds.

Fuel Efficiency

Depending on the engine and transmission pairing you choose, you can easily achieve around 20 to 30 city and highway EPA-estimated mpg on the newest GMC Terrain. The 1.5-liter turbo four-cylinder engine posts 26 city and 30 highway mpg in front-wheel drive, while all-wheel-drive models dip down to 24 city and 28 highway mpg.

Those who choose the 2.0-liter will see lower numbers than that, as standard front-wheel drive variants get 22 city and 28 highway mpg while 21 city and 26 highway mpg in the all-wheel-drive variants. The turbodiesel engine, however, fares better than both of these four-cylinders, posting 28 city and 39 highway mpg and 28 city and 38 highway for front-wheel and all-wheel-drive models respectively.

Entertainment and Safety Features

The 2019 GMC Terrain received superb ratings from both the NHTSA and IIHS. With five stars in the NHTSA overall rating and a “Good” rating in all categories from the IIHS, you can rest easy that the 2019 Terrain is a safe choice.

Trim levels on the 2019 GMC Terrain are as follows.

SL

Equipped with the standard 1.5-liter engine hooked up to the front wheels, this base trim level rides on 17-inch wheels. Customers will also receive heated mirrors, automatic headlights, keyless entry, a push-button start ignition, a rearview camera, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and six-speaker sound system. Technical features include Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, and a seven-inch touchscreen.

The base price for this model and trim starts at $26,195.

SLE

The main difference between the SL and SLE trim levels centers upon the upgradability of the SLE model. While it adds a few features the SL doesn’t have, it’s the first customizable trim level for the 2019 Terrain.

Choosing the Driver Convenience package will get you heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, roof rails, and remote start. Add an inch to the touchscreen and you’ve got the start of the Infotainment I package, which also features navigation, an enhanced rearview camera, and a few USB ports in the rear. Pack on the safety features with the Driver Alert I package, comprised of rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic warning system, and a vibrating driver’s seat that cues into the warning systems.

A panoramic sunroof is an option on this model no matter which package you choose.

SLT

If you’re looking for leather, choose the SLT trim, which also features the Driver Convenience and Infotainment packages mentioned above — without the navigation, however. Besides this standard equipment, you can also upgrade to the Driver Alert I or the Driver Alert II packages. The latter of which includes low-speed forward collision warning with pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keeping assist, automatic high beams, and adaptive cruise control. Plus, you can choose the Preferred package for even more upgrades.

Although both the SLE and SLT trims come standard with the 1.5-liter engine found in the SL trim, they can be upgraded to either of the two remaining engine options if desired.

Black Edition

We’ve mentioned the Black Edition here not because it’s a trim level, but rather a package you can add on to either the SLE or the SLT trims. Proprietary 19-inch gloss black aluminum wheels are accompanied by black exterior accents, a dark front grille, and select paint colors.

Denali

The 2.0-liter engine is standard on this top trim level, which features 19-inch wheels and many of the features found in the optional packages we’ve listed above. However, you can also add the Comfort package — that comes with ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, and a wireless charging pad — and/or the Advanced Safety package — which includes surround-view and automated parking systems.

How the 2019 GMC Terrain Compares

Experts who drove the 2019 Terrain had mixed reviews. U.S. News found the folding front passenger seat to be a nifty alternative to adding more cargo space to a luxury vehicle. However, the model still won’t cart around a storage locker by any means. And while it’s not the sportiest compact SUV on the market, it “belongs to a generation that has received an excellent predicted reliability rating from J.D. Power.”

Edmunds points out that the Honda CR-V “is all-around more practical and better to drive,” but they recommend the Chevrolet Equinox if you’re wanting to pay less for a similar vehicle. Mazda can compete with a tricked-out CX-5 in terms of value. At the same time, though, the Terrain trumps it in terms of available options.

Kelley Blue Book (KBB) echoes what many of the experts noticed, which is that the transmission buttons are somewhat oddly placed compared to their traditional location. The “hard plastics in the lower areas of the dashboard and doors, even in the supposedly upscale Denali model” didn’t impress KBB experts, though they do admit the “cabin is perfectly functional and comfortable without necessarily being that luxurious.”

When compared to other models on the market — such as the Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4, Mazda CX-5, Chevrolet Equinox, Hyundai Tucson, and Ford Escape — the GMC Terrain is an upscale alternative. Ultimately, it comes down to what features you prefer.

Pros

  • High-end interior materials
  • Respectable fuel economy
  • An affordably-priced luxury alternative to Chevy Equinox

Cons

  • Sporty engines these are not
  • Limited rear visibility

The 2019 GMC Terrain is an upscale alternative to many of the bare-bones compact SUVs on the market today. Add a little class to your ride by choosing the 2019 Terrain, but don’t take our word for it. Hop on over to your nearest GMC dealership for a test drive to see what you think.

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