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General Motors Will Leverage The GMC Brand For More Off-Road Truck Entries

GMC Canyon AT4 Performance Edition AT4X
Image via GMC

Beyond the headlines of mandated electrification, autonomous vehicles, switching to a bug-based diet, along with owning nothing and being happy, market demand has gone absolutely rabid for go-anywhere, do anything vehicles of all kinds. As a result, the used pickup truck market has demand exceeding supply. There’s evidence that the aftermarket is pivoting more and more towards off-road vehicle support. Additionally, automakers themselves have hedged high-voltage mandates by expanding portfolios of off-road trucks and SUVs in various shapes and sizes. General Motors, for example, started with the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 in 2016. But by 2023, that off-road truck lineup will include a larger Silverado ZR2, as well as a mega-sized GMC Hummer EV. In standard GM fashion, the company will leverage the GMC brand for even more off-road truck entries, which will twin what we see at Chevrolet, starting with the upcoming 2023 GMC Canyon AT4X.

Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 GMC Canyon AT4X Multimatic DSSV Dampers
Image copyright Steven Pham, Muscle Cars & Trucks.

2023 GMC Canyon AT4X Details

Based on the 31XX-2 platform, as MC&T first reported, the GMC Canyon AT4X will be a step above the AT4 trim level, and looks to feature identical hardware as the upcoming 2023 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2. This means the latest iteration of Multimatic DSSV dampers, meaty 33-inch Goodyear tires, 17-inch wheels, and bumper cutouts for improved approach and departure angles. For comparison, the outgoing Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 only has 31-inch tires.

Powering the 2023 GMC Canyon AT4X will be a high-output version of the 2.7L L3B turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine, likely floating around 325 hp and 380 lb-ft of torque as seen in the Cadillac CT4-V. A lower-output version of the L3B engine is found in the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado and 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 trucks, at 310 hp and 348 lb-ft of torque. So, if GM is keen on rivaling the next-generation 2023 Ford Ranger in output, these numbers should be enough. And the L3B engine will have to do, as there will be no V6 or diesel variants of the next-generation Chevrolet Colorado and/or GMC Canyon, as MC&T originally reported two years ago.

Those seeking a longer truck bed will also be upset to learn that the 2023 GMC Canyon AT4X and 2023 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 will only come in crew cab form.

In other words: one body style, and one engine. That’s it.

Tuning them will likely be a futile attempt, as well. Thanks to the encrypted nature of the GM Global B electrical architecture, the engine control unit (ECU), and transmission control unit (TCU) of the 2023 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 and 2023 GMC Canyon AT4X will be under lock and key. And, as we reported just yesterday, GM does not intend to unlock these modules for tuning.


Despite the rigid terms of these next-generation trucks, it’s encouraging to see General Motors expand its off-road truck family with the GMC nameplate. And, based on what we’re seeing from the 2022i Chevrolet Silverado ZR2, it’s likely that a similar recipe will be followed for the 2022i GMC Sierra, as well.

Hall Racing 2021 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2
The 2021 Hall Racing Chevrolet Colorado ZR2.

Written by Manoli Katakis

Muscle Cars & Trucks was founded by Manoli Katakis - an automotive media veteran that has been covering the latest car news since 2009. His journalism has uncovered dozens of major product changes, updates, plans, and cancellations long before automakers were ready to make things official.

Some highlights over the years of his reporting include the uncovering of the Zora trademark before anybody else reported on the coming of a mid-engine Corvette, as well as the dead-accurate reporting of the coming of the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, two years before it hit the market, and even before the debut of the concept vehicle. This type of reporting has immediately continued here, with reports of the original seventh-generation Camaro plans being shelved, as well as what's in store for the Chevrolet Silverado.

Some of his work can be found on massive automotive media outlets, such as Motor1. He also has been a guest on the 910AM Radio Station with Detroit News auto critic Henry Payne, as well as the enthusiast-oriented Camaro Show podcast.

Over the years, Manoli has interviewed various automotive industry titans, leaders, and people that make things happen otherwise. These include figureheads such as GM CEO Mary Barra, GM President Mark Reuss, automotive aftermarket icon Ken Lingenfelter, Dodge firebrand Tim Kuniskis, along with various chief engineers of vehicles such as the Ford F-150 & Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro & Corvette, and many more.

At MC&T, Manoli is taking his journalism expertise, deeply planted sources, driving abilities, and automotive industry knowledge to new levels, covering more vehicles and brands than ever before. This is the place where you will continue to read groundbreaking stories about American performance vehicles, pickup trucks, and sport utility vehicles. Here is where you’ll also read insights and quotes from various automotive subject matter experts on the latest relevant products, as well as some of the latest official news from their manufacturers.

Fun facts: he also once beat Corvette Racing driver Tommy Milner in an autocross with a Chevrolet Bolt EV. The biggest vehicle he’s ever driven is a John Deere mining truck. Besides a go-kart, the smallest vehicle he’s driven has been a Hyundai i10. He’s also spent time in the cockpit of various American performance vehicle icons, including the fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, Dodge Challenger Demon, and Ford Mustang GT350R. He has reviewed dozens of trucks, SUVs, and performance vehicles over the years.

One of his favorite new vehicles on the market today happens to be the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison. He is also a card carrying member of the Sports Car Club of America, and regularly participates in Detroit Region autocross events.

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