2014 GMC Sierra | road test

Posted on Jan 16, 2014 by
2014 GMC Sierra
  • Editor Rating

  • Rated 4 stars
  • Excellent
AEDAED 108,000 - 198,400
  • 0/5 Avg. User Rating

  • Rated 0 stars
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  • Sierra
  • Reviewed by:
  • Published on:
  • Last modified: December 10, 2014
  • Exterior
    Editor: 80%
  • Interior
    Editor: 90%
  • Quality
    Editor: 85%
  • Features
    Editor: 80%
  • Performance
    Editor: 80%
  • Value for money
    Editor: 90%

Review Summary:

The is a SUV that you will love as it offers comfort, handling, and power in abundance. You will, however, need to sacrifice your desire to park it.

Pros

Interior design and quality
Handles exceptionally well for its size

Cons

Extremely outdated Sat-Nav system
Parking the Sierra anywhere apart from a large open space is quite a task!

Introduction and Summary

The 2014 GMC Sierra is your typical Pick-up truck; offering a balance of convenience for transporting large payloads, and inconvenience for parking. The larger-than-life front end, with its chrome farm-yard gate grille and projector head lamps on either side, remains proportionate with the rest of the car. Although stylish, it lacks superficial beauty. I had this truck for four days and took it around the Emirates garnering opinions from friends, tackling different roads, and avoiding multi-storey car parks at all costs. The results were largely positive, but don’t ignore the pitfalls…

2014 GMC Sierra headlight

Comfort and Practicality

Let us begin with a positive: the Sierra is supremely comfortable, as long as you are a front seat passenger. GMC boast quite ostensibly that the Sierra’s interior blends fine craftsmanship with Pick-up persona, and I assure you that they are well within their rights to claim as much. The interior is superb, from the stylish, chrome-outlined detailing to the leather trim that is the dash, try as you may, you will be unable to fault it. The leather seats are comfortable, and notably tailored in such a way that you don’t find yourself sliding around like you do in other cars.

Now for a negative: I was given a “double cab” version of the SLT, which means that it sits halfway between a regular cab and a full-size crew cab. Space in the back, then, is near non-existent for any passenger who happens to have legs, resulting in quite a large impracticality. It will be fine if you are only planning on hauling children in the back, but three, or even two full-sized adults? Not a hope.

2014 GMC Sierra interior

Parking is also an issue, and in all fairness the Sierra is only victim of the standard Pick-up long wheel-base. As I entered my car park at home, it soon became clear that my optimism had preceded me. An embarrassing symphony of horns sounded behind… After much coordination with those stuck behind me, I was forced to park in the street.

Features, including Safety

The Sierra is not short on easy-to-use features, including things like a rear parking camera, adjustable pedals, seat memory, lane-drift alarm, collision warning system, air-conditioned seats, dual-zone air climate control, and of course, an infotainment system.

2014 GMC Sierra tailgate

As infotainment systems go, the GMC comes with a good one. The Bluetooth connectivity with my iPhone was easy to use and the audio system, complete with Bose speakers, was excellent. Sadly, the same cannot be said of the Sat-Nav. The map of the UAE is monstrously out of date, so much so that Abu Dhabi has been robbed of its surrounding islands, where I just happen to live. So when I used it to get home, the car thought that I had driven off a bridge and into the sea. It was also unable to direct me to the nearest fuel station.

Safety features heavily in the Sierra, with the standard airbags paired with the collision warning system. On the premise that you have actually switched it on, an alarm sounds when the car senses that you are accelerating towards the car in front (i.e. he is on the brakes). An LED also illuminates on the dash to warn you if you are traveling too close to the car in front.

Performance, ride, and handling

I was driving a 5.3 litre V8 SLT, the power delivery was smooth and gear changes seamless. No complaints about the power, and the sound it makes when accelerating aggressively is music to ones ears. The ride is also excellent, and dare I say, at times it felt like I was driving a VW Golf. I took this beast to Al Ain to see how it would tackle Jebel Hafeet, and it coped surprisingly well. Through the very tight hairpin bends you could certainly feel the long body wanting to push on with an ever-so-slight suggestion of understeer, but it handled the rest of the mountain road unusually well for such a large truck.

2014 GMC Sierra front + side

The Sierra is a fantastic motorway cruiser. For a car that appears to have all the aerodynamic properties of a tower block, there was little wind-noise and the engine was whisper quiet. Urban surroundings paint a slightly different picture, as U-turns are only to be conducted if you have three lanes at your disposal, and road humps are not dealt with as elegantly as rough, desert terrain.

On the motorways I was averaging about 13 litres for every 100km, and in the city it was closer to 15 litres per 100km. Acceleration is pokey, as 0-100kp/h is dealt with in 8 seconds, and the four disc brakes are able to stop this 2.5 ton leviathan easily.

Cost

There are four body-styles available: regular cab, double cab (as tested here), crew cab, and Denali. The regular cab kicks off at a reasonable AED 108,000, the double begins at AED 115,500, the crew cab at AED 121,000, and the Denali topping the list at a seemingly high AED 198,400. The car tested here, the double, at AED 115,500 seems like good value for the equipment you get. It matches a similar spec’d Ford F-150 on cost and features, and choosing between them will be determined solely by to which brand you are more loyal.

2014 GMC Sierra side

Verdict

Pick-up trucks are very much an acquired taste; you either love them or loathe them. On the assumption that you are reading this review because you like Pick-up trucks, then I suggest you go and book a test drive. The Sierra will do little to win over those who sit in the loathe-them camp. Their argument will be that there is no guarantee that you will be able to park at your destination, especially if you’re heading for a mall’s multi-storey. They will also say that you can’t put your shopping in the flat-bed because it will fry in the summer before being blown out, and thus you will have to put your groceries on the back seats, where hopefully, you won’t have any passengers.

But these niggles aside, if you’re looking for a sturdy off-roader, a smooth and quiet motorway cruiser that still emits a cracking noise when you accelerate, and a car with first-class interior, then really the GMC Sierra has you covered. Yes, you might struggle with the occasional U-turn, and maybe you’ll need to research the car park dimensions prior to your trip, but if you can live with that then the Sierra is a worthy truck.

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