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2008 GMC Sierra 1500 Extended Cab

Overview
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2008 GMC Sierra 1500 Extended Cab Review

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Long regarded as the twin of the Chevrolet Silverado, the 2008 GMC Sierra 1500 offers more differentiation from its General Motors stable-mate in looks, while sharing the same basic architecture and engine choices. Exclusive to the GMC Sierra line, though, is the Denali trim level that brings with it a variety of power and luxury features. Looking to extend their leadership in the pickup truck segment, GM engineers and designers have created a new breed of pickup, one offering an improved chassis, more precise steering and not one but two quieter, more upscale interiors. The Sierra also delivers segment-leading fuel economy thanks to the new line of Active Fuel Management-equipped V8 engines.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you need the hauling and towing capabilities of a full-size pickup truck, you can have them while at the same time contributing to the environment via a V8-engine lineup that offers Active Fuel Management technology and Flex-Fuel E85 capability.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you have trouble making up your mind, you might be boggled by the number of trim levels, cab sizes, bed lengths and even instrument panels.

What's Significant About This Car?

Dealer-installed 22-inch rims, a power-adjustable bench seat (Regular Cab) and an integrated trailer brake control system are new options for 2008. XM Satellite Radio is now standard on all models.

Driving the Sierra 1500 Extended Cab

Driving Impressions Sufficient power and surprising ride comfort are two hallmarks of the 2008 GMC Sierra 1500. Riding on a fully-boxed frame for more chassis stiffness, with coil-over-shock front suspension and rack-and-pinion...

steering, the big pickup truck is surprisingly nimble and easy to maneuver. Our lengthy test drive took us over rough, washboard gravel roads, yet the Sierra's cabin retained library-like calm and quiet. We found it hard to choose between the "pure pickup" interior and the "luxury-inspired" interior, because both were handsome and functional. While the available 4.3-liter V6 is no doubt adequate, the Sierra can also be equipped with a variety of V8 engines, most with 5.3-liter displacement, while the Denali features its own 6.2-liter variable-valve-timing engine. Power delivery with each V8 engine we tested was more than ample, though we have to admit we liked the pure power of the 6.0-liter and 6.2-liter V8s. The StabiliTrak electronic stability control system is welcome standard equipment on crew-cab models, and it is available on extended-cab models as an option.

Distinct Styling
This time around GMC Sierra is the beneficiary of a new front end that gives it its own handsome look.

Active Fuel Management
The Active Fuel Management system available in four different V8s cuts the operation of four cylinders when they are unneeded and enhances fuel economy.

2008 GMC Sierra 1500 Extended Cab Details
Interior

The 2008 GMC Sierra 1500 benefits from GM's extensive reworking of both full-size pickups and full-size SUVs, and among the benefits are two distinct interiors. The work truck and SLE trim levels feature the "pure pickup" interior that features larger controls—designed to accommodate gloved hands—and a double glovebox. The SLT trim level features the same "luxury-inspired" interior also used in GMC's SLT-trim Yukon and Yukon XL full-size sport utilities. Both attractive instrument panels are mounted lower and farther forward for an increased feeling of spaciousness. The same can be said of the back-seat area in the crew cab models, which offers significantly improved room and comfort. Its elevated stadium-style rear seat has a 60/40-split design and folding center armrest, and it can be easily folded up with one hand to provide an uninterrupted load floor.

Exterior

While the 2008 GMC Sierra 1500 does share the "strong, silent-type" handsomeness of the Silverado, it also offers a distinct front end, front and rear fenders and hood. An upscale look is highlighted by narrow gaps between body panels, enabled by the new version's significantly stiffer frame. The grille with prominent GMC logo is complemented by large "jeweled-appearance" headlights. The pickup box is taller than in the previous version of the Sierra and, at the same time, better integrated. The stamped-in rear fender flares are designed to give the truck a muscular look. Standard wheels are 17 inches in diameter, while 22-inch wheels are also available. Easy entry into the rear seat/storage area of extended-cab models is accommodated by new rear access doors that open 170 degrees. Power-operated rear-side windows lower completely into the access doors.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2008 GMC Sierra 1500 is offered in five trim levels from basic to sinfully luxurious. The base model is the WT (work truck), and then, ascending the food chain, the SLE, SLE2, SLT and Denali. In fact, the Sierra Denali is virtually a distinct model unto itself with features that include an exclusive 6.2-liter all-aluminum V8 engine and six-speed automatic transmission. Cloth seats are standard on WT and SLE models, and leather seating is available on SLE models. SLT models include standard leather seats, the "luxury" instrument panel, 12-way power-adjustable driver's seat, six-disc audio system with Bose speakers and heated windshield washer system. The crew-cab SLT version is even more luxurious with rain-sensing windshield wipers and a rear-seat audio system. Even the base trim level includes four-speed automatic transmission, tire pressure monitoring system, power rack-and-pinion steering, anti-lock brakes (ABS), air conditioning, tinted glass, full instrumentation, XM Satellite radio and two auxiliary power outlets.

