2013 GMC Terrain review

Research, photos, specs, and expertise

GMC Terrain highlights

Customer rating


  • Spacious backseat that slides and reclines for added comfort
  • Available V6 engine makes this crossover faster than even modern competitors
  • Interior stays quiet at highway speeds
  • Supple suspension soaks up impacts on rough roads
  • Some advanced driver aids features available


  • Four-cylinder engine feels sluggish
  • Less cargo space than many rivals
  • Touchscreen is hard to reach

Mileage (EPA estimate)

16 city, 23 highway, 19 combined

Pricing for current inventory

(no current inventory)


A powerful V6 engine and new Denali trim headline the 2013 GMC Terrain

For the 2013 GMC Terrain, the company extended its more luxurious Denali trim to this compact SUV and added a more powerful V6 engine. Put together, they make for a satisfying combination for modern shoppers seeking comfort and power on a budget.

The V6 engine doesn’t make the Terrain a sports car, but it’s handily quicker than many modern compact SUVs, and can tow up to 3,500 pounds when properly equipped. Various factors may impact towing capacity, including weight of passengers, cargo, and options/accessories. Inside are comfortable seats, plenty of sound deadening for on-road quiet, and a rear seat that slides forward and backward nearly eight inches to optimize rear legroom or cargo space. The Denali trim adds upscale exterior and interior styling, blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert, and an even smoother ride thanks to special suspension upgrades.

While it’s true the 2013 Terrain is an older vehicle, a standard USB port and available Bluetooth® audio streaming at least help bridge the gap to newer vehicles with more modern smartphone integration. Driver assist tech is limited, but includes available forward-collision warning and lane-departure alert.

All GMC Terrain years

What is new for the 2013 GMC Terrain?

  • The Terrain is available in a new trim called the Denali.
  • Terrain trims have been upgraded with Blind Spot Monitor, Lane Departure Warning, Memory Seat(s), Parking Sensors, Sunroof(s), and Power Hatch/Deck Lid as standard equipment this year.
  • Smart Key features are now available as options on select trims.
  • The SLE trim now comes with Power Seat(s) and Pioneer Sound System as standard equipment.

5 reasons to buy the 2013 GMC Terrain

What We Like

V6 Power: The powerful V6 engine first available in 2013 ups the game for this aging compact SUV. It has enough power to outpace newer compact SUVs, and it can also tow up to 3,500 pounds when properly equipped, not bad specs for this class even today.

What isn’t modern is fuel economy, but if you need the oomph more than you need to sip fuel, the Terrain has you covered.

Rear Seat Flexibility: The sliding rear seat of the 2013 Terrain, allows you to optimize cargo space with the seat all the way forward, or slide it back to enhance legroom. Surprisingly, it gives this older vehicle a bit of an advantage in legroom and cargo space than its successor (2018-present).

Interior Comfort: While all GMC Terrain models benefit from a comfortable, quiet interior and smooth ride, at this age it’s worth seeking out the Terrain Denali. Its suspension is tuned for comfort, and its interior is even nicer.

What Needs Improvement

Interior space: If you park a GMC Terrain between a Honda CR-V and a Ford Edge, you’ll see that it’s a “tweener” in exterior size. However, the interior is actually smaller than both. It’s plenty comfortable inside, but if you’re seeking maximum interior and cargo space, the Terrain comes up a little short.

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Ratings & reliability

Customer ratings

The 2013 GMC Terrain is a great SUV. Customers like the roomy interior, the smooth ride, and the economical gas mileage.
Above Average

RepairPal gave the GMC Terrain an overall reliability rating of 4 out of 5 stars, which RepairPal describes as Above Average. This rating ranks GMC Terrain 11th out of 29 among Compact SUVs.

View RepairPal's full rating of the GMC Terrain

GMC Terrain features and specs

SLT 2WD 4D Sport Utility

Standard Features

  • ABS Brakes
  • Air Conditioning
  • Alloy Wheels
  • AM/FM Stereo
  • Automatic Transmission
  • Auxiliary Audio Input
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • CD Audio
  • Cruise Control
  • Front Seat Heaters
  • Leather Seats
  • Overhead Airbags
  • Pioneer Sound System
  • Power Locks
  • Power Mirrors
  • Power Seat(s)
  • Power Windows
  • Rear Defroster
  • Rear View Camera
  • Remote Start
  • Satellite Radio Ready
  • Side Airbags
  • Traction Control
  • Automatic Transmission
  • Bluetooth Technology
  • Flex Fuel Vehicle
  • Full Roof Rack
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • Memory Seat(s)
  • Navigation System
  • Parking Sensors
  • Power Hatch/Deck Lid
  • Rear Entertainment System
  • Remote Start
  • Smart Key
  • Sunroof(s)
  • Tow Hitch

Drive Wheels

Front Wheel Drive (2WD)

Engine size




Torque (ft-lbs)


Engine type


Fuel capacity




Overall length






Leg room

F 41.2"/R 39.9"

Head room

F 39.8"/R 39.2"

Front tires


Rear tires


Seating capacity


Max towing capacity

225/1500 lbs.



2013 GMC Terrain FAQ

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