By KBB.com Editors
KBB Expert Rating: 7.1
Although it is the first crossover SUV ever sold by GMC, the 2011 GMC Acadia actually shares most of its structure and many of its features with the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave. The Acadia successfully combines the appearance and capabilities of an SUV with an added measure of practicality and efficiency. It seats up to eight people, has ample room for luggage or cargo and offers good fuel economy. Considering that most SUVs never leave paved roads, GMC expects the Acadia's street-focused ride, handling and available all-wheel drive to make up for its lack of off-road capability. The Acadia's competitors include the Honda Pilot, Toyota Highlander, Subaru Tribeca and the Ford Flex.
If you need lots of room to haul people and cargo but hate the look of a minivan, you'll like the 2011 GMC Acadia. It combines a large, usable interior and good gas mileage with attractive SUV-like exterior styling.
If you are one of the few drivers who travel off-road in your SUV, the 2011 GMC Acadia may not be for you. Its available all-wheel-drive system is designed to enhance traction during on-road driving, not during off-highway adventures. A maximum tow rating of 5,200 pounds may also be a deterrent.
The big news for 2011 is the addition of a Denali model to the Acadia lineup. The Acadia Denali includes a chrome honeycomb grille, monochromatic exterior trim, HID headlamps, unique interior trim and a long list of standard features. Other changes include a new eight-way power driver's seat (which replaces the previous six-way power seat) with power lumbar and recline, heated cloth seats (available on SLE) and a revised SL Preferred Package.
Driving Impressions Thanks to unit-body construction and street-focused suspension, the 2011 GMC Acadia drives more like a car than an SUV. Handling is good with precise steering response, controlled body lean and...plenty of traction during cornering. Eighteen-inch wheels are standard, with an optional 20-inch wheel and tire package available, which sharpens handling without sacrificing a comfortable ride. The GMC Acadia accelerates swiftly, and the StabiliTrak stability control performs admirably in the most dramatic situations. Many drivers will appreciate the raised seating position, which gives a clear view of the road. However, a high beltline limits rearward visibility, making parking lot maneuvers more difficult.
The third-row seats in the Acadia are roomy and bolstering on the seat backs makes extended journeys comfortable. Access to the rear seats is easy thanks to a clever mechanism that slides the second-row seats out of the way.
Dual SkyScape Sunroof
The optional dual sunroofs add a feeling of spaciousness to the interior. The fixed rear sunroof features a large opening and a power sunshade for when the sunshine gets too intense.
Inside, the 2011 GMC Acadia is roomy, versatile and utilizes high-quality materials. An attractive two-tone look is used throughout the Acadia lineup, and a cashmere-color option brightens an already airy interior. The Acadia can accommodate up to eight people in three rows, with ample head- and legroom for all. Wide rear-door openings and second-row seats that slide forward make getting into and out of the third row easy. Behind the third-row seats is an impressive 19.7 cubic feet of cargo space and, with second and third-row seats folded flat, cargo room expands to 116.9 cubic feet. The interior's usability is enhanced with numerous cup holders, storage spaces and additional storage beneath the rear cargo area.Exterior
With the Acadia, GMC smartly avoids the excessive body cladding that plagued some of General Motors' earlier SUVs. The result is a handsome package that looks purposeful and up-scale. Bulging fenders and standard 18-inch wheels give the Acadia a strong stance, with tasteful chrome accents and LED tail lamps adding a touch of class. A rear spoiler looks sporty and contributes to the Acadia's low aerodynamic drag. Other nice details include dual exhaust outlets with two chrome tips per side, chrome accents on the roof rails and beautifully-shaped headlamps.
The 2011 GMC Acadia is a well-equipped vehicle that includes as standard GM's OnStar system with one year of complimentary service, AM/FM/CD stereo with six speakers and MP3 capability, XM Satellite Radio, seven-passenger seating, dual exhaust with chrome tips, rear spoiler, sliding second-row seats, fog lamps and 18-inch wheels. Safety features include StabiliTrak with rollover mitigation, anti-lock brakes (ABS), Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) and six airbags. The Denali trim adds mahogany wood inserts, heated and cooled front seats, dual SkyScape sunroof, perforated leather seating and 20-inch two-tone clad wheels.
