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Author Topic: Looking at buying a Small used SUV is the GMC Acadia a good choice?? Problems?  (Read 425 times, 18 Replies)
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mightbaal
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« on: April 20, 2017, 05:45:47 AM »

I was looking into the GMC Acadia as a SUV used that I could purchase for cash.  I am looking at 2009+ models with the higher trims like the SLT-1 or SLT-2.  The 2011 Denali is to much for a cash purchase.  I have been hearing these SUV's are junk tho which would be a shame because I love the way they look the 2nd row bucket seats and I own a higher trim 2005 GMC envoy XL 4WD loaded with all leather sunroof DVD player 3rd row seats Etc.  I like the GMC envoy but 13-14 mpg avg is a bummer in the I6 4.2L engine.  I am wondering if these Acadia's have a lot of problems.  I work on my own cars and have been my whole life.  I own a 2008 BMW 335XI AWD (modified to over 500 HP) so I know what a unreliable car is like lol (it has problems all the time but is not my daily obviously).  So back to the Acadia I hear timing chain problems which scares me because most engines now a days if the timing chain fails its complete engine failure.  How do you guys like these vehicles and should I avoid them?  The mileage would be from 100k-130k that I would buy and I would use it on long trips mostly along with a safe car to transport my 4 year old and 4 month old.  Give me the shakedown lol.
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« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2017, 06:19:52 AM »

Your thread title states you are looking for a "small" SUV.   An Acadia is not a "small" SUV.    A small SUV is the Terrain.

Acadia's have their share of issues.  You only have to spend an hour or so scanning this forum to identify the weak spots. 






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« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2017, 06:23:48 AM »

As stated, the Acadia is not small.

From the posts that I have read I do not think the Acadia has any more problems then any other vehicle out there.   On a forum, vehicle problems seem magnified because that is what people write about.   You do not find people making posts that say they have had their vehicle for 3 years and have no problems.

George
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« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2017, 07:11:13 AM »

Not sure if you're a Consumer Reports guy or not ( I am) but from their April 2017 annual car issue, '09 showed a lot of red (worse) marks, '10 less red and a few greens, '11 and '12 started to improve, '13 and '14 showed much more improvement and the '15's and '16's solid greens, looks like they really got it right by then. Looking at this chart it looks like they really turned the corner starting in 2012...now we start all over again with the Gen 2, LOL. If you need any specifics let me know...good luck!
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mightbaal
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« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2017, 07:28:20 AM »

Thanks for all the quick replies looking at a 2010.  The newer ones I cannot pay cash for I should clarify I guess i am looking at a mid-size SUV something with good storage 3rd row seats and good options for long trips I like Luxury and a good sound system my 335xi has 12 speakers in the thing from the factory so Bose is a must at minimum (bmw fanatic).  Last week I was looking at 2007 Escalades and Denali Yukons so I like big but not the price tag that goes with it.  The only things that worry me on a non-rwd based vehicle is the engine and transmission I can do pretty much anything else.  If it was a rwd based AWD system i have no problems with I have taken out the transmission on my BMW 335XI and rebuilt what I could by myself.  I notice a poll for a class action suit for the timing chain can someone elaborate on that as it seems like a common problem?  I wont tow a lot with it but I have a motorcycle rack that I haul my enduro around on.  Tongue weight is a must know on this also as the bike and rack are about 350-400 lbs.  I just want to know if this is more reliable vs a BMW X5 (which are not very reliable lol).  Also are the parts pretty cheap because i do all my own work and have about 6-8k in tools and soon access to a lift.  I had a 2007 Pontiac GTP in my younger days that had a 3.6L VVT engine rated at I think 255 hp wondering if thats the same basic concept engine.

Thanks again
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mightbaal
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« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2017, 07:43:54 AM »

Also should add a big question.... How many miles can you expect out of one of these looking at a 2010 SLT-2 with 107k for 14k (gona try for 13k out the door).
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« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2017, 07:54:09 AM »

I've read stories (on other sites) where folks have driven some of the older models over 200K miles with no glaring issues. Like anything else, things wear out and need replaced. Good luck with your decision.
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« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2017, 09:10:22 AM »

If buying used, run the VIN# at any GM dealer to see if anything has been done to it...etc.  You can call the dealer service dept with vin# if you are not working through one to buy used.   
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« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2017, 10:51:49 AM »

2010's are beginning to show up on the forum with timing chain issues.

09's do show up in higher numbers (chain issues)

2010's- were 'corrected' (oil passages were made bigger from whats been posted)... but now with vehicles hitting the 80,000 mile mark--- it seems folks are getting the codes which point to a timing chain stretch (which is really the chain wearing- and making it seem loose)
But in my opinion- these 2010s and up (as we have seen a few posts from 2011's to 2013's).... I think is mostly related to owners not checking the oil level in their cars.
this leads to low oil levels and sludge buildup.

Oil in these engines is used for more than lubrication. Its also a hydraulic fluid of sorts-- as its used to 'move' parts and is also squirted on pistons to cool.


I have a 2010 with 126,000 miles and check oil weekly.
I do add oil if needed.  Ive found that oil usage depends on how the vehicle has been driven (highway vs street)
Ive had multiple used oil analysis showing low iron.

