DETROIT – The GMC Sierra fullsize pickup is the latest in a bloodline that stretches back over a century. The first truck to wear a GMC badge debuted in 1912, while a predecessor from the Max Grabowsky’s Rapid Motor Vehicle Co. was the first commercial truck operated in the City of Detroit 10 years earlier.
Here’s a list of highlights by decade, accompanied by a corresponding photo of each.
· 1900s: The first Rapid truck – little more than a seat, an engine cover and a frame – was delivered in 1902.
· 1910s: The GMC name takes its place on a truck grille for the first time in 1912 and the mix of trucks offered had either upright front ends or curved “French” fronts.
· 1920s: 1927 was a milestone for design features with more stylized fenders, headlights attached to the radiator, and the first chrome-plated radiator surround.
· 1930s: Streamlining in the ‘30s added sloped grilles, more paint color options and passenger cabs inspired by car design trends, which helped expand the truck market.
· 1940s: Following the war, GMCs of the late ‘40s featured fully integrated headlights for the first time, as well as wider, lower, and bolder grilles.
· 1950s: Cars again influenced truck design in the ‘50s, resulting in more safety, comfort and performance. 1955 highlights were hooded headlights and panoramic glass.
· 1960s: The first GMC pickup with a full-width hood debuted in 1960. Other design cues included “jet pod” grilles at the front and a pinched-waist body crease on each side.
· 1970s: Padded materials replaced many metal interior surfaces in the ‘70s. Heavy duty models offered a dual rear axle for the first time and the Crew Cab debuted.
· 1980s: In 1987, the Sierra name became standard for all full-size pickups with the introduction of a new, more aerodynamic generation of GMC trucks.
· 1990s: The ‘90s brought the first rear-hinged three-door Extended Cab model. In 1999, new generation of truck introduced the first use of frame hydroforming.
· 2000s: The new millennium brought the “D” decade: The first Duramax diesel engine for Sierra HD added capability and the first Denali pickup set a luxury standard for trucks.
· 2012: The new 2014 Sierra debuts on December 13.
GMC has manufactured trucks since 1902, and is one of the industry's healthiest brands. Innovation and engineering excellence is built into all GMC vehicles and the brand is evolving to offer more fuel-efficient trucks and crossovers, including the Terrain small SUV and Acadia crossover. GMC is the only manufacturer to offer three full-size hybrid trucks with the Yukon, Yukon Denali SUVs and the Sierra pickup. The Sierra Heavy Duty pickups are the most capable and powerful trucks in the market. Details on all GMC models are available at http://www.gmc.com/, on Twitter at @thisisgmc or at http://www.facebook.com/gmc.