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initial thoughts on 2024 Denali 1500


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Been looking for months and finally pulled the trigger on a 2024 Denali with 5.3L and 22's.

 

I drove Jeep Grand Cherokees for last 15 years, had 4 of them, all with V8's.  Just needed to get a truck for hauling stuff and dirt biking and family road trips.

 

I test drove Ford F150's several times but kept coming back to the GMC.  I actually liked the looks of the Chevy trucks a bit more but wanted the multi-flex tailgate and nobody around me had them in stock and didn't want to wait on ordering.

 

Ride:  my truck has the magnetic ride and it's very good.  Better than the other trucks.  Compliant around town and firm on the highway.   Not a lot of chassis flex either.  Can tell it has a solid rear axle but for a full size pickup, I'm happy with it.

 

Engine/Trans:  the 5.3 is a "good" engine but with the 10 speed it's much better.  That trans is really amazing.  Incredibly smooth, shifts are barely noticeable at light or heavy throttle.  My mpg has been trending close to 19mpg with highway and around town picking up kids from school etc.  Got 19.5 on long highway trip over break with cruise set at 80.  I'll take it.  Exhaust note on the 5.3L is perfect.  Just the right amount of rumble to sound sporty but not obnoxious.  The displacement on demand of the V8 is much better on this truck than it was on my Hemi.  Honestly, trying to identify when it kicks in & out, on slight uphills for example, I can't tell.  But the 3.5L turbo in the Ford is a great engine - incredible power right off the line, really set you back.  That was the #1 thing pulling me toward the Ford.  

 

Interior:  I think the GMC interior is better than the Ford, at least on the Lariat models and below.  Seats are comfortable, it's extremely quiet, excellent layout.  The screens on dash area all configurable and great resolution.  Nice materials.

 

Tech/Infotainment:  as most have noted, the stereo is "meh".  I actually think it sounds better when you really crank it up over 50% volume but it could be better for a $70k truck.  GPS is not my favorite.  I don't love the Google map function.  I don't like that it constantly asks where I want to go.  My Jeep would display interesting features like altitude and coordinates, not sure that Google maps does that.   The cameras are really good.  I thought it was a bit of a gimmick at first but I use them all the time now for parking.

 

Overall size of the truck seems a bit too big.  The Ford is smaller overall, more compact.  The hood line is lower and it's easier to see.  I think GM might look at going this route also.  The hood line is just too dang big.  I'm 6' tall and have no idea where the right front corner of the truck is.  Cameras help but the site lines are not great.  The bed at just under 6' is fine for me.  The Ford offers a 5.5' or a 6.5' bed on the F150's.  The 5.5 seems too small and the 6.5' becomes too long when combined with a crew cab.  The GMC has a really nice spray in bed liner, lights, an outlet and tie downs and of course the Multipro tailgate, all of which were better than what Ford had.

 

Bottom line, I'm happy with the truck. I got a killer deal with $7k in discounts and I get compliments all the time.  I ordered some super bright LED reverse lights to install this weekend and some carbon fiber vinyl to black out the GMC logos as well.  I might do an upgrade to the speakers in the future but I hate the idea of taking the dash and door panels apart and breaking something.

 

 

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At the time I had an 20' Explorer earlier this year. Had it in for a recall, and was driving a 22' XLT for 2 days. I found it really impressive with the smaller motor. But the price tag is a mouthful. I want to say it was north of $50k new. I definitely find the Sierras interior far more elevated then the Fords. What kept me from Ford F150s was the stupid SYNC problems I had in my Explorer, which I'm sure wasn't much better in the truck. 

 

I couldn't afford a Denali but I always have preferred trims that are in the mid-tier. I will say the Ecoboosts (smaller and big 3.5) is impressive torque. 

 

For me it was 10k off MSRP of a new 23' Elevation. So I went with that. I definitely will side with you. The stock audio system even in the Bose setup is lacking. I'm gathering quotes for a full system with amplified speakers as well. Reverse rear lights are the best to upgrade. I did the same on my 20' as well. 

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On 1/10/2024 at 2:33 PM, shudog said:

 I ordered some super bright LED reverse lights to install this weekend and some carbon fiber vinyl to black out the GMC logos as well.  I might do an upgrade to the speakers in the future but I hate the idea of taking the dash and door panels apart and breaking something.

 

 

Just a heads up. Denali taillights are led which makes the reverse lights non replaceable

Edited by ELO2095
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On 1/13/2024 at 7:41 PM, ARedSierra said:

 

For me it was 10k off MSRP of a new 23' Elevation. So I went with that. I definitely will side with you. 

If i could've gotten $10k off an elevation with 5.3L I would have gone that route.  The only Elevations on the lot were stripped with turbo's and not much else.

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Good review. I agree with you.  I have the 2024 Denali with the 6.2.  Only on my second tank of gas so too early to say too much.  Like the motor, camera, tailgate, screens, etc....

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