The 2022 GMC Yukon offers engine options, comfort

If it’s pure, fun-to-drive performance, the new 6.2-litre AT4 V8 engine will be the go-to choice. And then there’s also the proven base V8 engine that has 355 horsepower but only 383 pound-feet of torque.

As such, my tester was enjoyable. And you can’t go wrong with a Duramax, to be honest. It still has that diesel sound but because it’s smaller it’s a little less obnoxious. A 10-speed automatic transmission never lets the turbo get ahead and is one of the best transmissions available today. Two-wheel drive is available, but my tester came with four-wheel drive.

This behemoth’s 120.9-inch wheelbase and size and girth provide a bit of body roll at higher speeds and as such the Yukon is less than nimble, but it’s also doubtful anyone will. buys this vehicle for rally racing.

The rugged look starts with its chiseled exterior. The Yukon is not trying to look small; it embraces its waistline with a bold chain-like grille and chrome accents. The Yukon loses some of its bold styling and personality in the rear, with a rather boring rear end. It’s really the only flaw in the exterior aesthetics is that, however good it looks from the front and even in profile, the appearance starts to fall off to the rear.

The interest of SUVs like the Yukon is to offer comfort for a large family. The Yukon is intended to be a premium vehicle (as opposed to the more toned down Chevy Tahoe). And the Yukon, especially with the Denali trim, accomplishes that. The interior is luxurious, comfortable and spacious.

My tester was the standard cab, as opposed to the gigantic XL variety. With the “XL” room, the Yukon didn’t disappoint in terms of legroom, headroom and shoulder room, even in the third row. Behind the third row, there’s 25.5 cubic feet of cargo space with that area expanding to 72.6 cubic feet with the third row fold-flat and an impressive 122.9 cubic feet with all seats folded back.

General Motors infotainment systems are ideal. It’s got all the tech you could want, but is also intuitive with a nice combination of touch functionality, plus knobs and buttons. A 10.2-inch seems small for such a large vehicle, but flows nicely into the center stack.

My tester was equipped with optional rear-seat-mounted infotainment screens as part of the Denali Ultimate Package. It would be a perfect setup for families with children who might be addicted to their electronic devices. The Yukon is an ideal family vehicle on its own, even without the expensive Ultimate Package.

With plenty of leg and shoulder room and comfortable seating, there’s room to stretch out for road trips. Toss an RV on the hitch, thanks to the Max Tow Package and it’s a weekend vehicle ready for trips to the lakes.

With the aforementioned 3.0-liter Duramax diesel, the Yukon boasts impressive fuel economy. It is rated at 20 mpg/city and 26 mpg/highway. In a week of mostly suburban driving, I averaged over 22 mpg. In a vehicle that weighs nearly 6,000 pounds, that’s great.

The Yukon is a step up from the Chevy Tahoe. As such, my tester’s base price was $72,500, which seems pretty pricey. Add the Denali Ultimate Package with rear-seat entertainment plus a host of features like a sunroof, running boards, maximum towing and more and my tester’s final price skyrocketed to $83,395.

This is where circular arguments usually end in disdain, well can you afford it anyway? The answer is usually over and the circular argument is over. One thing that is indisputable is the impressive nature of this large SUV.

Jimmy Dinsmore is a freelance automotive journalist. Email him at [email protected] Follow him on Twitter @driversside

2022 GMC Yukon Denali

Price/Price as tested………………………………………….. …… … $72,500/$83,395

Mileage………………………………………… 20 mpg/city; 26 mpg/highway

Engine………………………………………… 3.0 liters turbocharged diesel

Power ………………………….. 277 hp / 460 lb/ft.

Gearbox ………………………. 10-speed automatic

Drive wheels …………….Four wheel drive

Final assembly point……………. Arlington, TX

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