The GMC Canyon returned to the midsize pickup fold back in 2015 with a new look, more powerful engine options, and more capability than ever before. The 2021 model year will be the Canyon’s seventh rerun since its debut, and it plays in a segment that is primed for plenty of change in the coming years. To help the Canyon keep pace, it may get a refresh similar to what its platform-mate, the 2021 Chevy Colorado, will get. This would bring in a reworked front end with a new standard grille and more design separation between trim levels, including unique grille options and skid plates, to show each model’s personality.
If the 2021 Canyon chooses to follow in the Colorado’s footsteps with an exterior refresh, we expect it to also follow along with no interior updates of note. This would result in it carrying on with the same interior design it’s had since 2015. Fortunately, the Canyon has received a handful of tech updates to keep it on pace with or ahead of the competition. The current model’s standard tech includes the GMC Infotainment System with a 7-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth with audio streaming, power windows, and more.
Powering the Canyon, we expect the same assortment of engines the current model includes. This will start with a standard 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that delivers 200 horsepower and 191 pound-feet of torque paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. Next up will be a 3.6-liter V6 that will inject 308 hp and 275 lb-ft of torque. This V6 will mate with an eight-speed automatic transmission. Topping the range will be a 2.8-liter turbo-diesel four-cylinder with 186 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. The diesel engine will mate with a six-speed automatic transmission.
Safety has been an issue for pickups, and the current Canyon is no exception, as its crew-cab variant received a “Marginal” score on the small-overlap front-passenger crash test. The extended-cab model didn’t do much better. Also, the current Canyon lacks any notable advanced safety features other than optional forward-collision alert and lane-departure warning. There is no indication this lack of safety equipment and its iffy crash-safety scores will improve in the 2021 model, but it seems unlikely.
Pictured: 2020 Canyon