2017 GMC Sierra 3500HD Review
With considerable capabilities and luxurious interior, the 2017 GMC Sierra 3500HD is an excellent choice for a heavy-duty truck. The revised, optional 6.6-liter turbodiesel V8 gives the Sierra HD massive towing and hauling power, too.
All heavy-duty trucks are chiefly concerned with towing and hauling, but the 2017 GMC Sierra 3500HD adds an extra level of luxury and modern tech. Sure, it excels at being utilitarian, but it's also really impressive when it comes to creature comforts. Available with two powerful engines and in several different cab configurations, the 3500HD can be tailored to fit your priorities, whether interior space, cargo room or maximum towing capacity. Ford and Ram also make robust pickups for extreme towing duties, but we think the 2017 GMC Sierra 3500HD is a strong all-arounder and a truck we'd definitely recommend taking a look at.
trim levels & features
The 2017 GMC Sierra 3500HD is a heavy-duty pickup truck available in four trim levels. The base version comes with basic equipment such as vinyl flooring and steel wheels but further up the ladder there's the SLE, SLT and the range-topping Denali which offer items such as a remote-locking tailgate, leather upholstery and navigation.
You can choose from three cab sizes: regular cab, double cab and crew cab. All are available with two- or four-wheel drive and in either single-rear-wheel (SRW) or dual-rear-wheel (DRW, or dually) configuration. All 3500 Sierras come with a long bed (8 feet) except the crew cab, which in SRW form offers a choice of the long bed or a standard bed (6.5 feet).
For the buyer interested in a pretty basic heavy-duty truck, the base Sierra comes standard with a 6.0-liter V8 engine (360 hp and 380 lb-ft) chrome bumpers, 18-inch steel wheels, an automatic locking rear differential, xenon headlights, air-conditioning, a choice of cloth or vinyl upholstery, a 40/20/40-split front bench with a fold-down center armrest, power door locks, manual crank windows, cruise control, a tilt-only steering wheel, a 3.5-inch central display and a four-speaker (regular cab) or a six-speaker sound system with a USB port and an auxiliary audio input jack.
From the base Sierra on up, you also have your choice of engine. A turbocharged 6.6-liter diesel V8 (445 hp and 910 lb-ft) is also available, and it is paired to a different six-speed automatic.
Optional on the base Sierra 3500HD is a 7-inch IntelliLink touchscreen infotainment system that includes OnStar, 4G LTE Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, voice controls, satellite radio, Pandora internet radio and Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
For a truck that feels a bit less bare-bones, you might want to check out the SLE trim level. It gets the base Sierra's optional infotainment items plus an upgraded 8-inch central touchscreen, 18-inch alloy wheels (single-rear-wheel models only), tinted rear windows, a remote-locking EZ-Lift and Lower tailgate, a rearview camera, remote keyless entry, carpeting, a 60/40-split folding rear seat, full power accessories, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, a 4.2-inch driver information display, a CD player and HD radio.
Further up the ladder (and our recommended trim level) is the SLT Sierra. On top of the SLE's equipment, it adds more chrome trim, foglights, power-folding mirrors, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery, eight-way power-adjustable and heated front seats (with power lumbar adjustment), driver-seat memory settings, power-adjustable pedals, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, remote ignition and a 110-volt household-style power outlet.
If you want all the luxury features available on the Sierra, the Denali is the way to go. You get even more chrome accents, a spray-in bedliner, a power-sliding rear window with defogger, front and rear parking sensors, a navigation system, wireless phone charging, a Bose audio system, a configurable 8-inch driver information display, upgraded interior trim, ventilated front seats and a heated steering wheel.
If you want to pick and choose your options, many of the upper trims' extra standard features can be added to the lower trim levels in one of several available packages. Other option highlights, depending on trim level, include different axle ratios, a bed storage box, various tonneau covers, trailering mirrors, a sunroof, a Driver Alert package (includes front and rear parking sensors, lane departure warning, forward collision warning and a safety-alert driver seat), a gooseneck/fifth-wheel trailering prep package and a rear-seat entertainment system. Only available on the SLT is the All Terrain HD package, which includes 18-inch wheels, the Z71 off-road suspension, skid plates, front-and-rear parking sensors and a heated steering wheel. A separate Suspension package (available on the SLE and SLT) offers hill descent control, skid plates, specially tuned shock absorbers and unique styling tweaks.
Noise & vibration
Ease of use
Getting in/getting out
edmunds expert review process
This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.
We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.