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A blue 2020 Ford F-150, which wins when comparing the 2020 Ford F-150 vs 2020 GMC Sierra 1500, is towing side-by-sides on the highway.

Top Contenders: 2020 Ford F-150 vs 2020 GMC Sierra 1500

What kind of truck suits you better? Do you need more towing or more interior tech? More towing and payload capacity? Or greater customization? Well, there are two models you should be looking at when it comes to comfort, convenience, onboard tech, and capability. Those two models are the 2020 Ford F-150 vs 2020 GMC Sierra 1500.

For a lower price, the Ford F-150 offers more horsepower, torque, towing, and payload capacity than the GMC Sierra 1500. However, the Sierra carries an intimidating classy attitude in a big-bodied light-duty truck, for a price.

Getting Where you Need to Go

If fuel efficiency is part of your decision-making process, consider the differences you will find between each 2020 truck. Both models have a diesel offering for 2020. The GMC Sierra is equipped with a 3.0L Turbo-Diesel V6 gets up to 23 mpg in the city, 30 mpg on the highway, and 26 mpg combined.

The Ford F-150 has a 3.0L Power Stroke V6 diesel engine offering that will run an EPA estimated 22 mpg in the city, 30 mpg on the highway, and 25 mpg combined. In this regard, the diesel offerings are not that much different for either truck.

After the diesel engines, you might be wondering which truck is the most fuel-efficient with a regular gas-powered engine. The F-150 gets up to 20 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. The GMC Sierra, on the other hand, gets up to 17 mpg in the city and 24 mpg on the highway. Without a doubt, you will get farther without filling-up in the 2020 F-150.

A charcoal 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 is parked with a bay and hills in the distance.

Performance and Engine Information

For GMC loyalists, you know as well as the best of them that the Sierra is no slouch. GMC’s best engine tops out at 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque, so you can get your job done and in style. This engine would be a 6.2L V8 paired with a 10-speed engine that can tow up to 12,100 lbs when properly equipped.

GMC offers a smaller V8, a 5.3L engine that yields 355 hp and 383 lb-ft of torque, a 10,000 lb towing capacity, and a payload rating of up to 2,278 lbs. It can be paired with either an 8-speed or 10-speed transmission.

Although GMC’s Dynamic Fuel Management technology does not make a dramatic difference in the fuel economy of the standard 5.3L V8, it does make a difference in the Sierra’s towing capacity by 1,100 more lbs.

Ford’s V8 is a 5.0L TI-VCT nicely paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. It can get up to 395 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque, has an 11,100 lb towing, and supports a 3,270 lb payload capacity.
Ford carries two 3.5L EcoBoost engines that operate on 10-speed automatic transmissions. Both are V6 powerhouses, but one is high-output.

The High Output 3.5L EcoBoost engine is responsible for a best-in-class 450 horsepower and 510 lb-ft of torque. It is also capable of towing up to 12,000 lbs and has a payload capacity of up to 3,000 lbs.

The non-High Output 3.5L EcoBoost is responsible for a higher payload and towing than the High Output, but lower horsepower and torque. This engine’s specs sit at 375 hp and 470 lb-ft of torque, 12,100 lbs towing, and a 3,230 lb payload capacity.

Ford and GMC have their own 2.7L turbocharged engines. Ford’s has a V6, and GMC has a four-cylinder variant. The Ford can get up to 325 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque, has a towing capacity of 8,500 lbs, and a payload rating of 2,470 lbs. GMC’s engine is capable of a lesser 310 hp and 348 lb-ft of torque, up to 6,900 lbs of towing capacity, and a payload of 2,181 lbs.

Back to the Diesel’s

When it comes to the better diesel-powered engine between Ford and GMC, it is a tight race. Each car manufacturer offers a V6 turbocharged 3.0L diesel-powered engine that runs on a 10-speed automatic transmission. GMC’s yields up to 277 hp and gets up to 460 lb-ft of torque. With this variant, you can tow up to 7,400lbs or carry a payload of up to 2,378 lbs.

Ford’s Power Stroke Diesel yields a smaller 250 horsepower and torque rating of 440 lb-ft. However, with this engine, your truck will have a payload rating of 1,900 lbs, less than GMC’s. Yet, its towing capability is up to 11,400 lbs, which dwarfs that of GMC’s diesel engine by 4,000 lbs.

