Is GMC’s safety rating for large trucks better than Ram’s?

GMC's large truck received a higher safety rating from the IIHS than Ram's large truck. Lower your car insurance rates by up to 8% with safety feature upgrades.

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Zaneta Wood, Ed.S. has over 15 years of experience in research and technical writing bringing a keen understanding of data analysis and information synthesis to reach a wide variety of audiences. She studied adult education and instructional technology at Appalachian State University as well as technical and professional communication at East Carolina University. Zaneta has prepared technical p...

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Joel Ohman is the CEO of a private equity backed digital media company. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, author, angel investor, and serial entrepreneur who loves creating new things, whether books or businesses. He has also previously served as the founder and resident CFP® of a national insurance agency, Real Time Health Quotes. He has an MBA from the University of South Florida. Jo...

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Reviewed by Joel Ohman
Founder & CFP®

UPDATED: Sep 15, 2020

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Here's what you need to know...

  • The 2017 Dodge Ram models and the 2017 GMC Sierra models have similar safety ratings in many areas, but there are a few important differences
  • The safety rating on your new truck will play a direct role in the cost of your truck insurance premium
  • Comparing truck insurance premium quotes before you decide which truck to buy can help you to save money on coverage for the years you own the vehicle


Many truck buyers are focused on finding the most well-equipped and powerful truck that they can afford.

While getting excellent value for your money and finding a model that you love are important when buying a new vehicle, you do not want to overlook the important factor of safety ratings.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety / Highway Data Loss Institute has created a safety analysis of numerous 2017 large truck models, and this analysis can help to guide you into making a thoughtful buying decision.

Safety ratings from the IIHS can be a good indicator of the potential well-being of you and your loved ones while driving in a new truck, and they also could be used to partially determine your auto coverage rates.

Many leading insurance providers analyze safety ratings for vehicles when calculating a premium amount, and exploring the IIHS safety rating results may help you to buy a safer vehicle that is more affordable to insure.

No matter what vehicle you choose, make sure to use our free quote tool above! 

Safety Ratings for the Dodge Ram and GMC Sierra Trucks

Some truck buyers commonly assume that the Ram and Sierra pickup trucks would have similar safety ratings as any other type of large truck on the market today.

However, when you take a closer look at how these truck models compare to the truck that earned the highest safety ratings for 2017, you will notice a considerable difference.

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What the 2017 Large Trucks Safety Ratings Tell Us

The IIHS reviewed a group of one dozen large truck models for 2017, and this includes two Dodge Ram trucks and two GMC Sierra 1500 trucks.

Both the crew cab and quad cab models of the Ram 1500 and the crew cab and double cab models of the GMC Sierra 1500 were analyzed for this safety rating.

The vehicles received ratings in eight distinctive categories, and there were noticeable differences between them in some areas. These eight categories were bundled into three larger safety groups for easy classification. The ratings are as follows:

  • good
  • acceptable
  • marginal
  • poor

Crashworthiness

The 2017 Ram quad cab and crew cab had a “marginal” rating for Front Small Overlap and Roof Strength, and both vehicles ranked “good” for Side, Front Moderate Overlap, and Head Restraints and Seats.

The Sierra double cab rated “average” for Front Small Overlap, and the quad cab version rated “marginal” for this category. For all other categories of Crashworthiness, the two Sierra models had a “good” rating.

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Crash Avoidance and Mitigation

The Crash Avoidance and Mitigation section has two categories, and these each explore the truck’s ability to prevent or reduce the severity of accidents.

The Ram quad cab and crew cab were rated as “marginal” for Headlights, and they both did not receive a rating for Front Crash Prevention.

Both the Sierra double cab and crew cab models had an “average” result for Headlights, and they had a “basic” result for Front Crash Prevention.

Child Seat Anchors LATCH

The last section, LATCH, reviews how easy or simplified the child seat anchors are to use. The LATCH rating for the Ram quad cab and crew cab models was “marginal.”

The Sierra double cab also had a “marginal” rating in this area, and the crew cab had a “poor” result.

2017 Top Safety Pick and/or 2017 Top Safety Pick+

The IIHS has created the Top Safety Pick honor and the Top Safety Pick+ award for the vehicles that excel in primary safety test areas.

You can see that both trim levels for the Ram and the Sierra pickup trucks fell short of the mark in several prime safety areas each, and because of this fact, none of these models were given the title of 2017 Top Safety Pick from the IIHS.

Is GMC Safer Than Ram for Large Trucks in 2017?

Of the four Dodge Ram and GMC Sierra trucks reviewed by the IIHS for safety ratings, the GMC Sierra 1500 with a double cab configuration received the best ratings.

The Ram trucks fell short of the GMC’s ratings in the areas of Front Small Overlap, Roof Strength, Front Crash Prevention and LATCH.

While you may be inclined to lean toward buying this model for the important matter of safety, remember that multiple factors should influence your buying decision rather than safety ratings only.

As important as safety ratings are when buying a new pickup truck, remember that the cost of the vehicle, the overall value, consumer ratings, and other factors must also be analyzed carefully if you want to buy the right truck for your needs and budget.

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Request Truck Insurance Quotes Today

One final factor to consider before you decide between buying a Sierra or a Ram truck model is insurance cost.

Safety ratings and auto insurance premiums go hand in hand, but other vehicle factors can also influence insurance costs, such as the power of the engine and the truck’s value.

Because you understandably want to keep the cost of ownership as low as possible, comparing a few truck coverage quotes from reputable providers for each of the trucks that are on the top of your list is a wonderful idea that may result in financial savings.

Don’t miss out on our free quote tool below! Just enter your zip code and start comparing rates now!

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