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2022 GMC Sierra 1500 Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons.

2022 GMC Sierra 1500 Trim Levels, Configurations & Comparisons: Pro vs SLE vs Elevation, SLT vs AT4 and AT4X, Denali vs Denali Ultimate

What 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 Trim Should You Buy? What is the Difference Between Trims?

The 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 is a half-ton truck that comes in a variety of body styles and trim levels. This full-sized pickup truck is made for light-duty work, but don't let that designation fool you. With the right setup, the Sierra 1500 can tow up to 13,000 pounds. It can haul up to 9,400 pounds in its cargo bed.

There are three cargo-bed lengths to choose from. The standard bed has a cargo volume of 71.1 cubic-feet. A short bed has 62.9 cubic-feet of space. The available long bed has a volume of 89.1 cubic-feet. The Sierra 1500 is available in Regular-, Double- and Crew-Cab variations.

The Regular Cab is a basic two-door model with no room in the back for passengers. The Double Cab gets small rear doors and some flip-out seats in the back. The Crew Cab has four full-sized doors and a spacious backseat area. The Sierra 1500 is also available in 2WD (two-wheel drive) and 4WD configuration.

GMC gives buyers the choice of four different engines. The stock engine is a turbocharged 2.7-liter with four cylinders. There are two available V8 engines as well as a six-cylinder turbo-diesel. With all of these options and eight different trim levels, it can be difficult to choose the right model. Here's a look at all eight trims and how they compare to each other.

Compare the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 Pro vs SLE Trim Levels. What Is the Difference?

The base trim level of the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 is called the Pro. This model is offered in all three cab styles and with all three bed lengths. It also comes in both 2WD and 4WD variations. The default powertrain is the 2.7-liter engine and an 8-speed automatic transmission. This standard setup produces 310 horsepower with 430 pound-feet of torque.

For those who need more power, the base model can be purchased with a 5.3-liter EcoTech3 engine. This is a V8 engine that makes 355 horses. Choosing this engine means getting a 10-speed automatic transmission. The Pro trim level gets a set of 17-inch steel wheels that are painted silver. These are outfitted with all-season blackwall tires.

The Pro trim has chrome bumpers and chrome corner steps. There are LED reflector headlamps, LED signature taillights and LED daytime-running lamps. On the inside, there are 4-way manual seats up front. There's a 40/20/40 split-bench setup in front with a storage compartment underneath. These are covered with cloth upholstery in a variety of color choices.

Power locks and windows can be found on all of the trim levels. There's a 3.5-inch driver-information display and a 7-inch touchscreen for the infotainment system. Bluetooth is available for music streaming. There's a basic AM/FM stereo and a six-speaker audio system. The Pro model gets a single-zone climate-control system too.

When it comes to safety, the Pro model has six airbags and Automatic Emergency Braking. There's a wealth of driver-assist tech here, such as a Forward-Collision Alert, a Following-Distance Indicator and Lane-Keeping Assist. Sensors detect when the truck has gone out of its lane and an audible warning is given for the driver. Every trim has a rear-view camera and a tire-pressure monitor. GMC has a stability-control system with traction control that comes stock on every trim level.

Moving up to the SLE trim comes with most of the same mechanical features. There's now an automatic locking rear differential for better off-road handling. Both models have electronic power steering. This trim is offered with the 3.0-liter, 277 horsepower, turbo-diesel engine. This power-plant produces 460 pound-feet of torque to help with towing heavy loads.

On the outside, the SLE trim offers 17-inch aluminum wheels and LED lighting for the cargo bed. On the inside, it gets a 10-way power driver's seat with adjustable lumbar support. The driver-info display is now a massive 12.3-inches diagonally. There's also now a 13.4-inch touchscreen display and built-in Google features for the infotainment system.

A WiFi hotspot is available with the upgraded infotainment system. The SLE trim gets a dual-zone automatic climate-control system, heating for the front seats and cruise control. The steering wheel also now offers heating and a leather cover. The safety features are mostly the same, though the SLE now offers OnStar® and GMC Connected Services.

Compare the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 SLE vs Elevation Trims. What Is the Difference?

The Elevation trim level drops the Regular Cab and Long Bed options. It still offers 2WD or 4WD configurations. It has the same base engine, but this can be upgraded to the turbo-diesel or the 5.3-liter V8. The Elevation also gets optional bucket seats up front. There's a new high-capacity suspension upgrade to increase the truck's capabilities.

This trim level gets a set of large, 20-inch aluminum wheels in a Glossy Black finish. These are outfitted with equally large, all-season tires. The chrome bumpers, door handles and trim of the SLE is swapped out for body-colored parts. Most of the remaining interior features are the same as those on the SLE trim level. There's a couple of new options, however, such as wireless charging for smartphones and a console-mounted safe.

When it comes to the driver-assist tech and safety features, nothing gets automatically changed by moving up to this trim level. There are some new available features, but these are optional. A bed-view camera can be added on for a small charge. This is a great feature that allows the driver to keep a close eye on their cargo.

Compare the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 Elevation vs SLT Trim. What Is the Difference?

The SLT is only available in a Crew Cab body style with either 2WD or 4WD. This trim level automatically gets the 5.3-liter V8 and the 10-speed automatic transmission. There's now an external engine cooler and an auxiliary transmission-oil cooler. The Elevation gets 18-inch, six-spoke, machined-aluminum wheels with Dark Gray Metallic accents and a set of 18-inch all-season tires.

