• Can a 2018 GMC Sierra 2500 HD All Terrain X Plow Sand and Bash Dunes? (Video)


    2018 gmc sierra 2500 hd sand plow
    2018 GMC Sierra 2500 HD

    Can a 2018 GMC Sierra 2500 HD plow sand and bash through the dunes? It is an odd question, but somebody had to find out, and it turned out to be a lot of fun. The Sierra HD in question is the All Terrain X off-road package. This truck is equipped with Z71 off-road suspension, underbody skid plates, and Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires. There are also beefy side steps and a sports bar behind the cab that can house additional off-road lights.

    The All Terrain X package is available with either a 6.6L Duramax V8 turbo-diesel (black truck that we recently tested) or a 6.0L gasoline V8 truck that you see here. The Sierra HD can be configured a snow plow prep package, and it can be used to plow through a sand drift, as you can see in the video.

    Roman takes the 6.0L V8 truck into the dunes and through soft sand. Does the truck have enough traction and tire flotation to get through? Check out the video for all the fun with sand.


    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov is an Automotive Enthusiast, Producer, Reviewer, Videographer, Writer, Software Engineer, Husband, Father, and Friend.

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    23 thoughts on “Can a 2018 GMC Sierra 2500 HD All Terrain X Plow Sand and Bash Dunes? (Video)

      1. In 2011 when GM redid their HDs, they advertised the front suspension as being “plow ready”, with no need of upgrading the front suspension for a plow since it was so beefed up to begin with.
        So why are they saying here that they had to upgrade the front suspension arms? What gives?

        1. That guy clearly didn’t know what he was talking about.

          The only suspension component that needs to be changed are the torsion bars to accommodate for the additional weight.

          “Snow Plow Prep Package:
          Power feed for backup and roof emergency light, 220-amp
          alternator with gas or diesel engine, forward lamp wiring harness, provisions for
          cab roof-mounted lamp/beacon, underbody shields and heavy-duty front springs
          (4×4 models)”

    1. Definitely good thing it was the gasser not the diesel. One question, when the truck was about stuck, were you wide open on throttle? And was that 4 high?

    2. Want to see the same thing done in REALLY deep snow at -10 deg F!
      Or, even worse, run the truck when the temp is 35 deg F, and there is freezing rain on top of 18 inches of already-fallen WET snow…
      C’mon GM guys. Take the truck to Alaska and plow some snow! Or, you may even be able take it to northern Minnesota or North Dakota right now and do much the same thing right now…

      ====================

      1. “Or, even worse, run the truck when the temp is 35 deg F, and there is freezing rain on top of 18 inches of already-fallen WET snow…”

        The difference between wet, self-lubricated, water-laden, self-adhesive snow**, — and dry, warm sand is enormous!

        ———
        ** A great paradox: this type of snow is self-lubricating, while at the same time adhering itself to anything it touches, — and blocking up grooves in tires, which are already made less flexible, less conforming, by lower temperatures, even with sipes.
        ———-

        ===============

        1. I live in MN and can personally tell you they do great plowing snow (even 18″ of wet snow). I have had a 2011, 2015 and now a 2017 all used for plowing. Rarely get stuck and that usually only happens when I hit the end pile to hard and ride the truck up bottoming it.

          1. Have you plowed with a Ford or Ram, with solid front axles? To me, the GMs I have seen “look” like they do a better job keeping the plow level, but most plows I see on Pickups, are on Superdutys.

        2. Bernie I get temperatures that go down to – 40C which just happens to also be -40F. Those temperatures will have no affect on the truck after a slush storm. The plow will look just as pretty as it does here. The remote plow will move to the point where it binds in frozen slush but if they kept the low air dam on its a back up to at least get the top flufffy stuff. Every GM should come with a plow to protect their Air Dam anyway but they did figure out how to remove it on the ZR2. The HD and 1/2 tons still elude them. Yes Frozen ice and snow will not be as conforming as sand and steel and plastics will not be forgiving and the guy driving wont be warm and cozy and traction will be dismal at best. These situation also blow up the G80 diff. Too much traction if the wheels to slip under heavy torque and the other wheel locks under a spin on pavent, they can blow up.

