A white 2021 Ram 1500 is shown parked in a field next to cows.

Power, Luxury, or Both? The 2021 Ram 1500 vs 2021 Sierra 1500

Trucks are the most competitive body style within the automotive industry. The specs are neck and neck across the board, and those who stand by their brand genuinely feel that it is better than any other truck brand out there. While the passion is real, sometimes the specs do not match up with the fan’s persistence. That’s why we’re taking a look at two popular competing brands today. Let’s compare the 2021 Ram 1500 vs 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 to see which model is fueled by facts rather than passion.

Why Do You Want a Truck?

While having a fancy, visually appealing ride is fun and all, it’s not a good enough reason to drop thousands of dollars on a new vehicle. If you’re like most people, you want a new truck for the power, not the looks. This is important if you’re trying to choose between the 2021 Ram 1500 and the 2021 GMC Sierra 1500. On the surface, both models are, of course, tow-capable, and they include several towing technology features. However, the main catch here is the Ram 1500 tows more and costs less.

When you go for the Tradesman Quad-Cab trim and configuration and pair it with the 5.7-liter HEMI V8 engine, you can tow up to 12,750 pounds with this half-ton beast. This configuration is cheaper than the GMC Sierra 1500, which is only capable of towing 7,900 pounds. Even the Ram’s payload is slightly higher than the Sierras, landing at 2,300 pounds versus the Sierra’s 2,250 pounds. Unless you are focused more on luxury and less on power, which we highly doubt, you’ll benefit much more from the 2021 Ram 1500.

A grey 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 is shown from above driving on a boardwalk.

Side-By-Side Off-Roading and Racing Comparisons

Another common reason to purchase a truck aside from towing and hauling is off-roading. Both the 2021 Ram 1500 and the 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 offer off-road-specific trims. The Ram’s is the TRX, and the Sierra’s is the AT4 trim.

Let’s talk about some main off-roading capability specs. It may not sound like much, but ground clearance is one of the most important specs you want to consider when purchasing an off-roader. This, combined with proper stock skid plates, helps keep drivers from receiving underbody damage on the trails. The Ram 1500 TRX’s ground clearance level is 11.8 inches, which is an entire inch higher than the GMC Sierra 1500. In addition to this, the TRX also has 13 inches of front suspension travel and 14 inches of rear suspension travel, which determines just how much it can give in the front and back. In short, this model is incredibly flexible on rough terrain and steep inclines and declines.

The 2021 Ram 1500 TRX model also produces more horsepower and torque than any other model in its class. In fact, no other truck on the market currently reaches as much horsepower as this model. It produces as much as 702 horses and 650 pound-feet of torque thanks to its turbocharged HEMI V8 engine. So, not only can you head off-road, but you can head to the drag strip as well.

Speaking of which, the TRX trim offers yet another feature that the Sierra does not, which is Launch Mode. The Launch Control and Launch Assist features regulate your engine RPM and wheel slip feedback so you can simply “launch” – aka quickly accelerate – off the line.

Finally, the Ram 1500 TRX includes up to 8 different Drive Modes, whereas the GMC Sierra only includes up to 6 altogether, but some are only featured on the 2WD model, while some are 4WD exclusive. One of the Ram’s impressive drive modes allows drivers to customize their driving experience, choosing their own steering style, torque levels, suspension, and more. All the main reasons you want to buy a truck are covered when you choose the Ram over the Sierra. Whether it’s towing and hauling, off-roading, or racing, the clear powerhouse is the 2021 Ram 1500.

What’s the True Luxurious Model?

Like all other GMC models, the 2021 Sierra 1500 is marketed towards luxury buyers. But what if we told you that the 2021 Ram 1500 is actually considered to be the most luxurious truck in its class? While the GMC Sierra is designed with luxury in mind, the Ram’s icing on the cake is just as good and better.

The 2021 Ram can include a massive 12-inch infotainment screen with built-in navigation, Apple CarPlay and Android Audio streaming, and even a 7-inch driver information display in addition to a classic dashboard. You’ll still get those classic, easy-to-read dials, but the information display is also present and customizable to display the information you care about most. If you want to know your fuel economy stats or keep an eye on your trailer, you can do it all right here on the dash.

Furthermore, while the GMC Sierra does include an option for a high-quality Bose audio system, the Ram 1500 has the best available sound system in its class. It uses a 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system paired with a noise-canceling interior to create the perfect listening experience.

Most importantly, the interior cab’s comfort is top-notch as it offers a rear best-in-class legroom rating and the only rear reclining seats in its class. You can even completely readjust the Ram’s center console if needed, and when configured correctly, the console can store a 15-inch laptop if necessary. The best part about this is that you can even charge the laptop while it’s in storage here, thanks to the built-in USB ports.

The Sierra does definitely compete with this as a luxury-themed model. It also includes sound-canceling technology and impressive rear seating space. While its rear seating section isn’t AS spacious as the Ram’s, and it doesn’t include rear reclining seats, it does offer rear heated seats, which is another rare feature for trucks. But despite these perks, the Ram provides impressive perks of its own, along with a much better performance offering and lower pricing than the 2021 GMC Sierra 1500.

A blue 2021 Ram 1500 is shown from the side parked in a city after winning a 2021 Ram 1500 vs 2021 GMC Sierra 1500 comparison.

Who Wins the Battle?

It’s quite evident that the 2021 Ram 1500 is the better option when compared with the 2021 GMC Sierra 1500. While GM fans everywhere may disagree, the facts are that the new Ram offers more power, a better off-roading trim, and a perfectly luxurious interior. Another perk to buying a Ram is that if you don’t want the luxury factor added in there, you don’t have to buy it that way. The Sierra starts off at a much higher base-level price due to its consistent luxury feature, but the Ram is open to both driver types. When you want to save money and reach the same amount of power without unnecessary tech features, the 2021 Ram 1500 is your friend.

None of this means that the Sierra is a bad truck. It’s just not the ideal option for those who are power-thirsty when it comes to vehicles, especially on a budget. When the Sierra’s performance stats start to line up with the Ram’s, maybe we’ll think differently. But for now, the Ram is a better option, while the Sierra is expensive, averagely capable, and nice to look at.