Chevy Silverado Heavy Duty Beats Competition in Manufacturer Testing

Chevy Silverado Heavy Duty Beats Competition in Latest Round of Manufacturer Testing

The rivalry and chest-beating among heavy-duty truck manufacturers continues as strong as ever. This time, Chevrolet is calling out both Ford and Ram by comparing three-quarter-ton and one-ton trucks in seven feats of strength in a series of “HD to HD” videos on Chevy’s website.

"We wanted to get away from spec-sheet comparisons and show how these trucks perform in the real world," said Rick Spina, global vehicle line executive for General Motors full-size trucks. "To do so, we engaged an independent company to test the Silverado HD with the [6.6-liter] Duramax [V-8] diesel and Allison transmission head-to-head with the competition, and record those tests for everyone to see."

The tests include acceleration comparisons at sea level and at 6,000 feet, highway-speed passing, brake fade and exhaust brake performance on a long downgrade, plus squat measurements under load and gauging frame stiffness during twist-ditch simulations. All the tests were conducted with cargo in the truck beds or heavy trailers or both simultaneously.

Most of the tests we’ve done ourselves, during the Heavy-Duty Shootout and last year’s Rumble in the Rockies. The real eye-opener is the twist ditch test (below). The Super Duty’s open c-channel frame shows a significant amount of torsional bending compared to the Silverado’s fully-boxed chassis.

To ensure none of the testing was rigged in the Silverado’s favor, the Chevy team hired AMCI to manage all of the testing. AMCI has been used as an independent neutral party to validate multiple manufacturers’ claims for over 30 years. Ram recently used AMCI to test its 4500 and 5500 chassis cab trucks to verify bragging rights for best-in-class braking and cost of ownership.

The only things we can critique about this round of testing are that it didn’t include fuel economy -- which Ford claims the Super Duty is best in class for diesel mileage -- and the new High Output version of the Ram 3500 isn’t used (it’s not on sale until June).

We’ll fix both of those issues this summer. Until then, take a look at the videos:


Zero to 60 MPH Acceleration

Acceleration at Altitude

Bumper Sag

Passing Ability

Wheel Brake Fade

Exhaust Brake Test


I wonder if the Ram beat or matched the Silverado in the test that it was not included in.
If it did then it would be very interesting what the acceleration testing would be like with the High Output Cummins Ram, as the acceleration tests were the only ones the Ram were shown in and lost badly in.

I'm not surprised. Good job GM!

I can't wait to see how the HO Cummins does.

I wonder why they didn't, at least, report the numbers of the Ram in all of the test.

OK, We know, that GM is facing FoMoCo test-ads, but my question is: why DODGE (yes!) Ram didn't perform in each one test out there? Not to mention, that Dodge is boosting the performance on the HD Cummins Rams with automatic, but maybe they haven't been available at that time yet...

If Ford responds about the frame twist, they'll probably say that frame twist is a good thing, while holding fast that it is evil in 1/2 ton trucks.

my guess is they couldn't get there hands on the high out cummins yet cause it come out later this year i still think it would be slower and not tow as well to because its still lacking in hp even tho tq has gone up to 800

I thought they dumped Howie. I tried to watch them but couldn't take any more after the first video. I give credit to GM for pointing out their advantages, but if they would drop Howie from the footage they would gain some credibility.

Just curious, how did the Ram fare in the twist test? It's nice to know that a Chevy won't turn into a pretzel off road, but they have no ground clearance.

chevy sucks ford need a bit more tuning on the suspension thats all

Does anyone know if the GM HD's are still riding on there bump stop in the front IFS setup?

GM needs to put this frame under their Express and Savana vans, because I know after driving a whole fleet of these around NYC and its crappy roads, the doors don't want to close correctly after a few thousand miles b/c of frame twist.

Nice to see Chevrolet coming up with some decent advertising ( especially using AMCI which gives it more credablility than the Ford ads ) I do think they cherry picked the results a bit by not showing the Ram winning the braking tests or the frame tests. Overall nice job and confirms the results that Mike and PUTC got!!! Now hopefully Ram's new 800 lbft Cummins can keep up with the competition because we know the rest of the truck can.


I am betting you are right. I know for a fact the ram would have beat the chevy on the exhaust brake test.

Too bad they don't include all the trucks for every result instead of the ones that Chevy won.

No doubt the Ford Chassis need updating, the domination of the F-150 shows what Fords next SD will bring. Good job Chevy to date, and Dodge for winning what was not shown.

