Sierra 1500
John Diether
Automotive Editor - August 18, 2016

2017 GMC Sierra 1500 OVERVIEW

The GMC Sierra 1500 plays to a diverse crowd who all agree on one thing: there's no substitute for a full-size pickup truck. Buyers within that group usually think Ford or Chevy, but those who want an extra measure of style or just something different have naturally gravitated toward the GMC.

What's New for 2017

All models receive a capless fuel fill system and a Teen Driver feature allows parents to monitor driving habits. Some option packages have been condensed and renamed. Automatic emergency braking is available for this first time.

Choosing Your GMC Sierra 1500

Like its Chevy twin, the Sierra is available with three cab styles: Regular, Double, and Crew. The Double Cab features a rear seat and narrow rear doors, while the Crew Cab is a bona fide four-door with adult-size legroom in back. Regular and Double Cabs come with a 6.5-foot bed; an 8-foot bed is optional on the Regular Cab only. As for the Crew Cab, the standard box is slightly shorter than the others at 5.75 feet, but the 6.5-foot bed is available as an upgrade.

5.75-foot Bed6.5-foot Bed8-foot Bed
Regualr CabN/AStandardOptional
Double CabN/AStandardN/A
Crew CabStandardOptionalN/A

The engine roster starts with a 285-horsepower 4.3-liter V6. Beyond that, there are two V8s: a 5.3-liter with 335 horsepower and a 6.2-liter that makes a stout 420 horsepower.

Towing capacity maxes out at 7,600 pounds with the V6, 11,500 with the 5.3-liter, and an even 12,000 pounds with the 6.2-liter.

A six-speed automatic transmission comes standard with the V6 and 5.3-liter engines. An eight-speed unit is optional for the 5.3-liter and standard with the 6.2-liter. Four-wheel drive is available across the board.

Like all full-size pickups, the 1500 covers an enormous swath of market territory across its five trim levels:


Comes with all the necessities like air conditioning, cruise control, power locks, 17-inch steel wheels, cloth or vinyl seats, a four-speaker AM/FM sound system, and a rubber floor covering (carpeting available). Double and Crew configurations also get power window. You can spruce things up with Convenience package, which adds keyless entry, a remote locking tailgate, LED cargo box lighting, heated power mirrors, a rearview camera, a household-style power outlet, and power windows for the Regular Cab. A Trailering package featuring an automatic locking rear differential is also available.


Comes standard with the most of the Base model's options, plus GMC's E-Z Lift and Lower Tailgate, Bluetooth phone and audio, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, deep-tint glass, stainless-steel finish wheels, OnStar, and an upgraded version of IntelliLink with satellite and Internet radio. The SLE can get a Convenience package of its own with power-adjustable pedals, rear parking sensors, a power-sliding rear window, and a rear defogger. There's also an SLE Value package with a power driver seat, remote start, and a telescoping steering wheel. Double and Crew models also get dual-zone climate control and a universal garage door opener. Those features are also included on the Elevation Edition, which adds 22-inch black alloy wheels, a black grille surround, body-color bumpers, and front recovery hooks.


Builds on the SLE with leather upholstery, heated front seats with passenger power and driver memory, an anti-theft system, additional chrome trim, 18-inch polished aluminum wheels, automatic climate control, and an auto-dimming rearview mirror. The SLT Preferred package adds front and rear parking sensors, a heated steering wheel, and a power sliding rear window with defogger. The available SLT Premium package has all that, plus chrome assist steps, 20-inch wheels, and a premium Bose sound system. You can also add the Enhanced Driver Alert package with lane keeping assist, automatic high beams, front collision alert with automatic braking, and a vibrating safety alert built into the driver seat. Finally, Crew Cabs are eligible for a Premium Plus package that includes everything in the aforementioned packages, plus ventilated front buckets seats. Note that the SLT is available in Double and Crew configurations with the 5.3-liter V8 and eight-speed automatic standard. The 6.2-liter becomes available at this level.


Tops off the 1500 with an upgraded leather interior, navigation, entry steps, an adaptive suspension system, 20-inch ultra-bright wheels, and unique exterior chrome trim and lighting. Power tri-folding side steps and a rear video entertainment system are optional. The Denali comes as a Crew Cab only with the 5.3-liter or 6.2-liter V8.

For buyers into off-roading, the SLE and SLT can get an All-Terrain package with hill-descent control, skid plates, special shock absorbers, a heavy-duty air cleaner, recovery hooks, and various appearance elements.

CarsDirect Tip

The SLE is our pick for combined work and personal use. It can be skewed toward either end depending on your needs and without threatening your budget.

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