Just about every manufacturer makes some sort of full-size SUV, few do it better then the folks at General Motors. You see, over 80-years ago (that’s right – I said 80) Chevrolet invented the Suburban, and in that time it’s evolved into what is the foremost authority on hauling gear, families, politicians, celebrities and anyone else you can think of around in pure comfort. Then, back in 1999 GMC grabbed hold of the concept, and gave it more power, luxury, and technology. The company dubbed it the Denali, the public loved it, and after putting 1,100 miles on a 2019 GMC Yukon Denali, it’s easy to see why.
2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL Exterior
With a multi-dimensional grille, special 22-inch gloss black wheels, polished mirror caps and trim, this 2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL is the definition of what a full-size SUV should look like it. GMC understands that, instead of trying to reinvent design, that taking an evolutionary approach sometimes works better.For starters, the Yukon Denali is still very much a truck, and one of the last body-on-frame SUVs sold in the United States. Its squared jaw and bold body lines employ an elegance that few can match, while the air of masculinity it possesses feels just at home on Rodeo Drive as it does on a family camping trip.
The sculpted grille is the focal point of the Denali, and while it’s the size of a barn door, it works with the ultra-high beltline. The projector beam headlamps with outlying LED running lights extend nicely into the front fenders, while the lower front fascia houses polished-trimmed and recessed driving lamps. Power running boards extend as soon as you open the door, when they retract, they’re completely hidden beneath the Yukon’s rocker panels. The subtle use of polished trim also helps make the Denali feel less slab-sided, and fools the eye into thinking it’s a bit smaller than its 224.40-inch length would dictate. As for the rear of the Yukon XL, well, it’s minimalist, with a large rear tailgate which can be opened with the touch of a button, or accessed via the rear window. A rear trailer-tow hitch is also hidden beneath a body-color concealer panel.
2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL Interior
To design a competent and luxurious interior, one needs to combine the rugged feel of a truck with the luxury elements of a refined automobile. By going with wood, soft-touch surfaces, and double-stitched leather, the GMC has done a fantastic job of outfitting cabin of the 2019 Yukon Denali for everyday life, without making it feel overly complicated. Features like adaptive cruise control, an easy to read cluster that utilizes both analog and digital gauges, and navigation with an 8-inch color touchscreen mean that one is never searching for information. There are also heated and ventilated power seats, a heated steering wheel, and a rear entertainment system that’s worthy of a living room. The ten-speaker Bose audio system and tri-zone active climate controls help to keep occupants happy as well.
Power outlets, charging ports and cup holders are available for the seven-passenger cabin, and outward visibility is also fantastic, thanks to large rearview mirrors and a greenhouse-like interior. The cabin is also extremely quiet at speed, with little in the way of wind or road noise. Most of all, the interior of the Yukon Denali is comfortable and welcoming, and doesn’t possess many superfluously features. Cargo volume in the Denali XL ranges from 39.30 cubic-feet of space, to a whopping 121.70 cubic-feet, with all the seats folded flat. Simply put, this is one the biggest, and most useful full-size SUVs you can buy.
2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL Performance
With 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque coming from an aluminum-block 6.2L V8 EcoTec3 with Direct Injection, the 2019 Denali XL is big on power and performance. With the help of the ten-speed automatic transmission, the sprint to 60 mph takes just 5.8-seconds. This is a vehicle that weighs in at over 5,800 pounds, so the fact that it’s that quick from a dig is really impressive. Since it’s equipped with GMC’s magnetic ride control (which adjusts every millisecond to ensure a smooth ride), the Denali always feels planted, with handling and steering characteristics that are surefooted and confidence inspiring. Our tester also came with four-wheel drive, which can be toggled to one of four settings (2wd, Auto, 4-wheel high, 4-wheel low), as well as a trailer tow brake system which helps to allow the Denali to tow up to 8,100-lbs. Mileage is EPA rated at 14-mpg city, 20-mpg highway and 16-mpg in combined driving**.
Once on the road, we had an opportunity sample other features like the adaptive cruise control and HUD (heads up display). Not only did the system work flawlessly but also I was able to obtain the best fuel economy when traveling with it active. The HUD system was also brilliant. It’s clear and in plain sight and allows one to never take their eyes off the road. Braking performance was on par with other vehicles of this size and weight, which meant performance was good. For those looking for enhanced braking performance, a six-piston Brembo caliper on massive 16.1-inch front rotors is offered.
2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL Safety
GMC understands that safety is paramount and as such has equipped the Denali XL with a variety of features to ensure a safe journey. Items like available Lane Keep Assist, Forward Collision Alert, Intelligent Brake Assist, Front and Rear Park Assist, a Rear Vision Camera, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Anti-Lock brakes are all present, and airbags can be found throughout the cabin.
To find out more about the safety features on the 2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL Head on over to GMC.com.
2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL Overall
There aren’t many vehicles that compare to the 2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL in terms of luxury, utility and performance. A full-size SUV the way they were meant to be, it provides the consumer with commanding styling and one of the best engines currently available. It’s also well built with bulletproof reliability, and believe it or not, it’s also quite fun to drive. Thus, if you’re in the market for a full-size SUV that offers American styling and a proven pedigree, the 2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL is definitely worth a look. Prices for the 2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL start at $71,590**.
Drop by your local AutoNation GMC dealer today to check one out!
*Fuel economy values (mpg) are EPA estimates. Actual mileage will vary and depends on several factors including driving habits and vehicle condition.
**Vehicle MSRP of $82,190.00 excludes taxes, title, transportation, options, and dealer fees.