Conducting a GMC Yukon vs. Acadia comparison may help you narrow your family’s SUV choices.
While the car world continues to expand new markets with the emergence of more environmentally-sensitive sectors like compact and crossover SUVs, there is still a quite lucrative market for the standard-bearer: the full-sized SUV. Even in this well-established corner of the car marketplace, concessions are being made to the strength of smaller and more eco-friendly versions of the SUV. Some of these concessions can be seen in comparing two of General Motors stronger options in this class of cars: the GMC Acadia vs. the GMC Yukon.
Conducting even a brief GMC Acadia vs. Yukon comparison is going to help you and your family decide if this class of vehicle still suits your needs.
2014 GMC Acadia overview
GMC first introduced the Acadia to the world in December of 2006 for the 2007 model year. It was intended to replace the GMC Safari, the GMC Envy and the Pontiac Montana (three flagging SUV models) as well as announce GM’s entry into the crossover SUV sector. It was GM’s first front-wheel drive “family wagon” and it offered an excellent, smaller and easier-to-handle SUV option to its Yukon. The driving public has responded well to the car and GM enjoyed sales of just under 90,000 units of Acadias in the U.S. in 2013.
Following the adage of if it ain’t broke… GM made few modifications to the 2014 Acadia. In addition to a few safety feature upgrades, about the only thing drivers may notice on the 2014 Acadia is the addition of two new USB ports (a nod to our ever growing thirst for technology options in our cars.) Just about everything else is the same.
2014 GMC Acadia options
The Acadia continue to come in four standard trim/option packages (not including the Denali line, which has its own distinct set of trim/option packages.) You can build your own Acadia within these four selections:
- Acadia SLE-1
- Acadia SLE-2
- Acadia SLT-1
- Acadia SLT-2
All four options come standard with GM’s 3.6-liter V6 delivering 288-hp and 270 lb. feet of torque. All four trims offer a front-wheel drive (standard) or all-wheel drive option on a 6-speed automatic transmission.
Acadia has always made a strong impression with its bold exterior lines and wraparound rear glass windows. It has also routinely meets expectations for the family turning to this model for flexibility in storage, hauling and towing. The three-row seating configuration (that easily handles seven passengers) allows you to flip down the third row and take full advantage of under-seat and extended backseat storage capabilities.
The 2014 Acadia continued its tradition of great safety ratings. It again received a top five-star rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for its crash-test performance and it was given a Top Safety Pick nod from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) for its standard features like stability control, front and side-impact airbags and curtains, and a rearview camera and parking sensors.
2014 GMC Yukon overview & options
When future generations go to define what the SUV was and became, they will do well to follow the progress of GMC’s Yukon. Since its introduction in 1998, this car has served as the benchmark (for both good and bad) in defining the full-sized SUV. While the Yukon has seen some of its steady annual sales figures decline (in some measure due to the success of the Acadia) it still accounts for round 30,000 units of sales in the U.S. for GM.
The 2014 Yukon comes in four trim/option packages (not including the Denali line of Yukons with separate trim and option packages):
- Yukon SLE
- Yukon SLT
- Yukon XL SLE
- Yukon XL SLT
All four trim options come equipped with GM’s 5.3-liter Vortec V8 engine that delivers 320-hp and 335-lb feet of torque. The standard variable 6-speed automatic transmission offers some additional efficiency as it adjusts to driving conditions (tapping from 4-8 cylinders as needed to improve fuel use.)
All trim options come standard with front-wheel drive, though you can select an AWD option for either.
Any of the Yukon trim packages allow for lots of interior storage or passenger capacity. The middle row of seats has a 60/40 split folding option while the third row can be split 50/50. Interior dimensions are remarkably spacious and nine passengers can travel in comfort (and still have plenty of room for storage.)
Knowing that this vehicle will be carrying a lot of families, there is additional emphasis on safety. The AWD options come equipped with an AutoTrac system that will engage full AWD when road conditions warrant (like on rainy or icy roads.) Yukons are equipped with the StabiliTrak suite of safety features that include rollover avoidance, trailer sway assist and hill start. A full array of front and side airbags and curtains links with passenger sensors to know when (and how many) bags to deploy during an accident. The 2014 Yukon also comes with six-months of OnStar service.
Size and power
Making a comparison between the 2914 Acadia and Yukon is really about size and power. If you’re not quite sure the Acadia is going to meet all of your hauling, towing and carrying needs, you’ll need to step up to the Yukon. If you can get by with a very reliable and powerful V6 that seats 7 and can easily haul over 1,700 lbs. or pull a 5,200-lb. package, you’ll do just fine with an Acadia.
If you do select an Acadia, there are some surprising areas where you’ll be ahead. Of course, the obvious one is fuel efficiency. The larger and more powerful V8 engine on the Yukon is going to cost you more at the pump. The best fuel efficiency you can expect from any of the 2014 Yukons is 15-mpg in the city and 21-mpg on the highway. Compare that with 17-mpg in the city and 24-mpg on the highway with the Acadia.
The Acadia also offers more second and third row headroom for passengers than the Yukon and well-appreciated more legroom in the third row than the Yukon.
Prices and warranties
While size, power and fuel efficiency are primary areas for consideration when comparing the 2014 GMC Acadia and Yukon, you’ll find that you are paying for that power and size when you step up to a Yukon. Here’s a quick summary of the starting MSRP for each basic model/trim option:
2014 GMC Acadia prices
- Acadia SLE-1 (FWD) -- $32,910
- Acadia SLE-1 (AWD) -- $37,410
- Acadia SLE-2 (FWD) -- $34,800
- Acadia SLE-2 (AWD) -- $36,800]
- Acadia SLT-1 (FWD) -- $40,540
- Acadia SLT-1 (AWD) -- $42,540
- Acadia SLT-2 (FWD) -- $41,635
- Acadia SLT-2 (AWD) – 43,635
2014 GMC Yukon prices
- Yukon SLE (FWD) -- $44,455
- Yukon SLE (AWD) -- $48,465
- Yukon SLT (FWD) -- $48,880
- Yukon SLT (AWD) -- $51,735
- Yukon XL SLE (FWD) -- $47,925
- Yukon XL SLE (AWD) -- $50,715
- Yukon XL SLT (FWD) -- $51,100
- Yukon XL LT (AWD) -- $53,835
As for warranties, there isn’t much daylight between any trim model or option when you compare the 2014 GMC Acadia and Yukon. All options come standard with GM’s 3-year/36,000 mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty, its 5-year/100,000 mile limited powertrain warranty, its 5-year/100,000 mile enrollment in GM’s roadside assistance program, and two full years of covered routine maintenance. The one real difference is that the 2014 Yukons will come with 6-months of OnStar navigational and assistance services included.
When all is said and done, conducting a 2014 GMC Acadia vs. Yukon comparison isn’t going to be an apples-to-apples affair. It all boils down to size and power (and of course, what you’re needs vs. budget for these is going to be as you will pay for more of both.) While this on-paper review can help you begin to make a determination of what you and your family may need, getting behind the wheel for a test drive might be your best option. Reply! can assist with more car reviews for your consideration and we can connect you to local GM dealers who will be eager to take you for a spin to seek just which SUV best suits your family’s needs.