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A red 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Pro is shown to be parked off road.

GMC Pro Safety vs. GMC Pro Safety Plus: Which Suite Is Right for You?

The 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Pro is the base level trim of GMC’s popular light-duty truck. It’s a versatile and convenient option, with tons of configurations allowing drivers to make more room for passengers, cargo, or both. It has a couple of diverse engine options that let drivers choose great fuel economy or impressive strength; plus, it’s got solid hauling and towing capabilities. While it is a light-duty truck, it’s still a lot of vehicle to manage. That becomes increasingly true if you plan on utilizing its trailering abilities. When you tow a camper or boat, every move must be made with extra caution, and you need added visibility around your vehicle. This is where driver-assist technology becomes crucial when choosing the ideal truck.

GMC understands that their drivers expect the best in driver assist features from them so that they don’t need to worry about accidents when driving their Sierra 1500 Pro, especially when trailering. That’s why the 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Pro comes standard with GMC Pro Safety; however, you can add Pro Safety Plus if needed. For some, the standard suite of driver-assist features is enough, but others require the added protection of the Pro Safety Plus. Sometimes when you’re shopping for a vehicle, dealers dangle so many upgrades and special packages in front of you, it’s easy to think that you need them all. But, for many drivers, the standard Pro Safety is perfect for their specific needs. It all depends on how you plan on using your truck. Here’s a breakdown of what each suite offers, so you can determine which one you need.

The black interior and dash of a 2023 GMC Sierra 1500 Pro is shown.

The GMC Pro Safety Suite

The standard GMC Pro Safety suite comes with a host of useful tools, including Forward Collision Alert, which will alert you when you’re at risk of running into the vehicle in front of you. It also alerts you if someone is tailgating you too closely. Automatic Emergency Braking will kick in after a Forward Collision Alert if you fail to brake manually in time to avoid a collision. It works when you are driving less than 50 mph and utilizes camera technology. The Following Distance Indicator will come on if you’ve gotten too close to the vehicle in front of you. It will display an image showing you how close you are to the vehicle in front of you, so you can make an informed decision on if it’s time to slow down.

Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning are two systems that work together to notify you if you are drifting from your lane and gently take over steering to get you back in your lane when necessary. The nice thing about these tools is that they can detect when you intentionally leave your lane, especially when your turn signal is on, and will not activate under those conditions.
Front Pedestrian Braking can sense when a pedestrian is in front of your vehicle and will automatically brake if you fail to do so. This system only works when driving at speeds below 50 mph and during the daytime. Please note that it does not work as well after sunset or in other low-light conditions. IntelliBeam High-Beam Headlights detect low light settings, turn on the high beams when needed, and turn them off when appropriate.

The GMC Pro Safety Plus Suite

The GMC Pro Safety Plus contains everything the GMC Pro Safety does and builds on it with more features. This includes Rear Cross Traffic Alert, a useful system for anyone who needs to back out of a driveway on a busy street regularly, alerting you of oncoming traffic behind your vehicle to prevent collisions. Lane Change Alert utilizes radar sensors on the back corners of your vehicle. When you’re moving straight ahead, it detects when vehicles behind you are changing lanes. It can also tell you when someone is coming up at high speed in your blind spot so you don’t change lanes at the wrong time. This is an excellent feature for drivers who do a lot of freeway driving, particularly at high speeds when poorly-timed lane changes can lead to major accidents.

Side Blind Zone Alert uses sensors to notify you when someone is in your blind spot. It will notify you via visual alerts on your side mirrors when someone is in or approaching your blind spot. This reduces the need to crane your neck to look in your blind spot, though checking and confirming what the sensors indicate is always recommended. Rear Park Assist uses sensors to help guide you into parallel and back-in parking spots to prevent dings and scratches. It can help you avoid other vehicles and objects, activating at low speeds.

As a side but relevant note, no matter which driver assist suite you select, you always have the option to add OnStar and GMC Connected Services to your Sierra 1500 Pro. This will mean you get the OnStar Guardian app, as well as Automatic Crash Response, emergency services, Crisis Assist, and Roadside Assist. Each of these can help greatly reduce the aftermath of a collision and ensure you receive the help you need in a timely manner in those crucial moments following a crash.

Do You Need to Upgrade to Pro Safety Plus?

You’ll want to consider the common environments you drive in to determine if you need to upgrade to Pro Safety Plus. Many drivers of the GMC Sierra 1500 primarily use their trucks around work sites or residential and rural roads. For those drivers, the standard GMC Pro Safety is often enough.

However, those operating in many congested and high-speed environments might need to upgrade to the Pro Safety Plus. Systems like Side Blind Zone Alert and Lane Change Alert will especially come in handy for drivers who do a lot of highway driving, where other vehicles are changing lanes at a rapid pace and in unpredictable ways. Additionally, Rear Park Assist might be necessary if you spend a lot of time in the city, where you need to get into tricky parking spots; however, if you mostly stick to work sites, residential areas, and rural areas where parking is pretty open, you might not need this feature.

Rear Cross Traffic Alert is a feature that can be useful for all truck drivers, no matter where you primarily drive. Seeing behind your pickup when backing up can be much harder than seeing behind a smaller vehicle. If you need to back out of your driveway or clients’ driveways onto busy streets, this feature can help prevent major accidents. In general, the Pro Safety Plus is a smart upgrade for Sierra 1500 drivers who will spend time in the city, on highways, and in rural or less-crowded areas.

Having the proper driver-assist features for your habits and normal driving conditions can help prevent costly accidents down the line. However, you don’t want to pay for added features if you don’t really need them. Hopefully, this breakdown can help you determine the ideal safety package for your needs, and if you need more assistance narrowing down your choice, visit your local GMC dealer.