2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab

2021 MODEL
$56,295 - $62,785
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7.5

Overall Rating

INDIGO

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Complete In-depth Review & Buying Guide

Updated on: August 10, 2020
Totan Banerjee's image

Totan Banerjee

Automotive Journalist

The GMC Sierra 1500 Denali got a wholesome change in the year 2019. That makes us easily guess that the outgoing version of the GMC Sierra 1500 Denali will be carried forward into 2021 without any significant changes made to it. The production of the Sierra 1500 Denali is expected to begin in mid-September in 2020 and it will cost you around $57,000.

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Pros

Great style quotient

Superb set of features both on the outside and on the inside

Good towing capacity

Great ride quality

Cons

Very expensive compared to rivals

Average gas mileage

What's New?

The Denali remains mostly unchanged from 2020.


Pictures

Exterior
Interior

Ratings

7.5

OVERALL RATING

Trims and Configurations

MSRP


2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Denali

Denali

power
355 hp @ 5600 rpm
fuel
Regular unleaded
mpg
19 combined

$56,295 - $62,785


Style Prices MPG Engine Transmission Drivetrain Seats Colors
Denali 4dr Crew Cab SB (5.3L 8cyl 8A) Starting at $56,295 MSRP (17/19/23) 355 hp @ 5600 rpm, 5.3 L, V-8, regular unleaded
8-speed shiftable automatic rear wheel drive 5
Denali 4dr Crew Cab LB (5.3L 8cyl 8A) Starting at $56,595 MSRP (17/19/23) 355 hp @ 5600 rpm, 5.3 L, V-8, regular unleaded
8-speed shiftable automatic rear wheel drive 5
Denali 4dr Crew Cab SB 4WD (5.3L 8cyl 10A) Starting at $59,795 MSRP (17/19/23) 355 hp @ 5600 rpm, 5.3 L, V-8, regular unleaded
10-speed shiftable automatic four wheel drive 5
Denali 4dr Crew Cab LB 4WD (5.3L 8cyl 10A) Starting at $60,095 MSRP (17/19/23) 355 hp @ 5600 rpm, 5.3 L, V-8, regular unleaded
10-speed shiftable automatic four wheel drive 5
Denali 4dr Crew Cab SB 4WD (6.2L 8cyl 10A) Starting at $62,485 MSRP (17/19/23) 355 hp @ 5500 rpm, 6.2 L, V-8, regular unleaded
10-Speed Automatic four wheel drive 5
Denali 4dr Crew Cab LB 4WD (6.2L 8cyl 10A) Starting at $62,785 MSRP (17/19/23) 355 hp @ 5500 rpm, 6.2 L, V-8, regular unleaded
10-Speed Automatic four wheel drive 5

Expert Review

7.5

Overall Rating


The GMC Sierra 1500 Denali is a muscle pickup truck that surely faces tough competition from the likes of segment stalwarts which includes Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ, Ford F-150 Platinum, and RAM 1500 Limited. Here’s our take on the 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Crew Cab Denali that is soon going to be on sale in the US market.

GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Front View
GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Rear View

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Features

The GMC Sierra 1500 is available in 3 trims, namely, SLT, AL4, and the Denali, however here we will only talk about the Denali variant of the GMC Sierra 1500. Denali is the term that the brand uses for its luxury vehicles in its line-up. As the Sierra 1500 sports the Denali badge, it means the truck has many great things to offer and is loaded with features.

Model

GMC Sierra 1500 Denali

MSRP

$56,695

Key features

First-in-class 15" diagonal Head-Up Display

 

Industry-first use of carbon fiber composite in a pickup bed

 

World’s First Six-Function GMC MultiProTailgate

 

Accessory MultiPro Audio System by Kicker

 

First-in-class Rear Camera Mirror

 

22" high gloss black wheels

 

Exterior color options: Onyx Black, White Frost Tricoat, Satin Steel Metallic, and Carbon Black Metallic

The Denali trim will cost you around $55,695 and is loaded with a box full of luxurious features; The main reason why the Denali trim is the costliest is the number of features it provides to the customer.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Maintenance, Reliability and Warranty

GMC is very well known for making pickup trucks loaded with many features and of course powerful too. The brand introduced the Sierra 1500 to stand against the pickup trucks like the RAM 2500, Chevy Silverado, and Ford F-150. The brand is revolutionizing itself with time with immense reliability and exceptional resale value. The way this vehicle is made and how well the components are designed and also its strong chassis makes it very much reliable. The truck has scored 4 stars in the NCAP crash tests and has a lot of safety equipment and new features.

