The 2014 GMC Acadia is one of the best SUVs on the market, offering a wide variety of special features and outstanding safety equipment. Its 3.6-litre V-6 engine is quite a treat as well, though it seems to be hindered by the car’s hefty curb weight. Its ride and handling deliver excellence, however, making the Acadia feel far more agile than an average truck.
When it comes to SUVs, the competition is as stiff as it gets, but somehow the 2014 GMC Acadia manages to stand out as one of the best. It manages to deliver an excellent cabin, filled with enough safety features to satisfy any safety conscious individual. And if you’re a parent, being safety-conscious is a must. But that’s not all – the 2014 Acadia also comes with an above-average engine and a variety of special features. So, if you’re in the market for a good family SUV, then there’s no better place to start than here.
You might be a little turned off by its exterior at first, but that’s only because it’s so undeniably generic. Admittedly, its appearance received a slight upgrade last year, so you could make the case that it’s a little less generic than before. For instance, the glass in the back is now slightly more angular, while the grille is a bit more aggressive thanks to a set of hefty LED daytime running lamps. Add to that a neat little spoiler and you get something plenty attractive. However, attractive does not equal to outstanding – so if you’ve seen similar SUVs, such as the Buick Enclave or the Chevy Traverse, then you’ve seen them all.
The cabin is just a straightforward as the body, featuring red ambient lighting, soft-touch materials and French stitching. The priciest trim also gets aluminum accents on the doors, dash and centre console. In terms of special features, you’ll find a Colour Touch Radio with touchscreen controls, a USB port and GMC’s IntelliLink, which is a smartphone integration package that incorporates Pandora and Stitcher internet radio capabilities. The layout is very simple – simpler than those in other SUVs – so you shouldn’t have any problems navigating across any of the car’s features.
The cabin is also very spacious, which shouldn’t be a big surprise. The front seats are the largest in the bunch, but the other two rows are decent enough as well. You can even get the captain’s chairs along with heating and cooling in the highest trim. One way or another, adults can feel comfy in the third row, which you won’t find in many other SUVs. The trunk is 24 cubic feet, but you can increase that space by folding down the second- and third-row seats.
And if you’re a safety-conscious parent – or you’re just safety-conscious in general – then the new GMC Acadia will have you covered. First of all, it’s received top scores from safety organizations like the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Secondly, it has an overabundance of safety features like anti-lock brakes, traction and stability control, front-seat side airbags, OnStar telematics system and more. It’s one of the safest cars on the road, so you definitely won’t feel insecure in it – we promise!
Under the hood, the 2014 Acadia isn’t quite as impressive as it is in other areas, but it still manages to deliver something decent. It comes with just one engine – a 3.6-litre V-6, which can pump out 288 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque. While these numbers look impressive on paper, they aren’t that great in practice since they’re offset by the car’s 5,000-pound curb weight and poor transmission. The real saving grace here is the Acadia’s ride, which is balanced with premium shocks. Handling is not bad either for a car this size, but you won’t be turning any sharp corners with this one.
At the end of the day, the 2014 GMC Acadia was meant to be a family vehicle – and it has done everything within its power to gain acceptance from that demographic. It’s safe, feature-rich and spacious enough to satisfy any large group of people – whether they are your family or just a bunch of friends. If you like SUVs, then you should definitely take this one for a drive.
2014 GMC Acadia
Reviewed by Unhaggle on .
Rating: 7.8 / 10
The 2014 GMC Acadia carries the same basic look as the last few models. It originated in 2008, so it’s not exactly new, but it hasn’t aged all that much since then. This year’s Acadia is available in three different trims: SLE, SLT and Denali. The Denali is the highest one, offering more features and quality materials than any other trim.
It has received a bit of an upgrade to its front and back too. At the back, you’ll see new glass, which happens to be just as angular as that in the Saturn Outlook. There you’ll also find a neat little spoiler. At the front, the SUV features a more aggressive grille, accented by a pair of sizeable LED daytime running lamps. The actual profile of the car falls somewhere in-between the more curvaceous Traverse and more angular and “masculine” Enclave. So, it’s neither too boxy nor too round.
