Presto, Here-We-Go! Animated Evolution of GMC from 1902 Rapid Truck to 2015 Sierra Denali HD + Brand Origin Explained

GMC really has some deep truck roots!

Even while Chevrolet hoovers up most of the sales volume these days — and has for many years — the GMC legacy actually predates Chevrolet.


Something that has never changed in the 102 years of this evolution span is the need by Americans for heavy-lifting trucks. The GMC line added two-ton weights, panel cabs and chassis cabs in 1915, and has never looked back.

But what did GMC really “stand” for when added to the General Motors portfolio as GMTC, selling Rapid and Reliance trucks from around 1909? Two clues are right there in the truck’s nameplates: rapid, and reliable.

These became core values, but it took nearly another decade five decades for GMC itself to be christened as a brand, versus just a division of General Motors.

“Brands” as we know them today were largely invented by William C. Durant. Until his ideas about diversified marketing and sales, single marques generally sold just one product under than badge or symbol.

Coca-Cola, for example, was by far the best-known national brand since the 1890s, but even it only sold various sizes of just the one product. Whereas now, Coca-Cola distributes everything from Sprite to Dasani in those big … (often) GMC trucks!


The brand also came to stand for something that was comfortable enough to basically live inside — on your 50 or 80-hour work week.

For a delivery driver or contractor of the time, this often meant nights away from home.

1931 GMC Sleeper Cab Truck


Stay tuned for the next article — touching on much more of GMC’s heavy truck history.



The previous utility trucks were so hot, noisy and difficult to drive by comparison that GMC earned itself the Professional Grade tag very truthfully. Only recently has this been a double threat to other truck brands, both appealing at the lower and cheaper sides of the range with good standard equipment — but also at the upper, upper reaches of the price ranges.

A ‘Denali or not to Denali’ article is coming up in a few days, but I love evolutions and I love to animate. Presto, here-we-go!


White Denali Spin ALL

See all the Sierra HD Denali photos toward the bottom, plus interiors and a few other animations just for fun. Please enjoy this fast blast through time with GMC.




1909-Rapid-Model-F-SIx-Passenger-Combination-Car1912-GMC-Model-V-Panel-Delivery 1918-US-Ambulance 1915-GMC-Platform-Truck 1912-GMC-Electric-Truck 1914-GMC-Electric-Model-10A 1914-GMC-Model-2B-and-4A-Electric-Flareboard-Delivery 1913-GMC-Electric-Truck

1912-GMC-Truck-Chassis-with-Custom-Beverage-Delivery-Body 1925-GMC-Model-K-52-Big-Brute-Cab-and-Chassis ????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????????1930-GMC-Private-Coach 1937-GMC-Suburban-Carryall 1936-GM-Parade-of-Progress-Streamliner



1927-GMC-Cab-Chassis-with-Cannonball-Baker ??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

1956_GMC_Pickup1 1956_GMC_Pickup1-tile 1956_GMC_Pickup2 1956_GMC_Pickup3 1956_GMC_Pickup4 1956_GMC_Pickup5 1956_GMC_Pickup7 1956_GMC_Pickup6 ?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????? ???????????????????????????????

2014 GMC Sierra versus previous-gen truck

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2014 GMC Sierra — Animated Spinners

White Denali Spin ALL Black Sierra Denali2014 GMC Sierra — Photo Gallery




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2014 GMC Sierra HD

GMC 2500HD and 3500HD Denali Sierra Animation header