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PERFORMANCE | 8 out of 10
works well in city and highway use, instead of favoring one, as rival systems do
the shift between electric power and the gasoline engine is seamless
Kelley Blue Book
maximum towing capacity for a properly equipped 4WD model is 6,000 pounds
The 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid features one of the most advanced hybrid drivetrains available on the market. Codeveloped with Chrysler and BMW, it is capable of running on electric power only or with a combination of electric and gasoline power.
Reviews read by TheCarConnection.com show that drivers love the new hybrid system in the 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid, which USA Today says "works well in city and highway use, instead of favoring one, as rival systems do." It features "a 6.0-liter V8 engine coupled to a pair of 60-kilowatt electric motors" that Edmunds states "produce 322 horsepower and 367 pound-feet of torque." Kelley Blue Book finds that "the shift between electric power and the gasoline engine is seamless," and the 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid's Active Fuel Management system switches "from eight cylinders to four" when cruising. Despite its additional weight and complex drivetrain, the GMC Yukon Hybrid 2009 is a very capable work machine, and Edmunds notes "maximum towing capacity for a properly equipped 4WD model is 6,000 pounds."
In terms of acceleration, Edmunds reviewers advise that "although the Hybrid is the most powerful Yukon available, it's also the heaviest, so don't expect particularly brisk acceleration."
The 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid is available with either rear- or all-wheel drive, the latter being a technological powerhouse. Kelley Blue Book says GM calls the system an "Electrically Variable Transmission," and Edmunds declares that the system is "essentially like having two transmissions inside one—continuously variable drive for light load conditions and fixed-ratio for high load conditions." While most reviewers appreciate the smooth operation, USA Today proclaims "when going to wide-open throttle, as when merging on a fast-moving interstate, the GMC tester held the engine at high revs—5000 to 5500 rpm—an unusually long time before shifting into another gear." They elaborate on this phenomenon by reasoning that "it could be because the transmission was switching from conventional four-speed automatic mode" to the "variable-ratio that's part of the hybrid setup."
The hybrid technology delivers, but so do the ride and handling. Reviewers are unanimously impressed by what Forbes Autos calls "a responsive suspension setup," which "delivers a fairly smooth ride with handling that's more composed than you might expect from a vehicle of this size and weight." Even the braking on this big sport ute wins over reviewers, as Edmunds finds that "the regenerative braking system produces a firm braking feel and, according to GM, actually stops the big SUV better than the regular Yukon's conventional brakes do." Car and Driver lists the 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid's "refined ride" as one of its greatest attributes. Joining the praise party is USA Today, which remarks that the 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid boasts the "same nimble feel and tight turning circle that allow all GM biggies to drive as if they're midsize."
Fuel economy on the 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid is the primary reason consumers will purchase this vehicle, and it doesn’t disappoint. Car and Driver says that the 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid boasts "mpg gains of up to 25 percent" over traditional Yukon models. The official EPA estimates for the 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid are 21 mpg city and 22 mpg highway for 2WD models, while the 4WD offers 20 mpg both in the city and on the highway.
The hybrid drivetrain in the 2009 GMC Yukon Hybrid enhances the driving experience and brings a big boost to fuel economy.