2014 Silverado/Sierra Has Big Changes

It must be tough writing for an audience that doesn't know much about half the auto industry (light-duty trucks accounted for 50.1% of the 2011 sales--in 2010 it was 48.3%); namely pickup trucks. 

Automotive News Senior Product Editor, Rick Kranz, wrote in his blog, "it's no secret that General Motors is redesigning its full-sized pickups. But does that mean all of GM's upcoming pickups will be extensively re-engineered?" 

I suppose if you had no idea that the light-duty and heavy-duty GM trucks have been built on different frames for decades, you might think that a truck designed to carry 1300 pounds could be the same truck designed to carry 3300 pounds. For those of us that do understand the differences, this is more likely to feel like a "no duh" moment than anything else. 

Regardless, Rick Kranz is one of the big Detroit insiders that has access to insider information from dozens of angles; as a result, we usually listen to what he has to say closely.

He continues: "GM's new 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups are slated to hit dealer lots next year. The trucks will offer better fuel economy, the result of improved aerodynamics, an eight-speed automatic transmission, less mass, engine improvements and other changes. A new chassis is expected, and the exterior and interior will be totally changed." 

Alright, this last sentence seems like a throw away because, of course, the new light-duty will be new inside and out. It has to be. Both Ford and Ram have come to market with complete revamped powertrains and significant design changes and a number of interior packaging upgrades. We can safely assume the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra has waited this long to do something major. 

Some have speculated that the two trucks will become more distinct, even suggesting there will be two different frames, possibly two separate lines in each plant, in order to allow for more handling and packaging distinction. Others can't believe that GM has allowed the two very similar product lines to continue to exist this long, but they both are quite profitable and GMC is clearly a brand on the rise (although this is the first year Jeep has sold more GMCs). It's a hard argument to make that someone should go into a proven product line strategy and completely change it to make it more like the competition (neither Ford nor Ram Truck has a premium-level of pickup trucks, but both are desperately trying to continuously expand their product bandwidth to capture with special upper-crust option packages). 

Kranz goes on to say in 2010, the Silverado and Sierra 2500 and 3500, GM's heavy-duty models, received a long list of foundational engineering improvements -- a new chassis, significant suspension and steering changes, plus a re-engineered diesel engine. Aside from a new hood and some minor tweaks to the grille and front fascia, however, most people (who are truck people) couldn't tell this was a substantially different pickup. Even the interior was a carry-over, he says. And finishes with, "The redesigned lighter-duty pickups arriving next year will not take this same strategy and will offer a more dramatic appearance change."

Certainly, that all makes sense. 

Mr. Kranz continues to give information about the next-gen heavy-duty trucks, after we get the new light-duties sometime next year: "As for the "new" heavy-duty 2500 and 3500 models, they will arrive a year or so later with a good portion of the major changes being cosmetic -- new sheet metal and interior treatments."

That certainly makes sense, as well, given the extent to which they re-engineered the 2500/3500s in 2010. And although we've heard nothing about it at the Detroit Show, we suppose the possibility exists that a 4500/5500 model could also be in our future as well. 


The same thing happened when the GMT900 was released: the HD models carried over the 800 frame largely unchanged. This way GM can design one body (largely shared between the light and heavy lines) and one chassis group. They can then sequentially develop the new HD frame using the same engineering resources as for the light frame. It can also let you adjust for the competitions NEW trucks (which could show up in 4-5 years)

Looks like 8-speed transmissions all around!

It will be interesting to see how this new generation of trucks does with towing and payload. They're obviously going to be lighter in weight, which might mean a significant drop in towing ability. However, that could also mean a significant rise in payload, assuming they use similarly rated components.

I'm hoping that's the case, as our half-ton trucks have abysmal payload. I mean, smaller trucks like the Euro Colorado and T6 Ranger have nearly twice the listed payload capacity. It would be nice to not have to buy a 2500 just to move a pallet of fertilizer without being overweight (~2,000lbs).

Paul810 writes:I'm hoping that's the case, as our half-ton trucks have abysmal payload. I mean, smaller trucks like the Euro Colorado and T6 Ranger have nearly twice the listed payload capacity. It would be nice to not have to buy a 2500 just to move a pallet of fertilizer without being overweight (~2,000lbs). Say WHAT????

There is nothing wrong with the payload of HALF TON TRUCKS. That's why they call them HALF TON'S. And to suggest that the Euro Colorado or the T6 Ranger having more payload capacity than a half ton truck is hilarious!

That is also the reason they offer 3/4 ton and 1 ton trucks that offer MORE payload capacity. Man, it never ceases to amaze me by the ignorance of posters on this board.

@Michigan Bob - quote ". Man, it never ceases to amaze me by the ignorance of posters on this board."

Are there no mirrors in your house?

