First Spy Shots of Next-Gen Chevy Silverado

Silverado II

Speculation about the next full-size Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra is practically keeping an entire truck industry on edge.

At a time when the truck segment is just beginning to get some stability and momentum, at a time when the Ford F-150 and Ram 1500 are drawing all sorts of attention with their aggressive powertrain and model lineups, and at a time when few economic predictors are pointing in any direction other than "uncertainty," all eyes are on GM to see what its truck engineers have up their sleeves.

We've heard that the powertrain teams took a hard look at all the competitive options and mapped out several possibilities as to what will likely happen in the next five, 10 and 15 years, not to mention the looming 2025 fuel economy targets. We assume something drastic and significant must happen with a next-generation vehicle in one of the auto industry's most competitive segments.

No doubt GM is fully aware of the risk involved, and who would blame them for taking a more conservative approach with so much at stake? But we're hoping a vocal group of internals understands how important it is to push the envelope — maybe even several envelopes — right now.

Producing a vehicle that gets you up to the level of the competition does not cut it anymore. We've seen that strategy played out over and over in all sorts of automotive segments, with long-term losing always the result. 

Silverado Cab II

Expectations are certainly high, with quite a chunk of company survival at stake with this core pickup truck. Let's just hope the internals who are riding shotgun to this introduction understand it's much easier to ride the wave of success after you make a big splash than it is to try to increase the size and momentum of a wave after you start slow. 

Sure, we understand that GM wants to (and should) keep a tight lid on the information and various technologies related to such an important vehicle. The wrong leak or wrong slip of the tongue could literally cost thousands or millions in sales or jeopardize long-cemented job-hiring strategies at specific plants.

Still, when we hear from someone getting a snapshot of one of these rare beasts in the wild, we have to share what we've found. You can bet we'll have more to tell as we get closer to the reveal and technology backgrounders. (Some say that could happen in late 2012, but it wouldn't surprise us if that got pushed.) Our hope is that we'll see something futuristic, maybe a concept vehicle, at this year's North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

For now, we have to wait, but here's what spy shooter had to say:

"We've just gotten our first glimpse at a prototype for the 2014 Chevy Silverado out on the test circuit.  We were able to peek through the branches and catch this Silverado prototype moments before it slipped away into thicker cover. The camouflage is predictably heavy for such an important product — and one so fresh out of its design freeze — but some interesting details still show themselves. Most interesting is the Silverado's greenhouse and side-window treatment, which appears to be significantly different [from] the thick-pillared look of the current model. It's not that the pillars are really any smaller, but the way they interact with the side glass, and the roof rails' looks, and backlight to be quite a departure from today's truck.

"Reports have been circulating that GM engineers have plans to cut a massive 500 pounds from the next-gen Silverado, to improve performance and fuel economy. Extensive use of aluminum and magnesium are said the be the most likely course to realize such weight savings, but it's clearly a lofty goal that, if reached, could be a game changer.

"On the design front, our sources tell us that GM planners have been a bit sensitive about the look [of] the current trucks — seeing them as a more feminine look compared to the Ford F-150 and Dodge Ram. We're told to expect a brawnier look, and more chrome — especially on the heavy-duty models.

"This Silverado will continue to spawn truck-based offerings in the guise of the GMC Yukon and Chevy Tahoe, which are expected to be under test very soon.

"We've heard production on the Silverado is expected to begin in late 2013 as a 2014 model."

 

Silverado front II

Comments

whatever they come up with will be the standard they compare othesr to.... LOL! Like, well, it's not as gutless as the chevy, not as lame as the chevy, doesn't need to downshift as much as the chevy, doesn't rattle as much as the chevy....

It needs a solid-front-axle (3/4 & 1-ton), in 4X4 guise, to be a contender in the heavy-duty club.

Chevrolet and G.M.C. can redesign/remodel all they want. They will never outsell the "old design" Fords.

Nobody wants a solid front axle anymore, they are archaic, even heavier duty trucks are going to independent front suspension.

Meet the new boss...Same as the old boss.

