Top and Middle Photos by Brian Williams for Brenda Priddy & Company
After months of catching 2011 Chevrolet Silverado Heavy Duty test trucks, our spies have finally caught the production version. These pictures follow last week’s shots of its GM twin, the 2011 GMC Sierra HD 3500 and Sierra HD Denali.
This one-ton Silverado 3500 dually sports a grille that’s remarkably similar to the current 2007-10 Chevy HD, except for what appears to be a slightly smaller top inlet and marginally larger Chevy bow tie. The huge metal flares at the corners of the front bumpers have been softened by reducing their height and extending the plastic front air dam the full width of the bumper at the bottom.
The inlet in the middle of the front bumper that feeds air to the truck's transmission oil cooler is about a third larger than the current inlet – likely for increased cooling needs related to the Silverado’s next-generation 6.6-liter "LML" Duramax V-8 under its hood. In June, we reported word from a source that GM is expected to target over 700 pounds-feet of torque for the LML Duramax.
GM's 2011 HD pickups are also expected to ride on an all new chassis. There’s been some debate among readers about whether GM will keep its current torsion bar independent front suspension or move to a different setup like the Ram HD’s multilink coil-over shocks and solid front axle or Ford Super Duty’s coil sprung SFA. Looking at the side shot, it appears that GM is satisfied with the current front running gear. We can just make out what appears to be torsion bars.
2011 Chevrolet Silverado HD and GMC Sierra HD Production is expected to start in the first half of 2010.