The 2021 GMC Canyon receives a light update for the 2021 model year, consisting of small updates to the exterior and interior. The 2021 Canyon also sees significant changes to the model lineup, including the replacement of several trim levels with new ones, along with the deletion of several packages.
While the 2021 updates is erroneously called by some as a refresh, it’s actually not. Instead, the 2021 model year represents a mild update that’s not considered a refresh (known in GM parlance as MCE, or Mid Cycle Enhancement).
Now, here’s exactly what’s new and different about the 2021 Canyon.
2021 GMC Canyon Model Line Changes
The following revisions were made to the Canyon lineup:
- Deletion of Base (2SA) SL model
- Deletion of (2LT) and (4LT) SLT models
- Replacement of Canyon trim level with Elevation Standard
- Replacement of SLE trim level with Elevation
- Replacement of All Terrain trim level with AT4
On the outside, the Canyon sees the deletion of eight exterior colors and the addition of four new exterior color options:
New exterior colors:
- Cayenne Red Tintcoat
- Dynamic Blue Metallic
- Desert Sand Metallic
- Hunter Metallic
Deleted exterior colors:
- Blue Emerald Metallic
- Cardinal Red
- Quicksilver Metallic
- Carbon Black Metallic
- Marine Blue Metallic
- Dark Sky Metallic
- Red Quartz Tintcoat
- Smokey Quartz Metallic
The 2021 GMC Canyon offers a total of seven exterior colors. Aside from the four new hues, Satin Steel Metallic, Summit White, and Onyx Black are also available.
Other exterior changes include the addition of dealer-installed (LPO-level) off-road lighting option, as well as the deletion of several other LPO-level items, such as:
- Black bed rails
- Chrome door handles
- Chrome mirror caps
- Chrome tailgate handle
- Hitch receiver cover
Three wheel options have also been deleted, and the new Elevation Standard and Elevation models are equipped with new 18-inch x 8.5-inch (45.7 cm x 21.6 cm), Black aluminum wheels (RPO code RCW) along with P265/60R18 all-season, blackwall tires (QIA). Other tire changes include the addition of 265/65R17 all-terrain, blackwall, 31-inch Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac tires (QJ2), which are standard on AT4 models as well as the addition of 255/65R17 all-terrain, blackwall tires (QHE) which are optional on AT4 models.
A rear body-color bumper also becomes standard on Elevation Standard and Elevation models, while black beltline moldings are standard on Elevation and AT4 models. Additionally, recovery hooks are now standard on 2WD models. For the 2020 model year recovery hooks were only available and standard on 4WD models.
As for the inside of the 2021 GMC Canyon, the truck sees slight changes to interior colors, including the deletion of the Jet Black with Cobalt Red option as well as the addition of two new interior color options: Cocoa with Dark Atmosphere, and Jet Black with Kalahari.
The single-zone manual climate control system is now exclusive to the new entry-level model, Elevation Standard. Meanwhile, all other 2021 Canyon models are equipped with a single-zone automatic climate control system as standard.
The manual rear sliding rear window is standard on Elevation models. For the 2020 model year, this feature was only standard on SLT, All Terrain, and Denali models, and was optional on SLE models.
Finally, the “fasten seat belts” label has been removed for the 2021 model year.
On the technology front, the 2021 GMC Canyon now includes remote vehicle start as standard.
Like the 2020 model, the 2021 GMC Canyon continues to offer three engine choices: the naturally-aspirated 2.5-liter LCV I4 with an output of 200 horsepower and 191 pound-feet of torque, the naturally-aspirated 3.6-liter LGZ V6 with 308 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque, and the 2.8-liter Duramax LWN I4 turbo-diesel with 181 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque.
Notably, 2.5L LCV is standard on two-wheel-drive Elevation Standard and Elevation models, but is not available on 4WD Elevation models. Meanwhile, the 3.6L LGZ is standard on all other models, and the Duramax four-cylinder diesel is optional except on Extended Cab Elevation models. Additionally, the Duramax engine requires the Driver Alert Package and Trailering Package on Elevation and AT4 models.
On the packages front, the 2021 GMC Canyon loses the following four packages, as a result of the aforementioned trim level re-arrangement:
- SLE Convenience Package
- Elevation Edition Package
- All Terrain X Package
- SLE Chrome Appearance Package
The midsize truck also introduces a new High Elevation Package, which includes Jet Black leather-appointed front seating with power driver lumbar control, heated driver and front passenger seats, and a heated steering wheel.
2021 GMC Canyon Availability
The 2021 Canyon represents the seventh model year of the second-gen model. Looking ahead, we expect the current, second-generation GMC Canyon to remain in production for the 2021, and 2022 model years, and that an all-new, future GMC Canyon will launch on or after the 2023 model year. See more on the 2023 GMC Canyon.
V6 is the new base engine. Turbo whistle is clearly audible.
V6 is the new base engine.
Turbo whistle is clearly audible.