Let's not forget that GM has two half-ton trucks in its stable, and that the 2014 GMC Sierra is every bit of a stellar change for GMC as the new Silverado is for Chevy. In fact, the new Sierra is completely redesigned inside and out, with huge engineering improvements underneath the skin.
GMC calls its new-truck strategy "bold refinement," and it includes three all-new engines: a base 4.3-liter V-6, a midgrade 5.3-liter V-8 and the premium option 6.2-liter V-8. All three offer direct injection, continuously variable valve timing, a second-gen cyclinder deactivation system and an all-aluminum construction (block and heads).
Exact power ratings and fuel-economy numbers have not been released, but GMC representatives say these engines will be their respective segment leaders in many categories. The new engines will be paired with upgraded rear axles depending on the powertrain option, and all engines will be mated to the previous six-speed automatic transmission.
For more details regarding the three engines and their new and unique technologies, click here for our full story.
The exterior design of the new Sierras may not look a lot different from the current-generation trucks, but every square inch of the outer shell has been touched by wind-tunnel and aero engineers, eliminating every fraction of drag, turbulence or resistence. Gaps between panels have been narrowed or closed altogether; the unique chrome grille directs airflow only where it is needed. And the new headlamp design not only looks premium-grade, but it also produces better aero numbers.
Other updates include a stronger frame with the use of ultra-high-strength steel in the ladder frame, as well as more high-strength steel in the cross-member; a rolled steel bed box for greater durability; a new electric power-steering unit; an upgraded DuraLife four-wheel-brake setup; and a new crew-cab wheelbase that will allow for a 6.5-foot bed, something only the Ford F-150 before and the 2013 Ram 1500 will now offer.
However, by far the biggest improvement announced with the new GMC Sierra is the redesigned interior that includes the dash layout, center stack configuration and choice of materials and trims. Everything inside the Sierra is soft-touch and/or aluminum trim, looking more like a high-fashion magazine living room than a truck space.
"Truck owners want a well-crafted cabin, but also one that still feels like a truck," said Helen Emsley, Sierra interior design director. "They want a purposeful interior, not one that's flowing like you'd find in a car or crossover."
The new Sierra gets a new color 4.2-inch scroll-through information display between the speedometer and tachometer, along with other major infotainment upgrades. Also available is the new IntelliLink connectivity package, which uses a high-definition, fully reconfigurable 8-inch touch-screen with an intuitive layout and easy-to-read icons that control audio features, Pandora internet radio, Bluetooth phone features and available navigation with all-new map displays. Many of the system’s features can be controlled by voice command, allowing the driver to keep eyes on the road and hands on the wheel.
Also, the Sierra will continue to offer the unique-to-GMC All Terrain trim package, which will only be offered in extended or crew-cab models with limited colors. The trim package will have several unique carbon-fiber interior accents, and the outside will offer a color-matched grille and less chrome. It's certainly not like the All Terrain HD concept, and it ain't no Raptor-fighter, but maybe it's a start.
We're told the crew-cab Sierras won't arrive at dealer lots until next summer, so you can expect pricing to be announced just before that. For more photos, you can check out our Facebook page.
For a more detailed look at the Sierra's powertrains, click here for our story.
For the full GMC press release, click here.