Boring! Styling of a brick.

@Bob and your multiple personalities - Ford doesn't need to go out of their way to test new trucks. All of their new drivetrains were released in the fall of 2010.
Ford is rumored to have a new frame and lighter truck. They could hide that frame under a test mule. The same goes for 8 speed transmissions, new rear ends or suspensions. Bodies- why do you need to test them? Maybe for durability but most of that can be done in a wind tunnel and sim lab.
Ram will have some new engines and the 8 speed. Those items can be tested under their current bodies. Ram's are great looking trucks so I don't think they will change much of the body.
Toyota Tundra desperately needs to be all new. They need a home run more than GMC does.

GMC will unfortunately release a new truck with a new body and new drivetrains to a tough market. Truck guys usually take a while to warm up to new bodies, and are skeptical of new technology (look at all of the debates surrounding the EB3.5).
I doubt that GMC will be able to bring a new truck to the consumer that will be head and shoulders above the rest.
They are taking aim at a moving target that will be significantly different right after they pull the trigger.

@Bob Industries, LLC. - maybe GMC had to camo the truck because once they took it outside they realized that it was the vehicular version of Medusa. Let it be written. Let it be done. Chevy trucks the longest last place truck on the road.

That rear door is HUGE!
Weightloss- take a look at the frame on a Sprinter cab/chassis. It looks nothing like an American truck frame, but its very strong, rigid and light. High strength steel will be as important as light alloys and composites. The composite bed GM offered before was not we'll accepted, but few things improve as fast as composite materials. I would fully expect to see an 8 speed trans and the next engine generation. I can't imagine those will have cast iron exhaust manifolds. Look for tow ratings to come down, except for 1500HD models. Definitely will be interesting.

"On the design front, our sources tell us that GM planners have been a bit sensitive about the look [of] the current trucks — seeing them as a more feminine look compared to the Ford F-150 and Dodge Ram. We're told to expect a brawnier look, and more chrome — especially on the heavy-duty models"

Copy, Copy, Copy.

Hmm...looks a lot nicer. Add a manual trans and i just might be interested

@Bob and all of his alternative personalities
"GM planners have been a bit sensitive about the look [of] the current trucks — seeing them as a more feminine"

Maybe all of that padding in the spy shots is the GM equivalent of a school girl's padded bra. You think there is something substantial underneath, but you end up with a handfull of nothing ;)

If they had used a Nikon camera the spy pictures would have been so much better. Does this sound like some of the people on this site?

I love my 07 Silverado no problems and great mpg for a full size 4x4.

But sure looking forward to the next update. I think what looks so different is the door tops do not extend into the roof, so maybe a little old school.

Bed length not sure, how wide is that rear tire then do the math.

GM says their trucks are feminine compared to Ford/Ram. Straight from the Donkey's mouth.

GM loses, again!

New Chevy theme song?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DFifyV6vfBw&feature=related

@Frank & Jason - Now you have crossed the line! This is war.

@Bob
Funny how the Bobs keeps calling Ford guys girly men when GM engineers are "sensitive"(read girly feelings) about the "feminine"(read girly) looks of their trucks. LMFAO.
You always point out Ford's MAN STEP.
Notice the word "man".
Its not a FEMININE step but a MAN step.
How about those box sides?
Why do you need "man steps" on a Ford?
It is a man sized truck.
Chevies don't need man steps because they are feminine. Any girl can reach into a Chevy box.
Louis Chevrolet got the idea for the bowtie from a wallpaper pattern in a French bath house.
Look at the bright side "feminine" trucks are in keeping with the 100 year legacy of the queen mother of GMC - Louis Chevrolet.
Let it be writen. Let it be done.
Chevy's new theme song:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJL4UGSbeFg

I know one thing is for sure -The upcoming Silverado/Sierra will be a better choice than anything from Nissan or Toyota.

@Buy American I wonder why the Japanese persist in offering "partial" US Pickups? No largish diesels or duallys, does not make sense? OK outside NA US vehicles have a very hard time trying to compete with them or the Koreans. If you are going into a market segment , you should be offering the full range, not part of that range.

