Review: 2010 GMC Terrain

By | January 24, 2010

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Generally, if automotive journalists have a significant problem with a vehicle they’ve driven the article that follows the test drive will quickly list all of the positive highlights first, subtly hinting that there is an opinion changing problem near the end. Today, instead, I will start by deviating from the traditional article structure and tell you straight up that my only problem with the 2010 GMC Terrain is its styling, which is interesting at best.

Don’t get me wrong– the car is an excellent drive and a very nice place to be in. But first impressions are key and when big square wheel wells are coupled with a huge chintzy chrome grill, some may not know that beauty isn’t just skin deep.

Stepping into the Terrain changes all of this, however. The dash and center console are clean, focused and well laid out, the seats (including the back row) are comfy with extra points going to GMC for perfecting lumbar support, and the amount of space inside is surprisingly more than expected. Technical goodies like rear view cameras and USB ports are standard on all trims. GMC has even included a height adjustable rear tail gate, a feature handy for not putting holes in your garage ceiling and impressing girls at the mall (I’d assume).

On the road, the Terrain is a great drive. Just like a good pair of running shoes, it simply blends in with the moment– you forget about what you’re driving and just concentrate on the driving. Steering was sharp and responsive, with adequate power coming from the direct injected V6. Most notable, however, was the lack of road noise even on wet and snowy pavement.

So it drives good, the interior is superbly executed, and with a base price of $24,250 the Terrain isn’t bad value for money.

But what about those looks?

Because I am very picky on what cars I do and do not like to look at, I arranged a test to see what the general public thinks of the Terrain’s styling and see if maybe I had been too harsh, too quick. Holding a large profile picture of the vehicle (which I printed straight from GMC’s website), I took a trip down to the local grocery store, chose ten random women, and asked them one simple question: “Would you date a man who drove this?”

After several minutes and several quizzical looks, the results were in. Of the ten women asked, nine said they would date a man who drove a Terrain– landslide victory for GMC!

So what do we take away from this whole experience then? The next time you see a GMC Terrain just remember its three key points: a great drive, a great interior, and a design that will get you women at grocery stores.


14 Comments

@adamweight on January 24, 2010 at 6:53 pm.

Thanks for the review. I’ve been thinking about getting a Terrain, and you have answered a few lingering questions. Like you have mixed feelings about the stying. The Acadia look much better.

Martin Sturrock on January 24, 2010 at 6:56 pm.

It looks as though they build in a snow plough to the front end. I bet it’s useless off-road as well.

Chad Waite on January 24, 2010 at 6:57 pm.

Hey no problem @adamweight. Glad I could clear up some gray spots for you!

Tyson Call on January 24, 2010 at 7:12 pm.

I wouldn’t date a man who drove one, or any other for that matter (they often smell).

I don’t enjoy the whole “bling SUV” trend going on. I liked Cadillac’s as it was the first, but the rest just seem like posers.

john holmes on January 24, 2010 at 9:00 pm.

Snap! The Terrain has me jumping for joy. I own one and the other night I had a bout of lightning diarrhea. As I walked out of PF Changs to my Terrain, it hit me like Rosie Odonnels in a boxing match with Tania Harding. I hopped in my Terrain, (white on white with 26 inch blades), and drove off for home like inspector Gadget late for a meeting with Dr Claw. My lightning butt urine dissipated THE WHOLE RIDE HOME due to the insatiable suspension and dreamy quiet cabin. I was soothed!! As I stepped out of my Terrain when I arrived I was in a dream state and blew mud like an english toffee machine all the way to my front door. I can’t say enough about the Terrains attributes and styling. It saved my ass. Literally. Did I mention that I am Lindsay Lohans driver?

Cheryl Waite on January 24, 2010 at 10:23 pm.

I love the way this car looks! It goes back to the good old,SUV days,though bigger,and more luxurious. Unlike the crossovers, smaller SUV’s, or gigantic SUV’s, it looks as if you could actually take the Terrain on a 4×4 dirt road, with ruts, careful maneuvering, streams and all. It’s nice to see an SUV with some height between the car and ground. I want one!

Blakely on January 24, 2010 at 10:45 pm.

I agree with the 9 women. I really like the way the Terrain looks, and thats saying something because I think 90% of General Motor’s Vehicles are hideous.

Ryan Waite on January 25, 2010 at 5:11 am.

Let’s be honest, I’m into skinny boys who drive scooters and who have great style. HOWEVER, I would def agree that I would date a guy who drove this.
A special note to Chad: Quit being so shallow. Isn’t what is on the inside that matters? I’ll take any car that can drive as nicely as you claim this to!

Ryan Waite on January 25, 2010 at 5:12 am.

ummm.. that was my comment (as in Kelly) NOT Ryan’s!!!

Britton Kowalk on January 25, 2010 at 7:21 pm.

that comment was so much better when it was Ryan’s.

Nathan Bagley on January 26, 2010 at 11:40 pm.

Props to you for hitting up the ladies with the style question. #WIN

Charlie Balls on January 27, 2010 at 8:41 pm.

@Cheryl Waite

Actually, it is a crossover, styled to look more like a true body-on-frame SUV. It has as much off-road capability as any other crossover, in other words, virtually none.

But that’s okay, because no one who buys one would ever go off-road anyway.

jess ibhann on June 15, 2010 at 2:51 am.

that`s very wellll…..
this like meee… =D

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