When you think about small crossover suvs, the name “GMC” likely doesn’t spring to mind, even if the 2014 Terrain has caught your eye out on the road. Most people equate a glittering red GMC badge with a big pickup truck or a huge SUV, which is why the Terrain is wrapped in design that grabs attention. GMC wants people to notice this vehicle. Nevertheless, despite the fact that it is almost impossible to ignore, the GMC Terrain is a relative rarity on American roads when compared to the heavy hitters in the segment, which in my opinion only enhances its appeal.
Introduced for the 2010 model year, and significantly upgraded for 2013, the GMC Terrain carries forward into 2014 with nothing more than new wheel designs and a new paint color. Last year, our own Benjamin Hunting reviewed the ritzy Terrain Denali model, complete with the SUV’s optional 3.6-liter V-6 engine, available all-wheel-drive system, and a price tag north of $40,000. This time around, we sampled the Terrain SLT equipped with the most popular powertrain configuration, the standard 4-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive.
After a week of using the Terrain for family-shuttle duty, it is clear that GMC has something to offer to crossover SUV buyers who are looking for an alternative to the status quo. At the same time, though, there is room for improvement in several areas.