The 2006 GMC Sierra offers a new base-model 1500 SL Crew Cab that is actually less expensive than last year's model, plus a new Extended Cab version with a short, 5-foot 8-inch cargo box. A new VortecMAX Performance Package, which is designed to improve towing capability, is offered on select models. Extended and Crew Cab models powered by the 5.3L V-8 engine see a gross vehicle weight rating increase for improved payload capability. And the Hybrid model is now available nationwide. Meanwhile, Quadrasteer four-wheel steering has been dropped.
The Sierra full-size pickup is GMC's version of the Chevrolet Silverado. The 1500 series comprises Sierra's 1/2-ton light-duty segment, although it does include a 1500 HD (heavy duty) model that tends to blur the distinction between light-duty 1/2-ton Sierras and the Sierra HDs that consist of 3/4-ton 2500 and 3500 models. The 1500 Series' new base-model Crew Cab and Extended Cab/short box models add to an already diverse lineup. The arrival of the short, 5-foot 8-inch cargo box associated with the new Extended Cab model now gives the Sierra three cargo box lengths instead of two: short (5-foot 8-inch), standard (6-foot 6-inch), and long (8 feet). The Sierra is available in two-wheel and four-wheel drive, with a variety of trim levels to choose from.
GMC also offers a host of powerplant choices that are enhanced with the arrival of the VortecMAX Performance Package. This special package boosts the towing capability to as much as 10,000 pounds on select models. It utilizes a high-output Vortec 6000 engine rated at 345 hp and 380 lb.-ft. of torque. The package also includes a heavy-duty 9.5-inch axle, automatic locking differential, heavy-duty trailering package, 17-inch wheels, and special badging. GMC also offers several alternative-fuel engine variations such as compressed natural gas, bi-fuel (which operates on compressed natural gas or gasoline), and another system (E85) that runs on a mix of ethanol and gasoline.
The Sierra Hybrid pickup goes nationwide in 2006. GMC says that this model has the best highway fuel economy of any full-size V-8 pickup, thanks to an electric motor that automatically takes over for the gasoline engine at stops. The best fuel gains are seen in city driving with frequent stops. The Hybrid also features generating capacity for four ground-fault protected, 120-volt electrical outlets that can operate a host of household accessories.
Sierra competes in the Large Pickup segment, which is comprised of 11 models-five of which belong to GM. This segment of full-size pickups is popular among those seeking a vehicle that can tackle practically any job or recreational interest.
The segment sales leader is the Ford F-150, with 579,820 units sold in calendar year 2005, followed by the Sierra's Chevrolet twin, the Silverado, with 445,585 sales, according to the J.D. Power and Associates Sales Report.SM Sierra is GMC's volume-leading sales line, tallying 135,529 sales in calendar year 2005. The balance of the segment consists of the Ford Super Duty models, the Chevrolet Silverado HD, light- and heavy-duty Dodge Ram Pickups, Toyota Tundra, GMC's Sierra HD, Nissan Titan, and Chevrolet Avalanche.
|SLE1||4 speed automatic||$26,205||295-hp / 5.3L 8-cyl||18/21|
|SLE2||4 speed automatic||$28,590||295-hp / 5.3L 8-cyl||18/21|