If GM goes with 8-speeds, less weight etc. it means they're showing some inovation and that's a good thing.

An 8-speed behind a turbo V6 or 4.5 Duramax on a lighter chassis is the type of thing that will make the truck successful as opposed to some half-assed approach with carry-over drivelines or other dated items tacked on a new design.

When the current body style came out in 07' I bought an old body style 07' because the GMT900 didn't do much for me. I paid far less than I would've on a new style truck with a carry-over driveline.

If GM sticks to being innovative and truly makes a new truck all around I would deffinately look at it closely.

In fact, this news has made a more excited about the truck and less down on GM for what they've done lately but I'll wait and see the final product before I come to any conclusions.

it seems that full size trucks keep getting bigger. Nissan Frontier which is midsize with v6 option has half ton capacity. midsize trucks are full size every else expect the in usa. I guess Red necks just love really big trucks. one made in 1990s look midsize to one made now.

LOU, you can lead a horse to the water but you can't make him drink lol.

@ spark300c...
They have to keep making them bigger to accommodate the ever-increasing waistlines in north america.

@spark300c- my 86 S10 had a 1800# payload. that doesn't make it a 3/4 ton. Redneck is one word, btw.
@Mark Williams- where's ma dang mid-size shootout?

"Nissan Frontier which is midsize with v6 option has half ton capacity."

I think you have watched to many Nissan commercials. The Frontier doesnt have all the capabilities of the Titan nonetheless the other more capable half tons. Just because it meets the old standards (Power, FE, Towing and payload) of a half ton doesnt mean it compares to a current half ton.

What on earth do you mean Ford and Ram don't have Premium pickups?? Do tell what the Platinum, Ring Ranch, Lariat and Laramie Longhorn are then. Please.. GM's just trying to make yet another excuse to keep GMC around. They're destroying their Chevy truck customer base one man at a time.

Of course GMC was on the rise. When you build something as UGLY as this last Silverado was, what else is a die hard GM man to do? He either has to buy the Sierra or leave and buy a Ford. Nor did the Silverado have any King ranch, Platinun or Denai premium interiors. GM flat out destroyed Chevy trucks with the GMT-900's. I'm done with Chevy trucks if this happens again.

2 truck lines again officially confirmed. I can't figure out why taxpayers gave GM all that money so they could go and waste it on building 2 truck lines. If there was ever a massive failure of our government it was letting this happen. Why it takes a company 2 truck lines to do what every other company in the world does with 1 is beyond my comprehension. GMC is just a horrible redundant brand and tacky as could be. Chevrolet should have been sold off to someone who would properly restore Chevy Trucks and let GM fall into the abyss. I'm glad I left Chevrolet for Ford awhile ago. From the looks of things, Chevrolet looks to be headed off a cliff with all the Chevy guys switching to Ford over this mess.

Mike Rowe's gonna be busy doing commercials that's for sure.

Still no manual? ugh...

I think Mark was reffering to the statement that GMC might become a premium model and Sivlerado will be more of work model; they will be different trucks.

It's just words; GMC will be a luxury line pickup and Silverado will be more work oriented. In other words, it's not trim packages but different and distinctive models between GMC and Chevy. I don't think he was reffering to trim packages like a KR, Harley, Longhorn, Denali etc.

That's how I read it but whether it actually plays out this way remains to be seen.

Why is GMC all of a sudden a problem but wasn't prior to the GMT900? GMC and Chevy trucks are both profitable. I agree having identical trucks with different names seems a waste but if they truly make the two different in some way who cares?

I'm not defending it but killing a profitable line probably isn't a good idea for any manufacturer these days.

I can't see GMC going anywhere in the near future.

After reading the Sierra is going to get luxurious interiors I'm not so sure I even want a Silverado when they arrive. I want a Serious work truck so in that respect I'm glad Chevy will be the 'Real Deal' as they say. I'd never buy that girly GMC Sierra anyhow. I absolutely hate that brand. At the same time I'm pretty frustrated at GM for not offering a mega premium interior option in the Silverado. Especially when there's those of us out there who are more than willing to pay for it. I've always wanted a King Ranch crushing interior in my Chevy Truck. Ford's been doing the King Ranch since 99 and it's really ticked me off at Chevrolet for not offering the same.

I guess I'll wait and see. I can't see myself sticking with Chevy trucks and cars anymore though if they're not going to step it up. Not when Ford offers what they do these days. I could get King Ranch F-Series and a new Fusion to match that both look stunning and have premium interiors. With Chevy you have nothing right now but an ugly truck with no King Ranch option and a new Malibu that looks to be almost Asian. I don't like the interior in that either.

