With the demise of the Dodge Dakota and the Ford Ranger, the GMC Canyon and its corporate twin, the Chevrolet Colorado, are the only remaining mid-size American pickups on the U.S. market. The GM duo's only remaining competition comes from Japan in the form of the Nissan Frontier, the Suzuki Equator, and the Toyota Tacoma. For 2012, the Canyon is mostly unchanged. It can be had with rear- or four-wheel drive (with an automatic locking rear differential); with a regular, extended, or crew cab; with four, five, or eight cylinders; and with either a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic transmission. The optional five-cylinder engine puts out about 60 more hp than the base four-cylinder engine without sacrificing gas mileage -- in four-wheel-drive automatic guise, both engines are rated at 16 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway. However, if you need your Canyon to do some real work, opt for the Vortec V-8, which ups the towing capacity to 6000 pounds when paired with the aging four-speed automatic. Inside, the Canyon's cabin is spartan but efficient, although you can get leather seats and a leather-wrapped steering wheel as options with the top trim level. One touch of modernity is the addition of standard Bluetooth phone connectivity.
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