You may have noticed that compact crossovers are kind of a big deal these days. After eight years on sale, GMC is finally getting a new version of its littlest ute, the Terrain, for 2018. And it can't arrive a moment too soon. The 2018 GMC Terrain made its debut tonight on the eve of the 2017 Detroit Auto Show.

The 2018 Terrain looks to be completely new, and is now built on GM's D2XX platform. It again shares a platform and major components with the Chevrolet Equinox; like the 2018 Equinox, the Terrain will offer three engines, including two turbocharged gas four-cylinders and a turbodiesel four. The base 1.5-liter gas four makes 170 horsepower and 203 pound-feet of torque, while the 2.0-liter inline-four puts out 252 hp and 262 lb-ft. (The 2.0 basically takes the place of the 3.6-liter V6 offered in the outgoing Terrain.) GM's 1.6-liter diesel four will also be available, making 137 hp and 240 lb-ft of torque in this application. Both gas engines will be paired with nine-speed automatic transmissions, while the diesel gets a six-speed auto. No fuel-economy claims have been made, but we expect the new models to outdo the current versions, with the diesel reaching around 40 mpg on the EPA highway cycle.

  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips
  • Image Credit: Drew Phillips


The new Terrain's design is equally fresh and does a good job of differentiating it from the related Equinox, with details very reminiscent of the new GMC Acadia. The lighting elements are even more intricate here, with LEDs used for the daytime running lights and taillamps. GMC designers gave it the floating-roof look, which is successful aside from the odd placement of a trim badge at the base of the D-pillar. Terrains will again be available in SL, SLE, SLT, and range-topping Denali trim, with the latter featuring the signature satin chrome grille, chrome accents, and monochrome paint scheme GMC uses on all of its top-trim models.

The interior sees an upgrade in materials and a more-thoughtful layout, with a new version of GM's Electronic Precision Shift gear selector using buttons and switches instead of a lever to open up more space on the center console. Both front- and all-wheel-drive models get a Traction Select system that will tune the shift points and throttle points for specific driving conditions via a knob at the rear of the console. On models equipped with all-wheel drive, a front-drive mode disconnects the rear axle to improve fuel economy.

On the tech front, all models get a 7.0-inch center display, with an 8.0-inch unit available. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto functionality are included with both setups, as is WiFi hotspot capability. A surround vision camera system, GM's vibrating Safety Alert Seat, forward-collision alert, low-speed forward automatic braking, and lane-keep assist with lane-departure warning are newly available, joining the existing lane-change alert with side blind zone detect and rear cross-traffic alert safety systems. Given that many of these systems use radar as well as cameras to function, it is a little surprising that adaptive cruise control is not on the list. We plan to find out why and report back. GM's Rear Seat Reminder and Teen Driver systems are also included.

The 2018 GMC Terrain will go on sale this summer. Expect prices to remain pretty close to their current levels despite the added technology.

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