It’s no surprise that full-size pickup trucks are the best-selling vehicles in America. Everywhere you look, pickup trucks are everywhere. But what is surprising is that they are selling so well, resulting in fewer drivers buying four-door cars, leaving auto makers wondering the fate of their sedans. But when you look at the new trucks being offered today, it’s easy to see why sedans are being left behind. Today’s trucks offer nearly all the amenities of a sedan, plus can offer more room – and not to mention the utility that a truck offers that a car just can’t match. One example of such a truck is the Chevrolet Silverado.
Last year the Silverado was been completely redesigned, giving way to a new look and new cabin. And of course, it’s available in many configurations. For those looking at a truck solely as a worker, Chevy offers the Silverado in a two-door regular cab. Those wanting a slightly larger cab to carry more passengers and better accessibility, a four-door extended cab (Double Cab) is available. But for the ultimate people mover, yet still functional as a truck, the Crew Cab is the way to go.
In its sophomore year, the Silverado isn’t taking a break, as it receives a few updates and most importantly, a new diesel engine option.
All the engines available last year continue this year, with the base engine being a 4.3-liter V6 that makes 285 hp and 305 lb-ft of torque and uses a six-speed automatic transmission. This engine is found in the WT, Custom and Custom Trail Boss trim levels. LT and RST models get, believe it or not, a 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. Yes – a four-cylinder engine in this big truck is available, and it tops the V6 by making 310 hp and 348 lb-ft of torque. It’s paired with an eight-speed transmission. The LT Trail Boss, LTZ and High Country gets Chevy’s popular 5.3-liter V8 that still makes 355 hp and 383 lb-ft of torque and is matched up to an eight-speed automatic. If more power is needed, the big 6.2-liter V8 continues on, working with a 10-speed automatic transmission, it makes 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque. It’s available on the LTZ and the High Country – and new for this year, it’s available on the RST and Trail Boss.
Now though, available on LT trim levels on up, is the new Duramax 3.0L Turbo-Diesel. This inline six-cylinder makes 277 hp @ 3750 rpm and 460 lb-ft of torque @ 1500 rpm and provides smooth acceleration, impressive towing capability, and a significant increase in fuel economy compared to the Silverado equipped with V8s.
With the Duramax, the Silverado is able to tow 9300 pounds. That number is good, but if towing is your thing, the Silverado with the 6.2 is a better way to go, since it can handle 13,400 pounds. But if fuel economy is important, the diesel powered Silverado tops V8 models with its 23 mpg rating in the city and 29 mpg on the highway.
Unfortunately for me, the Silverado that Chevy had me in last week wasn’t equipped with the new diesel engine. But I’m not complaining, as the tester, a sporty RST model, was fitted with the huge 6.2 liter V8.
With the mighty V8, the Silverado RST can hit 60 mph in just 5.4 seconds – making it one quick truck. Chevy even offers a Performance Package that increases power to 435 hp by way of a cat-back exhaust and performance air intake.
Other 2020 features include the availability of adaptive cruise control as well as the New Advanced Trailering System option that supports up to 15 camera views (as seen on the GMC Sierra 1500). This system, which can be a huge helping hand when towing, can use various cameras to make an image of your trailer that you can practically see through – so you can easily see what’s behind it.
Just spend a few moments in the Silverado and it’s easy to see why drivers are choosing them over cars. The test vehicle was fitted with heated, two USB ports, leather interior, Apple Carplay and Android Auto, plus enough room, especially in the back seat, to hold a party. And we haven’t even mentioned the truck bed that can carry a payload of more than 2000 pound and can haul over 13,000 pounds.
After spending some drive time in the 2020 Chevrolet Silverado, I can understand the love these big trucks attract. Being in a big vehicle makes most drivers feel safer, and with all the latest technology and creature comforts the Silverado has to offer, it really should come as no surprise that pickup trucks are becoming the new family car.
— Christopher A. Randazzo
By The Numbers:
2020 Chevrolet Silverado Crew RST 4WD
Base Price: $44,800.00
Price as Tested: $54,360.00
Layout: front-engine / four-wheel drive
Engine: 6.2 liter V8
Transmission: 10-speed automatic
Horsepower: 420 hp
Torque: 460 ft-lbs
EPA Fuel Economy: 16 city / 20 highway mpg
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