By KBB.com Editors
KBB Expert Rating: 8.2
The 2014 GMC Acadia is built on the same platform as the Chevy Traverse and Buick Enclave, but GMC's iteration of this 8-passenger SUV has an edge to it. The styling is more ruggedly truck-like, reminiscent of the GMC trucks. Inside, the Acadia in Denali trim is every bit the match of Buick's Enclave, which is often thought of as a high-water mark in crossover SUVs. Compared to other offerings, including the Honda Pilot and Ford Flex, the Acadia has ample room for cargo, a 3rd-row seat that accommodates real adults, a plush interior finished with upscale materials, and build quality that's equal to anything in the category. Add in the choice of front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, and the Acadia represents an extremely capable, and enjoyable, modern version of the family station wagon.
Need room for eight, space for lots of cargo – or some mix of both – but don't want the gas consumption or heft of a full-size SUV? Definitely don't want a minivan? Give the 2014 GMC Acadia your attention.
Spend much time going off-road, hitting rock and boulder-filled terrain, chasing down muddy trails? Have to tow more than 5,200 pounds? You probably need a GMC Yukon or something of a similar size and capability.
Changes to the GMC Acadia for 2014 are minor. The Forward Collision Alert and Lane Departure Warning are standard on the Denali and available on SLT1 and SLT2 trim levels, and there are two charging-only USB ports on the rear of the center console, for use by passengers in the second row of seats.
Driving Impressions Those who have spent most of their time driving cars rather than trucks will find nothing of concern in the 2014 GMC Acadia. It drives like a car, rides like...a car, steers and handles like a car, and has all the comfort and luxury one would expect in a high-end car. It is also extremely quiet inside the well-insulated cabin. Going down the road the Acadia is smooth and comfortable. Going around corners, if not as nimble as a sports car, it's responsive and predictable and takes the curves with certainty. Drivers should appreciate the strong and smooth 3.6-liter 288-horsepower V6 engine for most driving but, if fully loaded and/or dealing with steep hills, some might want just a bit more power. Our only significant complaint was the somewhat high beltline (the lower edge of the window openings) that limits views to the rear, thus making parking in tight spots more difficult.
The 3rd-row seat in the 2014 GMC Acadia is roomy and the bolstering on the seatbacks makes extended journeys more comfortable. Access to the rear seats is easy thanks to a clever 1-touch mechanism that slides the 2nd-row seats out of the way.
3.6-LITER V6 ENGINE
The 2014 Acadia's 3.6-liter V6 is a model of smoothness, response and power. While some might want a little more in heavily-loaded conditions, for most drivers, most of the time, the engine is just right.
With seating for up to eight people, including a 3rd-row seat that can accommodate adults, the 2014 GMC Acadia SUV is about as people-friendly as a standard-size vehicle can get. A clever sliding 2nd-row seat permits easy access to the third row, as do the long rear-door openings. An unexpected benefit is the Acadia's surprisingly spacious cargo area. Even with the 3rd-row seat in place it really will hold eight people and a good percentage of their gear. Fold both rows flat and the Acadia offers up a whopping 116.9 cubic feet of cargo-hauling capacity.Exterior
We like the conservative yet rugged and purposeful styling of the 2014 GMC Acadia SUV. You won't find any tacked-on body cladding or garish add-ons. Even the Acadia Denali, with its big chrome mesh grille and larger-diameter wheels, resists the temptation to go overboard. Riding on standard 18-inch wheels, the Acadia has a purposeful, wide stance, while chrome and LED lighting add noticeable yet tasteful elegance. A subtle rear spoiler helps reduce aerodynamic drag and looks sharp, while the chrome exhaust tips and roof-rail accents help the Acadia shine.
The GMC Acadia for 2014 is a well-equipped vehicle that includes as standard GM's OnStar system with one year of complimentary service, color touch-screen stereo with six speakers and MP3 capability, satellite radio, 7-passenger seating, dual exhaust with chrome tips, rear spoiler, sliding 2nd-row seats, fog lights, rearview camera, rear park assist and 18-inch wheels. Government-required safety features include StabiliTrak electronic stability control with rollover mitigation, anti-lock brakes (ABS), Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) and seven airbags. The Denali trim adds mahogany wood inserts, heated and cooled front seats, dual SkyScape sunroof, perforated leather seating surfaces, 20-inch wheels and more.
GMC offers a variety of convenience and luxury features for the 2014 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 color touch-screen navigation system (standard on Denali), IntelliLink Bluetooth streaming of apps, tri-zone automatic air conditioning, heated and cooled front seats, premium audio with Surround Sound, a head-up display, cargo-area audio controls and 8-passenger seating. Exterior options include a power liftgate, High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlights and an attractive 20-inch wheel package. Forward Collision Alert and Lane Departure Warning are standard on the Denali and optional on SLT1 and SLT2 trim levels.