So GM is going to play catch up by offering a 6.5' bed on a half-ton crew, a GTDI V6 engine (which GM fans thought was too complex), and higher bed rails (which apparently are too high to lift anything over without needing a manstep). What else is coming on the new shape Silverado? A manstep?

AND I QUOTE MICHIGAN BOB:

"@Dave, Where Dave??? Show me one post where GM guys are claiming other brands are old trucks? Just one post???? I bet you can't show it or prove it. It is widely known that GM has the oldest platform other than Nissan's titan and there not even a player in the market. "

Oh, yes. The Ford steps are coming...

"deployable assist steps for the cab and cargo bed make it easier to enter and exit..."

"LED floodlights for the cargo bed and assist steps"

http://media.gm.com/content/media/us/en/news/news_detail.brand_gmc.html/content/Pages/news/us/en/2011/Jan/11naias/gmc/1216_sierra_hdat

Yep, never fails, the ford fan boys come out in droves to pick apart this spy shot because it's a GM product.

The common complaints are like this: looks like a ford, they copied ram's side storage box, Howie long made fun of the "man step" " GM only copies ideas from other manufactues" etc, etc, etc, and yada, yada, yada.

This spy shot is fricken beautiful and looks better than the fords or dodges. I think I have the ford and dodge critics figures out. They feel threatened by GM'S spy shot and that is the main reason they feel the need to attack and tear down anything GM does or produces.

As far as Howie Long making fun of fords man step, you needed a man step to reach anything in the pick up box of the ford. The Chevy and Gmc trucks are much easier to get in and out of than ford or dodge. I know the attacks will continue on GM no matter what they come out with by the ford fan boys, who always feel threatened by GM.

GM fans don't feel the need to attack ford or dodge everytime they produce a product. You know it's true and so do I.

"Feminine?" Someone put there thinks the current silverado is "feminine?" Since when did "civilized" and "mature" absolutely have to mean "feminine?" It's always kind of wore on me that people make fun of truck owners for over playing the masculinity card, the current silverado doesn't have that pittfall except with the most hateful of trolls.

Oh well. Guess the next silverado will require of me that I exclusively don apparel with the words "tap out" and "ed hardy," and that would I call everyone "bros." Guess I better go study for this new truck persona, anyone have "jersey shore" on their dvr?

YAY!!!! I hope with that new look I expect to see new powertrains, especially with the V6. Glad to see Ford, GM, and RAM killing the competition. Love to see some positive development in the coming years.

@Marcus
The feminine label is coming from GM:
"On the design front, our sources tell us that GM planners have been a bit sensitive about the look [of] the current trucks — seeing them as a more feminine look compared to the Ford F-150 and Dodge Ram."
That seems like an odd comment to me.

Those DUMB square fenders have got to go. Hello, 1980.

I noticed that almost all of the comments (if not all) were discussing the photo and speculating on chevy's next move; until Bob joined the party. He said that I was an idiot for thinking it was a 6.5' box and then told everyone GM was better. Then the thread deteriorated into what it is now.

@Michigan Bob - Any response to my reasoning behind the 6.5' box speculation? I think Chevy would be making a smart move adding the option to the crew cab, and I don't think my rationale (using the cab height in the photo as a reference point) was a bad way of going about it. What do you think?

I like the square wheel wells, but do hope they offer it with a small bed. It would be great if they found a way to have a fold down midgate and some kind of built in bed storage.

It would also be great if the truck lost some major weight and that 3.0 L Twin turbo could put out 300hp and return 20mpg city somehow.

With these big trucks, somebody should be research kenetic Energy recovery to break that 300hp and 20mpg ceiling already.

@cyberpine I agree 100%. trucks have plenty of power and most consumers don't have the need for a hp or torque war. a major advancement in mileage is where the money is at. the ecoboost did well, combining power when you need it, and fuel economy when you need it, but there is a greater potential for much better fuel efficiency.

ecoboost does put out 300+ (365) HP and it is capable of 22mpg highway with a boring driver behind the wheel.

