GMC is doing the single cab pickup justice at SEMA this year with a concept that dials up the off-road capability and finally scales back the number of doors. GMC partnered with AEV to develop the GMC Sierra Grande Concept, built off of a GMC Sierra 2500 HD in a single cab, long bed configuration. The finished product is a chassis cab truck with the correct number of doors for the gnarliest builds — just two.
The folks at AEV essentially built a smaller Sierra HD AT4X by taking the suspension components of the AT4X and installing them into a diesel-powered heavy duty truck. The truck corrects the biggest problem with the GMC Sierra HD AT4X — the sheer size of it, which makes the truck less adept at off-roading.
Underbody protection is critical when navigating through technical terrain, so AEV installed the stamped steel front skid plate, IFS skid plate and transfer case skid plate from the Sierra HD AT4X AEV Edition. For suspension, AEV worked directly with the GMC engineering team to incorporate a variety of Sierra HD AT4X components, such as control arms, steering knuckles, rear suspension, and Multimatic® DSSV dampers. This factory-tuned combination provides 1.5-inch lift over standard HD models and delivers improved off-road performance and versatility, without sacrificing comfort or durability.
Thanks to the additional lift height gained from the AT4X components and a pair of HighMark fender flares, AEV installed a set of massive, 40” BFGoodrich tires mounted on a set of AEV Salta XD wheels. Rounding out the build, an 8-foot aluminum tray bed was installed, along with an AEV vertical tire mount, custom AEV rear bumper, ComeUp 9.5k winch and an ARB on-board air system.
So you get a powerful diesel engine with one of the best suspension setups on a modern truck. The suspension is actually stock, and the truck’s height comes from the 40-inch tires, which are even bigger than those worn by the machines that compete at the Mint 400. The fender flares allowed AEV to fit the bigger tires, and airing them up or down is easy with the onboard air compressor.
There are dual chucks for the compressor, one on either side of the truck. These are integrated into the aluminum bed — which is not a dump bed, although the side panels swing open. That’s because the Sierra Grande is all about off-roading. It’s even got a cloth interior, because trucks don’t need leather seats. This isn’t a luxury car.
Luxe crew cab trucks being the most popular models is just a fact nowadays. People hardly buy single cab trucks anymore. And single cab, long bed trucks are more or less extinct. But AEV and GMC have vindicated the single cab with a concept that willl likely never reach production, but is incredible all the same.
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