2019 GMC Sierra 1500 Review

Sierra 1500

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2019 GMC Sierra 1500 Overview

While the GMC Sierra 1500 has enjoyed moderate success since its 2014 redesign, the redesigned 2019 model reintroduces a new Sierra 1500 that’s upgraded in every measurable way.

While the redesign doesn’t drastically alter the style of the Sierra 1500, the 2019 model makes important updates to the car’s design, making it far more interesting than before. The expressive grille is flanked by C-shaped LED headlights and strong curves around the stalk-mounted mirrors that run all the way back to the tailgate. GMC also adds a few bells and whistles, namely a wing spoiler at the back and the interestingly-shaped wheel housings, and the highest trim, Denali, adds fun features like body-colored bumpers, extra brightwork, and badging.

GMC also embraced the Sierra 1500’s strength as a luxury truck by cutting lower-budget options and focusing on premium features and technology. The 2019 model only comes with a full cab, bypassing the regular and double-cab versions, and only the two upper trims, SLT and Denali, remain on its roster. From the moment you open the door on either trim, you can feel this new focus on luxury with the interior’s top-notch materials and tasteful details. Naturally, Denali kicks it up a notch with contrast stitching, premium leather, and open-pore wood trim.

Under the hood, the Sierra 1500 only makes a handful of changes to its consistently solid powertrain. Its base configuration — a 5.3-liter V8 and an 8-speed automatic transmission — remains unchanged, and GMC continues to offer an upgrade to a 6.2-liter V8 and 10-speed automatic transmission. However, both engines now have start-stop features, and GMC adds another upgraded engine — a turbocharged 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder diesel engine paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. Like before, rear-wheel-drive (RWD) comes as the Sierra 1500’s default configuration, but a push-button four-wheel-drive (4WD) system with an automatic mode is available. The Denali still includes a magnetic suspension setup for active ride control.

In addition to its new looks and powertrain options, the Sierra 1500 adds a number of useful, high-tech features. The new MultiPro Tailgate, which can open six different ways, comes standard, and so does the ProGrade trailering system, which includes features like a pre-departure checklist, maintenance reminders, a trailer light test, electrical diagnostics, and even tutorials all available through a mobile app. The Denali trim additionally offers a CarbonPro bed that resists all dents, scratches, and dings all while cutting the truck’s weight by 62 pounds.

The 2019 Sierra 1500’s upgrades extend to its interior tech, which does not disappoint. Standard features include alloy wheels, a new 8-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, leather upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control, 4G LTE hotspot capability, and an electronic parking brake, and it also adds important upgrades like keyless access and start. In the realm of safety equipment, only a reversing camera comes standard. Blind-spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, and low-speed forward automatic braking come as one upgrade package, and buyers can also add additional side-view and trailer-mounted cameras.

2019 marks a major effort from GMC to take its Sierra 1500 into the luxury sphere. GMC should release power figures and pricing later this year.


Kyree is new to the automotive journalism scene, but has voiced snarky public opinions about cars for quite some time. When he's not drooling over the latest European luxury sled, he's designing web experiences or writing backend code.

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