GMC offers a variety of convenience and luxury features for the Acadia. Dual sunroofs and a rear entertainment system make the drive more enjoyable and, unlike with some vehicles, can be ordered together. The interior can be outfitted with a touch-screen DVD-based navigation system, rearview camera system, tri-zone automatic air conditioning, heated and cooled front seats, premium audio with surround sound, a Head-Up Display, cargo area audio controls, rear park assist and eight-passenger seating. Exterior options include a power liftgate, High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps and an attractive 20-inch wheel package.
The 2011 GMC Acadia's strong 3.6-liter V6 uses variable valve timing and gasoline direct injection technology to enhance responsiveness, deliver good engine power and provide a maximum tow rating of 5,200 pounds. The six-speed automatic transmission maximizes engine performance and helps the Acadia achieve excellent fuel economy for a vehicle of its size. However, the transmission can be slow to react to throttle inputs, resulting in delayed downshifts when trying to accelerate to pass other vehicles.
288 horsepower @ 6300 rpm
270 lb.-ft. of torque @ 3400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24 (FWD), 16/23 (AWD)
By Chuck on Tuesday, March 03, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 154,000overall rating 6 of 10rating details
Pros: "Features & great in snow"
Cons: "Seems to need major repairs more often."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 5
"Excellent in snow. More room than other mid-size SUVs. Decent gas mileage. Our SLT version has GPS, DVD, two moon roofs, leather seats, etc. Love all the features. Heads up display on windshield for speed is very nice, easy to get used to. Our disappointment is in reliability: had to replace transmission (at 116,000 miles) and power steering pump (103,000 miles). Also had to have DVD repaired (GMC dealer can only replace with new). Front passenger airbag is periodically going inoperative - I hear it is expensive to repair. The front driver seat occasionally failed to move at all (electrical short?) but has been working perfectly in the last year or so. Shocks need replacing now - but might be normal wear at 154,000 miles."
10 people out of 11 found this review helpful
By Tabjoy85 on Friday, February 27, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 3,250overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Spacious,good price,saftey,comfort"
Cons: "Gas mileage"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I'm a mother of three children. The space is amazing! I went from a car to this SUV. I like being able to see around me. It's comfortable, spacious, and love colors of the interior. Larger SUV for a smaller price. I can afford this SUV and not have to loose the space like you do with the smaller SUV's."
4 people out of 5 found this review helpful
By frank on Friday, February 13, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 100,000overall rating 1 of 10rating details
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"and panoramic leaking.electrical problem,(radio,ac controls,interior lights)no buy this car,lost to much money"
24 people out of 36 found this review helpful
By Sad Driver on Thursday, February 12, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 108,000overall rating 1 of 10rating details
Pros: "It is comfortable to sleep in when broke down"
Cons: "TOO many defects and failures for a $50k vehicle"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"Ok the vehicle had several recalls, then the power steering went out, fixed it then out it went again one day later, fixed it again then out it went again. GM did not cover the repairs.. two days after a bath in low trade in value, GM sends letter to cover the cost to fix one time, however I would need to take the vehicle to GM.... a little to late GM... you lost a customer for life! (I traded in three GM vehicles for another brand, one more to go)"
16 people out of 27 found this review helpful
By NONE on Monday, February 02, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 55,900overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "GOOD PRICE, FUN TO DRIVE AND ROOMY"
Cons: "NO CONS"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"I WANT A CAR WITH A FULL WARRANTY, AND A DIFFERENT COLOR, THE CAR RUNS GREAT AND IS BEAUTIFUL. EVERYONE THAT SEES IT THINKS IT IS NEW."
8 people out of 15 found this review helpful
By Darren on Saturday, January 31, 2015
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 47,000overall rating 8 of 10rating details
Pros: "Very practical and convenient"
Cons: "Transmission and 2nd row bucket seats"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 7
"The only things i do not like about it are that the 2nd row seats do not lean back very much and that it really has a tendency to roll back on inclines if i take my foot off the brakes. I have owned many GM (and other) brand vehicles in the past and the Acadia is the only one that does this!"
7 people out of 10 found this review helpful