|1,578||Max Payload (lbs)||1,550|
|49.9||Max Cargo Space (cu.ft.)||41.3|
At the top of the market in the fight between midsize trucks, you will find the 2021 GMC Canyon vs 2021 Chevy Colorado. Both of these consumer friendly truck models are ready to dominate the 2021 market, but which is the best one to buy? While these trucks do look very similar at first glance, the difference is in the details. Top of the line performance, trims, and technology make these models stand out in their class.
While you will see some similar specs when it comes to engine power, the GMC Canyon is going to be the way to go if you need a truck with a strong payload capacity. With all of these similarities, it does make you wonder which of these vehicles is the best of the two. From the outside, it looks like the decision will have to be made based on the total package that all of these features come in.
At the top of any truck enthusiast's list is a series of questions about the performance of a pickup truck. Why not? The one thing most buyers are interested in is how well the truck performs on the road, as well as how much torque it can produce, and whether or not it's suitable for trailering.
The GMC Canyon brand has never failed to provide quality performance, and that trend seems to be continuing with the 2021 GMC Canyon. The base engine comes equipped as a 2.5-liter four-cylinder that produces 200 hp and up to 191 lb-ft of torque. Those stats are certainly more suitable for light-duty utilities rather than anything centered around heavy-duty requirements. However, the GMC Canyon offers higher-output options for consumers, with a 3.6-liter that produces 308 hp and up to 275 lb-ft of torque, making it much more agile on the road than the standard.
For those who need more muscle to make towing and trailering more convenient, a Duramax 2.8-liter turbo-diesel engine is available with 181 hp and up to 369 lb-ft of torque. With the right packaging and drivetrain configurations, this gives the GMC Canyon up to 7,700 lbs of towing capacity, which means you can bring boats or water-skis to the beach, or snowmobiles to the mountains without any problems.
The drivetrain for the GMC Canyon comes in two configurations, with rear-wheel and four-wheel drive options available. You will find the engines paired with either a six-speed automatic transmission for the 2.5-liter and 2.8L engines or an eight-speed transmission for the larger 3.6-liter.
On the fuel economy front, the GMC Canyon manages a standard 19 MPG in the city and 25 MPG on the highway for the four-cylinder, while the V6 tops out at 18 MPG in the city and 25 MPG on the highway. You'll gain the best fuel mileage from the diesel, which offers 20 MPG in the city and up to 30 MPG on the highway.
Much like the GMC Canyon, the Chevy Colorado comes with a base 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with 200 hp and 191 lb-ft of torque. The identical ratings in the powertrain department continue with the other two engine options, including the Duramax 2.8-liter turbocharged diesel engine, which produces 181 hp and manages up to 369 lb-ft of torque. This makes the Colorado just as capable in the trailering and towing department as the GMC Canyon, but you will need to equip the Trailering and Equipment package in order to achieve the maximum 7,700 lbs of towing capacity.
On the upper end of the powertrain spectrum is the 3.6-liter V6 that produces 308 hp and up to 275 lb-ft of torque. The drivetrain options are also the same as the GMC Canyon, with the 2021 Chevy Colorado being available with either rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive configurations. The transmission setup sees the six-speed paired up with the 2.5-liter and 2.8-liter engines while the eight-speed automatic is fitted with the V6 engine.
Fuel economy for the 2021 Chevy Colorado is on par with the 2021 GMC Canyon, as well, with the diesel engine option providing the best fuel economy for the truck. The biggest difference comes with the Chevy Colorado's ZR2 trim, where the fuel economy seems to significantly drop, managing 16 MPG in the city and 18 MPG on the highway for the V6, and 18 MPG in the city and 22 MPG on the highway for the ZR2 with a diesel engine.
Both the GMC Canyon and Chevy Colorado come with a variety of different trims and configurations. Each year there are usually some changes made to include or remove certain trims while upgrading or tweaking specific features for each trim. For 2021, GMC replaced one of the trims for the Canyon while Chevy removed a trim for the Colorado.
