GMCs full-size sport utility vehicle is closely related to the Chevrolet Tahoe and is based on General Motors full-size pickup trucks. Both the Yukon and Tahoe were redesigned for 2000, and they compete against full-size SUVs such as the Ford Expedition, Lincoln Navigator and Toyota Land Cruiser. GMC sells a larger version as the Yukon XL, which is comparable to the Chevrolet Suburban.
A fancier Denali edition joined the 2001 lineup and is equipped with permanently engaged four-wheel drive, leather upholstery and specific front-end styling. Standard Denali equipment includes a monochrome exterior color scheme, front and rear air conditioning, 11-speaker Bose audio, two-tone leather upholstery, GMs OnStar communication system and a heavy-duty towing package. For 2002, the Yukons 5.3-liter V-8 engine gains upgraded Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle (ULEV) status, and LATCH child-safety seat tethers are new.
Differences between the Yukon and Tahoe are found mainly in the grille, with the prominent GMC badge on the Yukon. Slotted between the new midsize Envoy and the king-size Yukon XL, the four-door version measures 198.8 inches long overall with a 116-inch wheelbase. The Yukon is 78.8 inches wide and more than 76 inches tall.
Interior seating accommodates as few as five to as many as nine passengers. Up front, theres a choice of two buckets or a three-place bench, which depends on the model. A three-place middle bench goes into all models, and a three-place rear bench is standard or optional. Middle and rear seats fold down or can be removed, with the help of built-in wheels. Cargo volume is 105 cubic feet with the middle and rear seats removed.
Under the Hood
The base engine is a 275-horsepower, 4.8-liter V-8, and a 285-hp, 5.3-liter V-8 is optional. The Denali model gets a 320-hp, 6.0-liter V-8. The Yukon comes with either rear-wheel drive or an automatically engaging four-wheel-drive system called Autotrac. The Denali has permanently engaged all-wheel drive, and computer-controlled shock absorbers change their stiffness based on driving conditions. All engines work with a four-speed-automatic transmission. Antilock brakes and side-impact airbags are standard.
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