@DaveB. - For me it was the fact that they gave the Sierra the good looking truck design. That floored me to no end because I didn't want a GMC, I wanted a Chevy. Before the 900's it didn't matter because they both looked the same. When the 900's came it certainly was the truck that pit the Chevy guys against GM. And the Denali trim always upset me greatly. Why couldn't Chevrolet customers get that?

See that's the problem. That's why all of these lifelong Chevy guys have jumped ship and went to Ford. You get a good looking truck whether it's the 1500 or Super Duty and you can get a Platinum or King Ranch interior to boot. Add to it the SFA offering in the SD and all around ruggedness in general of Ford trucks and it almost becomes pointless to stick with Chevrolet any longer. GM is hellbent on making you choose between one or the other. I'm not doing that. Not when none of the other companies give you everything in one. And I've bought nothing but Chevrolet trucks and cars my entire life. Even a Cadillac CTS for my wife last year. Yet here I am feeling like GM just gave me the middle finger. I've just about had it with that company.

I feel bad for all of the Chevy guys. I've been following this site for the last month and even I am starting to get a soft spot for the Bowtie. GM really did give them the shaft for the sake of GMC. I remember when GMC was just an extra knock off brand for other GM dealers to have so they could keep a truck in stock. Chevrolet was the top dog. It's like GM went and turned the table upside down. No doubt that's why all of the Chevy loyalists have been peeved and jumping ship. I would be too.

Oh well, that's why I just stick with Dodge. If If they would have gone under a couple years back I'd probably be in a Ford. It seems they're doing the right things now. I'm rather surprised the huge Chevrolet dealer network hasn't revolted against GM yet.

Sorry Chevy guys. Looks like you got the shaft again. I see you're getting screwed on the Colorado too with the Canyon coming back according to GMI. I was a Chevy guy for awhile but you could see the writing on the wall about 10 years back. GM was driving Chevrolet into the ground so I left. Toyota, Ford, Nissan and Dodge all offer better product now than Chevrolet for cars and trucks alike. GM's too hung up on this Buick/GMC thing anymore and it's apparent more and more that it will be the cause of their demise. Chevrolet and Cadillac was always where it was at. Not so anymore...

@ BrianL

I understand what you're saying. I see it differently because I'm not making my purchases on looks or appearance packages. I know it deffiantely plays in but we have some of the ugliest trucks on earth with the Tundra's we have as fleet vehicles. They've been unbelievably reliable for us and have held a lot more residual value. Ugly as f**k but have turned out to be a smart business decision for us.

GM's HD's (including the pretend HD's up until 2011) had IFS. The GMT900 has nothing to do with IFS and the beefed up 2011 has much a much better build over what it replaced IMHO. It's not a SFA but it's hardly weak, either.

Any true re-design will bring in new buyers and push away existing owners at the same time. If GM loses more market share with the new trucks they will have lost. If they stay the same or increase they're doing fine.

Being within a small percentage of what Ford sells hardly makes them a failure right now especially with such an outdated truck. I think the 900's were a poor effort but they're still selling 100's of 1000's of them.

I'm looking forward to the new GM now. Not sure I'd buy one but but at least it sounds like they have some neat things on the way.

If they give each truck a different frame and the Silverado gets the SFA then I'm game! I like IFS for a 1500 but a heavy duty needs a high frame and beam axle to be a true workhorse. That's how I view Chevy. A true workhorse truck. A rugged and tough as nails Silverado would be awesome! Leave the IFS for the Sierra. It's more of a powder puff truck anyway. I do agree with BrianL. and some others here though. The Silverado needs at least 1 King Ranch killer interior option. Sierra can have the bling but give Chevy a real rugged and tough leather package.

@BrianL. I do agree with you that the other brands don't make you choose between one or the other. I don't like that about GM either. That said, what if we can get the True Workhorse of a truck us Chevy guys have always wanted? Would you be game then? Especially if we got a rugged leather interior option?.. I would be. Like I said, leave the bling for the powder puff Sierra. Bring on the new Silverado!!

Blah.. Still ruining Chevrolet trucks I see. GMC should have gone the way of the dodo bird.

So, we give them all of this taxpayer money and I still can't get a Premium interior in my Silverado huh? That HAS to stay with the Sierra they say.. Ford and the rest don't have a "Premium" truck brand huh?? I've seen Platinums and King Ranches for Years that say otherwise. The Denali is a joke compared to what Ford and Dodge offer yet I can't even get something like that in my Chevy. I've officially had it. I'm with the rest. See ya GM. Here I come Ford.

