Words: Stephen Spyropoulos
Photography: Stephen Spyropoulos
Published: May 17, 2016
For years the Chevrolet Silverado and its twin, the GMC Sierra, have been the gold standard for full-sized pickups. After it was redesigned in 2014, the Silverado managed to become an even more powerful contender. Thanks to the overhaul, the new Silverado now handles like that of a smaller SUV, the cabin is pin drop quiet, and the tailgate even has a feature to help it from dropping open like a sack of potatoes. Throughout our test week, the 5.3-litre V8 engine even returned impressive fuel economy.
You’ve seen the commercials that ask consumers, “which pickup has best in class [blank] …” emulating the Price is Right. The onlookers took their chances guessing which truck from the Big 3 – Ford F-150, RAM 1500, Chevrolet Silverado – would be selected. To them, the results were shocking. Best in Class V8 fuel economy? Chevy. Best in class V8 horsepower? Ding dong, Chevy again. Best in class V8 towing? You guessed it, Chevrolet Silverado. Ford and Ram lovers eat your heart out.
Prospective buyers can now choose between three all-new engines that incorporate Chevy’s legacy of dependability ethos. Each can be paired with a 6- or 8-speed automatic transmission depending on select trims. Our tester was fitted with the 355-hp, 5.3-litre V8 which can be now paired with the aforementioned 8-speed for 2016. Also available is a 285-hp 4.3-litre V6, and a 6.2-litre V8 heartthrob that pumps out 420 horsepower.
We found that our 5.3-litre V8 had ample power but lacked the same je ne sais quoi that you get from the thrust of a V8 found in RAM 1500 or Toyota Tundra. The 8-speed autobox upshifts smoothly and very quickly, but it can be somewhat reluctant to downshift, which can make a truck feel underpowered. Neither is the Silverado’s braking top-drawer, this reservation was had when I found stopping distances to be very long on wet pavement – could possibly be due to the less-than-average Goodyear Wrangler SR-A tires equipped.
This specific tester came loaded with the infamous Z71 off-road package. Paired with red and white stickers, beefy 275 section wide all-terrain tires, and a lift kit featuring Rancho® monotube shocks give the Silverado more ground clearance to tackle any kind of terrain.
As many people will attest to, the iconic bowtie truck is one of the few, if not only, full-sized pickups that drive like a smaller sized SUV. Apart from the gigantic wheelbase, the Silverado is actually easy to operate in cramped and narrow areas like downtown Toronto. Steering is light, throttle response is predictable, and the mirrors are wide enough to peer around blind spots. However without any load in the bed, the Silverado rides stiff over bumps and road ruts. With no added weight to keep the rear tires on the pavement, too much throttle input can cause the wheels to spin easier than you’d expect.
Adding to the rugged look, the Silverado gains new front designs with bold horizontal elements, a sculpted hood to accentuate the V8 that lays underneath, and LED signature lighting in keeping up with the times. Also new for 2016 is the Iridescent Pearl Tricoat paintjob that was featured on this specific tester.
Interior wise, this Silverado receives the same treatment as more upscale GMC Denalis and Cadillacs. The Cocoa Dune brown leather seats are comfortable, supple, cooled, and heated. Feel free to keep your ten-gallon hat on inside the Silverado as you trek down the freeway. You’ll find a ton of cabin space for you to wiggle around. Even the rear seat occupants have ample room to stretch.
Wireless phone charging is included on every Silverado model that is equipped with front bucket seats. New for 2016, Chevy has included an updated 8-inch-diagonal touch-screen MyLink system that features a faster processor for a smoother and faster user interface. It is important to note that although Apple CarPlay is available, Android Auto is currently not supported and is set to come later in the year.
A major plus is the sheer connectivity of this truck. You’ll find access to GMs Wi-Fi hotspot, a plethora of USB slots, auxiliary ports, 12-volt power points, and an 115V/150W outlet is within easy reach. Bluetooth connectivity, like every other GM, is quick to connect and easy to use. The buttons and dials are all huge and have a good grip, making it easy for workers wearing gloves to dial in controls with ease.
Priced at $66,175, the Silverado is no small investment. Buyers will find solace in the proven reliability and in the Silverado’s workhorse nature. This truck can handle a variety of tasks ranging from hauling wood to hauling groceries. If you plan on towing, the Trailering Package includes a hitch, wiring for trailer lights, an integrated trailer brake controller, and a locking rear differential for better traction. The 5.3-litre V8 4WD Crew Cab with its 3.42 rear axle ratio can tow up to 4,354 kg, while the 6.2-litre engine option can raise this amount to 5,443 kg.
The full-sized pickup class has always been extremely competitive between the Big 3, and from Nissan and Toyota as well. The Silverado evens the playing field by sporting defining qualities such as being frugal on gas, easy to drive, and coming straight out of the box with highly sought after safety and connectivity technology.
型号 Model: 2016 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71 4WD LTZ Crew Cab
顏色 Paint Type: Iridescent Pearl Tricoat
廠方建議售價 Base Price: $54,620
試車售價 Price as Tested: $66,175
軸距 Wheelbase(mm): 3,645
長闊 Length/Width/Height (mm): 5,843 / 2,032 / 1,879
車重 Curb weight (kg): 2,467
引擎 Engine: 5.3L direct injected V8
最大馬力 Horsepower: 355 hp @ 5,600 rpm
最高扭力 Torque: 383 lb-ft @ 4,100 rpm
波箱 Transmission: 8-speed automatic
擺佈 Engine & Drive Configuration: Front engine, 4WD
油耗 Fuel Consumption ( City / Highway / Combined ) L/100km: 15.9 / 11.2 / 13.8
油耗 Observed Fuel Consumption (L/100km): 13.9
輪胎尺碼 Tires: P275/55R20