Optional Equipment

The multiplicity of trim levels should allow you to fine-tune your Sierra to the equipment level you want, but options abound as well. Convenience features offered on SLE and SLT models include touch-screen navigation/sound system, power-operated moonroof and a power-sliding rear window. Sierra offers five distinct suspension systems, each tailored to suit specific driving requirements. They include Z83 for a solid, smooth ride, Z85 for enhanced handling and trailer towing, Z71 for enhanced off-road capability, Z60 for street performance with 20-inch wheels and NHT for maximum towing capacity. The StabiliTrak electronic stability control system is standard on crew-cab models and available on extended-cab models. A choice of two- and four-wheel-drive models, various cabs and bed lengths and a variety of axle ratios are also offered.

Under the Hood

The 4.3-liter V6 and 4.8-liter V8 should be more than adequate in work truck applications, but for dual-use work and pleasure driving we recommend stepping up to at least the 5.3-liter V8 engines, some with cast-iron blocks and some with aluminum. For those with a need for towing capacity, the 6.0-liter with Active Fuel Management and variable valve timing and the 6.2-liter in the Denali are good choices, although they are expected to suffer a trifle in fuel economy.


4.3-liter V6
195 horsepower @ 4600 rpm
260 lb.-ft. of torque @ 2800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/20 (2WD), 14/18 (4WD)

4.8-liter V8
295 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
305 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/19 (2WD), 14/18 (4WD)

5.3-liter V8 Flex Fuel
315 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
338 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 11/15 (2WD, E85) 15/20 (2WD, Gas), 11/14 (4WD, E85), 14/19 (4WD, Gas)

5.3-liter V8
315 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
338 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/20 (2WD), 14/19 (4WD)

6.0-liter V8
367 horsepower @ 5500 rpm
375 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4300 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 13/18 (2WD), 13/17 (4WD)

6.2-liter V8
403 horsepower @ 5700 rpm
417 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4300 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 12/19 (2WD), 12/18 (4WD)

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2008 GMC Sierra 1500 Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.9
Out of 10

Based on 733 Ratings for the 2007 - 2013 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.0/10
    Quality
    9.0/10
  • Reliability
    9.3/10
    Performance
    9.1/10
  • Comfort
    9.2/10
    Styling
    9.1/10

Outstanding Truck, well done GMC !

By on Thursday, July 10, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 80,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Power, comfort, tows great, looks great, quiet"

Cons: "If I had to get picky I would want power seats"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is the best truck I have ever owned. I have just driven it from Massachusetts to Georgia and it was the best ride in a truck I ever have done. And that was towing a 12 foot landscape trailer with a load on! Powerful 5.3, quiet cab, pulls with ease, comfortable seats and interior setup, looks good and even gets decent millage for a full size truck. I'm happy."

7 people out of 12 found this review helpful

has served me well

By on Saturday, July 05, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 60,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "fair priced for a work truck, handles a plow easy"

Cons: "need manual locking rear end like fords"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"has done a good job for me for 6 years, used mostly for plowing snow and highway mileage, had some issues with front end as far as wear and tear which is expected, need to put a cover on console so when you bring a 3rd person into the cab, you don't have to empty console when flipping up. has served me well."

19 people out of 38 found this review helpful

many compliments of this truck. Sonoma Red Metalic

By on Thursday, July 03, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 15,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Truck looks and runs like new. Used as a 2nd vehicle. The Sonoma Red Metalic paint looks like new. Has bed and tail gate liner, 3" BOSS CHROME RAILS. 20" BRIGHT CHROME WHEELS & TIRES. RIDE IS EXCELLENT WITH THE 20" TIRES."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Best truck I've ever owned

By on Sunday, June 29, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 33,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Turns over once and cold starts at 30 below zero without the block heater. Absolutely the best truck I've ever owned. Balanced, comfortable ride and POWERFUL."

32 people out of 63 found this review helpful

Muscular, dependable, comfortable, handsome

By on Thursday, June 26, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 50,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Strong, great handling, great styling"

Cons: "Expensive"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have owned 7 different GM trucks over the years and had the opportunity to drive other brands at work. The 2013 Sierra 2500HD Denali is the best truck I have had the pleasure to own and/or operate. I pull several trailers with weights up to 10,000. The Sierra has the power and stability to easily move the loads but also the technology to bring it to a stop. The engine exhaust brake and Duramax/Allison are a must for anyone serious about hauling."

3 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Could not have asked for better

By on Tuesday, June 24, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 120,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "off road, day to day, looks good, reliable."

Cons: "extra parts can be a little pricey."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this truck a bit over a year ago and I am still happy every day I hop in and it makes me smile. I take it all over the city and the woods without any problems it is very comfortable and reliable. but it is also a very capable rig when hauling."

7 people out of 15 found this review helpful

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