*Go straight to our full review HERE.
Overview (Final Score: B)
Absurd doesn’t even begin to describe the fight in the heavy-duty truck arena. Every year the gauntlet is thrown down by Ford, General Motors or Ram Trucks with either a redesigned model or improvements to the chassis and powertrain to make them the king of the hill.
2017 sees GM taking the spotlight with updated versions of the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra HD trucks. Mechanical changes are the big story GM has updated key parts for their Duramax V8 diesel to produce more power. Is it enough to put GM on top? We spent some time with the 2017Denali to find out.
What We Love About the 2017 GMC Sierra 2500HD:
- Diesel V8 offers shocking performance
- Surprising ride characteristics
- Wide selection of trims
What We Didn’t Love About the 2017 GMC Sierra 2500HD:
- Doesn’t look or feel luxurious, considering the price
- There is such a thing as too much chrome
- Lacks certain active safety equipment
Pricing and Value (8/10)
The 2017 GMC Sierra 2500HD begins at $33,990 for a 2WD regular cab with the 6.0L V8. Our Denali Crew Cab tester starts at $58.495. With options, the as-tested price was $70,540. You may wince at the price, but it’s the going rate for luxury heavy-duty trucks. It should also be noted that a fair chunk of the as-tested price comes from the Duramax V8 diesel, coming in at $9,550.
For most buyers, we would say look at either the SLE or SLT trims. They offer a bit more variety in terms of cab and bed configurations – Denali only comes in the crew cab with a 6’6” bed. If you can stomach the price tag of the Duramax V8, go for it. Also, be sure to order Driver Alert Package as that nets you the parking sensors, forward collision alert and lane departure warning.
Ford recently redesigned the F-Series Super Duty for the 2017 model year with the big story being its all-new aluminum body. As we noted, thebests the Sierra 2500HD in hauling capability and offers more active safety equipment. Also, the top-line Platinum trim blows the Denali out of the water in terms of luxury features such as massaging front seats. The F-250 costs slightly less as well with a starting price tag of $32,535. But spec out a top-line F-250 comparable to our Denali and it will run you few more thousand dollars. Plus, the Sierra 2500HD beats the F-250 in ride quality.
The Ram 2500 does slightly better in terms of interior materials and features one of the easiest infotainment systems in the class. Plus, there is a wider range of trims on offer that gives you the ability to find the right truck. However, the Ram 2500 is beginning to show its age as the optional Cummins diesel engine isn’t as quick or quiet as the Duramax. Also, the Ram 2500 trails the Sierra 2500HD in overall towing and hauling.
As we said at the beginning, the heavy-duty truck has gone above absurd with truck manufacturers increasing power output and overall towing capacity to stand on top. While the GMC Sierra 2500HD may trail a key competitor in towing, it does everything else right. The updated Duramax makes the truck feel more like a hot rod and the mostly settled down nature of the suspension gives the Sierra 2500HD possibly the title of best-in-class for ride.
The heavy-duty truck class is like three bowls of oatmeal in Goldilocks. One is too cold, one is too hot and one is just right. For most folks, the Sierra 2500HD is the “just right.”
You can learn a lot more about the 2017 Sierra 2500HD now in the FULL REVIEW.