The GMC Canyon's base trim is called the Elevation Standard, which is available in two-wheel drive configurations for crew cab and extended cab, as well as a slightly more expensive four-wheel drive extended cab. From there, the GMC Canyon has an Elevation trim that comes equipped with a dark grille on the fascia and 18-inch aluminum wheels on all-season tires. The Elevation trim can be paired with rear-wheel or all-wheel drive configurations.
New to the 2021 GMC Canyon lineup is the AT4 trim, which is available either with cloth or leather upholstery. On the exterior, the AT4 comes with 17-inch wheels packed into 31-inch Goodyear Duratrac tires, a black chrome grille, red recovery hooks, and AT4 badging. The top of the line trim for the GMC Canyon is the Denali. This trim features diamond-cut 20-inch aluminum wheels, chrome assist steps, a spray-on bedliner, open-pore ash wood trimming within the interior, ventilated leather upholstery for the front seats, Bose premium audio system, and Denali badging.
The 2021 Chevy Colorado comes in four different trims with multiple configurations available. They decided to remove the Base trim from the 2021 lineup, which means the four trims for the model year include the Work Truck (WT), LT, Z71, and ZR2.
The WT trim starts the lineup with the available 2.5L and 3.6L engine options. Also available in the base model is dual rear seats with underseat storage or a folding rear bench seat. For a small price bump, the Colorado LT comes with the same optional features as the WT, but with rear bumper, mirror caps, and door handles that match the exterior body color. The HD rear vision camera and power-adjustable seats come standard, along with an EZ Lift & Lower tailgate.
The Colorado's upper-end trims are less about luxury and more about off-road capabilities. The Z71 and ZR2 are specifically designed for off-road adventuring. In the case of the Z71, it comes with modified suspension, automatic locking rear differential for difficult hill climbs and traversing rocky terrain, and 17-inch wheels and matching all-terrain tires. The ZR2 includes the same features as the Z71, but with a modified exterior body frame, new fascia, and a heightened ground clearance of 10-inches.
Modern computerized technology has become a standard inclusion in most truck cabins. Some trucks offer more convenience and tech than others, which can change the way drivers and passengers engage with the vehicle. Modern computerized technology is also the underpinning for a lot of the newest safety features in today's vehicles.
The GMC Canyon comes with an 8.0-inch touchscreen featuring the GMC Infotainment System, which is compatible with smart devices that can connect to the system through Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and Amazon Alexa thanks to 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity. GPS navigation and vehicle health statistics can also be accessed through the touchscreen. Wireless charging is available through the center console, so you can keep your smart devices active and online at all times.
The GMC Infotainment System also works in conjunction with the vehicle's built-in alert and safety assistance infrastructure. These safety features include rear parking assist and rear vision camera functionality, lane departure warning, alerts for forward collision, electronic stability control, traction control, and a teen driver mode that includes seat belt warnings and vehicular restrictions until certain safety standards are met.
The Chevy Colorado is decked out with its own impressive array of safety, convenience, and tech features, starting with the Chevrolet Infotainment 3 System, which is powered by an 8-inch diagonal touch screen that's anchored to the front of the cabin's dashboard. Much like the Canyon, drivers still have access to the Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa, and Android Auto connectivity for iPhones and Android-powered smart devices.
The Chevy Colorado also has a variety of safety tech embedded within its core, including StabiliTrak traction control to keep the vehicle stable no matter what the road surface is like. Lane departure warnings alert the driver when they start to drift into other lanes. Forward collision alerts the driver when they are following too closely and run the risk of a collision, while the rear vision camera is great for parking and reversing.
As far as tech is concerned, the 2021 GMC Canyon vs 2021 Chevy Colorado offer nearly identical features. With this in mind, it won't make too much of a difference if you choose the GMC Canyon over the Chevy Colorado. However, if you are looking at the package all of these features come in; we would have to give our preference to the Canyon.