Which GMC Canyon Years To Avoid and Why? (Explained)

The GMC Canyon, a pickup truck produced and sold by General Motors, is a good option if you’re searching for power and a pleasant interior in a durable vehicle. In 2004, it was unveiled with the Chevrolet Colorado, its identical twin. Canyons are big, boxy, and available in a variety of colors and trim levels. They’re popular with buyers and critics both.

However, GMC Canyon models from the past several years should be avoided as they have a slew of problems including engine transmission, electrical issues.

Buckle up, because I’m about to take you on a tour through the good and the terrible years of the GMC Canyon so you’ll know which model to avoid and which to purchase.

GMC Canyon Years to Avoid (With Reasons)

Here are the years of GMC canyon to avoid-

  • 2015 GMC Canyon
  • 2016 GMC Canyon
  • 2017 GMC Canyon
  • 2018 GMC Canyon
  • 2019 GMC Canyon

A hint that these years should be avoided is the abundance of problems and complaints leveled against them.

2015 GMC Canyon Problems:

Transmission problems are the most typical 2015 GMC Canyon concerns. Frequently reported transmission issues include Not Shifting Correctly, Moves in Park, 4WD Stuck in Low, and Transmission Failure.

Unanticipated breakdown of the power steering is another cause for concern.

Heat Not Working has been a source of aggravation for a great number of owners. Electrical, braking, and engine faults are also prevalent in this model year.

According to Car Complaints, the NHSTA has issued seven recalls for the Canyon. This is a poor condition for a car that is only four years old.

2016 GMC Canyon Problems:

Although the 2016 edition of the GMC Canyon experienced less issues than the 2015 version, the overall narrative remained the same.

According to Car Complaints, the most common issue cited by drivers was a problem with the transmission of the vehicle.

The 2016 GMC Canyon has the highest complaints on Carcomplaints about shifting issues.

This year have gear shifting and inappropriate accelerate issues. Another problem with the 2016 Canyon is the interior accessories issue.

Among the many issues that fall within this category are the following:

  • Having Problems with the Entertainment System
  • Unintentionally dimmed dash and instrument panel lights
  • Connectivity Inoperable front door Lights are left open, but the heater only works on “high.”
  • The infotainment screen has stopped working.

Another reason to steer clear of this model is the risk of engine stalling while driving.

2017 GMC Canyon Problems:

The 2017 GMC Canyon has a projected dependability rating of one out of five stars from Consumer Reports.  Many people use the rating to help them choose a new car.

Among the most common complaints about the 2017 GMC Canyon is that they suffer from major transmission issues. They are said to be “Jerks, Shudders, Chugs And Slips” which is not a good thing to hear about a car if you are looking for one to buy.

The heater and air conditioner in this model don’t appear to operate very well. Additionally, you may notice some vibrations coming from the compressor.

2018 GMC Canyon Problems:

Transmission-related faults are so prevalent in GMC Canyons that they can be found in almost every model on this list, including the 2018.

Issues with transmissions in the year 2018 Canyons sometimes entail a sliding torque converter, which can force the transmission to shift in an unsafely aggressive manner.

What are the Worst Years of GMC Canyon?

  • 2015 GMC Canyon

GMC Canyon model year 2015 is the worst according to carcomplaint.com. The transmission is the most problematic part of the vehicle. Several problems with the power steering and torque converter were reported by owners.

The 2015 model year is regarded as the worst based on various characteristics, including repair cost and average miles when problems arise.

What is the Most Common Problems of GMC Canyon?

Even though succeeding versions of the GMC Canyon have scaled up to midsize vehicles, the initial generation of the GMC Canyon, which ran from 2003 to 2010, included tiny pickups. However, all of these generations have had their share of problems.

The following is a list of the most often occurring issues with the GMC Canyon:

1. Not Shifting Correctly or Adequately:

Transmission issues are the most prevalent with the GMC Canyon, particularly the 2015 model. There are a variety of shifting issues, but the most typical are difficult shifting and slow gear changes.

Eight recalls for the 2015 GMC Canyon were recorded. The primary issue was steering. Due to a faulty electrical connection within the steering gear assembly, the power steering aid risked being disabled or losing power.

This issue is seen, when the vehicle has relatively low miles. Even repairing the transmission may not necessarily resolve the issue permanently, because the replacement transmission may have the same issue.

2. Torque Converter Failing:

Failure of the torque converter is another typical issue that can occur alongside shifting problems.

Typically, the primary sign of a failing torque converter is that the car begins to tremble, even at modest speeds. The vibration might be minor or intense, but it will often intensify over time.