Good test Chevy...especially the twist. NICE tailgate.

Oh how I love head to head comparison tests to determine a real world winner. Ford has always been known as a work truck has dominated the heavy duty market. GM knew they had to improve their heavy duty trucks to be compeititve so they gave it a all new fully boxed frame, bigger and better brakes, beefed up their suspension and improved the tried and true Durmax diesel.

The ford fanatics were saying that fords new 6.7 liter power stroke would beat the durmax in the shootout and when that didn't happen they were shocked and couldn't believe the results. They don't have alot to say now except trying to make every excuse and saying the tests were not fair.

Are these tests going to have a die hard ford fan buy a Chevy Silverado? no. but it does prove that fords claim of having most horse power, most torque, payload capacity, towing capacity etc, etc, doesn't equal real world results.

Hay, I am not trying convince any ford fans to buy a chevy and fords super duty is still a nice truck but I am glad these test results proved that GM's heavy duty trucks can go head to head with ford or ram. I say, buy what floats your boat.
I thank the lord for the great country we live in. God bless the USA!

Yeah that frame twist test is brutal. Makes Ford look TERRIBLE! There is nothing a Ford fan can say about that.

The fords need a new chassis for sure. They have been using the same one since 98. That alone is quite a feat. Before that ford used the same chassis for 17 years on the previous trucks. The current one being 13 years old its getting a bit long an tooth while the competition has updated theirs a few more times in between. The 2011 style i think will be the last super duty on this chassis. Time for a new frame, cab, bed. Be a nice refresh. I'm a ford guy btw. Gm has done a superb job on there new chassis.

Ram won some of the tests??? Well please show or tell all on what fricken tests the ram won? Please inform this board on what test did the ram win??? They were not shown in several of the tests because they were not competitive period. Infact in rumble in the rockies, they didn't run the ram because it was deemed unsafe to do so because it exceeded their gross combination weight rating.

Ram people, buy a ram if you like but right now your truck and your diesel is a distant 3rd place truck in these tests and nothing you can say or do will change that. YES, I know the super duper duper cummins high output wasnt in this test but don't worry, they will retest them again when ram has the high out put cummins available.

Right now GM's Heavy Duty trucks are "BEST IN CLASS" and the facts back up that statement. Have a nice day now ford and ram fans hold your heads up high, there is no shame in losing to the "Motor Trends Truck of They Year" The Chevy Silverado HD!!!

now wait just minute.... frame flex is needed in heavy load application without snapping. semi-truck flex for this reason. who cares about what example the f150 project as having a more rigid frame. we're talking about load bearing hear, not the grocery getter f150.


@ Bob
you know you are right i am a ford man and it upsets me that ford's number are not holding up to what they on paper, what is the deal are they lying to make themselves look better that to me is BS

Government losses in GM far higher than claimed...

Barack Obama: Losing $84 billion "big success"

While GM may have improved its trucks a great deal, i still wouldn't buy one. Too many bad memories and horror stories with GM products. They may have improved frame strength but what about the quality of the rest of the components? I'll pass..

@ Dan
i am changing my name to Dan the man no offense just do not want the same name

@ other Dan:
Ya, I was gonna add a J to my name. I will from now on.

Never fails. Ford and Ram owners don't like the test results so they start up with the bankruptcy bs again and gm took money from the govt and goverment motors same old tune.

I guess if you can't win the test results you try and tear the winner down by bringing up bankruptcy talk. boooo hooo, boooo hooo, waaaaa waaaa cry me a fricken river. what a bunch of pansies. don't like GM, fine than buy something else but quit the govt motors bs and by the way Barack Obama doesn't run GM and never will.

Chrysler took us tax dollars to, but I never hear theses people bashing chrysler like they do GM. I guess when your #1 like GM is, there is always somebody wanting to knock you down. The thing that bothers me the most is the constant attacks on GM from people on this board. don't like GM than buy something else but stop with the constant bashing. You have choices and nobody is making you buy a gm product.

Who decided on using Howie Long as an advertiser? Man I can't stand that guy! I can't trust any ads with him in them, even if they had an independent company monitoring everything.

The only testing you can count on to be accurate (no 100%, but not completely biased either) is the ones that don't involve anyone from the manufacture. I don't care how you put it, all the advertising is done by GM, so the only thing they will show you is what GM can do. Big whoop that AMCI was there, if its ads by GM it will be biased GM. Same goes with all the other manufacturer's as well. None of this makes me want a silverado..

