2017 GMC Sierra 3500HD
The GMC Sierra 3500HD full-size heavy pickup truck gets several updates and changes for the 2017 model year.
Having received updates to its exterior and interior for the 2016 model year, the 2017 Sierra Heavy Duty is expected to deliver:
- An all-new air intake system via a new hood scoop (confirmed)
- Potential updates to the powertrain, including revised or all-new Duramax V-8 turbo-diesel engine and Allison transmission (rumored, unconfirmed)
We will update this page as we gather more information about the 2017 Sierra 3500HD.
On June 1st, 2016, GMC released the first photos of the 2017 Sierra Denali 2500HD. The truck features a new functional hood scoop design that hints “at what is beneath its bold new appearance”, according to GMC. It’s almost a given that the same changes will apply to the Sierra 3500HD.
The brand also says that it will release additional details and information on the new model “in the coming months.”
Though that’s all the information GMC has released to date, we do have more details on the 2017 Sierra 3500HD courtesy of Chevrolet, which provided more information about the hood scoop and its benefits in the 2017 Silverado HD. The GMC Sierra and Chevrolet Silverado share mechanicals, including the platform, engines and transmissions.
All-New Induction System
The 2017 GMC Sierra 3500HD features a new air intake system that drives cool, dry air into the engine for sustained performance and cooler engine temperatures during difficult driving conditions. The patented intake system underwent extensive testing based on the most challenging real-world driving conditions to ensure competence and performance no matter the weather.
The new air intake system is marked by a dramatic hood scoop. Essentially an inlet at the front of the hood, the scoop provides 60 percent of the air to the Duramax diesel engine.
The air provided to the engine is very close to the outside ambient temperature and much cooler than the air under the hood. Cooler air helps the engine run better under load, especially in conditions where engine and transmission temperatures can rise quickly. Running cooler allows the Duramax diesel to maintain full power and vehicle speed for capable trailering in even the toughest conditions.
There’s also a ram-air effect from the incoming air at highway speed that helps pack more air into the engine. The air filter housing also draws 40 percent additional air from a dry location in one of the front fenders. It blends with the cooler air from the hood inlet before funneling into the Duramax’s combustion chambers. This assures the engine can breathe even if the hood is completely blocked.
“While developing this all-new induction system, we considered our customers towing a maximum-weight trailer through the Eisenhower Tunnel on a hot, rainy summer day”, said chief engineer of GM’s HD trucks, Eric Stanczak, the
At more than 11,000 feet above sea level, the Eisenhower Tunnel is the highest vehicle tunnel in the world and one of the highest elevations for any roadway in North America.
Clean And Dry
Maximized engine performance requires more than cool air; the air must also be clean and dry. Accordingly, the functional hood scoop includes a unique air/water separator to ensure only combustion-enhancing dry air is drawn into the engine. The air charge enters an expansion chamber containing a sharp, 180-degree turn on its way to the air filter housing. That creates a velocity change that causes humidity or mist to form larger, heavier droplets that are flung centrifugally against the outside wall of the housing. The collected water drains through a valve, while the air charge continues on to the filter housing and into the engine.
Testing The Intake
Testing the effectiveness of the system was rooted in real-world driving conditions of every degree — from misty rains to monsoon-level downpours; from powdery snow to wind-driven ice pellets; from desert dust to arctic cold.
Surprisingly, torrential downpours do not necessarily pose the biggest challenge to the hood scoop, according to Kevin Dunn, global vehicle performance for splash engineering:
“Big, heavy raindrops from a thunderstorm are relatively easy to eliminate from air. The more challenging issue comes from the mist-like spray generated by semitrucks on wet highways. Those very fine water droplets prove more challenging to separate from the air. The air intake is an elegant solution that works well with water droplets of all sizes. For customers, the results delivers maximum engine performance and even greater towing confidence.”
Other Updates And Changes
We will update this section when we have more information on the changes and updates to the 2017 Sierra 3500HD.