Welcome to the second Midsize Ike Gauntlet extreme towing test. The 2015 GMC Canyon Crew Cab 4×4 All Terrain is next to challenge this high altitude pull. The Canyon (and brother Chevy Colorado) are all new for this model year. GM put it a heavy doze of know-how, design, and refinement into the smallest of their trucks. This truck is the largest and heaviest configuration for the 2015 Canyon. It’s the Crew Cab 4×4 SLE grade with the long wheelbase and bed (6’2” long box). It also has additional components as part of the All Terrain off-road package.
This extreme test is designed to showcase how the trucks cope with towing a heavy load at high elevation and up a steep grade. The Midsize Ike Gauntlet is going down and up the eight mile stretch of interstate I-70 between the Eisenhower/Johnson Memorial Tunnel and the town of Silverthorn. There is more than 2,000 feet of elevation change with an average 7% grade. The finish line is at the top is 11,158 feet above sea level!
The load is a Logan Coach trailer, which weighs in at 5,600 pounds loaded with a four-wheeler and cement blocks. There are also two of our favorite reporters inside the truck: Roman and Kent (Mr. Truck). This brings the total load to around 6,100 lbs. The truck is not maxed out on trailer weight. It’s rated at 7,000 lbs of towing. However, if you account for the 560 lbs of tongue weight, this Canyon is at maximum GVWR of 6,000 lbs with two people inside. If you need to tow 7,000 lbs with this, you will have to drive by yourself to keep the truck load in check. Of course, you can also get a full-size truck for the bigger jobs.
We weighed the complete rig with two people and got a GCWR of 10,790 lbs. This is the total weight we will be targeting for all future mid-size truck Ike Gauntlet tests. This way, every truck is carrying about the same weight no matter what options or equipment it may have.
How did it do? Watch the video at the bottom and take a look at this data table.
We are measuring calculated power loss on this and all Ike Gauntlet runs. We need three variable to get this accomplished: barometric pressure, ambient temperature, and relative humidity. We measure this with a portable weather station near the Eisenhower Tunnel (at the top of this test). This time the data was: 19.76 inHg of pressure, 19F temperature, and low relative humidity at around 20%. The result is a calculated 33% loss of power at the top of the test relative to the standard provided by the SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers).
Midsize – Ike Gauntlet
|2015 GMC Canyon||2014 Nissan Frontier|
|Model||CrewCab 4×4 All Terrain||CrewCab 4×4 PRO-4X|
|As Tested $||$38,915||$32,486|
|Engine||3.6-liter V6||4.0-liter V6|
|Power (hp / lb-ft)||305 / 269||261 / 281|
|Tow Rating||7,000 lbs (3.42 axle)||6,100 lbs (3.36 axle)|
|Test Load (trailer + ppl)||6,100 lbs||6,500 lbs|
|Suspension Sag||1.25 in||1 in|
|Ambient Temp F||19F||33F|
|Relative Humidity||Low (20%)||Low (20%)|
|Barometric Pressure (at top)||19.76 inHg||19.76 inHg|
|Calculated Power Loss||33 %||33.1 %|
|Down: Brake Temp (Front / Rear/ Trailer) F||260 / 241 / 28||181 / 110 / 148|
|Down: Transmission Temp||normal||normal|
|Up: Interior dB||70||70|
|Up: Transmission Temp||normal||normal|
Andre Smirnov is a life-long automotive enthusiast, writer, reporter, and software engineer. He has been writing and reporting at TFL since 2011.