One of the first pickup trucks of its kind when it debuted in 2005, the GMC Sierra 1500 Hybrid married an eight-cylinder gasoline powerplant with an electrical power unit. Recognized as a mild or micro hybrid, propulsion for the Sierra 1500 Hybrid was derived from a 5.3-liter Vortec V-8 engine. Utilizing three lead acid automotive batteries as an electrical power source, the 2005 GMC Sierra Hybrid operated with stop/start technology and regenerative disc braking.
Resulting in up to ten percent fuel savings compared to a similar engined truck, the Sierra 1500 Hybrid’s key function is to automatically shut off the Vortec V-8 at a stop to conserve fuel. One unique aspect of the 2005 and 2006 GMC Sierra 1500 Hybrid is the ability to use the on-board battery pack as an auxiliary power source to run electrical equipment such as tools and lights. The vehicle was initially available only to fleet customers but was shortly added to the all GMC customers. With the redesign of the Sierra 1500 Hybrid in 2007, the hybrid version of the full-sized truck was sold for one more year as part of the Sierra 1500 Classic based on the previous truck GMT800 platform.
A revival of the hybrid-powered pickup truck was undertaken in 2009 consisting of a special two-mode transmission creating shift performance similar to a continuously variable transmission. Unlike the hybrid system deployed from 2005 to 2007 on GMC Sierra trucks, the new two-mode hybrid setup was integrated with the vehicle’s power train. Paired with a 6.0-liter V-8 using Active Fuel Management, the 2009 GMC Sierra 1500 Hybrid with two-wheel drive could achieve city fuel economy of 21 miles per gallon. In 2013, the Sierra 1500 Hybrid was once-again discontinued.