GMC Acadia Vs. Subaru Ascent: An In-Depth Comparison

In the bustling SUV market, two contenders stand out for their unique blend of features and abilities: the GMC Acadia and the Subaru Ascent. These two models, while sharing similarities, offer distinct advantages and drawbacks that we’ll delve into. 

Whether you’re an outdoor enthusiast or a family-oriented driver, our GMC Acadia and Subaru Ascent comparison will guide you through what you need to know.

A Brief Comparison Table

FeatureGMC AcadiaSubaru Ascent
PerformanceTurbocharged four-cylinder/V6Turbocharged four-cylinder
InteriorUpscale, 7 passengersFunctional, up to 8 passengers
Safety FeaturesAvailable in higher trimsStandard EyeSight suite
Fuel EfficiencyGood with base engineComparable to Acadia
ReliabilityAbove averageSome concerns reported
Cargo SpaceLimitedGenerous

GMC Acadia: The Family-Focused Performer

GMC Acadia
GMC Acadia

Pros of GMC Acadia

Strong Performance

Equipped with a range of engines, including a potent V6, the GMC Acadia delivers a strong performance. Its ride is smooth and comfortable, making long journeys a breeze.

Interior Comfort

Spacious with three rows of seating, the Acadia ensures a comfy ride for all passengers. The infotainment system is user-friendly, and interior materials are top-notch.

Fuel Efficiency

The base engine offers good fuel economy for the category, making it an attractive option for daily commuters.

Cons of GMC Acadia

Limited Cargo Space

Though it boasts three rows of seats, cargo space is on the tighter side, especially when all rows are in use.

Higher Base Price

The Acadia has a slightly higher base price than its competitors, which may deter budget-conscious buyers.

Also Read: The Tale of Autostacker Garage Lift.

Subaru Ascent: Adventure Awaits

Subaru Ascent
Subaru Ascent

Pros of Subaru Ascent

All-Wheel Drive Standard

Every Subaru Ascent comes with Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive, offering excellent traction in various weather conditions.

Generous Cargo Space

With ample room for storage, the Ascent supports your adventurous lifestyle. Folding the back seats expands the cargo space even more.

Advanced Safety Features

Subaru’s EyeSight Driver Assist Technology comes standard, providing a range of safety features to keep you secure on the road.

Cons of Subaru Ascent

Questionable Reliability Rating

The Ascent’s reliability rating has been noted as being lower than some rivals. This might lead to higher ownership costs over time.

Less Powerful Base Engine

The base engine can feel underpowered, particularly when the SUV is fully loaded.

Side-by-Side Comparison

The GMC Acadia stands out for families prioritizing comfort and performance, while the Subaru Ascent is tailor-made for adventurous souls. 

By understanding what you value most, choosing between these two becomes a more straightforward decision.

Key Differences Between GMC Acadia and Subaru Ascent

When shopping for an SUV, understanding the key differences between the GMC Acadia and Subaru Ascent can help you make an informed decision. Let’s break down these differences into several categories.


  • GMC Acadia

The Acadia comes with a choice of engines, including a turbocharged four-cylinder or a V6, offering more horsepower options. The ride tends to be smoother, with a suspension that absorbs bumps gracefully.

  • Subaru Ascent

The Ascent offers a turbocharged four-cylinder engine, which can feel underpowered when fully loaded. However, the standard all-wheel drive provides better traction and off-road capabilities.

Interior and Comfort

  • GMC Acadia

With an upscale design and high-quality materials, the Acadia’s interior feels luxurious. The infotainment system is straightforward, and it offers comfortable seating for up to seven passengers.

  • Subaru Ascent

The Ascent’s interior is more focused on functionality and ruggedness. While comfortable, it doesn’t feel as premium as the Acadia. It offers more space with optional eight-passenger seating.

Safety Features

  • GMC Acadia

The Acadia offers a variety of safety features, but some advanced options are only available in higher trims. Features include blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and forward collision warning.

