2018 GMC Yukon XL

#26
in Fullsize SUVs
2018 MODEL

$51,780 - $71,865

7.3

Overall Rating

FILTER BY YEAR

FILTER BY STYLE

Detailed Review

Bigger is better! The 2018 GMC Yukon XL makes even the big look small. It is a traditional old-school SUV that has been updated for the 21st Century. XL's nine-passenger seating capacity and 8,500-pound towing capacity makes it ideal for large family and leisure activities.

The Yukon XL is an easy to drive SUV but the heft and size makes it hard to maneuver in traffic and it also takes a toll on the fuel economy and ride comfort. Despite all this the GMC Yukon XL offers a lot in terms of utility. It has best in class cargo capacity and great on-road performance along with a plush interior.

There is also no dearth of power as the GMC offers Yukon with two engines: a 5.3-liter V-8 is standard on the SLE and SLT while the Denali comes equipped with a more powerful 6.2-liter V8 engine. Prices are highly competitive with the base Yukon XL starting at $53,095 (FWD).


9.6/10
Features

 

6.7/10
Engine

 

6.0/10
Fuel Economy

 

7.0/10
Interior

 

6.7/10
Exterior

 

6.9/10
Safety

 
 
 

There are plenty of SUV's in the market to choose but only a select few are the Real deals. One of them is the all New 2018 GMC Yukon XL. There is also no dearth of power as the GMC offers Yukon with two engines: a 5.3-liter V-8 is standard on the SLE and SLT while the Denali comes equipped with a more powerful 6.2-liter V8 engine. Prices are highly competitive with the base Yukon XL starting at $53,095 (FWD).

2018 GMC Yukon XL Features

9.6/10

The 2018 GMC Yukon XL is a full-size SUV and is offered in three trims: SLE, SLT and Denali. The SLT and the Denali seats eight passengers while an optional front bench seat on the SLE trim increase the capacity to nine. A second-row captain’s chair meanwhile shrinks the seating capacity to seven. All the three trims are also available in smaller wheelbase (203.9-inches) and costs ($2,700) less. We have covered the smaller GMC Yukon in a a separate review.

Trims SLE SLT DENALI
MSRP (FWD) $53,095 $61,195 $70,195
MSRP (AWD) $56,095 $64,195 $73,195
Features Standard features include:
  • 5.3L EcoTec3 V8 engine with 355 hp and 383 lb-ft of torque
  • 18-inch wheels
  • Rear vision camera system
  • Front & Rear Park Assist

SLT features SLE standard features, plus the following additions or replacements:

  • Perforated leather-appointed heated-and-ventilated front seats
  • Heated second-row seats
  • Second-row power release fold-and-tumble seats
  • Third-row power fold-flat bench seats
Denali features SLT standard features, plus the following additions or replacements:
  • Signature Denali styling including unique chrome grille, exterior chrome accents and 20-inch wheels
  • New Mystique Ash wood grains accent the interior
  • 6.2L EcoTec3 V8 engine with 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque and a new 10-speed transmission
  • Perforated leather-appointed, heated-and-ventilated front seats

Confused? We will help you find the best trim

Even the base trim SLE offers a lot for the money but still if you can swing go for the top trim Denali that features a more powerful V8 engine, without compromising on the fuel economy. It also gets Magnetic Ride Control, that improves the driving dynamics and adapts to different road condition. Denali’s plush interior quality also makes it worth the dosh.

2018 GMC Yukon XL Engine

6.7/10

"With a powerful engine lineup, a mostly pleasant ride (it can feel a little uneasy over some bumps), and easy drivability, the 2018 GMC Yukon will satisfy most shoppers. Although we wouldn’t call the Yukon nimble, it feels composed for a large SUV. It’s great for carting around the family, hauling your stuff, or towing a trailer"- Cars.usnews.com

Engine and Transmission

There is a duo of a powerful V8 engine that powers the 2018 GMC Yukon XL. A 5.3-liter V-8 engine that produces 355-horsepower and 383-pound-feet of torque is standard on the Yukon SLE and SLT.  It is mated to a six-speed automatic transmission that sends power to the rear or the optional all-wheel drive. The Denali trim meanwhile constitutes a 10-speed automatic transmission that is mated to a 6.2-liter V8 engine, rated at 420 horsepower and 460-pound-feet of torque.