The 2014 GMC Acadia SUV's capable 3.6-liter V6 has variable valve timing and direct fuel injection, both of which contribute to enhanced responsiveness and an appreciated output of 288 horsepower. The maximum rating of 5,200 pounds will allow the Acadia to deal with modest-sized trailers. The 6-speed automatic transmission maximizes engine performance and helps the Acadia achieve excellent fuel economy for a vehicle of its size. However, at times the transmission can be slow to react to quick throttle inputs, resulting in delayed downshifts when trying to accelerate to pass other vehicles. On balance, we think it's an entirely commendable and pleasurable drivetrain.
288 horsepower @ 6,300 rpm
270 lb-ft of torque @ 3,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/24 mpg (front-wheel drive), 16/23 mpg (all-wheel drive)
The Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the 2014 GMC Acadia SUV starts at just a little over $35,000 for the front-wheel-drive base model. That's more than the entry prices of the Ford Flex, Toyota Highlander or Honda Pilot. A loaded GMC Acadia Denali with all-wheel drive can reach close to $55,000. While priced at the high end of the segment, the Acadia's generous standard equipment list must be taken into consideration. To compare the actual transaction prices that consumers are paying in your area, be sure to check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price. Though higher priced than its competitors, the Acadia is expected to have excellent resale value, remaining slightly above the Ford Flex but not as high as the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander.
By BSmith on Saturday, April 05, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 112,000overall rating 1 of 10rating details
Pros: "Looks good"
Cons: "Piece of JUNK"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"Please do not ever buy this car. At 100 k miles the trans went out, sun roof leaks, rack and pinion has also gone out. I've heard of SEVERAL other people I know personally that have had the same problems I have. This vehicle is a piece of junk!"
2 people out of 5 found this review helpful
By sanderdog on Thursday, April 03, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 61,000overall rating 5 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great carrying capacity. 7 people and stuff."
Cons: "Transmission unreliable."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 1
"Great car for family. Good in bad weather. Transmission failure at 61,000. Had a previous recall on transmission too. Over $2k to fix. Poor quality."
1 person out of 4 found this review helpful
By Toymover on Tuesday, April 01, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 29,000overall rating 6 of 10rating details
Pros: "Nice ride"
Cons: "bad build...bad engneering...engine issues"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 2
"We purchased the Acadia Denali to replace a GMC Yukon Denali XL because it was so big and a real gas hog. We had purchased a 2010 Acadia for our Daughter and Son-in-Law and loved the way it handled...plus the gas mileage was better and the third row seats were built-in so we did not have to lug the huge Yukon seats around. Immediately after purchase we had a leak in the roof and water sloshing around everywhere and even through the vents and down into the dash. They had it for several days and did fix that issue. There were many other issues with small plastic parts that came loose or just were never installed. For instance the lock pull on the drivers side door was never installed and was just sitting in the slot. If you pulled it just came right out. We have an intermittent problem with acceleration...the car sometimes almost stalls when in a situation where you need quick acceleration...and I have almost been hit 3 different times because of this. We noticed that the acceleration is not nearly as good as the earlier Acadia models. Mileage is not much better than the Yukon XL (about 2 mile/gal better. Of course the acceleration issue is nothing that the dealer can find. I will be trading this vehicle this year and may go back to the Yukon since they now have the 3rd row seats built-in like all other large brands. The quality of the engineering and the build from the factory are very disappointing. It looks good since they have figured out a way to make cheap plastic seem luxurious."
By vb on Friday, March 21, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 66,000overall rating 10 of 10rating details
Pros: "Good size, nice option packages, lots of cubbies"
Cons: "Poor gas mileage"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"This is the second Acadia I have owned. Actually traded in one to buy a newer one of the same color, but more options. Since the second one was a demo model, it had more options than I would have liked, like the entertainment system, but I got a good deal. I like the size - not too big, not too small. Love the head-up display. It has just okay get-up-and-go but that's fine by me. Biggest issue is the less-than-stellar gas mileage (I average about 17 mpg). Also, on both Acadias I have owned, the DRL bulbs tend to burn out every six months or so and are very inconvenient to replace."
9 people out of 12 found this review helpful
By Ikeman on Wednesday, March 19, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 180,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Great vehicle overall"
Cons: "Rough start but then all good"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10
"Great vehicle with amazing versatility and functionality. We love this Acadia. One of best vehicles I have ever owned in over 30 years of car ownership."
2 people out of 4 found this review helpful
By Missie on Tuesday, March 18, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 87,000overall rating 9 of 10rating details
Pros: "Easy to drive - love the back up camera feature."
Cons: "Doesn't clean itself"
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"What a sweet car - easy to drive, easy to pack for traveling (we do a lot of that) and not too bad on gasoline for the size of the car."