The all-new 2022 GMC Sierra HD, 2500, and 3500 Heavy Duty are the strongest and most capable HD trucks ever. They were built to take on the hardest jobs you can throw at them with new powertrain options, new available technologies, and more functional Durabed than previous Sierra HD’s.
For 2022, the Sierra 2500HD and 3500HD don’t receive any significant changes. The only difference that stands out is that the entry-level work truck is now called the Pro. Previously, the lowest trim level was simply referred to as the Sierra.
Engine, Transmission, and Performance
The 2022 GMC Sierra HD comes standard with a gas-powered 6.6-liter V-8 that generates 401 horsepower and 464 pound-feet of torque. It pairs with a six-speed automatic transmission and rear- or all-wheel drive.
The optional Duramax diesel 6.6-liter V-8 cranks out 445 ponies and 910 pound-feet of twist, and it works through an Allison 10-speed automatic. You can also specify either a single- or dual-rear-wheel axle (known as a “dually”).
However, there’s no arguing that the Duramax/Allison combination is a highlight of the heavy-duty Sierra, and it’s a no-brainer for those who regularly tow substantial loads. The engine is surprisingly refined, and the transmission is very responsive.
Together they helped the 2500HD Denali we tested achieve impressively quick acceleration times. The gigantic GMC also has an agreeable ride quality for its breed. Though its steering is vague at highway speeds the Sierra nonetheless feels more agile than its heavy-duty competitors.
The trail-ready AT4 model is a more-rugged take on the commonly chrome-riddled rig, with an off-road suspension and a locking rear differential to go with its otherwise blacked-out aesthetic.
Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG
Since the EPA doesn’t test vehicles as heavy as the 2022 GMC Sierra HD and its gigantic competitors, we can only judge their real-world mpg on our highway fuel-economy route. We’ve only tested a Sierra 2500HD Denali with the diesel engine, which earned 17 mpg on the highway.
For comparison, the diesel-powered Silverado 2500 LTZ crew cab and Ram 2500 Tradesmen regular cab types of diesel we tested both managed 19 mpg. Those who stick with the GMC’s standard gas-fed V-8 should expect to see even worse fuel economy than the diesel option.
Interior, Comfort, and Cargo
Inside, the Sierra 2500HD and 3500HD have a huge dashboard that hosts user-friendly switchgear. Most models have a split-folding front bench that can be replaced with a pair of bucket seats and a full center console.
The 2022 GMC Sierra HD‘s interior can also be optioned with a head-up display, a heated steering wheel, heated-and-cooled front seats, and wireless charging. Unfortunately, the cabin’s panel fits and material quality are mediocre at best.
While there’s an abundance of soft-touch surfaces throughout, and most models benefit from durable plastics, the top-of-the-line Denali falls woefully short of its luxury billing. The fanciest alternatives from Ram overshadow the GMC largely thanks to their significantly more upscale look and feel.
Still, the 2022 GMC Sierra HD will please pickup-truck buyers who prioritize practicality and versatility. Along with extensive passenger space in the crew cab, the GMC is littered with handy interior cubby storage.
Its standard and long cargo boxes have built-in steps on both sides of the bed and the rear bumper has them at each corner. The box can be further customized with LED lighting, movable tie-downs, and a 120-volt outlet.
The heavy-duty Sierra’s biggest showpiece is its innovative multi-function tailgate, which has six different positions that include a work surface and bench. It’s a tailgater’s dream come true.
Infotainment and Connectivity
Every 2022 GMC Sierra HD has a standard touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. While base models have fewer options, they can still be outfitted with a 120-volt outlet and a mobile hotspot. Most trim levels have an 8.0-inch screen and additional charging ports.
All systems include a set of rotary knobs and physical buttons that are easily accessible. The larger touchscreen can be upgraded with built-in navigation, a Bose audio system, SiriusXM satellite radio, and a rear-seat entertainment system.
The 2022 GMC Sierra HD also offers a smartphone app that can be used to remotely control trailer functions. Likewise, the truck’s infotainment system allows users to store different trailer profiles to monitor maintenance.
Safety and Driver-Assistance Features
While the truck can be equipped with various driver-assistance technology, none of it comes standard, and heavy-duty rivals offer even more assists.
However, the 2022 GMC Sierra HD does have a comprehensive camera system that features up to 15 different viewing modes, including a “transparent” mode that allows the user to virtually see through an attached trailer as if it wasn’t there.