By the way Howie, I'm sure you could have opened the tailgate on the Ford, you just have to unlock it first..

@ uh huh

OH so now its OK for the truck to have frame "compliance" huh. its funny how you argued WITH ME about this against the Tundra vs F150 when YOU said the Tundra frame is weak and a box frame is MUCH better, IT IS NOT. I ALSO own a 2002 Silverado with an LB7 Duramax as well as my 2010 Tundra. I know the duramax whips a powerstroke, but i'm gonna say that i DO NOT think the box frame is a good idea on the new silverado.

Lets be clear here about a twist ditch, this test DOES SOMEWHAT show you frame rigidity, but remember there are other factors involved here, namely the suspension design. IF GM built in MORE suspension travel (which is good) that can effect the results as well. IF a truck doesnt have as much suspension travel the rear diff, wheel weight, the weight of the load and truck will help hang on the frame, AND will also help with forcing MORE of a reaction due to a cantilever effect you will have between the loaded wheel side and spring position causing MORE deflection of the frame. OBVIOUSLY this test shows the Silverado has it in spades over the ford in respect to rigidity AND/OR wheel travel, but thats not necessarily the best result IMO. an overly rigid platform will eventually crack if overloaded, ALSO IF you overload the trucks capability on a box frame the frame will KINK and then your structure will forever be misaligned, remember Semi's have a C-channel frame for more reasons than ease of upfitter applications.

i do NOT agree with making a truck that rigid, it also shakes the truck apart. "Rigidity doesnt equal durability" i preach this. I CANNOT believe i'm saying this (as you all know i'm NOT a Ford fan) but there is NOTHING wrong with ford's frame here. HOWEVER, it shouldnt make the tailgate buckle when going over a twist ditch. They goofed up in the design there.

i normally criticize ford because of their stiff rigid platform in the f150 for the same reason, they along with GM COULD design a platform that doesnt use a harsh box frame but will give you better ride compliance while handling a load, the Tundra has it, and even positions the leaf springs toe'd out to help with lateral stability (to prevent sway) instead of react to sway by way of a trailer sway control. Dodge cant remove the box frame now because of the severe pressure at one point in the frame from a coil spring in the rear.

The important part of the videos you saw are that the powertrain in the Silverado IS superior to the other manufacturers powertrains, period. The uprade GM made to their brakes was a welcome change too. The suspension change they made to better handle a load in the rear so your lights arent sticking straight up in the air is a big plus as well, the ford sagged pretty bad against the GM in that test (makes you wonder how ford claims best payload capacity).

*On a final note*
KUDOS to the boys (and girls) at GM for giving Ford a taste of their own medicine with advertising, AND it was done by a 3rd party company instead of "in house tests" which are COMPLETELY biased toward that manufacturer. Ford deserves this smack in the face with all their cut throat misleading advertisement, quite honestly THAT is the biggest reason i DONT like ford.

The tests were so close as to be inconclusive. Those of us that use a truck as a truck know that any of these will work just fine for the intended purpose. There will always be one that's better than another in specific operations, but overall they're all very well suited to the work. Buy the one you like the looks of best or the one you can get the best deal on. There is very little difference today.

Strikes me that Ram WAS competitive with the Chevrolet when it wasn't included in the test results - why else exclude it from the results ? By including it, if Ram lost, it would underline Chevy's win margin. Perhaps the Ram didn't win outright, but was too close, or near enough the same as the Chevy for Chevy's comfort ?

These tests, whilst interesting, would be better conducted with the new HO Cummins, even a pre-production model, to give credit to the results. Roll on the "Rumble in the Rockies" !

Currently, it's a little like a one-eyed man in the land of the blind ....


I think this is Funny considering ford has on their website comparison videos of the new ford vs the competition. And it also says it invites any automaker to try and recreate these tests. So what does GM do? Ask a third party to recreate these tests and do more tests, only to prove that GM is indeed the winner. Proving ford's test to be untrue. Good Job GM

Have you heard the 6.6L vs 6.7L at WOT. The Chevy is screaming it's lungs out and Ford is at ease.

Also, when debuted at introduction the 6.6L Duramax had way more problems then Fords 6.7L. That rubber band is stretching.

I know what truck I would pick.

Good for GM for improving their product.

Wow, you still cry even on a GM post. Sad!

