Although the teaser keeps most of the sheetmetal hidden, the truck appears to receive a more chiseled hood and concave door skins that should make it look less slab-sided. The fenders are eye-catching as well: They’re more punched-out that the current-generation model’s.
Keep in mind that we’re looking at the AT4X trim, which will be positioned as the off-road champion of the range and should consequently get a brawnier-looking design. Other off-road goodies include big Goodyear Wrangler tires wrapped around 17-inch beadlock-capable wheels, plastic wheel arch flares, and rock rails. GMC is keeping additional details under wraps, but we’re guessing suspension tweaks are part of the package as well. After all, the current-generation AT4 benefits from a one-inch suspension lift and skid plates, among other upgrades.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen or heard of the Canyon AT4X. Our spy photographers caught a camouflaged prototype that looks taller and considerably more rugged than the AT4 in July 2021, and the Canyon AT4 OVRLANDX concept introduced in August 2021 seemingly previewed some of the features that will trickle down to the production model, including the rock rails and wheel arches.
GMC will unveil the next-generation Canyon this summer, and we expect to hear more about it in the coming weeks. And, if a new Canyon is around the corner, that likely means that the next Chevrolet Colorado isn’t far behind. Both will compete directly against the new Ford Ranger, which has only been unveiled for overseas markets as of writing and which will spawn a range-topping, V6-powered Raptor. Another competitor the duo will need to fend off is the Nissan Frontier, which got its first update since the 2005 model year for 2022.
Already offered on the 2022 Sierra, the outdoorsy AT4X trim will spread across the GMC range in the coming years. Nothing is official yet, but earlier spy shots strongly suggest that the Sierra Heavy Duty will be treated to the AT4X treatment in the not-too-distant future.