My belief is that owners showing high iron-  is mostly iron being shed by the chain on this engine.


On MY vehicle- I change my oil/filter.
Since new- I took note of my TRUE full oil level. (Which by the way is ABOVE the hashed area).
I like to keep my oil above the hash marks.


so if you do get one- just monitor the oil level (engine cold so it has a chance to drain down).
the 2010s have a blade style dipstick.
It changed in later models.

this is what Im talking about.
5.5 qts with filter change.

By the time the oil level is in the middle of the hashed area--- its already 1 qt low.

This is what I consider MY true full oil level....





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« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2017, 04:52:24 PM »

 Bang Head

Wow 126k and burning oil?  I have a GMC Envoy with the 4.2L I6 and it has 176k and it maybe uses 1/4 quart in 3500 miles if that.  I think I may avoid this car which is a darn shame I love the interior on them and the style ugh.
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« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2017, 05:09:38 PM »

I also have a 2003 Trailblazer with 181,000 and the inline 6.

I agree.
 It uses very little oil. Practically none.


Also, the 2009 and up 3.6's on the Acadias/Traverse/Enclave are Direct Injection.


Though the Traverse- gives wayyyyyy better mileage than my Trailblazer.

If I was to buy a Trailblazer or Traverse again-- Id choose the Traverse.


after 3000 miles- I have added 3/4 quart to keep it up to the full mark.
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« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2017, 05:26:23 PM »

I also have a 2003 Trailblazer with 181,000 and the inline 6.

I agree.
 It uses very little oil. Practically none.


Also, the 2009 and up 3.6's on the Acadias/Traverse/Enclave are Direct Injection.


Though the Traverse- gives wayyyyyy better mileage than my Trailblazer.

If I was to buy a Trailblazer or Traverse again-- Id choose the Traverse.


after 3000 miles- I have added 3/4 quart to keep it up to the full mark.

How come?  Gas mileage refinements safety reliability newer?
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« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2017, 05:30:49 PM »

My 335XI is direct injection and had tons of problems because I think it was BMW's first direct injection car made.  They went through 12 different injector modifications before they got it right.  Also had serious problems with the High pressure fuel pump failing with also multiple revisions.  I just dont want a car that the timing chain gets so loose that it skips a tooth or 2 and the engine fails.  I like how the car looks the interior and the available options but want a SUV that will hit 200k easy like my I6 4.2L GMC Envoy....
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« Reply #13 on: April 21, 2017, 07:04:01 AM »

...  I just dont want a car that the timing chain gets so loose that it skips a tooth or 2 and the engine fails.  ...

Guess you take your chances regardless of the money you spend on a car. https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B52kNOwSMHMVNGRJWUo4NE8wanc/view


Wow 126k and burning oil?  I have a GMC Envoy with the 4.2L I6 and it has 176k and it maybe uses 1/4 quart in 3500 miles if that.  I think I may avoid this car which is a darn shame I love the interior on them and the style ugh.

You think 3/4 qt. in ~3000 miles is excessive oil consumption? Not in anyone else's book!

... I think I may avoid this car which is a darn shame I love the interior on them and the style ugh.

Seems to me you're talking yourself out of purchasing a potentially good Acadia. Maybe you didn't want one so badly in the first place.  shrug
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« Reply #14 on: April 21, 2017, 10:56:13 AM »

How come?  Gas mileage refinements safety reliability newer?

Better gas mileage,
Smoother ride
Quieter ride.

The Traverse feels a more refined.
I know one is body on frame..... and the other is unibody.

But Ive used them both in the same way. and the Traverse has been better.

Now, if I was going to be offroad all the time- then the Trailblazer. But since I live in the city.


I have driven both on long cross country trips multiple times- and do like the ride of the Traverse better.
Los Angeles to Florida
Los Angeles to Guadalajara (halfway into Mexico)   




Also.
The majority of timing chain failures reported--- are not catastrophic.
They will set the CEL- the code points to the chain. Giving you time to fix.



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« Reply #15 on: April 21, 2017, 06:29:08 PM »

Not sure why you would consider a Yukon big, when its max interior cargo space is 109 cu ft, and an Acadia small when it holds 116.  Just because the Yukon is heavy and has a full frame doesn't make it bigger.  I think most of us have difficulty in thinking of the Acadia as a small SUV.
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« Reply #16 on: April 21, 2017, 08:56:25 PM »

I think most of us have difficulty in thinking of the Acadia as a small SUV.

 Ditto  The new Acadia maybe, the Terrain maybe, the '17 Limited and preceding years, not small at all! JMHO thumbs up
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« Reply #17 on: April 21, 2017, 09:05:31 PM »

The new Acadia maybe, the Terrain maybe, the '17 Limited and preceding years, not small at all! JMHO thumbs up

I'd call the new design more of a mid-sized CUV. The Encore and comparable cars are small!
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« Reply #18 on: April 21, 2017, 09:25:53 PM »

I think GM has their CUV/SUVs classified as compact, small, mid sized, full and large.  Encore/Trax - compact, Envision/Equinox/Terrain - small, Acadia/Xt5 - mid sized, Enclave/Traverse - full and the Tahoe/Yukons on up as large.

Small and compact classes might be flip flopped.
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