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The first GM vehicle I had with an internal air filter was my old 2000 Silverado. WOW was it hard to change! I had to litterally hang upside down under the dash and take apart the air duct system! I can see that they do need to put the filter in-line with the air duct flow, so it's placement is not a problem. What is a problem is how they make it hard to get to. Anyone can change one today though. They did fix the access somewhat on later Silverado's. And newer cars with them (almost all GMs) are much easier than before.

Fortunately, from my experience they don't need changing very often. I changed the Silverado's air filter once in the ten years I owned it. The old one didn't seem that dirty either. So basically, unless you own your Terrain/'Nox/SRV for very login, I wouldn't worry about it too much. A handful of screws and about 10 mins worth of work isn't that big of a deal every 5 years or so.
 
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