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We know GMC has had a long history in the truck business, and it looks like it will continue well into the future. With so many pickups under its belt nowadays, the brand is trying to make a name for itself with upscale pickups, but it’s not quite there yet, especially with its 2023 GMC Sierra 2500HD. Critics, like Edmund’s, weren’t impressed with the model, claiming it doesn’t match what some of its rivals offer. 

Is that true, and if it is, where does the pickup lack? Let’s take a look at the three main areas that the model fails to compete and who its main rivals are.

A red 2023 GMC Sierra 2500HD driving down a gravel road.
2023 GMC Sierra 2500HD | GM Media

1. Towing and payload capabilities

Powering up the GMC Sierra 2500HD is a 6.6-liter V8 engine that produces about 401 hp and 464 lb-ft of torque. Paired with it is a 6-speed automatic that enables the pickup to go from 0 to 60 mph in 7.3 seconds.

While that sounds impressive, it doesn’t match what its rivals bring to the table. The Ram 2500 can handle almost 20,000 lbs with its 6.4-liter gas engine, which is paired with a 6-speed automatic. Meanwhile, the Ford F-250 can tow around the same weight as the Ram pickup with a gasoline engine. Add a gooseneck hitch and it will pull almost 23,000 lbs.  

GMC’s turbodiesel engine, combined with a 10-speed automatic can tow up to 18,000 lbs, but it still falls short of the Ram and Ford models. The payload capacity on the Sierra 2500HD is a little closer to the Ram 2500s 4,000 lb capability.

The Sierra 2500 can handle up to 3,614 lbs with the gas engine and 3,900 lbs with its diesel option. With the Ford F-250, you can expect to handle up to 4,260 lbs.

2. Outdated tech features

The pickup’s interior of the vehicle is pretty roomy and comfortable. But when it comes to tech features, the Sierra 2500HD falls short. What it does have is easy to use, but it’s too outdated compared to its rivals, especially the Ram 2500, according to Edmund’s.

The infotainment screen on the Sierra model is 8 inches, while Ram offers a 12.3-inch display on its higher-end trims and an 8.4-inch screen on the lower ones. 

It does match what Ford offers, however, but if it wants to compete with the likes of the Ram, it’s going to have to redesign the interior and upgrade its tech features. GMC wants to market itself as an upscale brand, what it’s currently offering with its Sierra 2500HD, though, isn’t going to cut it. 

3. Value for what you get

Pricing is another area that GMC might want to look at if it plans to play with the big brands, like Ram. The base Pro trim starts at $41,200 and gets you the basics of a work truck trim. If you’re looking into adding some useful features to it, expect to pay quite a bit more. For example, the available diesel engine will cost almost $10,000 more. 

On the Ram, if you add the diesel option to your base purchase, you’ll pay around $56,000, but you’ll get quite a bit more towing capacity and other standard features. Ford’s F-250’s Lariat trim offers the most features for a more cost-effective price, which is $56,980 to start. Adding the diesel engine option will cost you quite a bit more. 

GM needs to update its tech features, upgrade towing capacity and revamp what they offer for each trim if the brand thinks it can keep up with the likes of Ram and Ford. 


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