Models GMC Yukon XL Ford Expedition Max Chevrolet Suburban Nissan Armada
MSRP $50,395 $54,475 $51,495 $46,090
Engine 5.3-liter

8-cylinder

Gas engine

3.5L EcoBoost V6 engine 5.3-liter 8-cylinder Flex Fuel engine 5.6-liter DOHC 32-valve V8 engine
Transmission 6-speed automatic 10-speed automatic 6-speed automatic 7-speed automatic
Power 355 hp @ 5600 rpm 375 hp @ 5000 rpm 355 hp @ 5600 rpm 390 hp @ 5800 rpm
Torque 383 ft-lbs. @ 4100 rpm 470 ft-lbs. @ 3500 rpm 383 ft-lbs. @ 4100 rpm 394 ft-lbs. @ 4000 rpm

Acceleration

The 2018 GMC Yukon XL equipped with the 6.2-liter V8 engine takes 6.4 seconds to hit 60 mph which is at par with the competitors like the Ford Expedition Max and Nissan Armada. The Chevrolet Suburban however is the slowest of the block as it takes 7.1 seconds to go from 0 60. The Ford Expedition Max meanwhile is also the fastest in terms of covering a quarter mile.

Models GMC Yukon XL Ford Expedition Max Chevrolet Suburban Nissan Armada
0-60 MPH 6.5 sec 6.5sec 7.1 sec 6.5 sec
Quarter mile 16.7 sec. @ 91 mph 15.1 sec @ 90 mph 15.5 sec @ 91 mph 15 sec @ 93 mph
Engine 5.3L 3.5L 5.3L 5.6L
Emission

Tons/yr of CO2 Emissions @ 15K mi/year

9.2 8.8 9.2 11.0

Braking and Handling

The V8 engine on the 2018 GMC Yukon XL has enough gusto to move this ginormous mass swiftly. Ride quality is smooth over most pavements however smaller bumps in the road can make the ride shaky with the standard suspension. Thanks to optical Magnetic Ride Control on the Denali trim that takes care of the bumps and adapts to different road condition. The Yukon XL feels confident on a winding road but maneuverability remains a problem for a vehicle this size.

Model GMC Yukon XL Ford Expedition Max Chevrolet Suburban Nissan Armada
Brake Front(in) 15.6 13.5 N/A 13.8
Brake Rear(in) 10.88 13.2 N/A 13.8
Curb Weight(lbs) 5965 5801 5587 6000 aprx.
60-0 MPH (ft.) 134 ft. 121 ft. 126 ft. 128 ft.

The GMC Yukon XL stops form 60 mph in 134 feet which is the longest stopping distance in the segment. The Ford Expedition and even the Chevy Suburban with an equal heft have better stopping power than the GMC. Meanwhile, the brakes feel soft with long travel pedal and there is and minimal nosedive while hard braking.

Towing Capacity

When properly equipped the 2018 GMC Yukon XL can tow up to 8,300 pounds. It is enough power to tow a trailer, a small boat or jet skis. All the Yukon’s come standard with a receiver hitch while the Denali trim gets trailer brake controller and sway controller. You can, however tow more with the Ford Expedition thanks to its 9,000-pound towing capacity.

Model GMC Yukon XL Ford Expedition Max Chevrolet Suburban Nissan Armada
Engine 5.3L 3.5L 5.3L 5.6L
Drive Train 2WD 2WD 2WD 2WD
Capacity (lbs) 8300 9000 7400 8500

2018 GMC Yukon XL Fuel Economy

6.0/10

The 2018 GMC Yukon XL with the rear wheel drive and 5.3-liter V8 liter engine guzzle more fuel than its Chevy sibling. It checks in at 14 mg city, 21 mpg highway and 19 mpg combined. Opting for the four-wheel drive makes things even worse as it offers 14/20/18 mpg. The Denali trim with a more powerful V8 engine does not make any change in the figure. Equipped with the rear wheel drive it comes in at 14/21/17 mpg while with the all-wheel drive the Denali is estimated at 14/21/16mpg.

