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For 2012, the GMC Acadia gains some new exterior colors, as well as an additional console-mounted power outlet. The top-of-the-line Acadia Denali trim comes standard with hill-hold assist. The mid-grade Acadia SLT and Acadia Denali trim levels gain an integrated side blind spot mirror. All GMC Acadias get fog lamps and body colored side moldings.
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.
GMC adds gasoline direct injection technology to the Acadia's 3.6-liter engine resulting in more power and better fuel economy. Available new features include Bluetooth, Turn-by-Turn navigation download, XM Satellite Radio with NavTraffic and two new exterior colors.
As concerns about the environment and fuel costs drive consumers to look for alternatives to SUVs, the Acadia fills an important role for GMC. It allows the brand to establish a presence in the rapidly expanding category of crossover SUVs, where smart packaging and efficiency are more important than sheer size.
The Acadia is the first crossover SUV sold by GMC and shares its structure and many of its features with the Saturn Outlook and the Buick Enclave. The Acadia attempts to take the appearance and capabilities of an SUV and add a 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. Competitors of the Acadia include the Honda Pilot, Dodge Durango and Ford Explorer.