The GMC Sierra is known for its ruggedness and versatility, making it a popular choice for those looking for a vehicle that can handle various driving conditions.
One key feature that makes the Sierra a capable off-road vehicle is its 4-wheel drive system.
The four-wheel-drive system, called 4WD or 4×4, distributes power to all four wheels.
It’s a good choice for off-road vehicles because it gives better control in various driving conditions.
Sierra’s 4WD system is made to give it the best possible performance and stability.
5 Different 4 Wheel Drive Modes on the GMC Sierra
The 4WD system in the GMC Sierra is engaged using a transfer case.
The transfer case is a gearbox that distributes power to the front and rear axles.
The GMC Sierra comes with five 4-wheel drive modes, which can be selected using a dial or button on the dashboard.
Let us talk about the 5 different driving modes of the GMC Sierra.
1. 2WD Mode
In 2WD mode, power is sent to the rear two wheels.
Regular driving on paved roads and highways can be done in 2WD mode because it doesn’t need extra power.
2. 4WD High
In 4WD High range mode, power is sent to all four wheels, providing better traction and control in off-road conditions, such as snow, mud, or sand.
The 4WD mode is suitable for driving on unpaved roads and trails, but don’t drive in this mode on paved roads as it consumes more fuel than the 2WD mode.
3. 4WD Low
In 4WD low-range drive mode, power is sent to all four wheels at a lower speed and with more torque than in 4H mode.
This mode is suitable for extreme off-road conditions, like steep hills or rocky terrain.
4. Auto 4WD
Some GMC Sierra models come with an automatic 4WD system that automatically engages 4WD when it detects wheel slip.
In this mode, the truck runs in 2WD mode until the system notices it needs 4WD. At that point, it automatically turns on the 4WD system.
5. Neutral Mode
The neutral (N) mode disconnects the transmission from the drivetrain.
This lets the truck be towed or pulled without damaging the transmission.
How to Engage 4 Wheel Drive GMC Sierra [Engaging 3 Different 4WD Modes]
Engaging the 4 wheel drive in a GMC Sierra can be a bit intimidating for those unfamiliar with the process.
But getting your truck ready for off-road or slippery conditions is important.
There are three 4WD modes in the GMC Sierra.
- 4-Wheel Drive High
- 4-Wheel Drive Low
- Auto 4-Wheel Drive
1. How to Engage 4 Wheel Drive High (4H)
In snowy or icy conditions, 4WD high mode is recommended.
Set your shift lever to 4WD high.
You can shift from 2WD to 4WD high-drive mode at any speed and at any time.
You may need to use moderate force when shifting in motion.
The shift should be made in one continuous motion.
Slowing down or stopping is the best way to shift in extreme weather.
You can drive at any speed when using four-wheel drive.
2. How to Engage GMC Sierra 4 Wheel Drive Low
4WD low is used for extra-heavy-duty power or traction situations that need to deliver extra torque.
You need to choose 4WD low when driving off-road in deep mud or snow and while climbing or descending steep hills.
The 4-wheel drive low is used when extra torque is required.
Engaging 4WD low is smart when going up or down steep hills or driving off-road in deep mud or snow.
Turn the knob to 4-wheel drive low to engage 4-wheel drive low.
Indicator lights will flash while shifting to ensure 4WD low is selected.
Only loose terrain should be driven in 4WD low while the vehicle is below 45 mph.
So try to avoid concrete surfaces when 4WD is activated.
You must move less than 3 mph and have the transmission in neutral if you need 4WD low on concrete surfaces.
It is best for the vehicle to be moving at 1 to 2 mph while using the 4WD low driving mode.
3. How to Engage GMC Sierra 4 Wheel Drive Auto
Auto 4WD mode is recommended when road surface traction conditions are variable.
When you drive in 4WD automatic mode, the vehicle’s power is automatically distributed to the front and rear wheels.
Shifting into auto 4WD mode at any speed is possible unless you are in 4WD low mode.
The indicator light will remain on after the shift is completed.
After shifting back to 2WD mode, verify that your truck is not still in 4WD mode.
How to Engage 2 Wheel Drive
Engaging 2-wheel drive on a GMC Sierra is a simple process that can be completed in just 3 steps.
- Locate the knob for the 4WD system on the dashboard of the vehicle.
- Turn the knob to 2WD high. You may turn the knob to 2H at any speed.
- The indicator light will flash while shifting and remain on when the shift is complete.
How to Engage Neutral (N)?
Towing the vehicle behind something requires a neutral setting.
First, park your truck.
Secondly, apply the hand brake and press the brake pedal, then start the vehicle or turn on the ignition.
A neutral light will appear when the neutral mode is activated.
This is how you can engage neutral mode on your GMC Sierra.
How to Disengage Neutral Mode
Apply the hand brake and brake pedal to shift out of neutral.
Put the transmission in neutral.
If the vehicle is out of neutral, twist the knob to the desired setting.
Start the engine and shift to the desired gear after releasing the parking brake.
By following this process, the neutral mode of your GMC Sierra will disengage.
4 Benefits of 4WD Mode in a GMC Sierra
The 4WD system in the GMC Sierra provides many benefits, including:
1. Improves Traction
The 4WD system sends power to all four wheels, giving the truck better grip and control in different driving conditions.
2. Off-Road Capabilities
The GMC Sierra’s 4WD system is designed to be driven in mud, snow, sand, and other rough conditions.
3. Better Stability
The 4WD system improves stability and control, especially when driving on uneven terrain.
4. Better Towing Capacity
The GMC Sierra’s 4WD system makes it easier to pull heavy loads because it makes the vehicle better at towing.
The GMC Sierra’s 4WD system is an important part that makes the truck more useful and improves its performance.
With its various modes, the Sierra can handle different driving conditions, making it an ideal choice for those who want a truck that can handle both on-road and off-road conditions.
If you are in the market for a capable pickup truck, the GMC Sierra with 4WD is worth considering.