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Last year spy shots of a refreshed GMC Sierra were blasted around the internet. It was widely expected from those shots that an improved Sierra would hit the streets later this year as a 2022 model. But with plant shutdowns and the COVID-19 interruptions that isn’t how it will be. Instead, GM plans on producing the current configuration of Sierra as a 2022 GMC model for a short time before bringing out the refreshed truck as a 2023 model. 

The 2022 Sierra will be called 1500 Limited

A gray 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 drives down a street.
2021 GMC Sierra 1500 | GMC

The 2022 Sierra is being called a “continuation model.” That’s according to It found through a bulletin sent by GM to its dealers that the 2022 Sierra will be called 1500 Limited. That’s because it will get a “shortened model year” according to the info in the bulletin. 

Though details won’t be forthcoming until next month, GM says the 2022 Limited will be a continuation of the current generation. It will feature a full range of models and trims as produced for the 2021 Sierras. No reason is given for this move by GM but the reasons are fairly obvious.

Production schedules have been hampered by COVID-19 and chip shortages

A red 2021 GMC Sierra parked in the mountains
2021 GMC Sierra | GMC

The production shutdowns first over COVID-19 and now microchip shortages related to COVIS-19 closures are the main reasons. These shutdowns have wreaked havoc on production schedules. And they have pushed back development time as well.

We already knew that two engine options for 2022 Sierras had been killed. The 4.3-liter V6 and one of the 5.3-liter V8s weren’t making it to production. It is not clear whether this is due to production setbacks related to these engines, or is an effort to streamline the limited 2022 GMC production. If the latter, it would be one way to speed up assembly line production. 

There may also be supplier issues with some components related to these two engines. Many of these supplier problems are an indirect result of COVID-19 problems lingering since 2020. Whatever the reason, the 2022 model run of GMC Sierra pickups will be shortened to make room for the improved 2023 Sierra. 

The refreshed 2023 GMC Sierra will feature a new fascia and interior

GM truck assembly at Flint, Michigan
Workers inspect General Motors Co. (GM) Chevrolet 2019 Silverado HD and 2019 GMC Sierra HD pickup trucks on the assembly line at the GM plant in Flint, Michigan | Jeff Kowalsky/Bloomberg via Getty Images 

When it does hit the showrooms expect the refreshed Sierra to have a revised fascia and much-revamped interior. Both the Sierra and Silverado have been criticized for cheaper-looking interiors related to the Ram 1500. And the Ram 1500 leapfrogged over the Chevy Silverado to snag second place in sales for 2020. 

The Chevy Silverado has been solidly in second place in sales for decades. So the Ram 1500 taking that spot was a wake-up call for GM to get their pickup trucks in line with improved interiors and features. 

RELATED: The 2021 GMC Sierra Denali 1500 Leaves a Weak Impression

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