For so many years, the GM truck line has not had much diversity to speak of, not to say that’s a bad thing. There are many years of these two trucks that would leave you squinting to tell them apart from a distance, but they’ve always been somewhat unique to themselves; basically, these two trucks are brothers, not twins. One glaring characteristic has always set the two GM trucks apart, the Chevy Silverado has always eclipsed the Sierra in sales, but we’re starting to wonder if the newly unveiled 2019 GMC Sierra might make the two more evenly matched in the marketplace, at least when it comes to sales.
Like it or not Silverado owners, the Sierra is now, and always has been, an upscale variant of the Silverado, and the 2019 year model is more of a testament to that than ever before. Not only is the Sierra distinguishing itself from it’s Chevy counterpart, it’s also got one thing no other pickup on the market has, a truck bed made of carbon fiber. GMC is calling this the CarbonPro, and has this to say about it in a press release:
“The 2019 Sierra Denali will offer, later in the model year, an available GMC exclusive and industry-first carbon fiber box — the CarbonPro — developed to increase durability, efficiency and functionality of the truck. It replaces the standard steel inner panels and floor with a lightweight, purpose-designed carbon fiber composite that offers best-in-class dent, scratch and corrosion resistance, making it the most durable pickup box in the segment.”
The bed is slated to save the truck 62-pounds over the steel bed in the Sierra or Silverado. Total weight savings adds up to 360-pounds over the previous year model. But the changes don’t end there.
For 2019, the Sierra will have a more powerful and upscale stance, with a new front grille that’s both sleek while remaining aggressive. New 22” wheels still allow for a meaty tire in the wheel wells. Both the Sierra and Silverado ride on the same, all-new platform, and have the largest dimensions in their class.
The Sierra truck will go on sale this fall with the top two trim levels, the Denali and SLT, plus the base model and SLE; the Silverado will come in eight trim levels with six powertrain combinations to choose from.
Also as with the Silverado, the Sierra is getting updated versions of the 5.3L and 6.2L, with the addition of an all-new 3.0L turbodiesel. A 10-speed automatic will back the 6.2L and turbodiesel, while an 8-speed automatic is mated to the 5.3L.
To improve the ride, the Sierra is getting an exclusive Adaptive Ride Control suspension with sensors that monitor the road and then make real-time adjustments. It also has a special tailgate with six different positions and functions for loading gear, a feature known as the MultiPro Tailgate. The 2019 model will get a new ProGrade Trailering System with an app that offers a slew of features for those who like to tow.
As of last year, Sierra sales were down in comparison to the prior year, while Silverado sales were up. GM seems to be throwing everything they have at the Sierra, and we’re eager to see how the market reacts.
Shawn Henry is a Texas native who has spent the majority of his career building and selling F-Bodies and Corvettes. Now studying journalism, he is taking a new direction with his love of GM Performance vehicles.