2018 GMC Sierra
The 2018 GMC Sierra is the cream of the crop in terms of pickup trucks. GMC has created a monster workhorse that represents decades of research and design to provide people the best performer and hauler money can buy. Since countless professionals rely on this vehicle as an integral part of their business success, GMC has taken extra steps to make sure the 2018 model is even better in the areas that are most important: engine power, fuel economy, and cargo hauling/towing capacity.
The 2018 Sierra comes in many different trims and models depending on your overall needs. On the light-duty side, the Sierra 1500 and 1500 Denali offer more hauling capability than the midsize Canyon with a maximum rating of 12,500 pounds and 9,300 pounds respectively. On the other end, the Sierra HD and HD Denali nearly double that amount with both coming in around 23,000 pounds.
Much of the capability that comes from the Sierra is due to a wide range of engine options for you to choose from. Coupled with great drivetrain options, it is difficult to go wrong with the specific capabilities GMC offers for personal and professional use. Starting at $29,000 for the 1500, this is a truck that is also affordable compared to other full-size options.
18 City / 24 Highway
The best thing about modern trucks is a plethora of safety and convenience features they come with. The days of bare bone truck cabins, for example, are long over. When you drive a modern 2018 GMC, you can expect a much larger, roomier interior filled with great technological advancements and safety features.
Regarding safety, the GMC Sierra offers the usual assortment of front and side driver/passenger airbags all around the cabin depending on its size. If you have a full-length cabin, the side airbags extend to the rear passenger area as well. In addition, there are also many latch points for child safety harnesses in the rear. Active safety features are bundled in the enhanced driver alert package, optional on several trims such as the SLE and SLT levels. This package comes with the usual assortment of active safety systems such as front and rear collision detection, blind spot monitoring, and lane departure warnings.
For convenience, the GMC interior is filled with a number of comfort features such as optional heated seats, leather fabric, a heated steering wheel, power adjustable pedals, and an infotainment system. The central infotainment system relies on GMC’s 8-inch touchscreen with standard voice commands and optional 4G LTE Wi-Fi mobile hotspot, Android Auto/Apple CarPlay compatibility, and GPS navigation.
Making sure your truck gets good fuel efficiency is a top priority for many truck owners these days. Back in the early days of pickup trucks, this was a rare concern. It was generally accepted that if you purchased a truck, any concerns of fuel economy would stay at the dealership as you drove away in your new vehicle. Thanks to new technologies, smarter chassis design, and hybrid packages like GMC’s hybrid assist upgrade, these trucks are capable of getting better fuel efficiency than before.
As a baseline rating, you can look at the Sierra’s 5.3 L V-6 engine as a good midpoint representation of the fuel efficiency this truck can get. In total, the Sierra gets around 16 mpg in the city and 22 mpg on the highway. Combined, this averages out to 18 miles per gallon with either the rear wheel or all-wheel drive. This is exactly the same as the Chevy Silverado’s fuel efficiency ratings for the same V-8 engine as well.
If you choose the more powerful engine options, expect a slight decrease in fuel efficiency. The 6.2 L V-8, for example, comes in at 15 city MPG and 20 Highway MPG with a combined score of 17 miles per gallon.
Unique to GMC, however, is the hybrid package that you can include with a 5.3 V-8 engine. GMC has described this package as a “mild hybrid” technology platform that won’t necessarily give you the best fuel efficiency, but certainly better efficiency than comparable full-size truck models. The electric motor always works in tandem with the engine, unlike normal hybrid systems where the motor can run independently.
No truck would be complete without a great powerplant to drive the vehicle. Engines and trucks go hand-in-hand. The more powerful engine you have, the more capable the truck usually is. In the case of the Sierra, GMC has taken great lengths to combine a lot of horsepower with decent fuel economy, so you aren’t paying more than necessary anytime you have to drive the truck in an urban environment.
Given that GMC and Chevrolet are owned by the same company, you will also find a lot of similarities between the Sierra and the Chevy counterpart, the Silverado. Engine options, in particular, are similar enough that most people rely on minute differences in the features and safety between the trucks to make their final decision.
The half-ton Sierra, the 1500, comes with two different engine options that maximize out with an optional 6.2 L V-8 capable of producing 420 hp with a maximum total limit of 12,500 pounds. This type of engine is more suited for professional work than getting around the city, but it is a good choice if you want additional towing capacity and overall general acceleration.
If you want the base powertrain, you can expect a 285 hp 4.3 L V-6 that comes with a six-speed automatic transmission. Capable of 305-pound-feet of torque, this is the better option to consider if efficiency is a concern. The best, however, would be the 5.3 L V-8 with 355 hp and 383-pound-feet of torque. With this one, you can have the optional eco hybrid package that uses a single electric motor to improve overall fuel efficiency.
In the end, the specific engine you choose will depend on your overall needs. If you’re looking at the Sierra as a general everyday commuter, something lighter like the V-6 will be a great option to keep gas expenses down without sacrificing too much in terms of towing and hauling capacity. The 5.3 L V-8 is the better option if you want to include the hybrid technology. Otherwise, for true work purposes, the 6.2 L V-8 is a top-notch choice.