General Motors is reportedly planning to transform its GMC truck division into a Jeep-rivalling, SUV-focused offshoot, and a Wrangler-esque recreational offroader based on the Colorado ute is said to be a key part of such a move.
According to a report by industry paper Automotive News, GMC’s pending reinvention as an SUV specialist has been largely prompted by the brand’s slow sales growth that has failed to exploit rising demand for pickups and SUVs in the USA.
GMC’s current model range focuses on large trucks and SUVs, with the hulking Sierra and Yukon the mainstays of the lineup - both based on the Chevrolet Silverado and Suburban.
GMC also sells two smaller Chevy-based SUVs as well - the Captiva 5-derived Terrain and the larger 7-seat GMC Acadia - but Automotive News believes a rugged body-on frame wagon is set to bridge the gap between those unibody models and the body-on-frame Yukon.
Such a model is speculated to be based on the ladder-frame chassis of the GMC Canyon (above), which is, in essence, the same as that used by the Chevrolet Colorado and Holden Colorado (below).
Whether the end result will resemble the Colorado-based Holden Trailblazer that’s arriving later this year remains to be seen - GMC’s “sport utility” isn’t expected to make its debut until 2020.
If the rumours are correct though, expect a rugged “lifestyle” focused off roader with butch styling rather than a seven-seat family hauler like the Trailblazer.
Will it come here? It’s unlikely - at least as far as GMC-badged product is concerned. Past experience with Cadillac and Opel tends to suggest that General Motors would be reluctant to expand its presence here beyond the Holden brand.
But would a recreational offroader in the same vein as the Jeep Wrangler and Toyota FJ Cruiser work here as well? Perhaps.
After all, with the GMC Acadia (above) rumoured to be coming our way as a replacement for the Captiva the door to Australia may well be open to other GMC products as well - albeit with a Holden lion on the grille.