GM says the Sierra 1500 Hybrid's gasoline V-8 and electric motors team up for an overall mileage improvement compared with the regular Sierra. The Sierra Hybrid is only available as a rear- or four-wheel-drive crew cab, both with a 6.0-liter V-8 and two electric transmission motors. Standard features include a trailering package, locking rear differential and side curtain airbags.
New for 2011
The Sierra Hybrid gets GM's OnStar 9.0 telematics system that GM says provides better voice recognition. GM also said they have worked to cut down on the amount of wind noise occupants hear.
There's hybrid badging on the cab's rear window, ahead of the side mirrors and on the tailgate, but otherwise the hybrid version looks similar to the gas-powered version.
Depending on the Silverado Hybrid's seating configuration, the crew cab can seat five or six people. Interior features include:
- Hybrid badge on tachometer
- Fuel economy gauge
- Optional navigation system
Under the Hood
GM's two-mode hybrid system enables "full" hybrid operation with the capability to cruise on electric power up to 30 mph. The gas engine kicks in if more acceleration is needed, as well as at higher speeds; for maximum grunt, the electric motors and gas engine work together.
At the heart of the Sierra Hybrid is a 6.0-liter V-8 that teams with GM's Electrically Variable Transmission, which integrates two 60-kilowatt electric motors. The motors draw power from a 300-volt battery pack, which recharges itself off the friction generated when you hit the brakes. The engine makes 332 horsepower and enables a towing capacity of 6,100 pounds with rear-wheel drive and 5,900 pounds with four-wheel drive. That's not as much as the regular Sierra's 10,500-pound maximum towing capacity, but it's not too shabby for a hybrid.
Standard safety features include:
- Four-wheel antilock brakes
- Electronic stability system
- Side curtain and side-impact airbags