Some of the notable features include 19- or 20-inch chrome-clad wheels, foglamps, heated mirrors and a panoramic sunroof. Its headlights and chrome-mesh grille will also draw attention – or at the very least, make the car stand out.
|Trim / Style||MSRP||Est. Monthly Payment||Average Price||Invoice Price|
|Denali AWD||$55,995||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SLE1 AWD||$39,495||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SLE1 FWD||$36,495||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SLE2 AWD||$42,395||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SLE2 FWD||$39,395||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SLT1 AWD||$47,895||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SLT1 FWD||$44,895||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SLT2 AWD||$49,095||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|SLT2 FWD||$46,095||Get Local Price||Get Invoice Price|
|Power and Performance:|
The 2014 GMC Acadia comes with a 3.6-litre V-6 engine, which can produce up to 288 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque. Unfortunately, these otherwise decent numbers are offset by the car’s 5,000-pound curb weight, which slows it down in a noticeable way. The engine is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, which has been readjusted to feel smoother and more responsive, but can still give you trouble when downshifting. You also get to choose between an all-wheel and front-wheel drives, and your choice would depend squarely on whether you want that engine to work harder or not.
The fuel economy could be a little better, however, since it’s not that great, especially in the city. The EPA has rated the Acadia at 13.9 litres per 100 kilometres in the city and 9.8 litres per 100 kilometres on the highway. The all-wheel-drive model carries the ratings of 14.7 litres per 100 kilometres in the city and 10.2 litres per 100 kilometres on the highway. This SUV could definitely benefit from lower numbers in this segment, but unfortunately that’s not the case. It does, however, provide a variety of ratios, which can help you lower those revs on the highway.
|Interiors and Special Features:|
The cabin within the 2014 GMC Acadia is not particularly outstanding in terms of appearance, but it does its job, and does it well. Almost every single surface you’re likely to touch or lean on features soft-touch materials, including soft leather with French stitching and other similar materials. You also have the option of adding red ambient lighting and aluminum interior accents in the Denali trim.
In terms of size, the Acadia is big enough to seat eight people, with the third-row seats being available in all models. As is usually the case, the driver and front passenger get the most spacious and comfortable seats thanks to a high seating position along with standard heating, ventilation and leather upholstery in the Denali trim.
Despite the front seats being the best, the second-row ones are very spacious too, even for tall adults. And just like the front ones, they feature heating and cooling. The third-row seats are a bit of a disappointment, however, since they can only fit small adults at best. That said, if you go for the captain’s chair layout, the back seating becomes a little more accessible. All the seats can also be slid back and forth to create extra legroom if required. Additionally, it’s possible to flip up the rear seat cushion or move the seat forward thanks to a Smart Slide feature.
The cargo area is not too shabby either, providing 24 cubic feet of room. And if you’d like more space to storage something big, you can fold the second- and third-row seats flat to create 116 cubic feet. According to GMC, the car can transport a 48-inch-wide drywall and plywood.
Another fine aspect of the cabin is the overabundance of special features. All models come with power windows, locks and mirrors; cruise control; air conditioning; standard cloth upholstery; and a Colour Touch Radio with touchscreen controls, a rearview camera and a USB port. One of the optional features is GMC’s IntelliLink system, which comes with smartphone integration that includes Pandora and Stitcher internet radio capability. Other features you can get are leather upholstery, heated front seats, a tri-zone climate control system, a back-seat entertainment system and a Dual SkyScape sunroof. So, if a variety of features to choose from is what you crave, then you won’t be disappointed here.
The best aspect of the 2014 GMC Acadia must be its safety equipment. Its standard safety features include anti-lock brakes, traction and stability control, a rearview camera as well as front-seat side airbags and curtain airbags. Other features involve a blind-spot monitor with cross-traffic alerts as well as forward-collision alert and lane-departure warning system. There’s also GM’s telematics system known as OnStar, which includes a Directions and Connections service.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has given the Acadia five stars out of five, awarding four of them for frontal impact and five for side impact results. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has named it a Top Safety Pick, awarding it with top scores in every category.