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PERFORMANCE | 7 out of 10
More than enough for the type of driving you'll do 99 percent of the time
The Auto Channel
A new 3.6-liter V6 with direct injection that makes 288 hp and 270 pound-feet of torque
Better than expected acceleration
The 2010 GMC Acadia carries on the same engine from 2009: a 3.6-liter V-6 making 288 hp and 270 pound-feet of torque. In terms of performance, the car is very similar to its predecessor and serves the purpose for which it was designed: being a practical people-hauler.
Edmunds states that the Acadia's powerplant is a "3.6-liter V6 with direct injection that makes 288 hp and 270 pound-feet of torque, spread over a broad rpm range," and has become a welcome addition to the GMC Acadia since being introduced last year. ConsumerGuide is impressed by the engine's power, noting that "the Acadia offers better than expected acceleration both around town and on the highway." MyRide.com testers also love the V-6 under the GMC Acadia's hood, finding that it "is certainly willing, with smooth power delivery and even a good growl as the revs rise," and reporting they "couldn't be happier" that this is GM's "new corporate V-6." This power also provides for a substantial towing capacity that, "at 4,500 pounds when properly equipped, should be enough for most folks," according to Edmunds.
While the engine itself is well liked among critics, the same can't be said about the less-than-stellar transmission. MyRide.com reports that the "transmission is mostly a willing partner," and "its six speeds usually swap quickly, although we did notice some upshift jerkiness at full throttle and the occasional downshift hesitation." ConsumerGuide reviewers add that "the transmission shifts smoothly but is often caught in too high a gear" and "a prod of the throttle sometimes results in slow downshifts for passing power."
In terms of fuel consumption, the large, heavy GMC Acadia isn't as miserly as you would hope for a crossover vehicle, but it won't shock the environmentally conscious either. According to the official EPA estimates, the 2010 GMC Acadia should return 16 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway in all-wheel-drive versions, while the front-wheel-drive models get 1 mpg better in each, although it has been said before that these figures may be a little optimistic for most drivers.
The 2010 GMC Acadia handles and brakes well, according to a range of reviewers. ConsumerGuide says the vehicle is "impressively stable and agile" but "difficult to maneuver in tight spaces due to its long, wide body." Edmunds mentions that the GMC Acadia is "easy and pleasant to drive, especially considering the vehicle's size and 4,700-pound curb weight," and USA Today credits the "extraordinarily well-balanced steering." MyRide.com positively reports "minimal dive...under braking."
The 2010 GMC Acadia won't satisfy any high-performance cravings, but it's responsive enough not to leave you wanting.