A lot of people today use trucks to do “work” things, like haul lumber and dirt, but I like to assume the truck was created particularly for tailgating. Load the bed with a cooler, a grill, and chairs, and you have a celebration base camp. Add a tarp and a bunch of water, and it is a swimming pool. The point is, the truck bed is not just for hauling points, it is for hanging out. Being from a modest southern town, I spent numerous of my formative years drinking beer in the back of a truck in a field off the edge of Old Man Wilson’s farm. Tailgating on an actual tailgate is sublime.
What’s strange is that the actual tailgate of a truck hasn’t evolved significantly in the final 5 or six decades. Fortunately, 2019 has brought us a tailgate arms race, with various truck makers attempting to 1-up each and every other with new and enhanced styles. Ford kick-began the competitors with its F150 tailgate, which has a constructed-in step that slides out of the gate, and Dodge and Honda introduced versions with barn-door-style access. But GMC’s new MultiPro tailgate ($66,445 for complete truck create, as tested) is subsequent-level cool, with a Transformer-like design and style that shines brightest exactly where it counts: in the sport of kings that is tailgating.
The MultiPro drops flat, like a traditional tailgate, but it also has a smaller sized inner gate with its personal hinge, so you can raise and reduced the two tailgate panels in unique combinations based on the circumstance. Lower the major gate and then reduced the inner gate to build a step for straightforward bed access maintain the major tailgate raised, but plunk down the inner gate to build a operate station comparable to a standing desk knock down the major gate, but pop the inner gate halfway open to extend the truck bed by two feet. The MultiPro comes typical on all models of the GMC Sierra, which is a beefy, light-duty truck that is comparable to the new Ford F150 and Dodge Ram. Though the gate was made to boost Sierra’s operate capabilities, I spent a week driving the Sierra 1500 AT4 to see how the MultiPro impacted the crucial things—hauling outside gear and drinking beer.
Very first, you really should know that the Sierra 1500 is a beast. It is got a six.two-liter V-eight engine with a ten-speed automatic transmission that packs 420 horsepower, 460 pounds of torque, and up to 12,000 pounds of towing capacity. The AT4 is a 4-wheel-drive package that turns this operate truck into a completely capable off-road machine. But do not let the operate-truck bones fool you: this is a luxury vehicle loaded with conveniences, like air-conditioned seats that vibrate when you veer out of your lane. It is an extremely comfy and roomy automobile that is enjoyable in the dirt and plush on the highway. The bed itself is wide (just more than 50 inches) but comparatively brief at 69.9 inches. GMC tends to make up for it with the MultiPro the capacity to extend the bed by two feet is fantastic for carrying lumber.
Though the MultiPro provides a plethora of customizations, there are not a lot of characteristics that impact how you carry gear. I loaded a couple of ten-foot paddleboards into the truck on various days and had the tailgate up in a traditional mode to maintain the boards in. I also hung mountain bikes more than the tailgate just as I would in any other truck. Many tie-down points in each and every corner of the bed created it straightforward to lock bikes and strap down unwieldy products, but the MultiPro gate didn’t come into play even though carrying that gear. Nonetheless, it was a rock star when it was time to camp and tailgate.
GMC sells a camping package that consists of a mattress and Napier Sportz Truck Tent that fits more than the bed. I appreciate the notion, for the reason that it lets you drop the tailgate to add additional legroom, which signifies an individual more than six feet tall could commit the evening in this 5-foot-eight-inch truck bed without the need of feeling cramped. I wasn’t in appreciate with the tent itself, even though. The connection points in between the tent and truck are significantly less than bomber, and the polyester-taffeta walls really feel thin. I spent a evening in it, and even though it is lots roomy and completely appropriate if you are only going to camp sometimes, I’d appear into a sturdier selection if truck camping or overlanding is your factor. The tent does not hold up nicely in higher winds, and I assume the material would start to put on just after various utilizes. If you are comfy spending $60,000 on a truck, I’d commit a small extra money for a superior tent.
But the tailgate itself is a factor of beauty. Like I stated, it is ostensibly made to improve the load-hauling capabilities and accessibility of the bed for people today who “work.” And that it does converting the gate into a step tends to make loading a cooler complete of beer a breeze. But even superior, lowering the tailgate into a step also turns it into a comfy bench, comprehensive with handy side tables with cup holders—a function that proved to be important through postride beer sessions. You can even take it up a notch and get the Denali version of the truck and tailgate, which has constructed-in speakers and ports for your telephone.
Or you can maintain the major tailgate closed and drop just the inner gate to build a workstation that operates like a standing desk. And by workstation, I genuinely imply bar. I applied it various instances to serve cocktails and snacks even though camping. And that is what the MultiPro excels at: producing a space exactly where you want to hang out. I discovered myself searching for causes to commit time on the back of the truck. Just completed riding? Stick about, and let’s speak about our Strava segments. Waiting to choose up your children from college? You may perhaps as nicely chill out in the back of the truck. Knocked out some epic grocery buying? You really should have a beer in the parking lot. Lower the tailgate into bench mode, slide your cooler to the edge of the bed, have a beer, and start off carving up the cheese plate. GMC’s Sierra plays in a crowded field complete of well known trucks, but its new MultiPro tailgate slays the après scene like no other.
Lead Photo: Graham Averill