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2020 GMC Acadia AT4 First Drive: The Big Seduction, Off-Road Edition

Jackson Hole, Wyoming  – Presented at the 2016 Detroit Auto Show, the GMC Acadia was the first of GM’s trio of midsize products to get a big revision. And logic dictates that for 2020 it’s also first in line to get an overhaul; the Chevrolet Traverse and Buick Enclave will have to wait their turn next year to get upgraded.

GM had little choice to but to bring big changes to bear on the 2020 GMC Acadia, the three-row midsize segment it toils being a particularly competitive one. Although of course, the Acadia isn’t always equipped with the third row so cherished by the shoppers in this family-oriented category. In fact, in case you forgot or didn’t know, the GMC Acadia is the shortest of the GM trio of models. Its structure has even been borrowed for the new 2020 Cadillac XT6.

Our first contact with the 2020 edition in Wyoming was also a great opportunity to discover the AT4 version, a badge we’ll eventually see affixed to all GMC models. To date, the company has produced AT4 editions of the two Sierra trucks, and now it’s the Acadia’s turn to get the black-and-red-themed off-road treatment, so in vogue these days.

Off-road garb
Now, to be clear, off-road purists likely won’t be particularly impressed by this AT4 treatment. But for most buyers, who are principally looking for a more rugged, outdoorsy look without the quirks and hardships that come with a true 4X4, the AT4 formula seems mighty attractive. Already, the variant has been successful beyond GMC’s expectations since it’s been applied to the Sierra range. But, what is an AT4 model exactly?

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