What Is It?
The 2018 GMC Terrain marks the beginning of the second generation of GMC’s popular Terrain crossover, which originally went on sale for the 2010 model year. The Terrain is fully redesigned for 2018, boasting new powertrains, new features, a new interior and — most obviously — totally new styling.
Indeed, the biggest change to the Terrain is on the outside, where the SUV ditches its odd blocky wheel arches and huge fenders for a much subtler, more modern look. While the outgoing Terrain had something of a wannabe-Hummer look going on, the new version looks more like a smaller version of the handsome new Acadia crossover — albeit with a unique rear window that pinches in back for a distinctive appearance.
The Terrain makes some big changes inside, too, swapping out its aging interior for a more modern look with improved materials. Perhaps the biggest change, however, is to the transmission: The Acadia loses its traditional shift lever for 2018 and instead adds an unusual series of buttons — labeled “P,” “R,” “N” and “D” — located below the climate control system.
Under the hood, the 2018 GMC Terrain will offer an impressive array of three engines. Last year’s V6 is gone, though it’s been replaced with a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder that makes 252 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque. Drivers can also get a 1.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder with 170 hp or, for the fuel economy crowd, a 1.6-liter turbodiesel 4-cylinder with 137 hp and 240 lb-ft of torque. As usual, front-wheel drive is standard while all-wheel drive is optional.
As for technology, the Terrain offers low-speed automatic braking, an 8-inch center touchscreen, lane-departure warning, lane-keep assist and (obviously) much more. A 9-speed automatic transmission is standard on gas-powered models, while a 6-speed automatic is standard with the diesel — and like the outgoing Terrain, no third-row seat will be offered.
GMC hasn’t announced pricing for the new Terrain — but we don’t expect a huge boost over today’s starting MSRP of $25,000 with shipping.
When Can You Get It?
Add It to Your Shopping List Because…
The GMC Terrain has always been a strong contender in the compact-to-midsize crossover segment — and the new model looks even more potent. Not only does it offer a fuel-saving diesel powertrain (and two other options), but it touts handsome interior and exterior styling and improved technology compared to the outgoing model. Naturally, we can’t make any final judgements until we see exactly how the Terrain drives and where it’s priced. But it seems like a much more impressive package than its predecessor.
Other Cars to Consider
Chevrolet Equinox — The GMC Terrain’s mechanical twin, the Chevy Equinox offers similar sizing and technology but completely different styling. It, too, will offer the Terrain’s diesel powertrain.
Honda CR-V — The Honda CR-V is always among the most popular compact crossovers, largely due to its impressive durability, excellent reputation and great gas mileage. It’s available now, unlike the Terrain — but it lacks the Terrain’s more efficient and more powerful engine options.
Toyota RAV4 — Although the RAV4 doesn’t have the brawny styling of the GMC Terrain, it offers a hybrid powertrain that likely gets similar gas mileage to the Terrain’s upcoming diesel. More importantly, it’s out right now — and it comes with Toyota’s excellent reputation for dependability.
Used GMC Acadia — If you like the Terrain’s looks and its modern interior but you need more space — or you need a vehicle right away — you may want to consider the larger Acadia. It offers a similar look, more power and a third-row seat. Prices are higher, though, so you may have to consider a used model.