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A Detailed Comparison Of GMC Sierra Versus Chevrolet Silverado

Image Source: Aspects and Angles / Shutterstock

The distinction between the akin Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and GMC Sierra 1500 large pickup trucks can oscillate between striking and familiar, akin to siblings: perspective is key.

Sporting identical powertrain quartets, trio of cab styles, a trine of box lengths, a shared chassis, and many parallel amenities. Kin from a common progenitor. Their personas vary, albeit more subtly than in antecedent eras. With nine distinct versions, the Chevy Silverado covers a broader spectrum from the utilitarian workhorse to the opulent High Country edition. On the other hand, the GMC Sierra has emerged more polished with generally more sophisticated cabins, advanced technology introductions, and luxuries like massaging chairs.

This isn’t purely a matchup of utilitarian versus elegance due to the plethora of configurations accessible across both GM trucks. Yet, the variance leans more towards aesthetics and sensation over technical differentiation. Continue to identify the optimal match for your necessities and desires.

  • Sierra vs. Silverado trims and prices
  • Silverado LT crew cab with short bed is priced around $55,000
  • A comparable Sierra 1500 Elevation is valued at $58,000
  • The GMC crew cab, featuring a standard box, includes 4WD as a default
  • 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Ultimate

What is the cost of a GMC Sierra?

A base GMC Sierra Pro with a regular cab and 6-foot-6 bed starts just below $40,000. Opting for an extended 8-foot-2 bed tacks on an extra $200, whereas an extended cab fetches an additional $3,200. Choosing a crew cab with a compact 5-foot-10 bed begins at $45,000. The same cab with the standard-sized box is tagged at $48,000, nearly a $10,000 increment from the entry-level variant. Costs escalate swiftly, and that’s even before the engines are accounted for.

The standard Pro variant comes equipped with electric windows and door locks, 17-inch steel rims, a 40/20/40-split folding front bench, 60/40-split foldable rear seats, dual USB inputs, and a 7.0-inch touchscreen featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. The manually adjustable seats are sheathed in vinyl. The Silverado WT mirrors these specifications for roughly $1,000 less.

The Sierra ascends the premium ladder more rapidly than the Silverado, with its array of SLE, Elevation, SLT, Denali, AT4, Denali Ultimate, and AT4X configurations. The AT4 variants are equipped with standard 4WD and off-road enhancements, but the SLE crew cab is notable for its value proposition at $55,000. It includes a 12.3-inch digital dashboard, a 13.4-inch touchscreen with an embedded Google operating system allowing for wireless smartphone connections, cruise control, climate control, cloth-covered and heated front seats, a 10-way power adjustable driver’s seat, a heated steering wheel, internet hotspot capability, a satellite radio trial period, and GM’s versatile 6-way adjustable tailgate.

If the $68,000 Denali’s prestige wasn’t sufficient, GMC proffers a Denali Ultimate nearing the apex of its lineup at $83,000. This top-tier variant is standard-fitted with the mightiest 6.2-liter V-8 engine, four-wheel drive, the crew cab, and GM’s pinnacle of luxury features. It boasts 22-inch wheels, an integrated tailgate audio setup, a heads-up display, a premium Bose 12-speaker sound system, automatic running boards, a sunroof, adaptive suspension, sumptuous leather seats, 16-way power front seats complete with massaging and ventilating functions, heated seats in the rear, an adaptive cruise control system, inductive smartphone charging, and a power-actuated rear window.

What is the price of a Silverado 1500?

The Silverado parses out trim levels and amenities with finer distinction, with the WT regular cab and a 6-foot-6 bed starting at approximately $38,000. Variances in pricing for diverse beds, cabs, and amenities align with those of the Sierra, and the WT’s baseline features mirror those seen on the Sierra Pro. The Silverado navigates through a spectrum of trims, including the Custom, Custom Trail Boss, LT, RST, LT Trail Boss, LTZ, and High Country iterations. It does not quite reach the astronomical heights of the Sierra 1500 Denali Ultimate, capping at around $80,000 for a High Country variant complete with four-wheel drive and any chosen engine.

The Silverado does not boast some of the Sierra’s hallmark amenities, such as the 6-way power tailgate that commands an additional fee on any Silverado model. Features like adaptive cruise control and GM’s Super Cruise hands-free driving technology are only options even on the High Country, which also lacks a heads-up display and lacks the provision of massaging chairs. Evidently, GMC delivers more glitz.

The Silverado LT, valued at approximately $55,000 for a crew cab and short bed configuration, represents an optimal balance of cost and value. It possesses an identical instrument panel and touchscreen as found in the Sierra, which arguably are among the most user-friendly and neatly arranged in the full-sized truck segment, and comes furnished with a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, heated seats and steering wheel upfront, a trial for satellite broadcasting, Wi-Fi hotspot capability, a remote ignition system, quartet of USB ports, and twin 120-volt power outlets.

Both models feature off-road-oriented variants that epitomize the pinnacle in both pricing and capability, with the Sierra AT4X hitting the $84,000 mark and the Silverado ZR2 Bison coming in at $82,000.

Overall, the Sierra tends to be more generously outfitted, with price points that often closely match those of the Silverado.

Advantage: GMC Sierra 1500.

