Last year we saw the all-new for 2019 Chevrolet Silverado hit the streets with its new bolder-than-ever looks. Now, for the 2020 model year, it’s time to shine the spotlight on Chevy’s hardest working pickups – the Silverado HD.
For 2020, Chevrolet has completely redesign the Silverado 2500HD. Redesigning a vehicle is never an easy task but Chevy did a great job at making the new 2500HD still easily recognizable yet updating and enhancing its styling at the same time. The new Silverado 2500 HD has a longer wheelbase than the previous model and if you thought the new Silverado 1500 was big, the new 2500HD is nearly 20 inches longer and an inch taller. Power from the base engine is up as is its towing capacity. In the heavy duty truck game is all about numbers, and there are a lot of big ones surrounding this new HD.
Under the hood of the Silverado 2500 HD is a new standard engine – a 6.6 liter V8 that replaces the previous 6.0 liter V8. This new engine makes 401 horsepower and 464 lb-ft of torque – an improvement of 41 hp and more importantly, 84 lb-ft of torque. But most people that buy heavy duty trucks need even more power. Diesel power. And Chevrolet offers it with the Duramax 6.6 liter turbodiesel V8. Unchanged from last year, this engine produces incredible stump pulling power by delivering a monstrous 910 ft-lbs of torque and 445 hp. The gas engine uses a six-speed automatic while the diesel gets a ten-speed Allison automatic transmission. If the name Allison sounds familiar, that is because they are known for building some of the best transmissions in medium and heavy duty commercial equipment. An emblem on the side of the raised hood of the HD reminds you of the powerhouse that resides underneath it.
Chevy will offer the 2500HD in five trim levels. The base model is the Work Truck, and as the name describes, is strictly a truck to be put to work, and nothing else. Move on to the Custom and the HD is fitted with power accessories, cruise control and larger wheels. The LT starts adding in more creature comforts like power mirrors, nicer cloth interior and a remote locking tailgate. The LTZ, which is how the tester arrived, gets leather interior, heated and power front seats, and power folding mirrors. At the top is the High Country, which includes side-assist steps, vented front seats and a Bose Audio system. Along with the five trim levels, other extras, depending on trim, can be added on.
Making the Silverado HD such a good driver and great worker is its diesel engine. With its 910 lb-ft of torque, there is never a shortage of power. Barely tap the throttle, and the torque is felt – no matter what the speed is. In fact, it makes the HD amazingly quick – able to hit 60 mph from a standstill in the mid six-second range. That’s quick for any vehicle let alone one that tips the scale at more than 8,300 pounds.
On the road, the ride is anything but smooth. Drive over breaks in the pavement and you’ll know it as the rear end bucks a little and tries to break loose. This is, after all, a heavy duty truck, and it is made to work, not delivery a smooth ride. You want a smooth ride, get a Cadillac. You want to pull up to 35,500 pounds and be able to carry a payload of up to 3,900 pounds – then the Silverado HD is your thing.
As big as this truck is on the outside, it’s equally huge inside. Similar to the cabin of the Silverardo 1500, the 2500 has plenty of storage compartments (including two glove boxes), plugs and ports. There is an 8.0 infotainment touchscreen, and while in other vehicles appears big, it seems dwarfed in the 2500 expansive cabin. Backseat passengers will take a liking to the massive amounts of room they have, comparing it to a limousine.
The tester that I was a four-wheel drive Cajun Red LTZ that was equipped with some pricey options, including the Duramax diesel engine ($9,890), the Z71 Off-Road package ($1,080) and the LTZ Premium Package ($7,805) which includes vented front seats, Bose Audio system, a sliding rear window, heated backseats and a rear view camera mirror, heads-up display, among other things. It carried an MSRP of $73,265.
I had the privilege of taking the Silverado 2500HD on a road trip across Texas and into New Mexico. The truck felt right at home on the open road – granted we had no trailer in tow. For me, the driver, the heads-up display was a best friend – not only did it show me my speed, but also the speed limit of the road I was on – great for being in unfamiliar areas. Both passengers had plenty of room and the large number of USB ports prevented any fights from breaking out. Storing luggage in the bed was simple thanks to plenty of hooks to tie them down to. And while I was driving, I could easily check on them with the Bed View camera – one of 15 unique views that the 8 available cameras provide.
For most basic work needs, the regular Silverado 1500 serves quite well. But when the job gets serious and you need a little more umph, it’s good to know that there are trucks out there like the Silverado 2500HD that still provides great looks and comfort, but can get the job done with ease.
– Christopher A. Randazzo
By The Numbers:
2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 4WD LTZ Crew Cab
Base Price: $53,300.00
Price as Tested: $73,265.00
Layout: front-engine / four-wheel drive
Engine: 6.6 liter Duramax Diesel V8
Transmission: 10-speed Allison automatic
Horsepower: 445 hp
Torque: 910 ft-lbs
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