So now we know Frank would buy a Ford over a Chevy. What's that Frank? you say the Duramax is screaming at WOT and the powerstoke is just humming along at a ho hum pace. Won Frank? your posts are so dog gone informative. NOT! and now Frank wants to compare problems when the Duramax debuted in 2001 vs Fords first ever 6.7 liter in 2011 and compare reliablity???

The Durmax is the proven reliablity champ with millions of real world experience. Fords 6.7 is all new and doesn't have a long enough track record for comparison sake.

Good for you Frank, you love Ford, good because I don't want you driving a Chevy. Keep those informative posts coming Frank. I need a few laughs during my day.

good test,very clean no bull..


Your inept reading skills are always a joke. You still cry when GM makes an improvement. It is just the internet, SEEK HELP!

With that said, when you rev both engines to their peek points you will notice that the Duramax is louder than the 6.7L, oh wait you won't notice nothing because you don't even own a truck.

Today is your day, Bob!

Happy April FOOL's to you!!!!

Can't help but wonder if this testing company actually verified the trucks as true representations of what is on dealer lots. Chevy called out the test. Chevy supplied all 3 trucks. It doesn't matter how neutral the people conducting the test are if Chevy slipped a "hot" truck into the test or got a Ram and a Ford with less than optimum set ups. For example, in the payload test, was that a max payload Ford versus a max payload Chevy?


Their has been various discussion on other Forums that the Rumble in Rockies test was rigged. I am not crying foul or anything because I don't care. I just heard from a source that the test was rigged.

@Frank: What forum is that and who is your source? The Rocky Mountain test was not rigged. I'm not going to sacrifice a fifteen year rep in this industry over a single test. Unreal.

@Mike L,

I heard you didn't test the Ford with traction control? Is this true?

@Frank: If the RITR was rigged, why is Ford still loaning us trucks to test? I've got two 2011 EcoBoost F-150s were driving this week and next. What about the 5.0-liter F-150? Did we rig that test too? Amazing.

@Mike L,

I am not accusing you or PUTC, I just heard this from various other forums. Nothing against you or PUTC, unreal for sure.

Was the traction control on or off?

@Frank: We tested with traction control on (default when you key cycle the truck) and off during the runs to see which run would be fastest - because some folks complained about the HD Shootout testing. The fastest run was with TC on.

Plus, we're talking about the first 50 feet and several seconds of a 7-mile, 7-minute+ run. TC had zero impact at those distances. Road conditions were bone dry.

If anything, by cycling the TC, we were giving an unfair advantage to the Super Duty.

@Mike L,


Hay Mike, great to hear from you and to put those "rigged" rumors to rest. Guy's like Frank don't like the test results so they come up with BS like "I heard the test was rigged" with absolutely no proof and no facts to back up what he alledgedly heard.

GM won the HD shootout and I am also sure Ford will win the Half ton shootout with their new engines. I won't say something completely stupid like I heard the test results were rigged. If Ford wins the test, they win simple as that.

some of the ford fans can't handle the truth!


Props to GM for finally providing a decent rig. Their half tons are getting whipped! What you going to say about that?

Crawl away.


Their has been various discussion on other Forums that the Rumble in Rockies test was rigged. I am not crying foul or anything because I don't care. I just heard from a source that the test was rigged." - ME


Your inept reading skills, lol!

"I am not crying foul because I don't care."

This website is for Truck owners, mind you. This is why I am speaking with Mike L to clear the air.

seems you can't read very well can you Frank. I said if Ford wins the half ton shootout results with their new engines for 2011 I certainly won't say something so completely stupid that I heard the test was rigged.

Frank you saw GM'S half tons are getting whipped? How the he double L do you know Frank? the half ton shootout isn't completed yet or do you have the test results you would like to share with the board?

Frank, you can't handle the truth or the test results because your favorite truck brand "ford" gets beat by my favorite brand truck Chevy. So let it be written, so let it be done!

I'll Be the replacement Bob. I actually own a 2011 silverado 2500 HD Crew with The duramax :)


Being closed minded doesn't make you correct, when Ford's up's the ante and smokes Chevy you will cry. For now, I congratulate Chevy, you however, haven't even answered the question if you own a truck or not. Stop bench racing little boy.

"I'll Be the replacement Bob. I actually own a 2011 silverado 2500 HD Crew with The duramax :)" Bigger Bob,

Great, now we have two trolls by the name of Bob.

Little Bob & Bigger Bob.

Good grief!

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