2020 GMC Terrain Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Vehicle speed control, electrical system and powertrain issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

The 2020 GMC Terrain is a luxury-minded SUV that is designed to elevate the experience for customers. In fact, the GMC motto is “Like a pro,” but in this case, owners feel that the automaker missed the mark. For the time being, the Terrain seems to have a malfunctioning powertrain, vehicle speed control and electrical system.

Click on other model year to view more problems: 2018      2019

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Problems with the Transmission

The powertrain is supposed to be designed with a robust transmission that supplies energy to the wheels. However, this Terrain SUV is struggling to perform.

One Edmunds user puts it simply by saying, “Trans whines between 20-28 MPH.”

But, the issues go deeper than just the transmission making noises. Service Bulletin #PIP5720A also talks about one of the many major issues with the powertrain. It states that there could be a transmission fluid leak noticed, which looks like residual fluid from assembly. To determine if it is still leaking, a complete cleaning is required. New vehicles should not have any type of transmission fluid, whether it is currently leaking or was previously an issue. This doesn’t convince anyone that GMC knows how to do things “like a pro.”

Problems with the Electrical System

A vehicle’s electrical system has a big job. It must start the engine, run all of the accessories and supply up-to-date technology to picky users. When this system begins to fail, no one is happy.

Here is a complaint worth reading, left on the NHTSA website. “Every week it’s something different. In motion…no cruise control. No audio. Don’t drive over 50 mph brake problem. Parking brake engages randomly and without user engagement. No AWD. No Stability Traction. This happens so frequently the dash indicators have been reduced to Idiot Lights. At what point do I become concerned? Things appear to resolve when the engine is turned off and back on, sometimes…I compare it to other glitchy technology. However, I potentially could be at an 80 mph cruising speed when I decide to ignore the idiot lights…what happens when a real problem presents and I ignore the dash indicators due to frequent glitches? I’m so disappointed. My 2 previous Terrains were 10 times the vehicle the 2020 model year.”

It turns out that there are so many electrical system problems that GMC can’t keep up. One of the communications, Service Bulletin #PIT5745, talks about how the memory seat module can wake up the Lan BUS, leading to a parasitic battery draw. There’s nothing worse than running out to the SUV in the morning only to find out that the battery is dead and getting to work on time becomes impossible. This is a real problem, especially if the owner wants to make the money to pay the higher Terrain payments.

Problems with the Vehicle Speed Control

The vehicle speed control is designed to help cars move at a specified rate, without much operator input. When this system fails, a lot of people are put at risk, as is seen with the Terrain.

Another NHTSA complaint states, “When cruise control is engaged at 71 mph, holding +Res Button to increase speed and releasing it at 77 mph sets cruise speed too high. Car continues to accelerate. Cruise gets set at 100 mph and accelerates more than desired.”

When it comes to this defect, GMC doesn’t want to talk about any problems. Instead, the automaker has allowed customers to drive blindly down the road, not knowing that it could accelerate on its own. Apparently, the Terrain is so focused on being a “Pro” that it also wants to move every other vehicle out of its way on the road.

Your Lemon Law Legal Rights

Think you have a lemon? Sit back and let the experts work aid your lemon at no cost to you. The law makes GMC pay legal fees. You may be able to get your lemon out of your life. Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like you.

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1 COMMENT
  • Dave M

    Every manufacturer and vehicle model has lemons no doubt. Your comments here make it sound as though all GMC Terrains have terrible problems. Being in IT, I know you can look on forums for software/hardware problems and you will find them to the point you will wonder how the product even works! I own a 2020 GMC Terrain Denali for over a year now and have experienced none of these issues — I hope I don’t — and expect the vast majority of owners will not.

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