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2015 GMC Yukon Denali MPGs Improve Thanks to Eight-Speed Auto

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 11/6/2014 Kelly Pleskot
2015 GMC Yukon Denali© Provided by MotorTrend 2015 GMC Yukon Denali

Even though the Yukon Denali has been completely redesigned for 2015, General Motors is already updating this model with a new eight-speed transmission to replace the old six-speed. This change boosts fuel economy numbers for the new SUV and its extended-wheelbase version.

When paired with two-wheel drive, the updated 2015 GMC Yukon Denali and Yukon Denali XL achieve 15/22 mpg city/hwy, up 1 mpg from last year's highway rating. Four-wheel drive Yukon Denali models are rated at 15/21, an increase of 1 mpg in the city. There are no fuel economy improvements for the four-wheel-drive XL Denali.

2015 GMC Yukon Denali© Provided by MotorTrend 2015 GMC Yukon Denali

GM says its new transmission promises quicker shift times than before. A new torque converter should deliver smoother performance at low speeds, particularly when carrying heavy loads.

The SUV's new fuel economy ratings are on par with the V-6-powered 2015 Lincoln Navigator, but exceed eight-cylinder models like the Toyota Sequoia Platinum and Infiniti QX80. Non-Denali Yukon models with the 5.3-liter V-8 and six-speed automatic achieve slightly better fuel economy at 16/23 mpg hwy with two-wheel drive, and 16/22 with four-wheel drive.

The Yukon Denali keeps its familiar 6.2-liter EcoTec3 V-8 engine that produces 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque. Towing remains at up to 8400 pounds for the Yukon Denali, and 8100 pounds for the Yukon XL Denali.

Prices for the 2015 Yukon Denali start at $64,965, while the XL Denali begins at $67,665.

Source: General Motors

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