Civilian-truck styling, heavy-duty capability.
If the GMC Sierra — with its classic looks and great performance — is a gentleman’s pickup truck, the GMC Sierra HD is a gentle giant. Underneath its neat, muscled exterior is a true heavy-duty workhorse. The Sierra HD offers a choice of two V-8 engines, a 6.0-liter gasoline and a 6.6-liter Duramax diesel that can also run on B20 biodiesel. Although there’s no big horsepower advantage to choosing the larger diesel — it makes 397 hp to the 6.0’s 360 — the diesel offers an amazing 765 lb-ft of torque to the gasoline engine’s 380. The 6.0-liter gas engine can now be retrofitted to run on compressed natural gas for emissions-minded drivers, although in that configuration it makes 301 hp and 333 lb-ft of torque. When using a simple ball hitch, Sierra HD drivers can tow up to 13,000 pounds. The HD is primarily a work truck, but it’s also available in GMC’s uplevel Denali trim that adds a smattering of chrome to the exterior and plenty of leather and wood paneling to the cabin, which also offers Bluetooth connectivity, GPS navigation, automatic climate control, and SiriusXM satellite radio. All in all, the Sierra HD is a truck that doesn’t sacrifice handling or refinement for capability.
Chevrolet Silverado HD
Ford F-series Super Duty
Ram Heavy Duty
new for 2013
It’s now possible to buy a 2500HD extended-cab truck with the 6.0-liter gas engine or a 6.0-liter compressed natural gas engine. All 6.0-liter models get automatic engine braking even when not in tow/haul mode, and non-Denali trucks gain two optional colors, Sonoma red metallic and heritage blue metallic.
StabiliTrak traction and stability control, which also features hill-start assist, rollover mitigation, and trailer-sway control, is standard, as are front air bags and ABS. Side air bags are optional.
Huge towing capacity
765 lb-ft of diesel-generated torque
Falling behind Ram and F-series
Base Price Range: $30,095–$47,700
DRIVE: Rear-wheel, 4-wheel
TRIM LEVELS: 2500HD, 3500HD, Work Truck, SLE, SLT, Denali
BODY STYLE: Pickup, 2- to 6-passenger
ENGINES: 6.0L V-8, 301/360 hp, 333/380 lb-ft (CNG capable)
6.6L turbo-diesel V-8, 397 hp, 765 lb-ft
TRANSMISSION: 6-speed automatic
CAPACITIES: Towing 13,000–23,100 lb; payload 2545–7222 lb