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  • Writer's pictureCory Fourniquet

2023 GMC Canyon AT4: Is This THE Best Midsize Pickup Truck?

Much like when the GMC Canyon was reborn for the 2015 model year, the 2023 GMC Canyon seems to be shaking up the segment with its redesign for the modern buyer.

From a stat sheet perspective, this is shaping up to be the best Canyon to date, and possibly even the best midsize pickup on the market. Its powerful engine, lifted ride height, wide stance, and long list of standard and optional extras make this a compelling package for someone wanting the versatility of a pickup without having to drive around a massive 1500 and pay for the fuel of that large truck either. All 2023 Canyon models come with a factory 2-inch lift (unless you get the AT4X model which has a 3-inch lift) with an off-road suspension package and an ultra-wide track versus its competitors and even its corporate cousin in the Chevrolet Colorado. The sole engine across all trims is the most powerful version of the 2.7L turbocharged 4-cylinder making 310 horsepower and a best-in-class 430 lb-ft of torque. That too is better than all but the ZR2 trim of the Chevy Colorado.

While we were at the 2023 Chicago Auto Show, we got to spend some time familiarizing ourselves with what may turn out to be the best-selling trim of the new pickup in the AT4 model. We saw for ourselves just how upscale this pickup has become, really positioning it as the premium option to the more mainstream Chevy. We have tested all of the competition and feel that this really is the new bar for refinement in the class.

This Canyon had the best-in-class 11.3-inch digital infotainment screen. This screen will connect you to your wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay as well as serve as the only way to manually turn your headlights on and off. We also saw the class-exclusive 6.3-inch head-up display and the 8-inch digital gauge cluster.

Off-road tech includes the aforementioned ride height improvements, wider track, advanced hill descent control, automatic locking rear differential, 2-speed electronic transfer case, transfer case shield, and drive mode selector with the new terrain modes:

  • Terrain Mode: for low-speed precision off-roading and rock crawling

  • Off-Road Mode: for general off-road dynamics

  • Normal Mode: for balanced everyday on-road driving

  • Tow/Haul Mode: for optimized hauling heavy loads and towing

  • Baja Mode (exclusive to AT4X): for high-speed off-road driving

After spending time with this stationary on a show floor, we quickly went to to build and price ours. All this technology and refinement does come at a price and our online build came in at a staggering $50,500. We figure this model from the Chicago Auto Show to be optioned nearly the same and carry an equally heavy price tag.

While we love just about everything except the price of this one, it may just be worth paying if you want the newest, nicest, and most capable midsize pickup from GMC. It definitely has the chops to rival all of the competition, but we will reserve final judgment for when we can put it to the test. Stay tuned for more.

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