Tossing around the word “ultimate” as an adjective comes with a certain expectation. When you already have a reputation of being the crème de la crème in SUV luxury, that’s a weighty proposition. So what did GMC do to make their 2023 Yukon Denali the “Ultimate” version they claim it to be? Well, they make a few exterior tweaks, used nicer materials, and added more technology to an already stacked vehicle.
Interestingly, this Ultimate Denali actually uses less chrome, giving it a more subtle, conservative look. The GMC badges are also understated thanks to the darker finish. That’s not to say there’s no brightwork—there is still plenty of trim that has chrome on it. But while the exterior seemingly takes things down a notch, on the inside, things are amped up to another level.
All three rows of seating receive leather treatment with plaited stitching. The driver and passenger seat feature 16-way adjustable movement and come equipped with a massage function. Paldao wood adorns the dashboard and features an etching of Mount Denali (you’ll see the same image in the seat backs). An 18-speaker Bose sound system plays your music, with speakers built into the headrests. There’s also an optional rear-seat entertainment package that adds screens to the back of the front seats.
The already impressive technology gets an upgrade with the addition of the optional Super Cruise driver assistance. This feature includes automatic lane changing and a specific setting for towing. No, not the kind of towing where you’re the recipient, rather the kind that involves all your other toys. And thanks to the 6.2-litre V8, or the optional Duramax 3.0-liter turbodiesel, you’ll have plenty of power to do that towing.
The engine feeds into a 10-speed automatic transmission. The Ultimate rides on 22-inch wheels with seven spokes, and the ride is made smooth by magnetorheological dampers and air suspension. To get all these bells and whistles, you can expect to pay an additional USD$20,000 over the normal USD$92,000 for the regular Denali.