Monday, June 8, 2015

Our weekend in a 2015 GMC Acadia Denali

*Disclosure: We were loaned this car to review for ourselves. No other compensation was received and all opinions posted here are ours and ours alone. 

A couple of weekends ago my family packed up and headed south to Portland for a fun weekend. But instead of driving one of our ancient vehicles, we were traveling in style in a 2015 GMC Acadia Denali.

Pretty, isn't it?  This vehicle was great for a family road trip. We all had different favorite features of this car. I liked the safety features like the side mirror indicator light that shows when something is in your blind spot. Merging into traffic is one of my least favorite things to do and this gave me more confidence in the process. I also liked the backup camera. It came in especially handy on our return home, when my husband had to back into our teeny tiny driveway at 10:30 pm so that we could unload some large IKEA purchases! My kids' favorite feature was the backseat entertainment system. They spent most of our drive to Portland quietly watching DVDs in the back, with sound provided to them by wireless headsets!


I thought that this vehicle was easy and comfortable to drive. Even though I'm only 5 feet tall, I didn't feel like the car was too bulky or too tall for me. Acceleration and stopping were smooth.  While we were in the city, gas mileage was pretty low, but once we were on the highway, it improved immensely.  One cool feature that I loved while driving was the fact that my speed and the next step in our navigation were projected onto the windshield in front of me, so I didn't have to look down at any time.


Both my husband and I loved the comfort of this car for passengers. Seats were easy to adjust and I loved the lumbar support in the seats.  The kids liked the cupholders and the aforementioned entertainment system. They also liked that the climate control for the backseat was adjustable separately from the system for the front seat passengers. It took me a bit to get a hang of adjusting everyone's climate control from the front seat control panel, but I eventually figured things out!

I also really liked that we had a variety of entertainment options in the front seat. We alternated between radio, satellite radio, CDs and hooking up my iPod with Bluetooth and listening to podcasts. Nice to have all of those choices on a multi-hour trip! The front seat people also really liked the adjustable armrest between the front seats that could be scooted backward and forward for maximum arm resting comfort.

The second row seats came equipped with the LATCH carseat system, so it was super easy to fasten my kids' booster seats in and get them back out again when needed.


We tried out the back of the vehicle with multiple types of cargo. The third row seats were easy to put up and down to increase the space in the back. We couldn't quite fit my husband's bicycle in with his tires still attached, but we had no trouble with anything else. There was plenty of space on our way home from Portland to pack in our luggage and several large boxes that we stopped and bought on our way home.


I really enjoyed driving this vehicle for a few days. It was easy to figure out the various systems and it drove nicely. My only minor quibble was that it was challenging for me to get in and out of the driver's seat gracefully, since the car lacks a running board and there was no handle for me to use to help pull myself up. I looked good driving the car, but my entrances and exits from the front driver's seat were more entertaining for witnesses. Overall, we all gave this vehicle our seal of approval and we were sad to say goodbye at the end of our time driving the Acadia Denali!