DETROIT — General Motors on Thursday revealed its redesigned GMC Canyon as a more premium offering than the current midsize pickup, including a new off-road AT4X model that will expand the vehicle’s pricing range.
The new AT4X model features off-road performance parts as well as unique interior and exterior styling. It will launch alongside a standard AT4 off-road pickup, premium Denali model and an entry-level Elevation trim that will start at about $40,000. The company will also offer a limited “AT4X Edition 1” vehicle for the first year of production, starting at $63,350. Starting pricing for the current model tops out around $50,000.
Amid pent-up demand and record high prices, automakers have been adding more off-road and performance variants to their lineups to beef up profit margins before they transition more to electric vehicles, which can offer high performance but have lower margins than gas-powered vehicles.
GM started offering AT4 vehicles with its full-size Sierra pickup in late 2018. It has since expanded to the entire GMC lineup. AT4 currently accounts for about a third of Canyon sales, according to officials.
The Canyon is a sibling vehicle to the recently unveiled Chevrolet Colorado midsize pickup, but the company has greatly differentiated the designs of the new vehicles. However, both pickups share the same platform and “bones” and are exclusively powered by a 2.7-liter four-cylinder engine that produces up to 310 horsepower and 430 foot-pounds of torque.
GM expects to begin producing the 2023 Canyon early next year, with AT4X models beginning in spring 2023. GM opened reservations for the 2023 GMC Canyon AT4X Edition 1 on Thursday.
Each 2023 Canyon is higher and wider than the current generation. It’s also longer but offers about the same interior space as the current vehicle. The new design is more aggressive than the outgoing model, including a large rectangular grille and a new iteration of the brand’s signature C-shaped front lights.
Midsize pickup trucks are important to the automaker, but their sales are far lower than GM’s larger full-size pickup trucks. For example, GMC sold only about 13,700 Canyons through the first half of this year compared with more than 70,000 Sierra light-duty pickups during that time.
GM’s U.S. sales were down about 18% through the second quarter as the global automotive industry continues to manage through supply chain problems, including a shortage of semiconductor chips.