Body Type:Pickup Truck
For Sale By:Dealer
Model: Sierra 1500
Sub Model: EXT CAB 4X4
Exterior Color: Other
Number of Cylinders: 8
Huntersville, North Carolina, United States
Forget Corvette versus Viper. When it comes to important head-to-head comparisons, fullsize trucks are where domestic automakers really care. And until the redesigned Ford F-150 makes its debut, the Chevrolet Silverado is going to have plenty to brag about thanks to a new Consumer Reports shootout against the Ram 1500.
It was a tight race among these V8-powered titans, but the all-new 2014 Silverado (and its GMC Sierra twin) barely edged out Ram's updated pickup with a score of 81 points - enough to make it the institute's top-rated fullsize truck on the market. Its narrow victory over the Ram, which finished just three points back, was due to its superior fuel economy, better towing and payload capacity and conveniences like a lower step-in height, easy-to-use tailgate and rear bumper steps that make loading and unloading less of a chore.
Importantly, CR notes that buyers with less heavy-duty truck needs might actually prefer the Ram over the Chevrolet, since its high points include a smoother ride thanks to its coil spring rear suspension, dominant infotainment system with Uconnect, and a big thumbs up for the available Hemi engine and eight-speed automatic transmission.
According to General Motors, owners "just love off-roading with [its fullsize body-on-frame sport utility vehicles]," namely the 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban and GMC Yukon. If that's the case, it's a bit odd that sales of the previous generation of these models with the Z71 off-road package didn't sell particularly well.
Perhaps, considering this disconnect between owner's thoughts and desires with actual sales, it's not surprising that General Motors is reportedly "considering" an off-road specific model. That means the package would include styling changes and badges along with suspension modifications and larger wheels with appropriately sized fender flares.
There's no indication if the off-road model would be called Z71 or when it may potentially go on sale, assuming it ever goes on sale at all.
General Motors has just become the first pickup truck manufacturer to receive five-star overall vehicle scores in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's New Car Assessment Program. The updated safety standards, which went into effect in 2011, are more strenuous than the previous NHTSA curriculum and involve collecting both more and more substantial data, reflecting the improved safety inherent in newer vehicles. This feat is made more impressive by the fact that both Ford and Ram have released brand-new trucks since the new testing went into effect - GM's victory is no technicality.
The rating only applies to the redesigned, light-duty Silverado, Sierra and their upmarket variants, High Country and Denali, respectively, while only Crew Cab variants were tested. Considering that the four-door body style will make up 60 percent of GM's light-duty truck sales, the exclusion of the other variants seems reasonable.
This news is sure to be yet another feather in GM's pickup-oriented cap. Be sure to scroll down for video of the crash testing, as well as the full press release from General Motors.