2017 GMC Sierra 1500 Double Cab Review

2017 GMC Sierra 1500 Double Cab

Edmunds Summary Review of the 2017 GMC Sierra 1500 Base Double Cab

  • The current generation GMC Sierra 1500 pickup truck enters its third model year in 2017, having received a substantial refresh last year. It's still a rebadged twin to the Chevrolet Silverado, so very little separates the two trucks beyond cosmetics and sticker price. Still, both are uniformly accomplished, and if the GMC Sierra’s looks appeal to you more than do the Silverado’s, well, that’s fine by us. The choice ultimately comes down to a matter of taste.

    For 2017 the GMC Sierra glides along nearly unchanged. It brings a few minor upgrades such as active grille shutters that reduce aerodynamic drag, a capless fuel-filler neck and some enhancements to the infotainment system. Otherwise, this remains the same trusty and widely competent pickup that it has been for the past few years.

  • Pros

    Strong combination of fuel economy and power; comfortable, quiet cabin; compliant ride quality makes it suitable for daily use; many available configurations and trims

  • Cons

    Six-speed automatic gear ratios are spread too far for towing needs; cabin not as spacious as those of rivals; spendier than otherwise-identical Silverado

  • What's New for 2017

    For 2017, the GMC Sierra 1500 receives only minor updates such as a capless fuel-filler neck, active grille shutters for improved aerodynamics, low-speed automatic braking and a driver monitor system.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2017 GMC Sierra 1500 is available in four trim levels: base, SLE, SLT and Denali. They are available in various cab and bed configurations.

The base is available only with a regular or a double cab and is sparsely equipped, though options are available. We recommend buyers look to the SLE trim level at a minimum because it has features beyond just what you’d find in a work-only truck. The version that strikes the best balance between amenities and functionality is the SLT trim level, while the range-topping Denali’s luxury will appeal to buyers who want it all.

Configurations are as follows: Regular cabs are offered with a 6.5- or an 8-foot bed, double cabs come only with a 6.5-foot bed, and crew cabs are available with a 5.8- or a 6.5-foot bed. Be aware that not all trim levels are available with all configurations. All cab configurations are available with four-wheel drive.

Base Sierras are fairly bare-bones, which is fine if you’re looking for a work truck. It comes with a 4.3-liter V6 (285 horsepower, 305 pound-feet of torque), though a 5.3-liter V8 (355 hp, 383 lb-ft of torque) is optional. For any kind of regular use, you’ll want more creature comforts than the base Sierra delivers as standard.

The SLE trim level adds a backup camera, an upgraded infotainment unit, 17-inch aluminum wheels, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel with an optional telescoping column.

Stepping up to the SLT, our trim level of choice, nets you the 5.3-liter V8 engine, towing hardware, power-folding and heated mirrors, and heated leather seats. The SLT’s standard V8 engine paired with the available eight-speed automatic forms our preferred Sierra powertrain. A 6.2-liter V8 (420 hp, 460 lb-ft of torque) becomes an option at the SLT level. Parking alerts become available, too, and they’re terrifically handy in a full-size pickup.

At the top of the range is the Denali, which comes with most of the features available on lower trim levels and has all of the available driver assistance features. It adds exclusive Magnetic Ride Control dampers, 20-inch wheels and unique interior appointments.

Powertrains and Performance

When fitted with the 420-horsepower 6.2-liter V8, the Silverado/Sierra is among the quickest-accelerating full-size pickups. The eight-speed automatic doesn't shift particularly fast; it's also not remarkably responsive to manual shifting.

Slow throttle response is the only real gripe. Backed by 460 lb-ft of torque, the eight-speed transmission doesn't need to hunt for the right gear. The engine's switch to four-cylinder mode for fuel economy is imperceptible.

Interior Design and Special Features

The Silverado/Sierra's crew cab offers plenty of room and easy access to both rows. The instrument panel, central touchscreen, and the array of buttons and knobs are attractive, well-labeled and easy to use. Three USB, two 12-volt and one 120-volt outlets are available.

A versatile bed, access via bumper steps, a backseat that is easy to manipulate, a flat floor and plenty of small item storage make this a strong utility vehicle.

Driving Impressions

GM’s optional 6.2-liter V8 is impressive at full throttle. Otherwise, it offers slow response to small throttle openings. This is still a big truck, and it handles like one. Our truck's 18-inch off-road tires diminished cornering grip on pavement but enhanced off-road performance.

The 18-inch tires with tall sidewalls coupled with the Z71 off-road package still produced a fairly comfortable ride on the road. Damping is well controlled when bumps affect all four tires. Small, fast impacts can be jarring, though.

Unfortunately the off-road tires do nothing for the Silverado/Sierra's already average handling. It's big and needs to be driven slowly on winding roads.

Reviews from owners of the 2017 GMC Sierra 1500 Base Double Cab

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

2017 4x4 6.2 liter v8 w/8spd transmission, nice!

by on
Vehicle: 2017 GMC Sierra 1500

This review did not allow for the proper 6.2 liter 8spd option to be selected as a detail regarding this vehicle which is what I am describing here… I Have a little under 900 miles on this truck, barely breaking it in after trading up from a 2014 GMC 5.3 liter 6spd double cab... The new 2017 with the 6.2L engine and 8spd tranny is far more drivable under every condition I have experienced to date… lots of low end torque and power… mountain driving in Colorado is much less an effort for this power train, it always seems to be in the right gear for the task… less clunky and more responsive than the 5.3 w/6 spd… Also, I am getting similar maybe even better gas mileage than the 5.3L 6 spd did… The 6.2L now needs to run on 87-91 octane so a bit of a trade off for fuel expense… I registered approx 27 mpg avg for a 60mph 50 mile run through the hills... 30 mpg one way and 24 mpg returning… some light snow and rain at the time… I have the All Terrain package which is great except for the Rancho shock absorbers which feel mushy at highway speeds... too much disconnect from the road, like the stock 20" wheels and tires are bouncing at times… I much prefer the grip and feel of Bilstein shocks and will change them over after a bit more driving… did the same on my 2014 with a vast improvement in handing and control… it felt much safer to drive under all conditions especially on rough roads, paved, gravel or dirt… almost got a speeding ticket right after changing to the Bilstein shocks on my '14 All Terrain double cab because it felt like I was driving slower than I was used to, when actually I was going 10 mph faster… I do wish the 1500 frame was stiffer with less resonance like the 2500HD… Didn't like 2500 gas powertrain… felt sluggish… The GMC '17 electronics now have a much better user interface for the most part, a more positive touch screen and works fairly well at linking the functions on my IPhone… some distractions, random glitches, possibly user error… there are a few mysteries yet to unfold in that 8" glowing screen on the dash even after studying the manual for an hour… All in all… Yes, I am liking this truck! Is it worth the $$$$ ??? Time will tell...

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I'm looking at a 2017 Sierra 1500 Denali crew 4x4 with an MSRP of $58240.   Selling price is 53864 less $500 lease conquest rebate.   Quote is for $573 for 36/12k in NY (8.625%) including taxes.   Onl...

Hello, can I get the MF/Residual on a 2016 Sierra Double Cab SLE 4x4 in Southern CA? 12K miles / 36 months. If you also have information regarding incentives and the lease conquest $$ that would also…...

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