          1. Rambro – – –

            R: “Yes Frozen ice and snow will not be as conforming as sand and steel and plastics will not be forgiving and the guy driving wont be warm and cozy and traction will be dismal at best. These situation also blow up the G80 diff. Too much traction if the wheels to slip under heavy torque and the other wheel locks under a spin on pavent, they can blow up.”

            Exactly right. There are all sorts of weird and less-than-wonderful things that happen to trucks when quickly plowing deep, ice-encrusted, wet, adhesive snow. The problem is, as you noted, complete unpredictability, with that on-and-off torque delivery. I even broke the custom plow and mounts on a Case VAI tractor once doing that. Yes, momentum can be your friend…until you hit something or traction or inhibition reverses, side-to-side.

            ======================

          2. The GM HD/Half-ton air dam takes less than 5 minutes to remove and is completely different than the Colorado air dam. Also- The F-150’s air dam is just as slow slung, if not lower yet. Plenty of 2015+ F-150 owners have accidentally removed the air dam by pulling up to a parking block.

            “These situation also blow up the G80 diff.”

            The G80 is plenty tough. The only time guys break them is when they gun it on a slippery surface before the G80 is locked. They get the tires spinning, hits a dry or clean surface that causes the tires to grab hard on a clean or dry suface, and the gov-lock slams hard. If you feather the throttle a little to get it locked, and you can whip donuts and spin tires all you want without a problem. Additionally, it was the old wimpy 10-bolt version that gave the G80 most of its bad reputation. Since 2011 or so, the half-tons have had bigger 9.5″ and 9.75″ rear diffs with a bigger, stronger G80. Same for the HD trucks. I believe the Duramax trucks got an 11.5″ rear diff in 2010 or 2011 along with a bigger G80. You have to do something REALLY stupid over and over before you break one. Most lockers have their breaking point. Eaton E-lockers like the one Ford uses isn’t all the great if you abuse it either. Not sure about the Ram’s limited slip offerings…

    3. When driving on a road with snow or plowing weight is your friend…but not in sand. P/S I have used my plow to back fill a hand dug holes…works great…

    4. My experience is lake effect snow around Buffalo New York is the worst in U.S..

      Somewhere around there got 126 in a 6 day period.

      At one time the army was going to move their winter training from Alaska to the Buffalo area.

      1. Buddy – – –

        BU: “My experience is lake effect snow around Buffalo New York is the worst in U.S..” AND “At one time the army was going to move their winter training from Alaska to the Buffalo area.”

        Yeah. I moved to Rochester (NY) during the 1982-1983 storms. Snowed continually**. Didn’t see the sun for 6 weeks. My wife almost left me, wanting to return to “civilization” (Albany, NY?).

        I thought we lost Buffalo for sure. The joke was that only satellite photos could find it!

        ———-
        ** After the counterclockwise circulation got done sucking up moisture and dumping ~1-2 feet of the wet, heavy stuff from the South, then the clockwise circulation brought ongoing lake-effect snow off Lake Ontario that would add 4-6 inches of lighter fluff per day. There was no escape. People attached little CB-antenna red-flags to the bumpers of their cars to be seen at intersections, since the plowed piles were 4-6 feet high!
        ———-

        ===================

    5. Minot North Dakota area gets large snow drifts and deep snow banks.

      But actual snow amounts arent that large. It just never melts

      If they ever got the 3 feet of snow in 24 hours like we can get in the Sierra’s.
      Everything would be shut down

      Canada sends their wind and snow to North Dakota. But it doesn’t stop until it gets to Kansas.

      Unless it hits a Barn or outhouse. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

      1. Yeah park city gets a good amount like that, but its incredibly light and you can almost blow it off your driveway with a leaf blower.

        Thats a good idea actually.

      2. Buddy – – –

        BU: “Canada sends their wind and snow to North Dakota. But it doesn’t stop until it gets to Kansas.
        Unless it hits a Barn or outhouse. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚”

        Hah. Good one!

        ================

    6. Andre putting you in charge, get the gas powered allterain X and take up gold mine hill 2.0 . Also dare should be only choice. YOUR THE BOSS

    7. Plowing sand is professional grade.

      One reason you don’t see many hd gm trucks with snow plows is because the plow is lower to the ground because of the ifs suspension. That is why the solid axle is ideal suited for plowing snow being set higher.

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