Now in its fifth generation of production, the GMC Yukon is a full-size SUV that has seen various significant changes over the last 3 decades. The Yukon is closely related to the Chevy Suburban, which its design is based on. Once a 2-door, sporty off-road truck based on the Chevy K5 Blazer, the GMC Yukon has now evolved into a rather pricey, yet luxuriously large sport utility vehicle.
Continue reading to compare the features and specifications of 2021, 2022, and 2023 GMC Yukons.
2021 GMC Yukon Overview
The 2021 GMC Yukon was made available in the summer of 2020 and marked the beginning of the nameplate’s fifth generation. It represented the most notable changes to this evocative nameplate since it was initially introduced as a 4-door setup in 1996, including:
- A push-button gear shifter
- Bolder styling, especially on the exterior
- Nearly 5 additional inches to the wheelbase
- A newly designed frame with the first-ever independent rear suspension
- The third row of seating that folded flat to provide increased interior cargo space
- A newly designed interior space with a 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system
The 2021 Yukon seats up to 9 passengers, depending on the trim configuration selected. Available trims include the 2WD and 4WD SLE, 2WD and 4WD SLT, 4WD AT4, and the 2WD, 4WD, and AWD Denali.
2021 GMC Yukon Engine 5.3 V8
The GMC Yukon 2021 was fitted with a GM 5.3-liter V8 base engine that generates 355 horsepower at 5600 RPM. It’s paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission, and they work together to produce 383 pound-feet of torque at 4100 RPM.
There are also two other engines available, the Denali-only 6.2-liter V8 that makes 420 horsepower, and a 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder turbo-diesel that makes 277 horsepower. This was the first available diesel engine on a yaupon since 1999.
These engines are also paired with the same 10-speed automatic gearbox. Rear-wheel drive is standard on all 2021 Yukon models, with the 4-wheel drive being optional except on the AT4, where it’s a standard feature.
When equipped with the proper towing package, the 2021 Yukon can tow as much as 8,400 pounds, typical of a maximum towing capacity for most large SUVs. An optional hitch camera makes hooking up to trailers faster and easier. This base trims Yukon’s maximum payload capacity is 1,792 pounds.
2021 GMC Yukon reviews seem relatively favorable via various online sources. The most common complaints about this truck-style SUV include that it’s difficult to maneuver into tight parking spots and parking spaces along city streets, it handles like an earthmover, and the driver’s seat does not offer adequate adjustment features. It’s also not a lot less expensive than the very similar 2021 Chevy Tahoe.
2022 GMC Yukon Overview
Like the year before, the 2022 Yukon offers the same 2021 GMC Yukon engine 5.3 V8, as well as the EcoTec3 6.2-liter 420 horsepower V8 – and the Duramax 3.0-liter 277-hp inline 6-cylinder turbocharged diesel. The same 10-speed push-button panel-controlled gearbox offers rear-wheel and all-wheel drive.
The 2022 AT4 Yukon from GMC features:
- 2-speed transfer case
- Under-body skid plates
- 20-inch wheels with all-terrain tires
- Optional air suspension capabilities
Concerning fuel efficiency, Yukons with the 2021 GMC Yukon Engine 5.3 V8 are the most efficient of the gasoline-powered models. They are reported to average 16 miles per gallon during city travel and 20 miles per gallon on the highways. The 6-cylinder turbo-diesel engine is more efficient, delivering up to 21 miles per gallon in the city and 27 on the highways.
Overall, there were very few changes made from the 2021 Yukon to the 2022 version.
2023 GMC Yukon Overview
Some experts claim that the 2023 Yukon is one of the most luxury-loaded and obliging passenger vehicles in GMC’s history. This large SUV offers 3 rows of seating, a longer wheelbase on the XL trim, and plenty of legroom with increased cargo capacity.
The same 2021 GMC Yukon engine 5.3 v8 is still available, as is the more powerful 6.2-L V8, and the 3.0-L inline 6-cylinder turbo-diesel. Remember that this Duramax V6 is a true powerhouse for towing, delivering 420 lb-ft of torque @ 4100 RPM, and with appreciable fuel economy.
MSRPs for the 2023 Yukon range from $54,500 to $94,350, trim and optional feature-dependent. The base engine option delivers 15/20 mpg city/highway, has a 24-gallon fuel tank, and the gross weight is 5677 pounds. This new Yukon offers comfortable seating for 8 and features exterior dimensions of:
- 81.0-inches width
- 76.5-inches height
- 210.0-inches length
- 121-inch wheelbase
The 5-door 2023 GMC Yukon also offers a trim-dependent payload capacity ranging between 3688.3 – 4210.8 lbs. The maximum towing capacity remains the same as it was in 2021 and 2022: 8400 pounds.
2023 GMC Yukon Tech Features
The 2023 Yukon offers a considerable assortment of technology and convenience features, including:
- The 10.2-inch GMC Premium Infotainment Center gives you access to hundreds of apps to make your driving experience more automated, enjoyable, and safe. You can control everything without taking your hand off of the steering wheel – including Google, Amazon Alexa, Android Auto, and Apple Carplay.
- The Bose® Performance Series Sound system lets you enjoy luxurious acoustical tones via 18 separate speakers located throughout this large truck-style SUV, including head restraint-mounted speakers for the driver and front seat passenger.
- GMC’s SUPER CRUISE™ driver assistance technologies allow you to travel over more than 200,000 miles of compatible USA and Canada roadways. Attentive drivers enjoy 100% hands-free vehicle operation under the proper conditions.
Another cool feature of the 2023 GMC Yukon is that it has up to 13 different camera views to help you keep a fresh perspective of your exterior surroundings to better navigate them. Unfortunately, this feature is only available on Denali Ultimate and Denali trims.
2021, 2022, 2023 GMC Yukon Comparison Summary
2021 was the first year of the 5th generation of the GMC Yukon. It debuted in the summer of 2020, unfortunately, right before the COVID pandemic hit. The 2021 Yukon sold a total of 84,242 units, a 32.79% YoY increase from 2020. However, Yukon sales declined considerably in 2022, falling to a total of 59,545 units sold between January and September.
The differences between 2021, 2022, and 2023 GMC Yukon are not significant. There have been few changes made outside of the incorporation of new and better technological features. The 2023 Yukon represents the third year of production of the 5th generation of this iconic truck-style SUV.