In addition to the torque converter, the 2015 GMC Canyon has problems with the power steering as well.

Typically, the torque converter must also be replaced, which is an unfortunate additional issue. It cannot be corrected once it has begun to deteriorate.

3. Problems with the Transmission:

Many 2015-2019 GMC Canyon customers have complained about a problematic transmission.

While the 2015 model had the most transmission-related problems reported, the 2016 Canyon is not far behind, having total 21 complaints for both years.

Many 2015 GMC Canyons have reportedly experienced difficulties with changing between gears.

Some vehicles upshift or downshift too slowly, while others shift roughly.

This is risky, since driving in the incorrect gear can result in issues such as jerking and make it difficult to manage the vehicle.

4. Engine Problems:

Some GMC Canyon engines might break down as early as 3,000 miles, despite their durability and strength. Common complaints from impacted vehicle owners include engine misfires, stalling, reluctance, and refusal to start.

A number of 2015-model-year GMC Canyons were affected by the most severe engine issue.

When changing speeds, some drivers have claimed that their vehicles ran roughly or stopped. In the latter scenario, the engine tends to cut off and shut down unexpectedly when accelerating.

Accelerating or decelerating might potentially cause the engine to shut off.

5. Electrical Problems:

In addition to other more severe issues, the GMC Canyon is known to suffer a variety of electrical issues. The most prevalent problem is the battery dying or wearing out early.

There have been occasional complaints of the GMC Canyon catching fire, as well as claims of electrical failure while driving and the power locks going on and off at random.

Despite the fact that this year is not on this list of years to avoid, there is one NHTSA complaint that is about 2020 GMC Canyon which experienced an electrical breakdown that caused the vehicle to lose all of its power.

The connection between the battery cable and the nearby components caused melting.

2009, 2016 and 2018 years have many electrical issues recorded.

All of these concerns have the potential to be safety hazards, but they are uncommon and less likely to occur than the other faults we’ve listed with the GMC Canyon.

5. A/C and Heater Issues

The GMC Canyon’s climate control keeps the inside pleasant. Some 2015 Canyon owners were unhappy when their A/C broke. A malfunctioning instrument panel, heater, heater core leaks, or loud fan clutch might cause this.

While GMC Canyon is reliable, it’s smart to understand about typical problems for the model year you possess or want to buy. So, you can plan for probable problems.

Which GMC Canyon Years are Safe to Buy?

It’s not too difficult to get a dependable GMC Canyon. Several years of GMC Canyon should be avoided, however there are other years of GMC Canyon that are much more trustworthy.

Listed below are the years in which GMC Canyons have proven to be dependable, as well as the years in which significant issues with your Canyon are least likely:

  • 2009 GMC Canyon
  • 2012 GMC Canyon
  • 2013 GMC Canyon
  • 2014 GMC Canyon
  • 2019 GMC Canyon
  • 2020 GMC Canyon
  • 2021 GMC Canyon

There is little difference in performance between the 2014 and 2013 versions. As a whole, these models have a relatively low percentage of complaints from users and reviews.

Buying a used 2013 or 2014 Canyon is a safe bet if you’re seeking for the best value. However, 2009, 2012, and both the 2020 and 2021 models are also excellent choices.

Is GMC Discontinuing the Canyon?

According to information obtained from individuals with knowledge of the situation by GM Authority, production of the diesel-powered pickup trucks known as the Chevrolet Colorado and the GMC Canyon will come to an end in the third quarter of the calendar year 2022.

Is The GMC Canyon the Same as The Chevy Colorado?

Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon both changed the midsize pickup truck market when relaunched in 2015.

There are more parallels between the 2021 Chevrolet Colorado and the 2021 GMC Canyon than there are differences between the two vehicles. The reason for this is that General Motors is the manufacturer of both types of pickup trucks, and their platforms are identical.

As a direct consequence of this, their size for passengers and baggage, feature sets, powertrain options, and driving dynamics are all quite similar.

How Many Miles Do GMC Canyons Last?

In the event that it is properly maintained, a normal Canyon has a lifespan of at least 200,000 kilometers.

Multiple owners have stated that they have passed the 300,000 milestone, and they are optimistic that it might continue to push another 100,000.


In general, the GMC Canyon is a solid car. Aim to steer clear of the aforementioned model years. If you’re in the market for a canyon check out the latest models first, since they have less problems and complaints.

I strongly suggest conducting your own research before settling on a course of action, but I do hope that this essay will be useful in focusing your investigation in the right direction.

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