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2021 GMC Canyon Interior Review

Scorecard

Interior: 6.6

The 2021 GMC Canyon looks good inside and has a functional interior. However, it's not as stylish or upscale as some rivals, even in its highest trim levels. The front seats are generally comfortable, but the rear seats are a bit cramped, especially in Extended Cab models. The infotainment system is intuitive and easy to use.

  • "With the Extended Cab or Crew Cab, the 2021 GMC Canyon interior blends contemporary style with truck practicality." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Plastic toggle switches for accessory equipment on the center stack are handy and accessible, but they look cheap in pricier trim levels as with the Denali we tested. Therein lies our biggest complaint about the Canyon's interior: even in Denali trim, it never feels like a premium environment." -- Car and Driver
  • "Inside, the cabin that once impressed us in comparison to other midsize trucks has now fallen to the back of the pack with the introduction of its revised competitors. … Still, there's a lot to like about the Canyon's user-friendly tech and the new Denali trim that offers a premium vibe not offered on the mechanically identical Chevrolet Colorado." -- Autotrader (2019)

Cargo

The Canyon offers 5-foot-2-inch and 6-foot-2-inch bed lengths, depending on which cab you select. The bed sides and floor are both high, which can make it tough to load and retrieve cargo. There's a step in each corner of the rear bumper to make it easier to climb into the bed, and a remote-locking EZ-Lift and Lower tailgate is optional. Still, some other compact pickup trucks have more bed features, including moveable tie-downs and in-bed power outlets.

  • "The bed is somewhat basic and lacks some of the extra features (such as additional tie-downs) of its rivals, though you can add a variety of dealer-sourced accessories to spruce it up. The tailgate lip and bed sides are high and can make loading difficult, although handy bumper steps address this issue somewhat. When it's time to haul things inside instead of people, the backseat-folding design is inferior to the competition. The rear seats flip up, but the floor is marred by obstructions and you can't lay items flat." -- Edmunds
  • "At the business end, [the Colorado and Canyon] offer a decidedly user-friendly cargo box. Not only are there four 'solid' tie-down hooks, there are also 13 ports that can hold additional hooks, and there are optional racks for such things as bikes and kayaks that can be purchased through the dealer. Also nice is a damped, easy-open (and lift) tailgate, along with a step built into the rear bumper." -- Consumer Guide (2015)
  • "An available EZ Lift-and-Lower function uses built-in struts to allow the tailgate to be opened and closed with just one hand. For more practicality, the bed can be split into upper and lower sections thanks to a standard two-tier loading system." -- Left Lane News (2015)

Seating

The GMC Canyon seats four in Extended Cab models and five in Crew Cab models. Cloth upholstery and a power-adjustable driver's seat come standard. Leather upholstery, a power-adjustable passenger seat, heated and ventilated front seats, and a heated steering wheel are available.

The Canyon's front seats are wide and comfortable, but some critics think they could use more support. In Crew Cab models, a couple of adults can ride in the back without much trouble. In Extended Cab models, the rear seats get pretty cramped on anything but a short drive.

For installing child safety seats, Crew Cab models have two complete sets of LATCH connectors for the rear outboard seats, as well as a tether anchor for the rear middle seat.

  • "The seating position of the 2021 GMC Canyon is excellent, with plenty of height providing a good outward view. The seats are wide and supportive, and the feel inside the cab is more modern SUV than pickup truck." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "It's quiet inside, and the ample ride height translates to an excellent outward view from the Canyon's wide and comfortable driver's seat." -- Autotrader
  • "While the Canyon is unmistakably a pickup from the outside, the cabin comfort and features are far from basic pickup fare. The Denali trim's seats offer good comfort on long drives despite the firm backrests and not much lateral support. The rear seats, though, are fairly flat and upright. Adults won't want to stay back there too long." -- Edmunds (2020)

Interior Features

Standard features in the Canyon include a rearview camera, Teen Driver, a 7-inch touch screen, six speakers, two USB ports, Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto.

The infotainment system is pretty easy to use. The touch screen responds quickly to inputs, and there are large physical controls – which you can easily operate while wearing gloves – for some functions. The menu layouts are intuitive as well, making it easy to find the settings you need.

Available features include an 8-inch touch screen, wireless device charging, a seven-speaker Bose stereo, satellite radio, HD Radio, additional USB ports, a Wi-Fi hot spot, navigation, automatic climate control, keyless entry, and remote start. Available active safety features include forward collision warning, lane departure warning, and rear parking sensors.

See 2021 GMC Canyon specs »

  • "The Canyon's touchscreen infotainment system is attractive and intuitive. … The screen is easy to use, with rubberized knobs for volume and tuning and redundant hard buttons for quick operation." -- Car and Driver
  • "The Canyon infotainment system is easy to use and feature-rich. … The optional Bose system is a nice upgrade, but volume doesn't get as high as we'd like. For device charging, there are two USB ports up front and two in back. GMC's Wi-Fi hotspot setup is also one of the easier systems to use as it offers a 4G LTE connection and can handle up to seven devices. Forward collision alert and lane departure warning are optional and a bit sensitive, but they work as advertised. Otherwise, we'd like to see the inclusion of blind-spot monitoring on the options list." -- Edmunds
  • "Most of the functions are in a big center stack, with large knobs that should be easily operated by gloved hands. … The available infotainment upgrade with the larger 8-inch touch screen is worth the additional cost. The system is simple to operate, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible and it offers on-board Wi-Fi." -- Kelley Blue Book (2019)
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2021 GMC Canyon

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