Model GMC Yukon XL Ford Expedition Max Chevrolet Suburban Nissan Armada
MPG City 14 17 16 14
MPG Highway 21 23 23 19
MPG Combine 19 19 19 16

2018 GMC Yukon XL Interior

7.0/10

"The 2018 GMC Yukon employs a handsome interior design, executed with high-quality materials and a solid fit and finish. The GMC Yukon Denali model’s interior even rivals the opulence found in luxury large SUVs. All Yukon’s have comfortable seats, but if you’re planning to carry passengers in the third row regularly, you should opt for the long-wheelbase XL variant. The Yukon offers plenty of easy-to-use features. While the standard-wheelbase Yukon has less cargo space than most in the class, the XL has a large cargo hold compared to rivals."-Cars.usnews.com

Interior Seating and Comfort

Ingress and egress are made easy by the tall, big doors along with available running boards and grab handles. Thin windshield pillar makes for a good view of the road while the power tilt and telescoping steering help the drivers to customize their driving position.

The Yukon XL offers one of the most spacious cabins in the segment and there is enough room for adults in all the three rows. The seats offer good amount of adjustments and getting into the third row is a breeze thanks to power folding second row. There are also three complete sets of the LATCH in the second row for installing child safety which is easy to use. Standard seating feature includes:

  • Cloth upholstery
  • Power adjustable front seats
  • Leather upholstery (Optional)
  • Heated and ventilated seats (Optional)
  • Heated steering wheel (Optional)
  • Power adjustable pedals (Optional)
Model GMC Yukon XL Ford Expedition Max Chevrolet Suburban Nissan Armada
Passenger capacity 9 8 8 8
Front (Head/Shoulder/Leg)

(In.)

42.8/64.8/45.3 42.0/64.9/43.9 42.80/64.80/45.30 40.9/63.8/41.9
Second (Head/Shoulder/Leg)

(In.)

39.1/65.1/39.7 40.0/64.8/41.5 39.10/65.10/39.70 40.0/63.4/39.0

Third

(Head/Shoulder/Leg)

(In.)

38.5/62.6/34.5 37.3/64.236.1 38.50/62.60/34.50 36.4/60.5/28.3

Infotainment

The 2018 GMC Yukon XL comes fitted with the GMC’s IntelliLink infotainment system and boasts almost every feature that is available in the market. The 8.0-inch touchscreen is easy-to-use and responds quickly to the inputs.  Standard infotainment feature includes:

  • A nine-speaker audio system
  • Five USB ports
  • Bluetooth
  • Satellite radio
  • Apple CarPlay and Android Auto

Cargo Space

The 2018 GMC Yukon boasts one of the best cargo space in the segment. It offers 39.3 cubic feet of cargo space behind the third row, 76.7 cubic feet with the third row folded and 121.1 cubic feet with second-row folded. These numbers are impressive considering there is even room to tuck away small items under the cargo floor that increases the capacity further. However, the Yukon XL has a high cargo floor which might make it difficult for some people to load and unload their belongings. A hands-free liftgate is also available.

Model GMC Yukon XL Ford Expedition Max Chevrolet Suburban Nissan Armada
Volume (ft.cube)

(Behind 3rd row)

39.3 34.3 39.3 16.5
Volume (ft.cube)

(3nd Row Folded)

76.7 79.6 76.7 49.9
Volume (ft.cube)

(2nd & 3rd Row Folded)

122.4 121.5 121.7 95.4

2018 GMC Yukon XL Exterior

6.7/10

"The Yukon is the Jan Brady of GM’s full-size SUV family, but this middle child is a looker with a pleasing combination of soft curves and strong purposeful lines. All models share sheet metal, but Denalis get a new-for-2018 chromed-out grille, HID headlights and LED daytime running lights. The standard wheels are 18 inches in diameter, but there are many to choose from up to 22 inches" - Kelley Blue Book

Dimension and Weight

The 2018 GMC Yukon XL is one of the largest SUV in its segment and there are very few that matches its size. Even the Ford Expedition Max is 3-inches shorter in length than the GMC. However, it is not the heaviest of the lot considering its size. The Nissan Armada despite being 14 inches shorter than the Yukon weighs around 6,000 pounds and is also one of the least fuel-efficient vehicle in the class.

