2020 Silverado 1500 New Car Test Drive
Fully redesigned for the new model year, the 2019 Chevy Silverado 1500 full-size pickup truck is more refined and more practical than its 2014-18 predecessor.
In its latest form, the Silverado has lost a lot of weight, dropping up to 450 pounds, helped by use of mixed materials. Cabs are bigger. So are cargo beds, which offer more features. Crew Cabs have gained 2.9 inches of rear legroom. Buyers also have a wider choice of powertrains.
Road manners have improved, and more safety features are available. The model lineup has expanded to eight trim levels: Work Truck, Custom, Custom Trail Boss, LT, LT Trail Boss, RST, LTZ, and High Country. Most Silverados have the Double Cab (extended-cab) or Crew Cab configuration, but a couple of Regular Cab versions remain available. Cargo-bed length may be 5-foot-8, 6-foot-6, or 8-foot.
The base engine is a 4.3-liter V-6 that makes 285 horsepower and 305 pound-feet of torque, driving a 6-speed automatic transmission. Chevrolet's 5.3-liter V-8 now comes in two versions, both rated at 355 hp and 383 lb-ft. The base V-8 works with a 6-speed automatic and includes Active Fuel Management, which shuts down four cylinders under light load conditions. The new V-8 version mates with an 8-speed automatic. GM's new Dynamic Fuel Management (DFM) system can shut down one to six cylinders when appropriate.
Topping the power spectrum is a 6.2-liter V-8 that generates 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet, with 10-speed automatic and DFM.
Two powertrains are new for 2019. Rated at 310 horsepower and 348 pound-feet of torque, the 2.7-liter turbo-4 mates with 8-speed automatic. The 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline-6, whipping up 277 horsepower and a vigorous 460 pound-feet, joined during the 2019 model year.
Silverados may have rear-drive or four-wheel drive with low-range gearing. In automatic mode, the 4WD Silverado can be driven on any road surface.
Safety-feature availability has grown, but the most valuable items are offered only for upper-trim models. A Safety package, standard on High Country and optional for LT trim and above, includes blind-spot monitors, rear cross-traffic alerts, and front/rear parking sensors. Safety Package II, available for LTZ and High Country, adds forward-collision warnings, automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warnings, and active lane control.
Crash-testing by the IIHS resulted in “Good” scores, except for “Marginal” in the small-overlap frontal test on the passenger side. Headlights were rated “Poor.” The NHTSA gave the 2019 Silverado a four-star rating overall and for frontal impact, but five-star for side-impact..
Prices do not include $1,595 destination charge.
Regular Cab Work Truck V-6 ($28,300 with rear-wheel drive, $32,900 with four-wheel drive) on 126.5- or 139.5-inch wheelbase has 4.3-liter V-6, blacked-out trim, vinyl flooring, vinyl (or cloth) bench seating, 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and 17-inch steel wheels.
Double Cab ? 147-inch WheelbaseWork Truck V-6 ($32,200 with RWD, $35,500 with 4WD) is equipped similar to Regular Cab Work Truck.
Custom V-6 ($34,600 with RWD, $37,900 with 4WD) gets cruise control, LED taillights, and 20-inch alloy wheels,
LT Turbo-4 ($36,900 with RWD, $40,200 with 4WD) gets a chrome mesh grille and body accents, 8.0-inch touchscreen, automatic LED headlights, heated power mirrors, and 17-inch alloy wheels.
RST Turbo-4 ($38,800 with RWD, $42,100 with 4WD) includes body-color trim, full LED lighting, foglights, and details that convey a tough street-performance look.
LTZ V-8 ($43,000 with RWD, $46,300 with 4WD) with 5.3-liter V-8 includes power-folding heated mirrors and leather upholstery.
4WD Custom Trail Boss V-6 ($39,500) comes only with four-wheel drive and incorporates the Z71 package, including a 2-inch suspension lift, Rancho shocks, locking differential, skid plates, and 18-inch off-road tires.
4WD LT Trail Boss V-8 ($45,900) gets a two-speed transfer case with Z71 off-road suspension and equipment, including skid plates and 18-inch wheels.
Crew Cab ? 147-inch WheelbaseWork Truck V-6 ($34,600 with RWD, $37,900 with 4WD) is equipped similar to Work Trucks above.
Custom V-6 ($37,000 with RWD, $43,000 with 4WD) is equipped similar to Double Cab Custom.
LT Turbo-4 ($39,300 with RWD, $42,600 with 4WD) is equipped similar to Double Cab LT.
RST Turbo-4 ($41,200 with RWD, $44,500 with 4WD) is equipped similar to Double Cab RST.
LTZ V-8 ($45,400 with RWD, $48,700 with 4WD) is equipped similar to Double Cab LTZ.
High Country V-8 ($53,000 with RWD, $56,300 with 4WD) comes with navigation, heated/cooled front seats, heated outboard rear seats, chrome assist steps, 20-inch wheels, chrome/bronze-finish grille, and a power up/down tailgate,
Crew Cab – 157-inch WheelbaseWork Truck V-6 ($34,900 with RWD, $38,200 with 4WD) is equipped similar to Work Truck on 147-inch wheelbase.
Custom V-6 ($37,300 with RWD, $40,600 with 4WD) is equipped similar to Custom on 147-inch wheelbase.
LT Turbo-4 ($39,600 with RWD, $42,900 with 4WD) is equipped similar to LT on 147-inch wheelbase.
RST Turbo-4 ($41,500 with RWD, $44,800 with 4WD) is equipped similar to RST on 147-inch wheelbase.
LTZ V-8 ($45,700 with RWD, $49,000 with 4WD) is equipped similar to LTZ on 147-inch wheelbase.
4WD Custom Trail Boss V-6 ($42,200) is similar to Double Cab Custom Trail Boss on 147-inch wheelbase.
4WD LT Trail Boss V-8 ($48,600) is similar to Double Cab LT Trail Boss.
High Country V-8 ($53,300 with RWD, $56,600 with 4WD) is similar to High Country on 147-inch wheelbase..