2005 GMC Yukon XL 2500

  • 2005 GMC Yukon XL 2500 Base Utility

    Base Utility

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      6.0L V8
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2005 GMC Yukon XL 2500 Review

A powerful and roomy SUV with plenty of standard features.

Reviewed by Automotive on


The GMC Yukon XL 2500 is the largest of the wide range of Yukon models available from GMC. For most of its history, the Suburban was shared by the Chevrolet and GMC brands. The first models were introduced in 1935 with new models made every subsequent year since. Until the sixth generation models, introduced in 1960, the Suburban had a wagon-style body; after 1960, these became SUVs.

In 1993, GMC rebranded its suburban the ""Yukon"" with models ranging from full-size up to three-quarter-ton models. Yukon is the flagship SUV for GMC with different trims within each category. It is a midrange to upper-level SUV, and the Denali trims are the luxury versions competing with different luxury models than the base trims available in each size classification. All Yukon models are known for being very reliable, with powerful engines, convenient driving experience for its size, and a competitive number of features. Even though the Yukon is usually highly rated, sales at any level consistently fall short of their Chevrolet counterparts.

The Range

Body Styles: SUV
Engines: 8.1-liter V-8, six-liter V-8
Transmissions: four-speed automatic with overdrive
Models: GMC Yukon XL 2500 SLT 4x2, GMC Yukon XL 2500 SLT 4x4, GMC Yukon XL 2500 SLE 4x2, GMC Yukon XL 2500 SLE 4x4

What's New

GMC makes only a few changes to the 2005 lineup. For the 2500 models, the most significant addition is the optional Quadrasteer four-wheel steering. This allows the driver to turn the rear wheels slightly while parking, making getting in and out of tight spots a lot easier. The option is expensive, but may be worthwhile for those who need to commute in areas where parking is at a premium.


The 2005 GMC Yukon XL 2500’s size is its defining characteristic. A flat grille area with the GMC logo sits in the center. The vehicle has a slightly-rounded back, but overall, it maintains a somewhat boxy appearance. A number of colors are available.


The interior is very roomy, seating nine very comfortably with three rows of benches. When reconfigured with buck seats in the front or in the front and center, the GMC Yukon XL 2500 seats eight occupants. For cargo, the back two rows can be removed leaving 131.6 cubic feet. Different interior trims and materials are available. The controls are well-placed and within reach.

Performance & Handling

The 2005 GMC Yukon XL 2500 models get the most powerful engines of the entire Yukon lineup, a standard 335-hp, six-liter V-8 or an optional 320-hp, 8.1-liter V-8. Both perform admirably even fully loaded with plenty of kick at high speeds. Towing capacity is on par with anything in its class. More surprising is the XL 2500 feel. Driving is surprisingly easy for such a large vehicle, and steering response is great. Naturally maneuvering in the city in heavy traffic is not exactly fun in a three-quarter-ton SUV, but for the size it’s not as bad as most would think. Parking can be a problem due to poor visibility in the rear and rear-sides, but the Quadrasteer option makes it much simpler.


Anti-lock brakes are standard as well as dual-stage front airbags; the passenger side front airbags sense an occupant and only deploy when needed.

EPA Fuel Economy

GMC Yukon XL 2500: Unavailable

You'll Like

  • Roomy interior
  • Cargo space
  • Responsive steering
  • Easy to drive for the size

You Won't Like

  • Poor fuel economy
  • Lack of rear visibility
  • Maneuvering in city traffic
  • Difficulty parking
  • Awkward entering and exiting

Sum Up

A powerful and roomy SUV with plenty of standard features.

If You Like This Vehicle

  • Chevrolet Suburban 2500
  • Ford Expedition
  • Nissan Armada

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