Intro: The GMC Yukon XL slots in between the Chevy Suburban and Cadillac Escalade in GM's full-size SUV lineup, blending rugged truck-based construction with premium amenities, and...when properly equipped, a downright luxurious full-size SUV package.
Our top of the line test model Yukon XL Denali exemplifies that luxury with a special chrome grille not available on lesser models, custom-look rear taillights, available 22-inch chrome rims, and the largest engine in the Yukon lineup.
Performance: The Yukon XL 1500 is equipped with a 5.3-liter V8 making 320 horsepower and 335 pound feet of torque. The 2500 model comes with a 6-liter V8, putting out 352 horsepower and 382 pound feet of torque. Both of these engines route power through a 6-speed automatic transmission to the rear wheels or available 4-wheel drive with low range.
The Yukon XL Denali is powered by a 6.2-liter V8, generating 403 horsepower and 417 pound feet of torque sent through a 6-speed automatic transmission to the rear wheels or available full-time all wheel drive.
Fuel Economy: Here are the highest and lowest EPA estimates for fuel economy:
Features: The 8 passenger Yukon XL features standard front bucket seats and two rows of bench seating, while the Denali models get first and second row bucket seats and a power folding third row. For those in need of seating for nine, a split front bench is optional. The rear seats of the Denali model also get their own climate and audio controls, and can be equipped with an optional DVD entertainment system. Depending on the seating layout, the Yukon XL's cargo area rivals that of a minivan, with the Denali allowing access via a standard power rear lift-gate.
Safety: Standard safety features on the Yukon XL include GM's StabiliTrack stability and traction control, dual stage frontal airbags, first and second row side-impact airbags, rollover sensor, and a tire pressure monitoring system.
Pricing/Warranty: Base MSRP for the 2011 GMC Yukon XL is $42,005. The range-topping all-wheel drive Yukon XL Denali starts at $58,990. The Yukon XL is backed by a 5-year, 100,000-mile powertrain warranty.
Summary: With rugged construction and available features that rival even its own luxury GM brethren, the Yukon XL will take you to the corner store or the great outdoors, in comfort and in style.