Category Archives: GMC

2018 GMC Sierra Denali can help you tow without breaking a sweat

Towing a trailer once meant that only those who possessed certain knowledge would be able to go fishing, tow a race car or pull a camper safely. For me, it took four long years of practice working a job behind the wheel of a jacked-up Ford F-250, hauling tons upon tons of mowing equipment for my local parks department, to become proficient. Just how far things have come since then became evident after a recent trip to Utah with GMC, in which we used the half-ton Sierra Denali to tow a set of Polaris side-by-sides through the state. Modern safety technology and a suite of electronic aids make towing simple enough that anyone with a driver’s license and something to haul can do it.

This revelation came behind the leather-wrapped and heated steering wheel of GMC’s outgoing 2018 Sierra Denali. Sitting in the plush, heated and cooled captain’s chair, I could barely feel the 6,000 pounds I was towing behind me. Even GMC’s smallest full-size truck engine, a 5.3-liter V8 generating 355 horsepower and 383 lb-ft of torque, felt like overkill for what used to amount to a heavy load.

With Utah’s pristine landscape, the plush confines of the cabin and the uneventful nature of modern towing, mile after mile just streamed by at highway speeds without incident (or excitement). When we finally reached our destination a few hours later, one of GMC’s representatives who had chosen to sit in the rear of the cab asked me what I thought about the drive. I pondered for a few minutes and answered with this: “Modern pickup trucks have removed nearly every skill-based variable once associated with towing. I could drive this truck and trailer confidently with just one finger.”

The GMC Tow Like a Pro media drive Monday, May 21, 2018 at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes in St. George, Utah. (Photo by Isaac Brekken for GMC)

Consider the near overabundance of towing-assistance systems in the GMC Sierra Denali that I piloted through Utah. Let’s start with the most basic of towing skills — something that’s now been relegated to the annals of history: reversing a pickup to meet the trailer’s hitch. Once upon a time, this required knowing a truck’s dimensions and understanding proximity, as well as having a keen eye, a steady foot for both the gas and the brake and the patience to get it right. Now, though, pickups such as the Sierra Denali offer customers a trailer reverse camera system that helps the driver align truck to hitch with pinpoint accuracy. Adding further benefit, the same technology can then be used once the trailer is attached to help assist the driver in reversing the trailer, something that once took hours of practice, patience and a healthy dose of failure to even become close to proficient. Outside the GMC universe, there are other trailer and towing systems that further help drivers, systems such as Jaguar Land Rover’s Advanced Towing Assist, as well as Ford’s Pro Trailer Backup, which both semiautonomously reverse the trailer for you.

No better example can be made than when, after a year or so working at the parks department — and a couple hundred hours’ towing the shop’s 27-foot trailer — my parents and grandmother purchased a 17-foot fishing boat. On the day we towed it home, my father took the driver’s seat. When we reached my grandmother’s house, he decided that he’d park the boat in the house’s single-car garage. My dad, ever the optimist, said “step back” to my mother, grandmother and me as he started backing the trailer toward the garage opening. For about a half-hour, the three of us boiled over with laughter as we watched my father attempt to back the boat in time after time after time. To his credit, he got close a few times before giving up. But then I stepped in and backed the boat into the garage on the first go while my dad muttered some expletive toward me in a half-joking way.

The GMC Tow Like a Pro media drive Wednesday, May 23, 2018 at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes in St. George, Utah. (Photo by Isaac Brekken for GMC)

It wasn’t his fault, though. He didn’t have the same training I had received. It took failure after failure for me to finally get it right. If my dad had the keys to a modern Sierra Denali like the one I piloted through the purple and rose mountains, my anecdote likely would’ve ended differently.

Things are just as easy after you’ve hooked up the trailer. Those years during which I was towing the park service trailer, I spent so much time checking my mirrors, looking over my shoulders, peering around to check the blind spots, spotting cars entering the “no-see-zone,” considering how wind would cause the trailer to sway and wondering whether it was safe to change lanes. In a modern truck, nearly everything is handled by the truck’s onboard technology: Side Blind Zone Alert, Lane Keep Assist, Lane Departure Warning and Trailer Sway Control make up the bulk of those once-required driver skills, the coolest of which is Trailer Sway Control.

The GMC Tow Like a Pro media drive Wednesday, May 23, 2018 at the Coral Pink Sand Dunes in St. George, Utah. (Photo by Isaac Brekken for GMC)

One fear many have about towing is, what happens when the trailer begins to sway back and forth either due to a gust of wind, the pressure differential caused by a semi or a mistake committed by the driver. It’s an honest fear, but Trailer Sway Control mostly assuages it. In the Sierra, the system works with the truck’s StabiliTrak traction control system. When the system detects a certain amount of sway, or yaw, the Sierra applies the brakes and reduces the engine’s torque and power to reduce the vehicle’s speed, allowing the driver to get a handle on the situation. Furthermore, in the Sierra, the driver can aid the process of fighting a swaying trailer by using the dash-mounted trailer brake system, a system designed to only brake the trailer when activated.