Reliability and Ownership Costs

The J.D. Power reports can very well define the reliability of a car. Basically, the JD power reports are based on or written by collecting consumer feedback on parameters of quality, durability, and dealership experience. Also, they consider customer reviews too and then review the vehicle on the mentioned parameters.

GMC Sierra 1500 Denali scores well in all the reliability parameters of the J.D power report and also scores extraordinarily in the resale section. It scores 77 out of 100 in the quality and reliability section, 82 out of 100 in the driving experience, 87 out of 100 in-dealership experience, and 92 out of 100 in resale value resulting in an overall score of 83/100 which is pretty much a good score for a pickup truck.

On average, the vehicle costs around USD 56k across the states. As per the data available on the NHTSA website, the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 has 4 recalls issued against it. The details of the recalls and the issues are mentioned below.

  • Brake Calipers Bolts May Break
  • Poor Alternator Connection may cause Crash or Fire
  • Fuel Pump Missing Pressure Regulator
  • Fire after Seat Belt Pretensioner Deployment

MAINTENANCE AND COST OF OWNERSHIP

The average estimated cost of ownership for a GMC Sierra 1500 Denali crew cab is $61,718. This cost of owning estimation is for the 2020 Sierra 1500 Denali crew cab which is very accurately calculated with taking in all the particulars of cost born by a user during the ownership period of 5 years. 

Particulars

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Total

Tax Credit

$0

$0

$0

$0

$0

$0

Insurance

$924

$956

$990

$1,024

$1,060

$4,954

Maintenance

$403

$630

$629

$1,880

$1,125

$4,667

Repairs

$0

$0

$120

$284

$414

$818

Taxes and Fees

$3,413

$111

$111

$111

$111

$3,857

Financing

$3,407

$2,740

$2,028

$1,269

$459

$9,903

Depreciation

$10,655

$4,174

$3,952

$4,634

$4,387

$27,802

Fuel

$1,830

$1,885

$1,942

$2,000

$2,060

$9,717

True Cost to Own

$20,632

$10,496

$9,772

$11,202

$9,616

$61,718

The maintenance cost is averaged for each year depending on the general wear and tear of the vehicle when you drive your GMC Sierra 1500 Denali crew cab 15000 miles per year. The average maintenance cost for a five year period is estimated at $4,667 dollars and $818 for repairs for the same period.

Warranty

GMC provides a very competitive warranty scheme/plan, that cannot match the other pickup trucks coverage, but it does include one complimentary scheduled maintenance visit. The truck gets a limited warranty of 3 years or 36,000 miles, which comes earlier while the powertrain of the vehicle is covered for a maximum of 5 years or 60,000 miles. The brand is also offering extended warranty programs, details of which can be obtained from the authorized dealers. The company also provides free scheduled maintenance for the first visit.

Criteria

Period

Limited Warranty

Covers 3 years or 36,000 miles

Powertrain Warranty

Covers 5 years or 60,000 miles

Scheduled Maintenance

Covered for the first visit

The warranty claims are handled without any hassle and overall, the after-sales support provided by the brand is great, and at par with its rivals.

Miles Per Dollar

The cost of fuel for driving the vehicle for an estimated 15000 miles each year is averaged at $2000 which estimates the miles per dollar output of this vehicle to be 7 miles per dollar on favorable terms.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Buying Advice

Being the top trim of the Sierra 1500, the Denali is loaded with top-notch features whether we talk about interior or exterior and we cannot forget about its towing capacity, up to 9,600 lbs makes it a powerful pickup truck. For people who are more into colorful vehicles won’t be disappointed with the Sierra 1500 Denali as it is also available in many different colors.

The outgoing version of the truck received an overall score of 87/100 from the JD power report, which means the truck has performed well in every aspect whether It’s about power, towing capacity, or about reliability.

Is buying a used GMC Sierra 1500 Crew Cab Denali a good ida?