  • 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Ultimate
  • GMC Sierra vs. Silverado performance, payload, and towing
  • The Sierra AT4X is equipped with the turbodiesel by default
  • The forceful 6.2-liter V-8 is mated exclusively with four-wheel drive

The Silverado models with V-8 and turbodiesel engines boast a towing capacity reaching 13,300 pounds, eclipsing that of the Sierra

Electric iterations are on the horizon for both truck models, but currently, GM outfits them with a selection of four powertrains: a commendable 2.7-liter turbo-4 that transforms both vehicles into agreeable daily drivers; a 3.0-liter turbodiesel that tops the fuel efficiency leaderboard and is suited to those with frequent long-distance towing needs; a dependable 5.3-liter V-8 that delivers less torque than the turbo-4; and a commanding 6.2-liter V-8 that personifies the classic pickup. All except the turbo-4 engine are coupled with a refined 10-speed automatic with overdrive capabilities. This 10-speed is prompt enough to go unnoticed with moderated acceleration, but steps up to allow for high revs during assertive overtaking or ascents.

Engine specs

  • The 2.7-liter turbo-4 generates 310 hp and 430 lb-ft of torque
  • The 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline-6 produces 305 hp and 495 lb-ft
  • The 5.3-liter V-8 is rated at 355 hp and 383 lb-ft
  • The 6.2-liter V-8 offers 420 hp and 460 lb-ft

Both the Sierra and Silverado are furnished with rear-wheel drive as a baseline, but full-time four-wheel drive with a two-speed transfer case is attainable on most trims and comes as standard with the 6.2-liter V-8 on Sierra AT4, AT4X, and Denali Ultimate, as well as on the Silverado Custom Trail Boss, LT Trail Boss, and ZR2. This feature represents a significant investment.

Nevertheless, a sought-after improvement that incurs an additional expense ranging from $3,000 to $4,600 based on the model level.

Trail Boss and AT4 variants are engineered for off-roading, equipped with a factory-installed 2.0-inch elevation, terrain-conquering suspension featuring Rancho monotube shocks, a secured rear differential, and protective underbody plating. However, the AT4X and ZR2 elevate this setup, including both front and rear electronically locked differentials, dynamic spool-valve damping systems, and 18-inch Goodyear Wranglers suitable for mud terrain. The ZR2, in our estimation, outperforms due to its additional shielding plates and aggressively treaded tires, which are capable of fitting 35-inch tires.

What’s the towing capacity?

  • 2.7-liter turbo-4 manages up to 9,500 pounds with RWD, 9,300 pounds with 4WD
  • 5.3-liter V-8 handles 11,200/11,000 pounds
  • 6.2-liter V-8 crew cab short bed manages 13,300 pounds 4WD only (Sierra 13,000 pounds)
  • 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline-6 extended cab can tow 13,300/13,000 pounds (Sierra 13,200 pounds)

Both vehicles employ an independent suspension in front and a conventional leaf-spring setup at the rear, which adeptly mitigates rough spots regardless of wheel dimension, yet may lead to some bouncing when not loaded. The GM siblings do not provide as cushioned a ride as the coil-sprung rear of the Ram 1500 or the Ford F-150’s optional adaptive dampers. The Ram is also available with an all-around air suspension. The Sierra boasts its direct electric-assist steering system as an asset.

What’s the payload?

  • 2.7-liter turbo-4 offers a payload of 2,260 pounds with RWD or 2,140 pounds with 4WD
  • 5.3-liter V-8 can carry a payload of 2,180 or 2,110 pounds
  • 6.2-liter V-8 crew cab short bed can bear 1,980 pounds
  • 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline-6 can handle a load of 1,970 or 1,960 pounds
  • Performance consideration: It’s a tie, but Silverado ZR2 possesses a superior off-road capability.

Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LT

  • Silverado 1500 vs. Sierra 1500 fuel efficiency
  • 2.7-liter turbo-4 RWD achieves 19 mpg city, 22 highway, and 20 combined, or 18/20/19 mpg with 4WD
  • 5.3-liter V-8 RWD Silverado achieves 17/21/19 mpg; Sierra achieves 16/20/18 mpg with RWD; both procure 16/20/17 mpg with 4WD
  • 6.2-liter V-8 with 4WD: Silverado is rated at 16/20/17 mpg; Sierra achieves 15/19/17 mpg; off-road variations have lower efficiency
  • 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline-6 attains 24/29/26 mpg with RWD or 22/27/24 mpg with 4WD

Minor discrepancies in mpg between the Sierra and Silverado stem from the Sierra’s additional offerings and a greater curb weight, which varies from 30 to over 200 pounds. GM aims to counter fuel economy standards with transmissions boasting numerous gears and V-8 cylinder deactivation, which can deactivate up to six cylinders during cruising to conserve fuel. However, these measures do not quite measure up to the hybrid systems in the Ford F-150 and Toyota Tundra, nor the Ram’s mild-hybrid setup.

The turbo-4 provides a mere 1 mpg improvement over the V-8 engines, a difference that may accumulate over time. The 24-gallon tanks in extended and crew cab versions (28.3 gallons with the regular cab) do not hold as much as competitors’, necessitating more frequent refueling stops.

Image Source: Aspects and Angles / Shutterstock

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