Magnetic Ride Control Finally Comes To Pickups

Updated Jul 20, 2014

Magnetic Ride Control Coming To A GMC Sierra Dealer Near You

It’s been more than a decade since GM took suspension control to a new level by integrating magnetic ride control (MR) in the 2002 Cadillac Seville STS. Everyone was in awe. 

Over the ensuing years the MagnaRide technology has been refined and its suspension-enhancing traits lauded by all.

Now it’s found under GM’s finest performance cars including the Corvette Stingray and Camero ZL1 — and now it’s under the 2015 GMC Sierra 1500 Denali.

Yes, pickups have finally made their way to the front of the MagnaRide line.

It’s the first time the advanced, electronically controlled damping system has been offered on a full-size truck. About time, too.

GM says Magnetic ride control provides more precise body motion control that correlates with a more refined ride while maintaining payload and trailering capability.

MR is standard on all 2015 Sierra Denali half-ton models, whether equipped with the standard 5.3L V-8 (355 hp) or the optional 420hp 6.2L V-8.

Magnetic ride control is ultra-sophisticated in how it is managed, but rather simple in basic concept: 

The fluid in the MR shocks is loaded with microscopic iron particles. Electromagnetic coils on the shocks magnetize the particles so the viscosity varies according to how the computers deem necessary to provide the optimum ride/handling at that moment. The fluid thickness can be changed in as little as one millisecond. (GM says the Denali’s MR system takes about 5 milliseconds.)

In even more basic terms, shock valving changes happen almost instantly as the truck rolls down the road. 

So for those of us who use our pickups off-road, for towing, or daily driving, having a suspension that instantly compensates for road irregularities and varying loads is almost too good to be true.

But it’s here.

How long it takes for the technology to trickle down to the more mainstream Sierras and Silverados is yet to be seen. When it does, though, pickups will be even more refined without compromising work/recreational ability. 

And who said truck guys can’t have their cake and eat it too?