Notes: The GMC Canyon is mechanically identical to the Chevy Colorado.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
75,931 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2008 GMC Canyon engine problems

engine problem

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2008 GMC Canyon Owner Comments

problem #5

Feb 082016


  • 43,384 miles


Purchased vehicle new with 417 miles. From the beginning, there was a ticking noise at start-up, which gradually worsened to a loud knocking and vehicle shimmy for several seconds, sometimes requiring multiple attempts to start. Originally, it was only on cold start-up. Multiple visits to the dealer resulted in incorrect diagnoses or no diagnosis. Finally, at 18,071 miles, the problem was diagnosed as loose timing chain and worn gears. All were replaced by the dealer under warranty. Problem was significantly reduced but not solved. It then began to again worsen through multiple trips to the dealership, until 43,384 miles, when it was once more diagnosed as the timing having jumped or the chains having stretched. We declined to have the dealer replace everything with us paying for it, and had our own mechanic do the work. Our mechanic believes there is some sort of timing chain defect in design or composition, which keeps causing/allowing the chains to stretch.

- Mt. Vernon, IL, USA

problem #4

May 012016


  • 144,000 miles
Vehicle sets an "ac off" fault message frequently. When this occurs, the temperature gauge goes to zero and the ac does not work. The truck is not overheating and no other faults are set. No trouble codes are found during scan. After some time (20-50 miles of travel), the fault disappears and the temperature gauge and ac begin working again. There are literally 1,000's of messages on discussion boards about this problem on numerous websites on different GM vehicles. People have changed one, some, or all components of their cooling system to no avail. The problem sometimes goes away for a few hours or a few months, but always seems to return. I had my vehicle to the GM dealership in May 2016 and the condition was unable to be duplicated at that time. I paid the dealership to do a complete servicing and inspection of the entire vehicle, which included the cooling system. No anomalies were found by the dealership. Since the problem continued, I replaced the coolant temperature sensor hoping it was a just a bad sensor/connector problem. This has not changed the condition in any way. My concern is that this is possibly an issue related to the actual placement of the temperature sensor. I'll explain with the following scenario: Once the engine comes up to operating temp, the thermostat opens, and when the coolant begins to circulate, the temp sensor is left exposed, the temp gauge tanks, and the system kicks into a safe mode. While this is a great system safe response, I am prevented me from seeing a real overheat condition. I personally live and work in the mojave desert. In an environment where temperatures are commonly above 100 deg F, a properly operating vehicle cooling system can mean the difference between life and death. I can't be entirely sure if my coolant system really has a problem or is just giving false indications at this point.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #3

Jan 102012


  • 140,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 GMC Canyon. When shifting into drive or reverse, the vehicle accelerated without warning. The defect was a recurring issue. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the fuel injectors needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 140,000. Updated 03/11/16

- Mars Hill, ME, USA

problem #2

Mar 012014

Canyon 4WD 5-cyl

  • 26,000 miles
When first starting the vehicle(especially cold starts) the engine is making a loud knocking noise and then stops after it warms up for a while. I brought it to my mechanic and he informed me I need new lifters and have a internal engine problem. He told me that GM is well aware of this problem because it is happening in many different models. He even showed me the technical bulletin GM has out on it to tell mechanics how to repair it. I did not have him repair it because of the cost and because I only have 30,000 miles on it. I'm hoping there are enough complaints about it to force GM to recall it. My warranties on it have expired. Thank you.

- Clark, NJ, USA

problem #1

Sep 192012


  • 26,272 miles
The contact owns a 2008 GMC Canyon. The contact stated that the vehicle stalled without warning while turning at unknown speeds. The failure was experienced numerous times. The vehicle was towed to the dealer. The vehicle was taken to the dealer several times but the failure could not be replicated. The dealer cleaned the engine and fuel wiring system. The vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred. The manufacturer advised that the VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number 09V154000 (fuel system, gasoline). The failure mileage was 26,272 and the current mileage was 30,000.

- Sebeweing , MI, USA

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