  • Subaru Ascent

Subaru’s EyeSight suite comes standard in the Ascent, offering adaptive cruise control, pre-collision braking, and lane departure warning across all trims. This can be considered a more generous safety package.

Fuel Efficiency

  • GMC Acadia

With its base engine, the Acadia provides a good fuel economy. Upgrading to the V6 will decrease fuel efficiency, but this provides more power in return.

  • Subaru Ascent

The Ascent offers a comparable fuel efficiency to the Acadia. The standard all-wheel drive does not significantly affect the fuel consumption, maintaining a balanced performance.


  • GMC Acadia

Generally, the Acadia has received above-average reliability ratings. Its long-term dependability will largely depend on proper maintenance and care.

  • Subaru Ascent

The Subaru Ascent’s reliability rating has been a point of concern for some. Although it has received praise for its performance and safety features, there have been reports of mechanical issues.

Cargo Space

  • GMC Acadia

The Acadia offers limited cargo space compared to other midsize SUVs. While it provides ample passenger room, luggage space can be a challenge when all seats are in use.

  • Subaru Ascent

With a generous cargo space, especially when rear seats are folded, the Ascent is more suitable for those needing extra room for gear or shopping.

Also Read: Differences Between Rough Country And AMP Power Steps.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What SUV is comparable to GMC Acadia?

Several SUVs are comparable to the GMC Acadia, including the Chevrolet Traverse, Ford Explorer, and Honda Pilot. Each has its unique selling points, so personal preference and requirements will guide the best choice.

Why does Subaru Ascent have a low reliability rating?

The Subaru Ascent’s lower reliability rating may stem from issues in certain models or years, such as mechanical or technological problems. Make sure to research specific years and consult owners’ reviews to understand better what might affect the rating.

Is the Subaru Ascent a reliable SUV?

Despite some reported reliability issues, the Subaru Ascent is generally considered a capable SUV with strong safety features and performance. Individual experiences may vary, so consult various sources and take a test drive to get a true feel for the vehicle.

What is the reliability of a GMC Acadia?

The reliability of the GMC Acadia varies by model year, with recent versions generally receiving above-average ratings. Like any vehicle, proper maintenance and care will enhance its longevity.

Which SUV is better, Traverse or Acadia?

Both the Chevrolet Traverse and GMC Acadia are solid choices, with the Traverse offering more cargo space and the Acadia providing a more upscale feel. Test drive both to see which suits your needs and preferences best.

Is a GMC Acadia considered a large SUV?

The GMC Acadia falls into the midsize SUV category. Its three-row seating allows for up to seven passengers, making it spacious but not classified as a large SUV.

When pitting the GMC Acadia against the Subaru Ascent, the decision boils down to personal preferences and needs. With the Acadia’s family-friendly amenities and the Ascent’s adventurous spirit, either choice offers a robust set of features. 

Evaluate your lifestyle and take these models for a spin to discover which one will be your perfect road companion. Whether it’s the GMC Acadia’s polished interior or the Subaru Ascent’s readiness for adventure, you’re in for an exciting journey ahead!


The choice between the GMC Acadia and Subaru Ascent boils down to what you prioritize in an SUV. If luxurious comfort and strong performance are at the top of your list, the Acadia may be your pick. For those leaning towards adventure and needing extra cargo space with robust safety features, the Ascent could be the way to go.

By understanding these key differences and matching them with your lifestyle, you’ll be well on your way to selecting the perfect SUV, whether it’s the family-oriented GMC Acadia or the adventurous Subaru Ascent. Remember, a test drive of both models will give you the best feel for which one speaks to you personally. Happy car shopping!

Clayton S. Johnson

Well, I am Clayton who writes, manages, and does overall stuff for this website. I live somewhere in Stone Mountain, Georgia, and used to have a full-time job. But the pandemic taught me to do more do with my life. So, I quit my job and travel a lot! Since I have tons of time now, I write about all the stuff I have done, used, and have first-hand experiences.

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