GMC Trucks First Drive: Low-Key Luxury in the Sand

Our loaded, gas-powered VORTEC 6L V-8 engine truck was equipped with the All-Terrain package which includes the Z71 off-road suspension with twin-tube Rancho shocks, an underbody shield, hill-descent control, spray-on bedliner, front and rear park assist, center console with a wireless charging mat, and the All-Terrain X Package which includes 18″ black-painted wheels, mud-rated Goodyear tires, power sunroof, a power-sliding rear window, power folding mirrors, camper/5th wheel trailer wiring, and a fancy sport bar on the back.

GMC Trucks First Drive: Low-Key Luxury in the Sand

I’ve had quite a bit of experience pulling trailers on trucks, and while this one was loaded with much less weight than I’m used to pulling when our 32′ gooseneck is full of calves or goats, it was still quite long.

Long story short, I was pleased with how well the truck handled while towing. On our way to the park from St. George we had to drive on both asphalt and the Utah version of caliche — the crushed limestone so many of our Texas ranch roads are made of. The truck never wanted for power, and it was a quiet ride inside.

GMC Trucks First Drive: Low-Key Luxury in the Sand

Once it was my turn to drive, I got to see for myself how easy it was to handle the truck with a load. After pulling up to the Coral Pink Sand Dunes Park, I soon had to maneuver the truck with its 25’+ trailer through the campground’s narrow and twisty roads. Making sharp turns while pulling a trailer is never easy, but it was relatively painless in the Sierra.

The retail price for the fully loaded 2018 Sierra 2500 4WD Crew Cab SLT was $59,910 including a $1295 destination charge.

One of the first things that we did once we got to Coral Pink Sand Dunes Park was watch a demonstration with a Sierra Denali truck that had been fully outfitted with a snowplow. Since there was no snow to be had, the demonstration was done with sand!

That was pretty impressive.

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About the Author

Judie Lipsett Stanford
Judie is the co-owner and Editor-in-Chief of Gear Diary, which she founded in September 2006. She started in 1999 writing software reviews at the now-defunct; from mid-2000 through 2006, she wrote hardware reviews for and co-edited at The Gadgeteer. A recipient of the Sigma Kappa Colby Award for Technology, Judie is best known for her device-agnostic approach, deep-dive reviews, and enjoyment of exploring the latest tech, gadgets, and gear.