2018 GMC Terrain Review
Pros & Cons
- Comfortable and upscale interior
- Optional engines offer efficiency and power
- MyLink user interface is intuitive and easy to use
- Extensive list of optional safety features
- Price with options runs higher than average for the class
- Less cargo space behind the back seat than most competitors
- Base 1.5-liter is disappointing all around
- Midrange trims offer fewer standard safety features than competitors
List Price Range
$18,602 - $34,998
Used Terrain for SaleSee all for sale
Which Terrain does Edmunds recommend?
We think the SLE with the Driver Alert I package gets you all the basic safety and technology features you need, plus quite a few you'll want. However, buyers who want a full suite of active safety features, including forward collision mitigation with automatic braking and lane departure intervention, will need to upgrade to the SLT and the Driver Alert II package. In either case, we also recommend upgrading from the base engine, as the 2.0-liter dramatically improves the driving experience without a serious mileage penalty.
Edmunds' Expert Review
The base engine lacks power, the transmission is slow-witted, and the powertrain's focus on fuel economy all but eliminates snappy acceleration and quick pedal response. Elsewhere it's better. The brakes feel good, and though it's no sport SUV, the Terrain handles curves and corners with composure.
Poorly placed central air vents and stifling leather upholstery aside, the Terrain is quite comfortable, at least at rest. On the road, it's prone to regular low-impact shock, vibration and jostling on even moderately rough road. The seats are good, though, and the cabin keeps outside noise at bay.
The interior is attractive and well-configured, but some controls are awkwardly placed. Taller drivers will want the steering wheel to extend farther. The panoramic sunroof cuts into rear headroom for taller folks, but overall this is a roomy cabin with good space for shoulders, legs and elbows.
The Terrain doesn't offer an abundance of cargo space compared to some rivals, but can handle most routine hauling and cargo needs. Some of its more thoughtful features — such as small trays and cubbies and especially a fold-flat front passenger seat — offer an edge.
The Terrain deserves high marks for its tech, improving on the mediocre offerings of past models. Plenty of features are standard throughout the lineup, multiple driver aids are available, and six USB ports help ensure that all devices get charged. Navigation comes with strings attached, though.
|Overall||6.5 / 10|
Most helpful consumer reviews
SLT 4dr SUV AWD (1.5L 4cyl Turbo 9A)
The 1st generation was a poor mix on all fronts. A weird, blocky vehicle. Harsh ride, loud, and a poor choice of engines...a weak 4 cylinder or an expensive, "more-than-is-needed" V-6. It seems that GM learned from its past mistakes and also from the mistakes of its competitors and created a vehicle with proper balance. I own an SLT AWD with the 2.0 L turbo. Amazingly smooth shifts from the 9-speed transmission and it rolls calmly and composed down the road, however, published times of 0-60 of 6.8 seconds are not weak by any means. Truly balanced. People complain about the buttons for shifting. Ridiculous. It takes about an hour to get used to it. I swear people posting on the internet just like to have something to whine about. The big negative for this vehicle is the MSRP. It is much higher than the competition. That has always been Detroit's game; high starting price followed by incentives. I saved $11000 off MSRP after generous March incentives (starting price $39620). Don't pay anything near the sticker price. Front seats are so supportive allowing for long drives. Back seat room is spacious and comfortable. Load height in cargo area is perfect with spacious lower cargo compartment beneath floor. Awesome vehicle. I don't miss my Acadia one bit.
Denali 4dr SUV (2.0L 4cyl Turbo 9A)
I’ve had my fully loaded Terrain Denali for several weeks now and it just keeps growing on me. He 2.0T really shoves you back in your seat and the 9-Speed auto is extremely smooth and responsive for having that many gears. Auto stop/start does take some getting used to though. Soft touch materials abound and most things feel like real quality to me. Mileage is decent and would no doubt be better if I could keep my right foot out of the Turbo. Cargo space is good. It’s fairly quiet as well though there is of course a bit more noise from the back compared to the sedans I’ve had prior. The new updated GMC Intellilink looks great and is easy to set up and use. Give one a test drive and try the Terrain out for yourself.
SLE 4dr SUV (1.5L 4cyl Turbo 9A)
Bought this Terrain about 2 months ago for my wife to replace her aging 2006 Trailblazer. She always said her Trailblazer was the perfect size and she was adamant about the size of the new vehicle being close to the same size. This Terrain comes darn close. She loves it!! We found an SLE with the 2.0 4cyl engine and the driver alert pkg and the infotainment pkg. This thing is a rocket ship and very comfortable even for a big guy like myself.
SLE 4dr SUV (1.5L 4cyl Turbo 9A)
First let me run down down my list of vehicles, in order, leading up to the Terrain : Lexus IS, VW Touareg, VW Passat, Infiniti G35, BMW 335D, Terrain. I traded in the BMW (40MPG and a lot of power). I wanted to get back into an SUV, as I missed my Touareg the most. I did some poking around, some test driving, and ended up at GMC. I've never bought American and I'm so far thrilled with my purchase. The one thing I miss, obviously speed and pickup, is easily justifiable by the comfort and convenience of my car. I bought the SLE. There's no nav, and it's missing some power options that I really don't need (seats that I'll never change and a sunroof I'll never use). The entertainment system is great. I just plug my phone in and everything I want to do I can do verbally through the car or my phone. Play Spotify, Navigate here (I use Google maps off my phone and it projects very nicely on my display), Text my friend this, etc. The design is sleek, the interior extremely comfortable and the ride incredible smooth. Go give it a test drive, you wont be disappointed.
Features & Specs
Our experts like the Terrain models:
- Rear Cross Traffic Alert
- Alerts the driver to perpendicular oncoming traffic when reversing out of a driveway or parking space.
- Side Blind Zone Alert
- Monitors blind spots for traffic, warning the driver when an obstacle is present.
- Safety Alert Seat
- Vibrates the driver seat cushion to provide physical alerts from safety systems.