Needs Boost - 2010 GMC Terrain Long-Term Road Test

2010 GMC Terrain Long-Term Road Test

2010 GMC Terrain: Needs Boost

November 12, 2010


Though other car companies have done it in recent years, with the introduction of the Sonata Turbo, Hyundai's shown us that you can have a two liter engine that delivers a good deal of power while still returning good fuel economy. And I can think of no other car in our fleet that needs a little kick in the pants more than our Terrain.

Adequate on a good day, going downhill, the 2.4 liter Ecotec is no match for the weight and barn door aerodynamics of the Terrain. And when coupled to a heroically stubborn transmission bent on upshifting at all costs, you have to really throttle the thing around town just to keep up with traffic. Care to guess what that does for fuel economy? Don't even get me started on what it's like to drive it up a long grade - we've got quite a few of them here in Southern California - it's miserable.

If GM could slap a turbocharger on this engine (maybe The General should hire away some of Hyundai's engine guys), not only would you probably add at least another 70 horsepower and 70 torques, but you'd be able to re-calibrate the transmission to respond better to real world driving situations. I'd gladly take an honest 28 mpg as opposed to almost theoretical and seemingly impossible 30 mpg.

They could even call it the EcoBoost - oh, that name appears to already be taken.

Kurt Niebuhr, Photo Editor @ 17,967 miles

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