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Under the General Motors umbrella, consumers know they can draw particular distinctions between different vehicles. For example, the GMC Yukon and the Chevy Tahoe share similar designs and equipment. Likewise, the popular GMC Canyon and the Chevy Colorado also share engineering DNA. But there’s only one engine option for these two pickups in 2023.

Typically, when configuring a truck, consumers are used to whole suites of customization options, including cab size, trim level, bed length, and engine size. However, if you’re buying a 2023 GMC Canyon or a 2023 Chevy Colorado, you’ll really only have one engine for either. And in a recent interview with a GM executive, the reason for this single-engine option is apparent.

The only engine option for both trucks

A white 2023 GMC Canyon outdoors.
2023 GMC Canyon | Creative Commons

So, if you only get one engine option for the GMC Canyon and Chevy Colorado this year, is it at least a worthy, powerful engine? Yes. As Edmunds shared, GM opted to turn away from previous four-cylinder, V6, and diesel configurations. Both trucks get a new turbocharged 2.7-liter inline-four for the 2023 model year.

This one engine will come in different power stages for the Colorado. The base engine will have 237 hp. The next bump in power will offer 310 hp. And the GMC Canyon’s only option is the more powerful 310 hp engine, with 259 lb-ft of torque. This engine adds 37 more horses than the outgoing four-cylinder engine, and GM also says the new 2.7-liter engine will provide more power without compromising fuel economy. But that’s not why, according to GM executives, the automaker opted to stick with one engine for both trucks.

Why GM decided to keep the same engine

Motor1 shared some excerpts from the interview with GM’s Nick Katcherian, the Chief Engineer for the Colorado and Canyon and Muscle Cars and Trucks. The first reason GM points to behind its decision to stick with a single-engine option is “it’s simply too good.” To reiterate, Katcherian says there’s no need for a diesel option. The torque on this new engine performs better than any previous 2.8-liter Duramax. There’s no sense in complicating things by offering more than the best engine option.

Katcherian says, “this powertrain has all the torque you really need,” insisting it’s delivered even faster than before. It does a much better job of delivering performance than any engine design that came before it. The other apparent reason behind the single-engine option for the Canyon and Colorado is simplicity. It will be easier for GM to produce trucks when fewer components are involved.

More about the GMC Canyon and Chevy Colorado

There have been plenty of upgrades for the GMC Canyon and Chevy Colorado. You’ll still have plenty of other customization decisions, despite the sole engine option. For starters, the 2023 Chevy Colorado comes in both rear and four-wheel drive.

Other upgrades include a new gauge cluster, steering wheel, and infotainment center. And you’ll still have trims to choose from, including the WT, LT, Z71, Trail Boss, and ZR2, each with its suite of additional luxury, work, or off-road extras. This truck will start around $28,000 for the entry-level configurations.

The 2023 GMC Canyon is chock-full of upgrades, including plenty of cabin amenities and tech. The Canyon also comes with more off-road chops, complete with a wider track, off-pavement suspension, underbody cameras, and a lifted height with Multimatic DSSV dampers. Armed with more, the GMC Canyon is estimated to have a starting MSRP closer to $40,000.

There are plenty of differentiators for the 2023 GMC Canyon and Chevy Colorado. You’ll have to forgo choosing an engine since both come with the same version. And based on GM’s executives, you’ll likely be more than pleased with it.


2023 Chevy Colorado vs. 2023 GMC Canyon: Which Is Right for You?