@Bob - how can yo usay the new GMC is "fricken beautiful"?It's completely covered in vinyl and padding (unless that sort of thing is a big turn on for you)

@toycrusher84 - I agree. How one drives plays a huge roll in MPG. Hypermilers took a 4x4 EB 3.5 supercrew full of people and gear around the USA and got 32 mpg average. I can get 2 mpg more than my 5.4 SuperCrew's rated 14/18 if you drive like a granny on valium.

I don't get the folks griping about the ecoboost. The torque far out weighs the horsepower, and the low rpm in which it happens. I live in the hills, I would take torque anyday. Still skeptical about how long it will last...we will see. I know I had a 310 hp aluminum 5.3, it didn't get it, unloaded even. 22 is pretty darn good for that amount, and if you idle (traffic, warmup) alot, more savings there.

For the record, women do drive trucks. GM saying that their trucks are more feminine than Ford or Ram...Let's just say the current Silverado is a bit plain-Jane, I mean John, I mean...plain, but not ugly. As for the Ford tailgate step...women could use it, or men in their 80s and 90s. I mean if you don't need then rip the thing out of the gate and DON'T USE IT! I do hope they put disc brakes in the rear of the 1500. Drums are for small cars...I feel like the current models I'm looking at a full-size Chevrolet Aveo with a V8 and a bed!

I dunno Billy, an Aveo with a v8 and a bed sounds pretty cool. I had a Ford Festiva and I chopped the top off to make a small bed. 5-speeds and 60+ HP = loads of fun!

That's got to be a HD in the pic right???

@ Billy - I'm not sure why GMC engineers would feel that thier trucks look feminine. I like the looks of the Sierra, but hate the looks of the Silverado. The bumper looks pieced together from spare parts.
A while ago I read that in 2009 Ford sold roughly 32% of their trucks with the tailgate step. Apparently they liked the GMC Howie Long bashing adds because it turned out to backfire and provide free advertising for Ford.
I have running boards on my truck as well as the side steps and tailgate steps. I find they are great features. I use them all of the time. If I did any hard core offroading I wouldn't have a truck with running boards or side steps. The side steps can freeze up in the winter. I've had a few "deployments" when plowing through super deep snow.(Snow up to top of bumper). I've seen a few work trucks with them torn off. I've seen many wrecked running boards too.

@toycrusher
Sounds awesome.

@Lou

I prefer the Sierra too. The Silverado's bumper was inspired by the Nissan Titan, which too could use a dose of updates. And they still use the bumper on the 2012 1500 all chromed out like the 2007-10 HD models. I prefer the bumper used on 2011-present HD Silverados. Running boards and tailgate steps are great assets depending on the person and stature and ability. But we all have our preferences. I'd like to see the new truck in the coming months though.

how can anyone tell what is under the camo?, I missMike L. right now I'am on a trip with my new 2011 Chevy Z-71 ext 6.5' bed 4X4, with 5.3, 3:42 lmtslp.We have traveled from Cape Cod, south down thur 81 in Penn. to rt 95 in N. Carolina, all the way to Key West, with the cruzcntl set at 70mph our average mpg so far is right at 20.5mpg!!!, when in the Keys (flat, 40-45mph) I got 23mpg! on that tanks full. Don't realy know what is coming, but very satified with what I have now. I also own a new F-150 reg cab 8' 4X4 for heavy work, with the HD package and the Ecco-Boost!! wow-wee nice truck for work and hauling weight, and towing, but on a road trip I much prefure the Chevy, smoother ride, better handling, more secure cab space. Both of our trucks are black ALL black, bumpers grills wheels interiors. what can I say? I like black, a real bitch to keep clean tho.The Ford gets the same mpg as the Chevy, but has a lot more power! everywhere, expxecialy towing! the Ford is a great work truck, it also cost $7000 MORE than the Chevy! and itsa reg cab! but all HD parts 7 lug wheels! All I can say is I like and spend my $$$$ on American brand trucks! At the time of purchase the Ford dealer could only give me a great trade on what I had, but only $1,500 off the truck! the Chevy dealer was able to give me $6,550 OFF!!! AND gave a nice trade on her Avalanche! (she loves Chevy's too!) good girl! oh well everyone take care out there, and keep the greasy side down and the shiney side up!! and may God Bless America, for which it stands One Nation Under God with liberty and justice for all Americans that have grown uphere.

