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Both the Yukon and Land Cruiser have child safety locks to prevent children from opening the rear doors. The Yukon has power child safety locks, allowing the driver to activate and deactivate them from the driver's seat and to know when they're engaged. The Land Cruiser’s child locks have to be individually engaged at each rear door with a manual switch. The driver can’t know the status of the locks without opening the doors and checking them.
In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Yukon are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.
The Yukon has a standard front seat center airbag, which deploys between the driver and front passenger, protecting them from injuries caused by striking each other in serious side impacts. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer front seat center airbags.
Both the Yukon and the Land Cruiser have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available all-wheel drive, crash mitigating brakes, lane departure warning systems, blind spot warning systems and rear cross-path warning.
The Yukon’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Land Cruiser’s (6 vs. 5 years).
There are over 38 percent more GMC dealers than there are Toyota dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Yukon’s warranty.
The Yukon has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.
To reliably start during all conditions and help handle large electrical loads, the Yukon has a standard 720-amp battery. The Land Cruiser’s 650-amp battery isn’t as powerful.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Yukon second among large suvs in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The Land Cruiser isn’t in the top three in its category.
The Yukon Graphite Performance Edition/Denali’s standard 6.2 V8 produces 39 more horsepower (420 vs. 381) and 59 lbs.-ft. more torque (460 vs. 401) than the Land Cruiser’s 5.7 DOHC V8.
On the EPA test cycle the Yukon 4x4 with its standard engine gets better fuel mileage than the Land Cruiser (15 city/21 hwy vs. 13 city/18 hwy).
An engine control system that can shut down half of the engine’s cylinders helps improve the Yukon’s fuel efficiency. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a system that can shut down part of the engine.
The Yukon has 1.4 gallons more fuel capacity than the Land Cruiser (26 vs. 24.6 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups.
The Yukon has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.
A ten-speed automatic is standard on the GMC Yukon Graphite Performance Edition/Denali, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Land Cruiser.
The Yukon stops shorter than the Land Cruiser:
60 to 0 MPH
The Yukon’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 45 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Land Cruiser’s 60 series tires.
For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Yukon offers optional 22-inch wheels. The Land Cruiser’s largest wheels are only 18-inches.
The GMC Yukon’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Toyota Land Cruiser only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.
The Yukon has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.
The Yukon offers an available driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads or off-road. The Land Cruiser’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.
The Yukon offers an optional automatic front and rear load leveling suspension to keep ride height level with a heavy load or when towing. The Yukon’s height leveling suspension allows the driver to raise ride height for better off-road clearance and then lower it again for easier entering and exiting and better on-road handling. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a load leveling suspension.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Yukon’s wheelbase is 3.8 inches longer than on the Land Cruiser (116 inches vs. 112.2 inches).
For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Yukon is 3.8 inches wider in the front and 4 inches wider in the rear than on the Land Cruiser.
The Yukon SLT 4x4 handles at .78 G’s, while the Land Cruiser pulls only .72 G’s of cornering force in a Motor Trend skidpad test.
The Yukon SLT 4x4 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.4 seconds quicker than the Land Cruiser (27.5 seconds @ .65 average G’s vs. 28.9 seconds @ .58 average G’s).
The GMC Yukon may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 50 to 450 pounds less than the Toyota Land Cruiser.
The front grille of the Yukon uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer active grille shutters.
The Yukon Graphite Performance Edition//Denali uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.
The Yukon offers optional seating for 9 passengers; the Land Cruiser can only carry 8.
The Yukon has 4.5 inches more front headroom, 2.4 inches more front legroom, 1.4 inches more front hip room, 3.8 inches more front shoulder room, 4.6 inches more rear legroom, 1.7 inches more rear hip room, 4 inches more rear shoulder room, 2.3 inches more third row headroom and .3 inches more third row shoulder room than the Land Cruiser.
The Yukon’s cargo area provides more volume than the Land Cruiser.
Third Seat Folded
51.7 cubic feet
43 cubic feet
Second Seat Folded
94.7 cubic feet
81.7 cubic feet
Pressing a switch automatically lowers the Yukon SLT/Denali’s second and third row seats, to make changing between passengers and cargo easier. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer automatic folding seats.
The Yukon’s liftgate lifts up in one piece, completely out of the way of loading and unloading, while sheltering the cargo loading area. The Land Cruiser’s tailgate’s top part raises up, but the bottom part lowers, getting in the way of loading and making an uneven surface for sliding cargo.
To make loading groceries and cargo easier when your hands are full, the Yukon SLT/Denali’s liftgate can be opened and closed just by kicking your foot under the back bumper, leaving your hands completely free. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a hands-free gesture to open its tailgate, forcing you to put cargo down if your hands are full.
Maximum trailer towing in the Toyota Land Cruiser is limited to 8100 pounds. The Yukon offers up to a 8500 lbs. towing capacity.
The Yukon has a much higher standard payload capacity than the Land Cruiser (1650 vs. 1320 lbs.).
The Yukon has a much higher maximum payload capacity than the Land Cruiser (1690 vs. 1320 lbs.).
The Yukon has a maintenance free battery for long life without checking the battery’s water level. The Land Cruiser doesn’t have a maintenance free battery, so the water level in the battery’s cells must be checked often to prevent damage.
The Yukon has a standard remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a remote starting system.
The Yukon Graphite Performance Edition/Denali has a standard heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a heads-up display.
The power windows standard on both the Yukon and the Land Cruiser have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Yukon is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Land Cruiser prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
The Yukon’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Land Cruiser’s power mirror controls are on the dash, hidden behind the steering wheel, where they are awkward to manipulate.
The Yukon is available in both rear-wheel drive and four-wheel drive configurations. The Land Cruiser doesn’t offer a two-wheel drive configuration.
Insurance will cost less for the Yukon owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Yukon will cost $3690 to $3945 less than the Land Cruiser over a five-year period.
IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the GMC Yukon will be $11261 to $26034 less than for the Toyota Land Cruiser.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Yukon second among large suvs in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Land Cruiser isn’t in the top three.
The GMC Yukon/Yukon XL outsold the Toyota Land Cruiser by over 25 to one during 2018.
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