Model GMC Yukon XL Ford Expedition Max Chevrolet Suburban Nissan Armada
Curb weight(lbs) 5965 5544 5587 6000
Lenght(in) 224.4 221.9 224.4 208.3
Width(in) 80.5 83.6 80.50 79.9
Height(in) 74.4 76.4 74.4 75.8
Ground clearance(in) 7.9 9.8 7.91 9.1
Wheel base(in) 130.0 131.6 130.0 121.1
Track width(in) F/R 68.7/68.7 67.6/67.2 68.7/68.7 67.5/67.9

2018 GMC Yukon XL Safety

6.9/10

The IIHS has not crash tested the 2018 GMC Yukon yet, but it has earned a four-star overall rating by the NHSTA. Despite scoring five-star in each it gets a four-star overall rating because the rollover measurement is calculated and not actually tested so these top-heavy SUVs gets just three stars.

On the reliability front the GMC has covered the 2018 Yukon with a 3-year/36,000-mile warranty and a 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty.

NHSTA Rating

Frontal barrier crash rating overall 5 star
Frontal barrier crash rating 5 star
Frontal barrier crash rating 5 star
Side barrier rating overall 5 star
Side barrier rating driver 5 star
Side barrier rating passenger 5 star
Side crash rating overall 5 star
Combine side barrier and pole rating 5 star
Rollover 3 star
Overall Rating 4 star

Safety features

All the Yukon’s come with an innovative airbag integrated into the right-side bolster of the driver’s seat to prevent the driver and the passenger from banging head in the event of a collision. Low-speed automatic emergency braking is optional on the SLE trim and standard otherwise. Adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, lane departure warning and front parking sensor are available.

  • Advanced Air Bag System with dual-stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt and occupant classification sensors
  • Driver and front-passenger seat-mounted side-impact supplemental air bags
  • Roof-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental air bags with rollover sensor help provide head protection for outboard occupants for all three rows
  • 3-point ALR/ELR passenger seat belt system (ELR for driver)
  • Front seat belts with pre-tensioners and load limiters
  • LATCH System (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children)
  • Child-safety rear door locks
  • Adjustable Pedals
  • Traction Control
  • High-strength side-door guard beams
  • Tire Pressure Monitoring System

2018 GMC Yukon XL Competition

2018 GMC Yukon XL vs Ford Expedition Max

The 2018 GMC Yukon XL is an appealing choice but there are certain things that the Ford Expedition Max does better. It offers better fuel economy and has class-leading towing capacity. The GMC meanwhile cost $4,000 less than its Ford rival and offers plush interior along with more space in all the three rows. It also offers best in class cargo capacity. Both these giants make for a good choice and it depends choosing one depends on what you prefer in your SUV.

2018 GMC Yukon XL Vs Nissan Armada

GMC Yukon boasts one of the nicest cabins in the class and it also has the capacity to seat nine, which is more than the Nissan Armada. The Yukon XL also has one of most user-friendly infotainment system and offers features such as Android Auto and Apple CarPlay along with a Wi-Fi hot spot-none of this is available in the Armada. GMC also offers a quiet ride and gets better fuel efficiency than the Nissan. The Yukon XL is a better SUV any day and offer value for money.

2018 GMC Yukon XL Vs Chevrolet Suburban

The GMC Yukon XL is a notch better than its Chevy sibling. It has better towing capacity, a peppier engine, and is also few inches longer. The Yukon XL has also a low starting price and has a seating capacity of nine passengers. Apart from these differences both the SUVs are identical in many ways but the Yukon still is a better choice over the Chevrolet Suburban.

 

2018 GMC Yukon XL Final Verdict

The 2018 GMC Yukon XL is one of the best full-size SUV that is available in the market today. It boasts plush interior and the V8 engine on the Denali trim accelerates faster than all the rivals. It also seats nine as compared to eight in others and has a towing capacity of 8,500 pounds that is enough to do most of the job. The Yukon XL also has best in class cargo capacity and good mileage for a large SUV. It gets strong competition from Ford Expedition but with a low starting price the Yukon XL definitely scores ahead

Pros

Seats up to nine people

Best in class cargo capacity

Excellent towing capacity

Cons

Maneuverability in a tight spot is difficult

High cargo loading floor

Slow gas pedal response makes engine feels sluggish

What's New?