@sandman4X4 - nice to hear from you again. Sounds like you are having a great vacation.

@sandman-haha I like the ending of that.

(Dry heave)

Looks like they're bringing back the Wagon Queen Family Truckster.

Is Chevy actually going to start taking on Ford here? Better body durability? High quality interiors? Can I get a King Ranch or Platinum interior in a new Chevrolet Silverado?? Is this one actually going to look good unlike the last couple of generations? Are we Finally going to ditch those stupid square wheel wells? C'mon Chevy, get with the program on this truck. If they don't fix ALL of those things I'm sticking with my F-150. The only Chevy truck I'll still own will be my 71 C-10. One of Chevy's last greats..

Let's talk 2500's now. When on God's green earth will Chevy get rid of that horrid low hanging frame and put a real solid front axle up front again? What a bunch of girls at GM. IFS and low hanging frames do not belong anywhere near a HD truck. You wonder why the Super Duty kicks your butt in sales? Go back into time to the day you slung your frames down low and yanked out the SFA. Ford was smart and picked up on your stupidity. Ford also took your HD customers with them as they then built the Super Duty with a Tucked Up Frame and SFA. You know, like you Use to do...

I was a Chevy Truck guy forever too. Sad what they became.

Like many here, I don't like the current Silverado or it's 3 piece bumper. The Sierra looked better but I'm a lifelong Chevy guy and not a fan of the GMC brand so I passed on this last generation. If this next Silverado isn't mindblowing (in a good way) I'm buying a Ford F-150. It's sad but Chevrolet has been losing my loyalty for awhile now. Dumbing down Chevrolet in favor of their corporate GMC brand is the biggest mistake they will have ever made. Not only for Chevrolet brand value but for stockholders and potential investors. No company needs 2 truck lines. It's a complete waste of resources on tooling to have 2 truck lines. Ford surely doesn't need 2. Particularly when Chevrolet outsells GMC by nearly 4 to 1. Utter stupidity brought down GM before and I'm afraid they're doing it again. All of their resources should have been put into a complete line of premiere and premium Chevrolet trucks.

I work for John Deere and never would we consider a dual tractor line splitting up our resources. We focus on 1 world class product. I'm very disappointed in their business sense here. These trucks aren't a grille swap anymore. They're entirely different bodies, interiors from what I've heard and the marketing dollars wasted is unheard of. Mr.Ackerson and his board members should know better.

I'll add, the Bowtie symbol did not come from Louis Chevrolet or french wallpaper folks. Learn your history. It came from a Coalette's newspaper ad noticed by William Durant. The founder of GM. The Coalette's logo was in the shape of a bowtie.

@Tom47 - thanks for the history lesson. The Wikipedia version of where the bowtie came from is funner to use on multiple personality bob.
There was a study that was done with the results posted on this site.
It explains why GM Corp keeps the Silverado and Sierra. If they killed off one of them they'd loose a large percentage of customers.
If Silverado folded:
They'd loose 66% of their customers.
Thirty-four percent chose GMC
In second place for Chevy owners was Ford (25 percent)
Dodge (19 percent)
Toyota at 18 percent

If Sierra folded:
They'd loose 48% of their customers.
(52 percent) picking the sibling brand
Ford (22 percent),
Toyota (10 percent)
Dodge (7 percent)

http://news.pickuptrucks.com/2009/09/poll-post-1.html#more

In Canada Sierra ranks #3 and Silverado #4 in sales (Ford #1, Ram #2).

