Recently I had the true pleasure of driving a GMC Acadia. I kind of fell in love with this car back at Haven Conference last August, never dreaming it might be on my short list so soon.
We’re forced into a decision on a new car this week. Remember the red car we’ve had for 14 years? Her current ailments are nearly fatal. My must-have list is very specific. These are the deal-breakers:
- 3rd row seating (minimum 6 passenger)
- Heated seats
The folks at GMC were kind enough to let me drive my dream car, the Buick Enclave. No, wait, that’s not right. It turns out that the Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia, and Chevy Traverse are all basically the same car, with differences in finish and options. Of the three, the GMC Acadia had what we needed.
It came down to the seats. I have a funny thing about leather; I’d rather not have it. It’s always cold in the winter and hot in the summer. I might be the only one in America who doesn’t want leather, but heated seats are a MUST.
Ed Allwine from Patriot GMC in Boyertown, PA chose the perfect car for me to drive. How did he know blue is my favorite? They couldn’t have been nicer! I absolutely recommend checking in with them, even if they aren’t in your neighborhood.
This beautiful Acadia has everything:
- Heated fabric seats
- Tons of room in the middle bench seat
- Fold flat 3rd row seats that don’t feel like an afterthought, like some cars we tested
- Large LED display with backup camera (honestly, I’m not sure how I would drive this car without a backup camera)
- Bluetooth, of course
- And cup holders to make everyone happy. Interestingly, many family cars had tons of cup holders, but none that my little people can reach from their car seats. The Acadia’s cup holder in the door was just right.
What really matters, though, is the engine, the handling, and the safety.
Engine: Love the v6 under the hood, powerful enough to move this car, and provide towing as well.
Handling: The Acadia sits higher than a car, but still easy enough to get into. It seems to be just right, maybe with a teensy bit of attitude.
Safety: This is a big one for me. The vehicle gets an awesome 5-star safety rating, which is not true for everything I was comparing it to. I LOVED the center front air bag, standard for Acadia but unique in its class. In a collision, this air bags stops the driver and passenger from bonking heads. Yes, please.
Also, it has a great, readable display with Bluetooth, OnStar, and a whole bunch of other features that we can’t live without today. My iPad and the Acadia were best buddies in about 30 seconds.
It has a ton of storage, as well. The center console, the doors in front and back, and even the hidden rear compartment all stand up well to what I need to stash. This little table is in the process of getting a makeover, but I could fit four of these in here, and still have room for the kids! I’m tired of having to leave the kids by the side of the road when I find these curbside treasures. (Just kidding!!!)
I LOVE the tie-down rings in the trunk area. This is such a no-brainer, and one of the things conspicuously missing from my wagon.
Cargo, of course, is what this car was made for. These vehicles were featured in the GMC Hidden Treasure Adventure. where some fabulous bloggers headed down the world’s largest yard sale, racking up treasures to install in a brand new Habitat for Humanity house. I didn’t go that far, but I do need to haul my stuff!
You lose some fuel efficiency coming from a smaller car, but that’s just the price you pay for a car in this class size. I couldn’t find anything that performed much better.
Truth: I am anti-SUV. Always have been. I always thought that you should have to certify that you had three or more kids or own a Saint Bernard to be granted a license to buy a large SUV. My Saint Bernard’s name was Benjamin. Yes, he was bigger than the kitchen I had way back when. Come to think of it, I think this Acadia may be bigger than that kitchen was!
I don’t have him anymore, but these days I have frequent curbside treasures and design deliveries. I need room, and this baby has it! (Did I mention I need space???)
I was happy to have the Acadia when I picked up the donations from our 11/12/13 Make the Day Count food drive.
It was fun having the family in one car when they visited. That’s Uncle Marty and Aunt Tia along with Daddy in the back. Uncle Marty is over 6′ tall, but he still fit back there. We got all 7 of us in.
My stomach was in knots knowing that I’d have to give it back. We would have kept it. Really, we would have. Although I’m not great at math and geometry, I do know this…I can’t make this garage any bigger. There isn’t enough room here to pull the Acadia in AND open the doors. Opening doors once parked is kind of necessary. All that room on the inside? I paid for it here.
If you need an SUV for family or work, this is definitely one to put at the top of your list. If you plan to use the third row seating a lot, consider getting the captains chairs in the second row, to make access a bit more flexible. I hope you have a garage that’s just a smidge bigger than mine, and I hope you’ll give Ed at Patriot GMC a call if you are anywhere near Philadelphia.
GM and Patriot GMC were kind enough to let me drive this vehicle for a few days. I’m glad I could give you my honest experience with it, since researching, comparing and finding the right car can take a lot of time.
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its not coincidence that i do not care about leather; only heated seats!
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