The GMC Sierra 1500 Denali is all about experiencing a premium and a luxurious experience, which may not be there in a used vehicle and thus, we would advise you to avoid buying the Sierra 1500 Denali from the used market. In addition to this, the truck may not be available at a value for money price which altogether eliminates the purpose of buying a used truck.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Engine and Performance

The news is out that the 2020 Sierra 1500 Denali will be carried forward. However, it is expected that the truck might get a little improvement in the engine performance for the 2021 version. The Denali version of the Sierra 1500 is available in both the drivetrains, RWD, and an AWD. However, the engine choices are different for both the drivetrains, the RWD offers a 5.3-liter EcoTec V8 engine or 3.0-liter Duramax turbo-diesel Inline-6 engine. Talking about the AWD drivetrain, it offers a 6.2-liter EcoTec V8 engine.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Engine

Talking about the transmission system the AWD comes with a 10-speed automatic transmission and the RWD comes with 8-speed automatic transmission. The 5.3-liter EcoTec V8 engine churns out 355 hp and 383 lb-ft torque whereas the 6.2-liter EcoTec V8 pumps out 420 hp and 460 lb-ft torque.

Models

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali (Expected)

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

2020 Ford F-150 Platinum

2020 RAM 1500 Limited

MSRP

$56,695

$50,395

$55,520

$53,915

Engine

5.3L EcoTec V8 Engine

5.3L EcoTec V8 Engine

5.0L Ti-VCT V8 Engine

3.6L V6 24V VVT eTorque Engine

Drivetrain

RWD/AWD

RWD/ AWD

RWD/ AWD

RWD/ AWD

Transmission

8-speed automatic transmission

8-speed automatic Transmission

Electronic 10-speed transmission

8-speed automatic 850RE transmission

Power

355 hp @ 5600 rpm

355 hp @ 5600 rpm

395 hp @ 5,000 rpm

305 hp @ 6400 rpm

Torque 

383 lb.-ft. @ 4100 rpm

383 lb.-ft. @ 4100 rpm

400 lb.-ft. @ 4,500 rpm

269 lb.-ft. @ 4800 rpm

The Chevrolet Silverado and the GMC Sierra 1500 are similar; some also call them twins as they have the same performance figures. The Ford F-150 produces the maximum power and torque too.

2021 GMC Sierra Denali Acceleration and Braking Performance

GMC 5.3-liter EcoTec V8 engine allows the Sierra 1500 Denali to sprint from 0-60 mph in 6.5 seconds, coming to the quarter-mile distance the truck takes around 15.2 seconds to cover a quarter-mile.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab 0-60 MPH Just in 6.5 Sec.

The braking performance of the truck is also decent, covering a distance of 128 ft to reach 0 mph from 60 mph.

Models

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali (Expected)

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

2020 Ford F-150 Platinum

2020 RAM 1500 Limited

0-60 MPH

6.5 secs

7.0 secs

7.0 secs

N/A

Quarter mile

15.2 secs

15.2 secs

N/A

N/A

Top Speed

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

60-0 MPH 

128 ft

128 ft

121 ft

N/A

The Ford F-150 has the piece of cake in terms of braking performance and the Sierra 1500 Denali tops the list when it comes to the acceleration part.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Fuel Economy

As the truck will be having no changes and it will be a carryover model, the fuel economy figures will be the same as of the 2020 model of the Sierra 1500 Denali. The 2020 model gives 17 MPG in the city and 24 mpg when combined. The pickup truck has a fuel tank capacity of 24-gallons.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Instrument Cluster

Models

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali (Expected)

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

2020 Ford F-150 Platinum

2020 RAM 1500 Limited

MPG (City)

17

17

19

20

MPG (Highway)

24

24

24

25

MPG (Combined)

20

20

21

22

Fuel Capacity

24 gallons

24 gallons

23 gallons

26 gallons

Range (City/Highway/Combined)

408/576/480 miles

408/576/480 miles

437/552/483 miles

520/650/572 miles

The GMC Sierra and the Chevrolet Silverado stand together here too, the RAM 1500 Limited has better figures than the other trucks in the segment. RAM 1500 has the largest fuel tank thereby it can travel long before in need to stop for fuel. Ford has the smallest fuel tank of them all but significantly better fuel economy than Denali.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Interior

The GMC Sierra 1500 Denali has always had a very spacious cabin, and not only offers a comfortable space for five passengers to sit at ease but also offers a premium and upmarket cabin loaded with features. At the front, the vehicle gets power-adjustable bucket seats for both driver and the passenger. The front seats are heated and ventilated along with two memory functions for the seat position. Side bolstering is spot on and the seat cushion is also on the softer side, giving a plush experience to the passengers. 