There's a lot of extra chrome trim on the outside of this trim level. The SLT also gets heated, power-folding, power-adjustable mirrors on the outside. Rain-sensing windshield wipers come on automatically when needed. There's an EZ Lift Assist tailgate with a power-locking feature.

On the inside, the front passenger can now enjoy a 10-way power seat, just like the driver's seat. There's now a memory feature for the driver's seat and outside mirrors. This trim level has rubberized flooring with carpeted floor mats. There's an auto-dimming rear-view mirror. The driver-assist features and safety equipment are all the same here, but the SLT adds the option for front and rear parking sensors.

Compare the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 SLT vs AT4 Trim Levels. What Is the Difference?

The AT4 trim level is designed for off-road performance. As such, it's only available with 4WD in the Crew Cab body style. A standard or short box length can be selected. This model comes stock with the 3.0-liter turbo-diesel and a 10-speed automatic transmission with Electronic Precision Shift. Both the SLT and AT4 models get the option for a 6.2-liter Ecotech3 V8 engine that makes 420 horses with 460 pound-feet of torque.

The AT4 has a special off-road suspension with a 2-inch lift. It gets a set of red recovery hooks and some skid plates for underbody protection. There's now a heavy-duty battery and air filter. There's also an Electronic Transmission Range Selector and a set of paddle shifters mounted to the steering wheel.

Being an off-road truck, the AT4 comes with a set of mud-terrain tires mounted to some 18-inch aluminum wheels. On the inside, the AT4 gets an upgraded, premium sound-system by Bose. This includes seven speakers and a Richbass woofer. There are now heated outboard seats and a Hitch-Guidance View feature. This trim level also gets Hill-Descent Control.

Compare the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 AT4 vs AT4X Trims. What Is the Difference?

The AT4X trim level takes the off-road enhancements of the AT4 model and further builds on them. This is the best off-road performer of the eight different trim levels. It comes in the Crew Cab body style with a short bed and 4X4 all-wheel drive. It's powered by the 6.2-liter V8 and gets the same transmission system as the AT4 trim. It also comes with a 2-speed Autotrac transfer case.

The AT4X has locking front and rear differentials. There's a dual-outlet exhaust system. This model also has another suspension-system upgrade and a 2-inch lift. The new suspension has Multimatic DSSV dampers. The AT4X gets 18-inch Glossy Black aluminum wheels and a set of mud-terrain tires.

There's a power sunroof installed right from the factory. This model has most of the same interior features as the AT4. It does get a new sound system by Bose, though, this time with 12 speakers. There's also a separate, weatherproof MultiPro™ system by Kicker. This is a 2-channel, 100-watt, tailgate-audio system for some outdoor entertainment. This trim has some additional safety tech too, such as Rear Pedestrian Alert and HD Surround Vision.

Compare the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 AT4X vs Denali Trims. What Is the Difference?

While the AT4 and AT4X focused on off-road capabilities, the Denali trim is all about comfort and luxury. The Denali is available in a Crew Cab version with 4WD and the buyer's choice of a standard or short cargo box. There's also a 2WD Crew Cab that is only available with the short box. This trim has the 5.3-liter V8, a 2-speed transfer case and the Electronic Precision Shift, 10-speed automatic transmission.

The Denali gets 20-inch multi-dimensional, polished-aluminum wheels with all-terrain blackwall tires. There are 6-inch chrome assist steps. On the inside, both front bucket seats have 10-way power adjustments, lumbar support and heating. This trim gets the Premium GMC Infotainment System with a 13.4-inch touchscreen. It also has the Bose sound system and the tailgate audio setup can be added as an option.

The Automatic Emergency Braking gets enhanced and upgraded for this trim. Perforated leather upholstery is available. There are higher-quality floor mats and more upscale materials for the interior. The remaining previously-mentioned safety features and driver-assist tech is all here for the Denali.

Compare the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali vs Denali Ultimate. What Is the Difference?

The Denali Ultimate is to the Denali what the AT4X is to the AT4. It takes all of the extra comfort and convenience features of the Denali and then adds to them. This trim only comes in a Crew Cab configuration with a short box and 4WD. This model gets the 6.2-liter V8 engine for the ultimate performance specs. It features the same 10-speed automatic transmission as the regular Denali models.

This trim has a CarbonPro bed for the ultimate protection. There are 22-inch Low-Gloss-Black aluminum wheels with machined accents. These come with a set of 22-inch all-season tires. This trim level gets the top-tier infotainment and audio systems. The power sunroof also makes a return for this model.

The seating, climate-control systems and remaining comfort features are basically the same when comparing these two trims. They also share most of the same safety features. One of the most amazing new features for the Denali Ultimate is the Super Cruise driver-assist system. This is a semi-autonomous driving system that allows for hands-free cruising along compatible roadways.

Which Trim to Choose?

For anyone looking for a simple work truck, the Pro trim will do nicely without breaking the bank. There's a surprising amount of standard convenience and tech features here for a base model. For anyone who will ever need to transport more than one person, the Crew Cab variation is a must. A Double Cab is much too cramped for anyone but children to ride in the backseat area. For the most capable truck, it's going to need the turbo-diesel to get the maximum towing and hauling numbers.

For off-road enthusiasts, the AT4X will be a joy to own. For the majority of buyers, the SLT offers a great combination of luxury features and capabilities. It's a well-equipped and versatile truck that can do just about anything. It also has a very reasonable starting price. The Denali Ultimate is tempting with its amazing Super Cruise Technology, but it's also significantly more expensive than the previous trim levels.

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