The Tech and Other Features

It’s clear that the 2020 Ford F-150 is the objectively more capable and less expensive than the CMC Sierra 1500. But, does the Sierra pull ahead on the interior and driving experience portion?

If our opinion matters to you, then it’s worth saying that the F-150 provides an as, if not, more comfortable cabin than the less powerful GMC Sierra.

The Sierra comes in 6 total trims, and they are as follows: the Sierra, SLE, Elevation, SLT, AT4, and Denali. The F-150’s trims are 7 in total and are the XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum, off-road-ready Raptor, and the Limited.

The base model GMC Sierra is called the Sierra. It features more standard creature comforts than the Ford F-150 XL while providing a lot less power. Expect Apple CarPlay and Android Auto on the base model Sierra, with a 7” diagonal touchscreen monitor.

Looking at the Price Tag

A white 2020 Ford F-150 is parked at a construction site.

The base model Ford F-150 XL will cost $2,700 (depending on additional fees) less than the base model Sierra. The XL is standard with the more capable and fuel-efficient 3.3L TI-VCT V6 engine. It also features a rearview camera and useful trailer hitch assist. It does not come standard with Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

Moving onto the car company’s second trim level, the F-150 XLT has an MSRP of $34,510. With the increase in trim-level, the driver experience is heightened with Ford’s voice-activated digital assistant dubbed SYNC 3. SYNC 3 comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

GMC’s second level truck is the SLE. At an MSRP of $39,395, the SLE is only available in the extended cab size. It comes with a higher-end appointed interior with wood trim interior door accents, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

As you continue to graduate through the F-150 lineup, you’ll move to the F-150 Lariat. Here, the F-150 gains wood-trim interior accents, an 8” diagonally-wide infotainment screen, access to Ford’s engine starting and remote temperature-setting smartphone app, and more. The Lariat has an MSRP of $42,500.

GMC’s competitor to Ford’s Lariat is the Elevation, at an MSRP of $41,895. With little standard options different from the lower-end Sierra SLE, the Elevation gains exterior additions and little interior ones. Storage underneath the heated 40/20/40 split front seats come standard.

Next, the Ford F-150 King Ranch brings LED headlamps, a premium leather interior, and Ford’s TI-VCT V8 powerhouse. The King Ranch has an MSRP of $52,740.

Each manufacturer sells a factory modified off-road ready version of their light-duty pickup truck as well. GMC is welcoming the AT4 with a more durable carbon fiber composite bed. It also features a 2” factory lift and comes available with the fuel-efficient and torque heavy 3.0L Duramax Turbo-Diesel engine. The MSRP for the AT4 is $51,000.

The well-known Ford Raptor is promising to turn side-walking heads with its 2020 return.

The Raptor features Ford’s top-of-the-line, V6 3.5L EcoBoost High Output engine capable of 450 hp and 510 lb-ft of torque. The Raptor is equipped with Fox Live-Valve Off-Road Racing Shox to make your off-roading cushier. A most underrated fact about the Raptor is its 36-gallon fuel tank: guaranteeing miles of dirt-covered adventures, un-interrupted by gas-stations. The MSRP for the Raptor is $53,205.

Some Exclusive Features

The famous MultiPro Tailgate on the GMC Sierra, with six different maneuverable options to load, store, and secure your supplies, does not come standard with the base model. It comes available on the Sierra SLT, for a base price of $45,895. The Sierra SLT trim also offers the driver a larger infotainment screen (8” diagonally) and leather-trimmed front and rear seats.

Next, an F-150 Platinum purchase will bring home that sought-after, heated steering wheel and a remote tailgate release. The Platinum has an MSRP of $55,270.

When it comes to the top of the line Sierra, you want the Denali for an MSRP of $54,700. The Denali comes standard with a Bose Premium speaker system, 8” wide touchscreen infotainment screen, and available with the 3.0L Duramax engine.

The highest-end for the F-150, the Limited, comes standard with Ford’s powerhouse 3.5L EcoBoost High Output. A twin-panel moonroof, 360-degree camera, and rear heated seats come standard with the Limited. The Limited has an MSRP of $67,485.

In our opinion, the Ford F-150 reigns as the smarter purchase not only in a financial sense but from a reliability perspective as well.

Making Your Final Choice

All-in-all, the 2020 F-150 and GMC Sierra prove as quality tools in the light-duty truck segment. There are plenty of features that make either truck a noble choice, but you’ll find better performance and a more affordable choice with the 2020 Ford F-150.

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