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CHICAGO - Distinctive styling, segment-leading refinement and superior V-8 power - these professional grade traits of GMC's premium Denali nameplate are the hallmarks of the new Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali midsize SUVs.

GMC announced the 2005 Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali at the Chicago Auto Show. They will join the luxury and performance-oriented family of Denali vehicles, which includes the Yukon Denali, Yukon XL Denali, Sierra Denali and the new 2005 Sierra Crew Cab Denali. Marking the fourth introduction to the Envoy family lineup in as many years, the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali round out the offerings by further enhancing the Envoy's already exceptional levels of comfort, amenities and proven power.

"The Denali name has become synonymous with style, comfort and performance and the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali bring those desirable attributes to the midsize utility segment," said Jim Bunnell, Pontiac-GMC general manager. "And they provide the capability you expect from a GMC."

A billet metal-look, chrome-plated grille instantly identifies these new, premium midsize utilities. Similar styling cues separated the original Yukon Denali from other full-size SUV competitors, helping push the Denali to almost 30 percent of Yukon and Yukon XL sales.

"It has become an aspirational vehicle and part of popular culture," said Bunnell. "By employing the same attention to detail and great design cues to the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali, we are making the Denali level of refinement available to a new group of customers."

In addition to the iconic grille design, the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali feature new front and rear fascias, integrated, body-color running boards, body-color accents and 17-inch polished forged aluminum wheels. Inside, a host of high-quality leather, burl wood grain trim and satin metallic accents work harmoniously to maintain the Denali promise of uncompromising refinement.

Standard equipment for the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali includes:

- Vortec 5300 Gen IV V-8 (with Displacement on Demand to be included in Envoy XL Denali later in 2005)
- Electronically controlled air suspension
- 17-inch polished forged aluminum wheels
- Interior noise reduction package
- Nuance leather, eight-way adjustable, heated front seats
- Bose premium audio system
- Headlamp washers
- Electric-adjustable pedals
- Content theft deterrent
- Cargo shade/cargo net (Envoy Denali only)
- Third-row floor mats (Envoy XL Denali only)
- Autotrac all-wheel-drive on 4WD models
- Traction Assist on 2WD models
- Locking differential
- In the 2006 model year, a vehicle stability enhancement system will be available, and 18-inch wheels and tires will be standard.

Displacement on Demand

Powering the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali is the robust Vortec 5300 V-8. Rated at an estimated 290 horsepower and 325 lb.-ft. of torque, the engine delivers excellent step-off acceleration and a broad torque range that gives the vehicles segment-leading towing capability - up to 7,100 pounds in the Envoy XL Denali. Later in 2005 Envoy XL Denali will be equipped with Displacement on Demand (DOD), a fuel-saving feature that uses a sophisticated program to shut down four of the eight cylinders in certain driving conditions. Fuel savings of up to 8 percent are possible, depending on driving style and load conditions.

With DOD, the engine's state-of-the-art powertrain control module determines when conditions are optimal to shut down the cylinders - typically in lighter-load conditions when the power of all eight cylinders isn't required to sustain cruising speeds. The seamless operation instantly switches between eight- and four-cylinder power and there is no discernible difference in power felt by the driver or passengers. In conditions that demand it, such as towing or driving up a steep grade, the Vortec 5300 always operates with all eight cylinders.

"This is cutting-edge technology that makes a noticeable difference in the fuel consumption of an SUV," said Craig Bierley, midsize truck marketing director. "GMC's legendary capabilities have not been sacrificed whatsoever - in fact, DOD ensures the promise of performance and makes it more efficient."

The Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali are available in two-wheel drive and with Autotrac four-wheel drive.

Exterior design

The Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali are imbued with instantly recognizable premium styling appointments pioneered by the original Yukon Denali, which was introduced in 1999. The most recognizable of these is the signature chrome-plated grille with "honeycomb" texture. The Envoy Denali models receive their own version of this iconic styling cue, which is accented with a surrounding chrome ring for an overall look of machine-crafted billet metal.

An all-new, body-color single-piece front fascia also is part of the styling package and has a large, horizontal air intake flanked by round foglamps. The foglamps are set deeper in the fascia and accented with 2.5-inch-deep bright bezels. The front fascia also includes an integrated air dam to channel more air to the Vortec 5300 powertrain.

Attention to detail for all the elements comprising the front fascia and grille include tighter gap tolerances, enhancing the Denali models' refined, precision-crafted appearance.