It seems then, with the advent of driver-assistance technologies, that the skills of the past have become almost redundant. There’s still the matter of having confidence in your abilities to trailer safely, but you’re no longer required to obtain those skills through years of practice. That confidence, and indeed much of the skill once needed to trailer, can now be bought at your local dealership. Towing is much different from the way things were when I learned. There are still a handful of things you’ll need to learn — tongue weight, ensuring the trailer is properly connected to the ball hitch, trailer balancing and what it feels like laden and unladen. But as for the GMC Sierra, towing is as simple as driving your unladen car to the grocery store, as time-consuming as filling it up with gas, and as safe as walking your dog around the block.

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2019 GMC Sierra 1500 spied in base trim level

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When the 2019 GMC Sierra 1500 half-ton pickup was revealed, it was shown in the ultra-deluxe Denali trim with its carbon fiber bed and trick tailgate. And thanks to spy shots, we’ve been able to see the more modest SLE a few months ago. Now we get to see it in the most plain, worktruck iteration thanks to the above photos.

Continue reading 2019 GMC Sierra 1500 spied in base trim level

2019 GMC Sierra 1500 spied in base trim level originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 11 May 2018 13:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2020 GMC Sierra Denali 2500 spied for the first time

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It’s been a big year for truck debuts. Since January, we’ve seen the new 2019 Chevy Silverado, 2019 Ram 1500, 2019 Ford Ranger and the 2019 GMC Sierra. Just last week, we drove the new 2018 Ford F-150 Power Stroke diesel. The Silverado, Ram and Sierra HD variants will soon follow. We’ve even seen a teaser for the Silverado 2500. These new spy shots give us a pretty decent look at the upcoming 2020 GMC Sierra 2500 Denali.

Continue reading 2020 GMC Sierra Denali 2500 spied for the first time

2020 GMC Sierra Denali 2500 spied for the first time originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 04 May 2018 11:15:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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What Do Cold Air Intake Systems Do For Cars, Trucks, SUVs – Cold Air Intake Kits In Stock & On Sale

If you’re looking for a quick, easy and relatively inexpensive way to bolster your vehicle’s horsepower, a cold air intake is the way to go. One of the most popular aftermarket accessories of all time, the cold air intake, or CAI as enthusiasts know it, is a proven way to increase your engine’s output. But, instead of just installing one because everyone else is, lets ask what do cold air intakes do, and how cold air intakes work.

Choosing the Right Air Intake System

Source: What Do Cold Air Intake Systems Do For Cars, Trucks, SUVs – Cold Air Intake Kits In Stock & On Sale

5 things we love about the 2019 GMC Sierra AT4

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The 2019 GMC Sierra AT4 proves that GM’s upmarket truck and SUV brand is getting serious about offering rough-and-tumble capability to rival the Ford F-150, Toyota Tundra, Ram 1500 and Nissan Titan. Until the Sierra AT4 rolled onstage at a media event in lower Manhattan, prior to this year’s New York Auto Show, the GMC brand had been more focused on luxury touches like fancy chrome wheels and posh interiors — no surprise, considering the upscale SLT and Denali trim levels account for the v

Continue reading 5 things we love about the 2019 GMC Sierra AT4

5 things we love about the 2019 GMC Sierra AT4 originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 28 Mar 2018 16:45:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2019 GMC Sierra 1500 prototype shows off differences from Silverado

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The fancier Silverado.

“Now that the new Silverado has made its debut, we’re awaiting the reveal of its mildly restyled twin, the GMC Sierra 1500. While it likely won’t be that different as far as capability and major equipment are concerned, we are looking forward to seeing what design changes it will have. Based on these recent spy shots, the changes will be mild, but still enough to make it visually distinctive.

One of the more obvious differences will be in the front fascia treatment. Unlike the Silverado’s grille that’s level with the top of the headlights, the GMC’s will rise above the lights, which will also yield a slight drop on each side of the hood to meet the lights. The grille is quite tall, extending far below the headlights, too. We can make out, behind some mesh, two dips on the outer edges of the grille that give the Sierra a more menacing frown. Large foglights are also found right near where the scoops for the wheel air curtains, and the headlights are unified on the edges, rather than split on the Silverado.”

Continue reading 2019 GMC Sierra 1500 prototype shows off differences from Silverado

2019 GMC Sierra 1500 prototype shows off differences from Silverado originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 02 Feb 2018 14:45:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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2019 GMC Sierra shows off new headlights in Los Angeles

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The new Silverado debuted last week.

“These photos were taken out in Los Angeles, presumably for some warm weather testing outside of Michigan. At the Silverado’s debut, GM VP Mark Reuss said there would be a significant difference between the Silverado and Sierra with this new generation. The grille on the Sierra appears to be far more upright and rectangular, contrasting the rounded look of the new Silverado. The headlights are larger and more upright. The same goes for the foglights. The profile and rear look fairly similar, though the fenders on the Sierra are more squared off.”

Continue reading 2019 GMC Sierra shows off new headlights in Los Angeles

2019 GMC Sierra shows off new headlights in Los Angeles originally appeared on Autoblog on Mon, 22 Jan 2018 15:25:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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