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Front Seat

At the rear, the recline angle of the seats may not be as comfortable for everyone but apart from this, the seats at the back, just like those at the front, are comfortable and spacious. The switches and other controls are easily accessible from the driver’s seat and the vehicle scores high on the practicality front. All-round visibility from the driver’s perspective is great and driving this truck will not be too difficult for anyone who is not new to driving. With this being said, we expect the 2021 Sierra 1500 Denali to get a marginally better cabin with an updated list of features and equipment on offer. 

Models

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali (Expected)

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

2020 Ford F-150 Platinum

2020 RAM 1500 Limited

Seating Capacity

5

6

5

5

Front Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

43.03/ 66.02 /44.53

43.03/ 66.02 /44.53

40.8/66.7/43.9

40.9/66/40.9

Rear Row (Headroom/Shoulder Room/Leg Room, in inches)

40.12 / 65.16/

40.12 / 65.16/ 43.40

40.4/65.9/43.6

39.8/65.7/45.2

Trunk Capacity (cubic feet)

71.70

71.70

62.3

61.5

Denali has a spacious cabin and provides enough space for the passengers, massive trunk capacity when compared to its competitors. Ford and Ram small cabin and they have significantly poor cargo space in the segment too.

How’s the infotainment of the 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Crew Cab Denali?

The 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali comes equipped with an 8 inch GMC Infotainment system with inbuilt navigation. It also comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto in addition to Bluetooth connectivity. The music system comprises a Bose premium audio setup which includes six speakers and a subwoofer.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Infotainment System

The infotainment system is user friendly and responsive making it one of the highlighting features of the cabin. The system can be controlled by steering mounted controls or via the buttons placed on the instrument panel. The truck, in addition to this, also gets hotspot connectivity.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Exterior

The truck already received major changes and updates in the year 2019, giving the truck a complete redesign that included a large grille and refreshed headlights design which gave it a bold and a menacing look. In addition to this, the truck gets flared wheel arches, huge dimensions, and a massive road presence which gives it a distinctive character.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab  Front View

While the 2021 model will remain largely similar to this model, we do expect some small designing tweaks here and there to make it look fresh and modern. The truck surely has beast looks and also looks aggressive from the outside. 

Models

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali (Expected)

2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

2020 Ford F-150 Platinum

2020 RAM 1500 Limited

Curb Weight 

4694 lbs

4674 lbs

4639 lbs

5160lbs

Length 

241.25”

241.21”

243.7”

241.8”

Width 

81.24”

81.24”

79.9”

82.1”

Height 

75.35”

75.35”

77.2”

77.5”

Ground Clearance 

7.75”

7.75”

8.4”

8.1”

Wheelbase 

156.98”

156.95”

156.8”

144.5”

RAM 1500 has better figures than all the trucks of this segment whether it’s about the length, width or the height. The Sierra 1500 Denali has the highest wheelbase of all, the reason for spacious interiors.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Safety

The Sierra 1500 Denali earned average crash-test scores from the National Highway Traffic Safety (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Being a carryover model the 2021 model will also have the same safety features as of the 2020 model. However, the Sierra 1500 Denali has a box full of standard safety features, some of the features are:

  • Front and Rear Park Assist
  • HD Rear Vision Camera
  • Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert
  • Rear Cross-Traffic Alert
  • Teen Driver
  • Forward Collision Alert (Optional)
  • Automatic Emergency Braking (Optional)
  • Bed View Camera (Optional)
  • Front Pedestrian Braking (Optional)

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Competition

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Crew Cab Denali vs Ford F-150 Platinum

The Sierra 1500 Denali is a bit heavier than that of the Ford F-150. Also, the truck offers electronic 10-speed transmission whereas for the same the Denali offers an 8-speed automatic transmission.

2021 Ford F-150 Platinum

However, the Sierra 1500 Denali is more practical, has more space to offer inside the cabin. 

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Crew Cab Denali vs Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

The twins are here, both of these have many things in common whether it’s the engine, transmission, chassis, and whatnot. The dimensions of both trucks are also similar.

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ

The only thing in which they can be differentiated is the interiors; this is the place where the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ takes the lead.

2021 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali Crew Cab Final Verdict

Nothing new will be seen in the 2021 Sierra 1500 Denali, as it was updated recently in 2019. If one is into buying the GMC Sierra 1500 Crew Cab Denali then there is no point of waiting for the 2021 model to roll out. The truck surely is trustworthy and capable and has served the people for many years. It's just the interior where the truck lacks behind otherwise it is totally a beast.