The 2019 GMC Sierra AT4 is a more muscular version of the popular Sierra.
Factory additions include a two-inch lift, two-speed transfer case, and a new performance package.
Although SLT and Denali models lead the lineup in sales, GMC is attempting to reach the off-road buyer.
GMC Sierra fans are getting a little more bite for their bark as the 2019 GMC Sierra AT4 arrives. GMC says the truck is a “unique formula” because it blends off-road capability with technology and refinement. In person, it’s easy to see the beefiness of the AT4; its demeanor and stature remarkably different than the rest of the Sierra stable.
Duncan Aldred, Global GMC Vice President, explained earlier this year that SLT and Denali models account for 87 percent of the brand’s total crew cab sales. Even in that, GMC senses a need for a muscled-up, off-road Sierra, hence the AT4.
From the factory lift to the Off-Road performance package, here is a look at the 2019 GMC Sierra AT4.
“It offers optimized performance, both on- and off-road,” Aldred said.
This GMC special rolls out of the factory with a two-inch lift, two-speed transfer case, locking rear differential, and skid plates. The Rancho monotube shock absorbers, hill descent control, and traction select system each increase the truck’s 4×4 capability. And there’s even a suite of advanced safety features like Surround Vision, Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert, and Front Pedestrian Braking.
The GMC Sierra AT4 comes with three different wheel and tire combos: 18-inch wheels with all-terrain tires, or mud terrain-rated Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires, or the available 20-inch wheels with all-terrain tires. It’s your call.
Power & Performance: Two Reliable Options
Standard is the evergreen 5.3 V8 although the beastly 6.2 is available, both with Dynamic Fuel Management. This replaces the former Active Fuel Management and differs in the sense it can shut off any number of cylinders, in a variety of combinations, to boost performance and efficiency. Dynamic Fuel Management enables the truck to operate on just one or all eight cylinders, depending on driving conditions.
Sierra AT4 buyers can also opt for the Duramax 3.0-liter inline-six turbo-diesel. The Duramax and 6.2 are paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. The aforementioned traction select system contains preset drive modes tailored for different terrain or weather conditions. The different modes adjust the Sierra’s transmission shift points, throttle mapping, and StabiliTrak to optimize performance.
Given the AT4 is already a muscular truck, we’re not entirely sure adding this package is worth it. However, with the Off-Road Performance Package, the 6.2 V8 gets a slight boost to 435 horsepower and 469 lb-ft. of torque. This represents an increase of 15 horsepower and 9 lb-ft. of torque versus the “normal” 6.2 V8.
A performance air intake and cat-back exhaust system compliment the 6.2 V8, recently named as one of Wards 10 Best Engines for 2019. 18-inch machined aluminum wheels with Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac tires complete the package.
The Off-Road Performance Package has an MSRP of $4,940. That’s a bit high in our opinion but it all depends on how badly someone wants that extra power, those tires, and that exhaust.
When loading up those ATVs for the wild country, the new Sierra AT4 will give adventure seekers plenty of towing tools. GMC’s ProGrade Trailering feature with a compatible smartphone app is on offer. The system includes a pre-departure checklist, trailer light test, tire pressure monitoring for the trailer, and maintenance reminders among others.
There’s also a handy bird’s-eye view that shows up on the infotainment screen.
Styling & Design: Easy To Notice
The GMC Sierra AT4 should look pretty slick coming down the road with its darker exterior finishes, black chrome, and touches of red. The front and rear bumpers and grille surround match the truck’s body color, and the C-shaped LED lighting is a nice touch. A premium high-gloss black finish was even applied to the window trim, mirror caps, and skid plate.
On the inside, drivers receive a darker cabin with tinted and textured aluminum finishes on the steering wheel, center stack, and sill plates. Long trips should be a breeze thanks to the leather-trimmed seats and Jet Black/Kalahari color accents.
Special AT4 badging on the headrests and floormats finish off the interior treatments.
Pricing & Availability
The 2019 GMC Sierra AT4 is available now and starts at $50,800. The 2019 GMC Sierra is manufactured at Fort Wayne Assembly in Roanoke, Indiana. The 6.2 V8 is manufactured at GM’s Tonawanda engine plant in New York.
Carl Anthony is Managing Editor of Automoblog and resides in Detroit, Michigan. He studies mechanical engineering at Wayne State University, serves on the Board of Directors for the Ally Jolie Baldwin Foundation, and is a loyal Detroit Lions fan.