@Tom47 - both accounts surface as to the origin of the Bowtie.
Both origins can be used to needle multiple personality bob.
He likes to rant about other brands copying GM/Chevy.
Durant copied another company's logo or he copied wallpaper.
Both work for me.

My apologies to legitimate GM/Chevy fans out there. Bob sure does wreck it for everyone.

http://www.torquenews.com/1068/gm-celebrates-chevrolets-bowtie-logo-several-possible-accounts-origins

http://www.autoguide.com/auto-news/2011/09/origin-of-the-chevy-bowtie-logo-an-unsolved-mystery.html

This truck does look like it has shrunk in size a bit. The nose is smaller and perhaps the bed a bit shorter.

Concerning the Chevrolet vs. GMC debate. The day of reckoning will have to come sooner or later for GM. They still have 1 truck line too many. The automotive future will be streamlined even further and operating 2 brands of virtually the same thing will eventually have to go. It may have worked with grille swaps in the 1900's but we're long past that now.

They should stick their resources into Chevrolet trucks as it's their biggest truck and car line. Focus focus focus. These studies of lost customers mean nothing. If the Chevrolet Silverado was the best truck money could buy, GMC truck buyers should have no problem purchasing one. Sure GM would lose a few customers to Ford or Dodge. However, if the proper world class Silverado was built, Chevrolet and by default GM would most likely Gain some customers from other brands as well. It's a wash. Just like closing Pontiac, Olds, Saturn and the rest. GMC will need to be folded eventually to make room for Chevrolet to come up and compete against Ford in a proper manner. Buick is also a priority at GM and could use vehicles like the Terrain. The Acadia hurts the CUV sales of Buick and Cadillac as well.

There's simply Still too much overlap in the GM camp. The obvious solution is to fold GMC mostly into Buick as the new Buick dealerships are already established. This will give Buick more product and give their dealers better legging, give breathing room for both Cadillac and Buick and allow Chevrolet to step up to it's full potential as Ford and Dodge are beginning to do.

I worked for GM years ago and this issue plagued boardroom members I know for a fact in the 80's and early 90's when I was there. The issue still hasn't gone away. With Buick established however now, folding GMC could (and should) be done overnight without any issues at all. All suv/cuv material goes to Buick increasing the brand. Chevrolet trucks and suv's become premium which could (and would) seriously hurt Ford.

Just the fact that the current board and CEO haven't put this into action has me worried frankly. As a current shareholder I'm rather upset with their decisions (or lack of) at the moment. The time to act is Now before another generation of messy overlap is put into play.

@ Matt - Sierra outsells Silverado in Canada. GM corp does not offer the huge range of truck packages that Ford or Ram offer. They could keep the 2 brands but alter how packages overlap. I wouldn't hesitate to buy a Denali HD if I was in that market, but I sure as hell wouldn't by a Chevy luxury truck as I hate the looks of the Chevy.
GM Corp needs to do a better job of marketing and of packaging. 2 brands could be very beneficial. I like the different sheet metal choice as opposed to a different grill and badge. It offers customers some choice. GM Corpse as usual, is unable to make important decisions and maximize their product lines. They've done a wonderful job of turning Cadillac into a vibrant luxury brand that is starting to appeal to younger buyers. Why not do the same with Sierra? Make the 2 brands stand further appart.

Lets hope they see the light and open the wheelwells to allow larger tires without having to raise the truck. Nothing drastic, 35x12's at a stock ride hight would be plenty

Why would GM want a Sierra to appeal to younger buyers? GM is in the business to sell big brands on a big volume basis. GMC has no cars. GM should push Chevrolet trucks so they can get the youth not only interested in their Silverado's and Colorado's but Cruze's, Volt's, Camaro's, Malibu's, Impala's and Corvette's. Chevrolet should be king of the hill here not GMC. I'm 28 and would much rather have a Chevy truck. Just not the current one. It's butt ugly. I'll wait for the good looking Chevy or just buy Ford's instead. My Camaro could match my Silverado or my Mustang could match my F-150. GMC just seems so pointless to me. Just my opinion.



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