Millennial Mom’s Review: 2022 GMC Acadia AT4

The 2022 GMC Acadia is surprisingly simple, in the best possible way

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Wow, I didn’t expect to be so pleased with the 2022 GMC Acadia. I didn’t mind it going in; no prior knowledge that it is even the slightest concern in any way. To be honest, I didn’t expect much from it. And maybe, at the end of the day, that’s why I loved it.

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You know when a new movie comes out and it seems like everyone you know has seen it? So the first thing you do is avoid Twitter – and all social media – because it will be filled with spoilers that set super high and unattainable expectations. Well, this is not so. Acadia AT4 is more like one of those obscure indie movies that you stumble upon because nothing else is on, but you’ll love every minute of it.

From the moment I walked in it was so easy to get comfortable. I’m short, which means it’s not always super easy to get comfortable, especially in larger vehicles. But after placing the seat and adjusting all the mirrors, everything was comfortably visible and reachable.

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The wheel is on the thinner side but if you have smaller hands you can appreciate the difference in feel. On the flip side, it might not be as comfortable for someone with larger hands. The steering wheel also felt loose (as opposed to stiff), which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it takes a minute to get used to how light it makes this big SUV feel. The light steering matches the feel of the gas and brake pedals. Where some SUVs feel heavy to start, this one seemed eager to move—and just as eager to stop.

It’s not the most fuel-efficient, but city ratings of 12.6L/100km and 9.2 on the highway are pretty average for this segment. That said, because of the large gas tank, it felt like I was driving forever before actually filling up, which almost makes it seem like it has better fuel efficiency than it does. Do not let yourself be fooled. With gas prices just over $2/liter and a fuel capacity of 82L, I filled up half a tank of gas for $80!

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The infotainment is very basic, in the best possible way, and it can be connected wirelessly to Apple CarPlay. It’s not a big deal for some, but a wireless connection means that even the person sitting furthest away from me (my son in the third row) can control the music from my phone, which also means I’m not constantly annoyed to change the song or the album.

My absolute favorite thing about this SUV is the climate control. It’s that simple, in the most genius way. Instead of endlessly pressing a button that provides multiple options and combinations of how the valves work, there are a few buttons that simply turn on and off. You want warmth on your feet, tap it. One tap, that’s all. If only all cars could be this simple!

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One thing I really disliked was the ventilated front seat. I’ve never been a fan of the ventilated seats – the fan is usually an annoying buzz and the cold seat makes me feel like I peed my pants – but this one is a bit noisier than usual. But that’s a first world problem if ever I heard one.

The Acadia seats six (or seven if you opt for the second-row bench); two in the front, two in the middle and two in the third row. During the week of testing the AT4, my seven- and two-year-old sat comfortably in the middle row. Their shorter legs meant the third row had a bit more legroom. My five-year-old and husband sat in the third row, which is easy to get in and out of; the middle row seats fold forward for easy access.

The back row was undoubtedly fine for my son, but I was surprised to hear that my husband also had enough legroom. His only concern was that the seats didn’t recline. If the seats reclined, there would be even less cargo space; With both third row seats up, I could fit my umbrella stroller in the 362L, and that’s it. But fold down one or both of the 50/50 split seats and there’s a lot more boot space — up to 1,180L.

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Optioned all the way to $56,473, this AT4 trim as tested starts at $48,698 (plus $1,900 destination charge) and comes with a 3.6L V6 engine and nine-speed automatic transmission. The Summit White color is free, but all other colors have an additional cost, including $495 for Light Stone Metallic (gray) or Ebony Twilight Metallic (black), and $1,195 for White Frost Tricoat (glossy white). Premium cloth interior is included in the cost, but it’s an extra $1,195 for perforated leather seats.

There are eight optional packages at varying prices, but each adds something different and you can quickly increase that base price by adding more than one. For example, the AT4 already includes the Luxury package, and this tested vehicle added a $2,995 GMC Pro Grade package that features a head-up display, a dual-panel power sunroof, HD surround vision, and more. You can also add the $1,225 ‘Hit the Road’ package if you want the roof rack with cross rails, or the $750 Trailer package for an increased towing capacity of up to 4,000 lbs.

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2022 GMC Acadia AT4
2022 GMC Acadia AT4 Photo by Renita Naraine

There’s standard all-wheel drive across all trims, even the base SLE trim that starts at $41,398. Also standard is GMC Pro Safety Plus, which includes rear park assist, automatic high beams, and front emergency braking with pedestrian detection—there’s even a little person icon that pops up on the head-up display when it sees a person walking (or riding) toward the SUV : n.

If you’re looking for a little extra, nearly $13,000 more will get you the Denali trim which opens up a few more options to add, as well as an included Denali Technology package. The Denali is the only trim that has a wireless phone charger, but the AT4 has a USB and USB-C port right below the climate controls, so you can still charge most devices.

The 2022 GMC Acadia was surprisingly awesome. I loved the simplicity and ease with which my family became completely comfortable. That said, as technology continues to rapidly advance, I’m sure the Acadia will too, and sooner or later – probably much sooner than later – the perfect climate control buttons will become a thing of the past, replaced by a touchscreen option. It’s going to be as annoying as I probably will be trying to explain to my friends how awesome Acadia is – just like a super underrated independent film that no one wants to see until they have nothing better to do.

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