"The tighter tolerances contribute as much to the premium appearance as the styling enhancements," said Bierly. "Improved build quality is apparent to the eye and underscores GMC's professional grade philosophy."

A new rear fascia is part of the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali design package. It has been lowered to visually conceal the vehicles' undercarriage components and, like the front fascia, its gap tolerances have been tightened. Air deflector extensions surrounding the trailer hitch area also help create a lower look for the vehicles, and the rear step pad that leads to the liftgate opening carries the honeycomb-style pattern of the Denali grille - this time with dime-sized embossments that form a rubberized mat.

Integrated running boards are painted body color and also feature rubberized mats embossed with the Denali circle pattern. The boards prevent stones and other debris from being kicked up onto the vehicle's exterior surface. To ensure exceptional fit and finish, the running boards are mounted so that they appear as seamless extensions of the rockers.

Other exterior design cues for the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali include thinner, body-color side moldings, body-color mirrors (heated and with integrated turn signal indicator), and polished forged aluminum 17-inch wheels. Forged aluminum is lighter and polishes to a brighter finish than comparable - and more common - cast aluminum wheels. Beginning with the 2006 model year, 18-inch wheels and tires will be standard.

Six exterior colors will be offered: Magnetic Red Metallic, Steel Metallic, Liquid Silver Metallic, Onyx Black, Summit White, and Carbon Metallic.

Interior refinement

Nuance leather seats immediately signal the accommodating environments of the Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali models. Leather is used to accent additional interior items, including the steering wheel, shift boot, parking brake boot, center console cover and in the door panels above the armrests. Selective use of satin nickel and burl wood grain accents also complement the upscale passenger compartment.

The leather-covered seats, which include all positions in the second row, are tailored with French seam stitching, with particular attention paid to ensure the sew lines and seat trenches are as small and tight as possible. This increases the stitches-per-inch ratio of the seats, enhancing both the finely crafted appearance and long-term durability. The increased number of stitches means less chance of a "stretched seam" look after several years of use.

Driver and front passenger seats have standard eight-way power adjustments and are heated.

A new, burl wood grain accent, which is richer and darker in appearance, surrounds interior components in the "center stack" and console. It also is used in trim surrounding the light switches and the switches on the door armrests. This upscale accent also is planned for Envoy SLT models in 2005.

Satin nickel metallic accents, which also are used in other Envoy models, are found around the instrument cluster, the shifter base and HVAC vents. Denali models receive an additional satin nickel accent that runs vertically down the center of the shifter head.

The steering wheel has the look and feel of premium execution and craftsmanship. The four-spoke wheel incorporates leather covering with French stitch seams in the 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock positions, with real wood insets at the 12 o'clock and 6 o'clock positions. Subtle chrome accents ring the wheel where the leather and wood meet and a jewel-like Denali badge is positioned over the horn pad.

Other interior appointments include brushed aluminum Denali-logo sill plates, a map pocket on the back of the driver's seat and two interior color choices: all-ebony or tone-on-tone light gray - a mixture of a lower surface light gray and upper darker gray.

Exceptionally quiet interior

Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali are engineered to deliver outstanding quietness. To that end, these new models have up to 20 additional applications of acoustic material treatments designed to deliver exceptionally low interior noise levels. They include:

- Laminated windshield and front door glass: Within the front windshield glass, an acoustical-grade vinyl sheet is layered between the glass laminates, resulting in a reduction in noise of approximately 13 percent. The front side-door glass uses a non-acoustical vinyl sheet, yet yields similar noise reduction levels.

- Front-of-dash sound absorber: Constructed of a two-layer, non-woven fiberglass material, this component closes openings in the front-of-dash panel, virtually eliminating the passage of noise or air from the engine compartment. Noise is reduced up to 2 decibels with this sound absorber.

- Exhaust resonator: Achieves quieter performance with an acoustic chamber tuned to the Vortec 5300's specific resonant frequency - effectively canceling much of the exhaust noise.

- Sound absorber insulators: Like the front-of-dash absorber, more than a dozen similar insulators are used throughout the vehicles in places like the doors, pillars, body openings and speaker areas, to ensure noise from wind and other sources is muted.
Envoy Denali and Envoy XL Denali are scheduled to arrive in showrooms in the first quarter of 2005.

GMC, a division of General Motors Corporation, markets the Sierra, Yukon, Envoy, Savana, Safari and GMC medium duty trucks and the all-new Canyon midsize pickup. GMC's lineup of professional grade trucks delivers outstanding capabilities. GMC sold nearly 580,000 vehicles in 2003, setting a divisional sales record for the 10th time in eleven years.
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