2019 Chevrolet Silverado LTZ
Wyo. — Remarkably quiet and easy to drive, the all-new 2019 Chevy
Silverado makes a strong bid for the title of America’s best
the victory parade yet, though. Ram will unveil a mild-hybrid
version of its own all-new full-size pickup shortly in the pitched
battle for supremacy in the auto industry’s biggest and most
profitable market segment.
Silverado, Ram and the soon-to-come GMC Sierra all aim to take a
slice out of perennial No. 1 seller Ford F-150’s hide.
weighs as much as 450 pounds less than comparable 2018 models,
despite having much more cargo and passenger space. Chevy claims a
Silverado with the short cargo box has more cargo capacity than the
competition’s longer, standard-bed pickups.
That’s a big
deal because it could also make the new Chevy relatively easy to
park and drive in the suburbs and cities where many truck owners
live and work. The added cargo capacity is thanks to one of the
Silverado’s many innovations, a bed with tucked-in walls that fits
the Silverado’s structure like a tailored suit.
Also in the
service of making these big vehicles easy to use in crowded
environments, a short-box Silverado’s overall length increased
just 1.7 inches while its wheelbase grew 4.0. The bed got an inch of
the extra space. The other 3 inches went to rear legroom in the
four-door crew cab models that account for well over half of sales.
I spent a day
driving 2019 Silverado crew cabs through the mountains and high
meadows of western Wyoming and eastern Idaho.
and into mudholes
355-horsepower 5.3-liter V8 pulled effortlessly up a 10-percent
grade in Teton Pass. The route included a short but challenging
off-road course strewn with boulders and a mudhole. I also towed a
passed all tests with flying colors.
dynamic fuel management system seamlessly — and magically, if you
know much about how engines work — lets the V8 engines switch from
using all eight cylinders to one, and every combination in between.
That helps a
four-wheel-drive Silverado get EPA scores of 16 mpg in the city, 22
on the highway and 18 in combined driving with the 5.3L V8 and
eight-speed automatic transmission. The more powerful top 6.2L V8
rated 16 city, 20 highway and 17 combined with a 10-speed automatic.
Chevy says the
cylinder deactivation system improves city fuel economy 5 percent,
and may save even more fuel in real-world driving than on the EPA
impressive, but the remarkable thing is that the driver can’t tell
whether the engine is firing on all eight cylinders, or one, three,
five, any combination. Operating like that would have shaken
previous engines apart, but not before making the vehicle buck like
light strong frame gets a lot of the credit for that, and for a
smooth, quiet ride on rough roads. The Silverado’s frame and body
benefit from what GM calls its mixed materials approach. Unlike
Ford, which got plaudits when it switched the F-150 to a lighter
all-aluminum body a few years ago, the Silverado’s body and frame
use a wide range of materials, including some aluminum and several
different grades of steel to strengthen strength where it’s
The frame is
90 pounds lighter, but strong and stiff to achieve the Silverado’s
vibration-free ride without the electronic systems many other
benefits from new 20- and 22-inch tires with higher sidewalls —
the equivalent of softer springs. The trucks weren’t inclined to
bounce when driven empty, despite a 5-percent increase in towing
capacity and 14-percent bump in payload, the amount of weight they
can carry in their beds.
power steering is smooth and precise. The crew cab Silverados I
drove — a $50,995 LT Trail Boss and top of the line $62,535 High
Country — were maneuverable and easy to handle. The LT and High
Country could account for up to 70 percent of Silverado 1500 sales
was poised on a serpentine road above the aptly named Snake River.
Silverado will have the widest model range in Chevy trucks’
101-year history: Eight distinct models from the luxurious High
Country crew cab to two-door work trucks. Between the spacious crew
cab and two-door regular cab, a "double cab" has smaller
rear doors and back seat than the crew cab. Crew cabs are the
New models for
2019 include the RST, a well-equipped pickup with body color trim
instead of chrome for a more citified look; and the Trail Boss and
Custom Trail Boss, off-road models with a 2.0-inch suspension lift,
locking differential, skid plates and other goodies.
available features include:
cameras for hooking up trailers and towing.
settings for up to five different trailers.
alert and assist.
automatic front braking.
detection and automatic braking at up to 50 mph.
out all the stops for the Silverado’s engineering and model range,
but its most upscale interior clearly trails the luxury of top
competitors from Ford and Ram. While those pickups offer leather fit
for a hand-tooled saddle and detailing like saddle-bag style map
pockets and barbed-wire pattern floor mats, the Silverado High
Country’s interior holds no surprises.
LT Trail Boss I drove featured lots of black soft-touch materials
that felt fine, but didn’t look like anything special. The
Silverado crew cab has plenty of room, storage bins and cubbies,
models with 355-hp 5.3L and420- 6.2L V8s are available now. A 5.3L
without the electronic cylinder deactivation system will be
available for fleet customers buying work trucks.
four-cylinder 2.7L turbocharged four-cylinder engine linked to the
8-speed arrives this fall as the base engine for the volume-selling
LT and RST. A 285-hp 4.3L V6 and six-speed automatic for base work
trucks also arrives this fall.
A 3.0L V6
diesel is due in early 2019.
double cabs begins this fall. Two-door regular cab Silverados —
the least popular and profitable models — are expected in the
first quarter of 2019.
Phelan: email@example.com or 313-222-6731. Follow him on
Twitter @mark — phelan.
at a glance:
6.2L OHV V8
with cylinder deactivation
Power 420 hp,
460 pound-feet of torque
capacity 12,200 lbs.
economy rating: 16 mpg city/20 highway/17 combine