The Chevy Silverado is a series of full-size and heavy-duty pickup trucks manufactured by General Motors. Since its debut in 1999, more than 12 million Silverados have been sold. For the past few years, the Chevrolet Silverado has been voted in the top three full-size pickup trucks, competing with the Ram 1500 and Ford F-150. The 2019 Silverado is currently ranked No. 3 by U.S. News & World Report.
Prior to the first official Silverado pickup truck, the term “Silverado” was used to describe the trim level for the C/K series of pickup trucks, Suburbans, and Tahoes (1975–1999). The Chevy Silverado has a General Motors Company counterpart: the GMC Sierra. Both are part of the GMT800 platform. Light-duty Silverados are designated as the 1500 and 2500 models, with heavy-duty truck versions named 1500HD, 2500HD, and 3500HD.
First Generation (1999–2007)(Also known as Classic)
The 1999 Silverado model 1500 debuted with a 5.3-liter V8 engine, 270 hp, and 320 ft. lbs. of torque. In its first year, two other engine options were available: the Vortec 4300 V6 and Vortec 4800 V8.
By 2001, Chevrolet introduced one of the most powerful engines to date on its heavy-duty models. The Duramax 6.6-liter turbodiesel produced 300 hp and 520 ft. lbs. of torque.
The body design changed a few times during the first generation, including rear and front ends made to look more like the heavy-duty variant (which ran from 2000 to 2007). Several other variants were introduced, including an SS edition in 2003 and a hybrid model in 2004.
The first generation lasted until 2007 even though Chevrolet introduced the second generation Silverado the previous year.
Second Generation (2007–2013)(Also known as New Body Style)
The second generation debuted with a new interior and exterior design and a new engine. All in all, the second generation was more powerful with better construction.
The new suspension and new steel frame improved the Silverado’s aerodynamics and made it tougher. The 2007 Silverado 1500 featured a 5.3-liter V8 engine with 315 hp and 338 ft. lbs. of torque.
The exterior facelift included a broad face and boxy design with a larger grille. The interior was redesigned to be more comfortable and spacious (with a higher interior storage capacity) than previous models. The top-of-the-line LTZ trim offered a more luxurious appearance, with a unique instrument panel and a large-capacity center console.
In its first year, the second generation Silverado received top accolades in the auto industry, winning Motor Trend’s Truck of the Year and the North American Truck of the Year awards. This generation lasted until 2014, again with third generation models introduced the previous year.
Third Generation (2014–2018)
Bigger, stronger, and more innovative. This generation of Chevy Silverados featured more powerful and more efficient engines, and debuted the CornerStep rear bumper. The third generation light-duty Silverado models debuted in mid-2013 and were released for the 2014 model year, with the new heavy-duty lineup debuting for the 2015 model year.
A diverse lineup was introduced throughout this period, including the commemorative Silverado and Colorado Centennial Editions. The new Silverado also got its first luxury version, the High Country special edition, which features leather upholstery, exterior styling adjustments, and more luxury elements throughout.
The Silverado HD with the Duramax diesel engine is the most powerful Silverado pickup in its history. According to Car and Driver, the 2018 new second-generation Duramax engine can reach 60 mph in only 6.2 seconds, and it produces 920 ft. lbs. of torque.
The third generation Silverado also made standard some features that were previously optional. These include the MyLink infotainment system with a touch screen, OnStar navigation, and Bluetooth technology, to name a few.
The third generation ended with the announcement of the all-new Silverado in January 2018, exactly 100 years after Chevrolet delivered its first brand of trucks to customers.
The All-New Silverado
The 2019 Chevrolet Silverado comes in eight models, each made with different truck owners in mind. It’s considered to have the most functional bed of any full-size truck, including cargo volume in every bed length.
It’s also up to 450 pounds lighter because of Chevy’s use of mixed materials for improved performance. The engine received an upgrade, and there are six engine/transmission choices, including an all-new Duramax 3.0-liter inline-six diesel engine.
Additional features on the new model include a class-exclusive power up/down tailgate (which can be operated by your key, a button, or by hand, as well as task lighting and larger cutouts for CornerStep bumpers to accommodate steel-toed boots for work truck owners.
The Chevy Silverado offers great options for drivers who search for good hauling capacity. The 1500 starts at 12,800 pounds of towing and 1,980 pounds of payload capacity, up to the 3500 version that offers as much as 23,300 pounds of towing and 5,518 pounds of available payload. Check out the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado.
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