A new image has surfaced over the weekend that seems to show the 2021 GMC Yukon Denali. As the Yukon is set to be completely overhauled for the 2021 model year, some publications – we won’t name any names – have gone so far as to state that this is the all-new model. But we’re here to tell you that it is not.
The image features a front fascia, including the prominent (and functional) front hood scoop from the 2020 GMC Sierra HD, as well as the side mirror from the all-new 2019 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali. The rest of the vehicle, including the side profile, is identical to that of the current, K2-generation GMC Yukon. Alas, this is a rendering, rather than the real thing. Let’s take a closer look.
For starters, the body of the vehicle in question is identical to that of the current GMC Yukon. Meanwhile, the actual 2021 GMC Yukon will have an all-new body as part of its 2021 redesign. That should serve as the first hint that this isn’t the upcoming all-new model.
Second, take a close look at the lighting of the front end, which seems quite different from the hue adorning the rest of the body. As we have seen time and time again with our own renderings here at GMA, things like this are difficult to draw up in a realistic form. Speaking of the front end, the front grille pattern and overall treatment does not line up with what we’ve seen in spy shots. In addition, the grille surround of the image in question does not fold far enough into the hood, thereby making it impossible to deliver the “clamshell-style” hood and grille treatment that the all-new Yukon will deliver.
Third, there are several issues with the side mirror, including the way it’s attached to the door in the image. Look at the pedestal-style mount, which is attached to two creased surfaces on the front door. That’s not the way it will be attached in the actual production-intent model. Instead, the mounting point of the wing mirror mount will be the negative crease on the door. In addition, the mirror itself will have a completely different shape than the unit seen in the image, which was taken straight off the all-new T1 Sierra half-ton.
Outside of those items, the air intake on the hood of the image is also very suspect. The 2021 GMC Yukon will not have such a feature, as evidenced by spy shots we’ve shown you over the past few months, and according to GM Authority sources familiar with future GMC product plans.
We’ve also heard from insider sources that the all-new GMC Yukon will have an intricately-styled front and rear fascias that will differ quite a bit from those seen on the all-new Sierra. In addition, sources have also told us that the 2021 Yukon will have an interesting and intricate design between the C- and D-pillars. Clearly, the image seen does not meet any of those characteristics.
But the final nail in the coffin of this image is its actual description. We traced back the photo back to an Arabic Instagram account and translated the caption accompanying the image. It reads, “GMC Denali imaginary design.”
So, there you have it. This is not the 2021 GMC Yukon Denali, but rather a rendering.
The actual 2021 GMC Yukon, initially believed to launch for the 2020 model year, should be revealed in the near future, and is expected to launch in the first or second quarter of the 2020 calendar year. It will ride on the GM T1 platform (shared with other GM full-size SUVs and pickup trucks) and finally introduce an independent rear suspension configuration that is expected to improve ride and handling, as well as space in the cargo area and the third row.