The 2011 GMC Yukon Hybrid comes in two trim levels. While both only offer a short wheelbase, there is an option to have either four-wheel or rear-wheel drive. Either way, it can hold eight people in three rows of relative comfort.
This year's model doesn't differ that much from the previous (standard) one, but it does have a couple of upgrades, including redesigned head restraints in the second row, to better protect passengers in rear-impact crashes. As well, it now sports GM's OnStar 9.0 telematics system, which is supposed to offer improved voice recognition.
The exterior design of the 2011 Yukon Hybrid has been streamlined a bit more than its gas-powered cousin, in order to make this full-sized SUV more aerodynamic - at least according to GM. It's got a modified bumper that actually makes it seem a bit chunky, and replaces the regular models fog lights with two portal-style lights. Instead of being a single piece, the grille has multiple horizontal slats, and there is lower side cladding.
Other exterior highlights include standard 18-inch wheels and assist steps, with the option for 22-inch wheels on the Denali trim level. There are heated power side mirrors (those on the driver's side have an auto-dimming feature) and the tires are designed to reduce road noise.
Inside the 2011 Yukon Hybrid, it's not that different from the regular model, though the Denali trim, when fully equipped, adds 12-way power-adjusted cooled leather front seats (the base models and the base Denali already come with heated leather front seats). There is also a host of optional items, like a rear DVD player, a blind-spot warning system, and a sunroof.
Standard features don't disappoint however, and include tri-zone air conditioning and automatic climate control, leather seats (with the afore-mentioned heating), and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with wheel-mounted audio controls for the Bose sound system.
Under the hood of the 2011 GMC Yukon Hybrid, you'll find a dual-mode hybrid system that enhances and augments the existing V-8 engine with two electric motors powered by a 300-volt battery pack. One of the motors powers the Yukon on the highway, while the other is dedicated to city driving, and there's also a cylinder deactivation system that cuts power to half of the eight cylinders when the engine isn't being stressed (when the vehicle is coasting down a hill, for example), and friction from using the brakes feeds the battery. That V-8 engine, by the way, is a 6.0-liter, 332 hp machine that generates 367 pounds-feet of torque, and there's a special intake-induction system to reduce interior noise, and the Yukon Hubrid does have power steering assist.
With an added tow package this SUV can haul loads of up to 6,200 pounds.
The safety features on the 2011 Yukon Hybrid are about what you'd expect on a full-sized SUV: electronic stability control and traction control, antilock brakes, dual-state front airbags with a passenger-sensing feature, and side-curtain airbags with a rollover sensor.
GMC says the 2011 Yukon Hybrid, which manages an average 21 mpg in the city, gets 50% better gas mileage than the gas-only Yukon, but that may not be enough to off-set the large price-tag. The base model's MSRP is $51,610.