The 2018 GMC Yukon XL has gone under the knife but only for some minor changes

A 10-speed automatic transmission now comes standard


Features

vehicle bio

base price

$51780

bodystyle

4dr SUV

passenger capacity

9

drivetrain

RWD

engine type

displacement

325 cu. in.

horsepower

355 hp @ 5600 rpm

torque

383 lb.-ft. @ 4100 rpm

transmission

6-speed automatic

chassis

suspension front

Independent front short and long arm suspension

suspension rear

Rigid axle rear multi-link suspension

brake rotors (f/r)

13.6 in. ventilated disc brakes/13 in. ventilated disc brakes

dimensions

wheelbase

130 in.

length

224.4 in.

width

80.5 in.

height

74.4 in.

curb weight

5610 lbs.

ground clearance

7.9 in.

capacity

cargo volume

39.3 cu ft.

towing capacity

8300 lbs.

payload capacity

1660 lbs.

performance

zero to 60 mph

7.5 sec.

standing ¼-mile

15.7 sec.

fuel economy

city/combined/highway

16/19/23 mpg

highway range

713 mi.

warranty

basic warranty

3 years/36000 miles

drivetrain warranty

5 years/60000 miles

corrosion warranty

6 years/100000 miles

roadside assistance

yes



Styles

 2018 GMC Yukon XL in White Frost Tricoat color  2018 GMC Yukon XL in Summit White color  2018 GMC Yukon XL in Satin Steel Metallic color  2018 GMC Yukon XL in Quicksilver Metallic color  2018 GMC Yukon XL in Onyx Black color  2018 GMC Yukon XL in Mineral Metallic color  2018 GMC Yukon XL in Iridium Metallic color  2018 GMC Yukon XL in Dark Sapphire Blue Metallic color
White Frost Tricoat

Vehicle images are guides only and may not reflect the model's exact specifications/features– exact specifications/features should be confirmed with the seller.

Ratings

Features

9.6

Engine

6.7

Fuel Economy

6.0

Interior

7.0

Exterior

6.7

Safety

6.9

Comfort

7.9

Driving

7.3

7.3

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


 2018 GMC Yukon XL SLE

SLE

power
355 hp @ 5600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
18 combined

$51,780 - $54,780


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
SLE 4dr SUV (5.3L 8cyl 6A) Starting at $51,780 MSRP (16/19/23) 355 hp @ 5600 rpm, 5.3 L, V8, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
6-speed automatic rear wheel drive 9 NA
SLE 4dr SUV 4WD (5.3L 8cyl 6A) Starting at $54,780 MSRP (15/18/22) 355 hp @ 5600 rpm, 5.3 L, V8, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
6-speed automatic four wheel drive 9 NA

 2018 GMC Yukon XL SLT

SLT

power
355 hp @ 5600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
18 combined

$59,830 - $62,830


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
SLT 4dr SUV (5.3L 8cyl 6A) Starting at $59,830 MSRP (16/19/23) 355 hp @ 5600 rpm, 5.3 L, V8, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
6-speed automatic rear wheel drive 8 NA
SLT 4dr SUV 4WD (5.3L 8cyl 6A) Starting at $62,830 MSRP (15/18/22) 355 hp @ 5600 rpm, 5.3 L, V8, regular unleaded
See Full Specs
6-speed automatic four wheel drive 8 NA

 2018 GMC Yukon XL Denali

Denali

power
420 hp @ 5600 rpm
fuel
Premium unleaded (recommended)
mpg
16 combined

$68,865 - $71,865


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Denali 4dr SUV (6.2L 8cyl 10A) Starting at $68,865 MSRP (14/17/23) 420 hp @ 5600 rpm, 6.2 L, V8, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
10-speed automatic rear wheel drive 7 NA
Denali 4dr SUV 4WD (6.2L 8cyl 10A) Starting at $71,865 MSRP (14/16/21) 420 hp @ 5600 rpm, 6.2 L, V8, premium unleaded (recommended)
See Full Specs
10-speed automatic four wheel drive 7 NA