Just because a mid size truck has a payload rating about what some half tons do it doesn't mean it as capable. I can put a full size car hood in my 1500 quad cab bed. Can you fit one in a Frontier/Tacoma longbed? Let's hook 5500-6000 pounds of car, trailer and tools behind both of them. Sure the mid sizes are rated to pull low 6000 pounds. Would you feel comfortable towing that around curves and up and down hills in a mid size? I came back from Washington to Colorado with a truck load of car parts in the back, my friend and his stuff, and my stuff, a cooler and a stage speaker I picked up in Boise, sure can't do that in any single cab, and stuffy in a mid size 4 door. I would like to see them do braking tests on 1/2 tons and mid sizers at MAX PAYLOAD. We can see the ones with high payloads really handle it. I know mine will handle it, even thogh it's on the low end of payload compared to equally configured 1/2 tons. It still handles it well, and more then it's payload (Ram screwed up and forgot to add a couple hundred pounds GVWR to make up for the 200 plus pounds of 4x4 equipment. This didn't just change in 2009 with the coil springs. And thats mostly front end weight. Go 200 pounds over the GVWR and you have no more weight on rear tires then a 4x2 with 200 less. Stops it fine.) Heck my brother in laws TRD Tacoma 4x4 double has a 1200 pound rating, course it barely has any bedspace.

*should say "we can see HOW the ones with heavy payload handle it"*

The LTZ trim level on the Silverado is a nicely finished, luxurious and well appointed interior. I don't know the exact figures, but I don't consider the King Ranch trim level a high volume seller by any means. I am willing to bet that GM sells more LTZ Silverados than Ford does with the King Ranches. I believe the King Ranch interiors are so overdone, they are almost gawdy.


See Ya, Buddy.

Don't let the door hit you in the A$$ on your way out.

"I can't figure out why taxpayers gave GM all that money so they could go and waste it on building 2 truck lines." - FordTrucks1

So you're saying you don't pay taxes? And you make it sound like GM were only building Chevy for the time being and once they got their bailout funds from the government, that's when they started GMC. GM was building two different truck lines long before many of us posting here were probably even born.

There's little difference between a Denali and an SLT/LTZ.

Denali is a trim package like the KR. The interior is identical with slightly different trim. It looks good but it's not a different interior.

If you're buying an XL you're getting the same interior in the KR with the exceptiion of the trim and usual option selection that comes with a higher end trim. The KR isn't a different truck, it's a different trim.

And for the record, I like the KR package especially with the black that's availble on the SD.

I think the trim package issues are a moot point. If people are going to jump brands over this they are ready to go into a new brand anyway.

I've been there and done that and I get it but using trim as an excuse has nothing to do with the quality or usefullness of a truck. It's simply a visual thing that you like and being visually appealing sells vehicles.

GM needs more visually appealing trucks. I think most of us can agree on that.


You freaks, competition is good.
It's a good thing when one of the major automakers comes out with a redesign.

Fail, hahahahahahahahah.

@Michigan Bob

That's pretty funny coming from you.

I stick by what I said. The payload capacity on many modern half ton trucks is quite low in relation to their size and hardware.

Ford's tiny car based Transit Connect is rated for 1,600lbs payload. Dodge's C/V based on the Grand Caravan minivan is rated for 1,850lbs payload. Meanwhile, a few configurations of the Dodge Ram 1500 with the 5.7L Hemi, can't even break 1,200lbs. Car based Utes overseas laugh at that number.

It's pretty silly to me when cars and minivans are readily beating full size body-on-frame pickups in payload.

Ford and Dodge do not offer a luxury upscale pickup. I have been saying that for years! Now it is being noticed by someone else.

Coming out next week, GM sells more vehicles in the world then anyone else. GM wins again and Ford just keeps dreaming. Why are the warranties on GM vehicles better then Ford's warranties? Because they last longer!

Looks like GMC took the old Super Duty front end

@Grreg - the length of a warranty has nothing to do with quality durability or longevity. Dodge used to offer longer waqrrranties on many of their vehicles and they were certainly not dependable. Hyundai/Kia went the same route to allay fears of poor quality.
You talk like Chevy is the best truck on the planet. I don't buy it. JD Power says the industry average is 151 problems per vehicle. Ford brand rates 140 per 100. Ford is above average. Chevy brand rates 156 per 100. Chevy is average. GMC brand rates 184 per 100. GMC is below average. Those are corporate averages. That means you have better odds of owning a reliable vehicle by purchacing a Ford. There isn't a huge difference but assuming a guy owns a "Ford" for 8 years he will see a dealer for repairs 11(11.2) times and a Chevy owner will need 12(12.48)repairs. A GMC product will need 15 (14.72) repairs. http://businesscenter.jdpower.com/news/pressrelease.aspx?ID=2011029
For 2011 Tundra, F150, and Ram 1500 are the top 3 large pickup trucks when it comes to durability.

@michigan bob considering chevy runs three major trim level, ltz being the top, it would make more sense than ltz would move more than a specialized package like king ranch.

Twinkies Maker Hostess has filed for bankruptcy.

@Rob - Michigan Bob will be really really disappointed.

Sure looks like it. I don't here the Chevy guys calling it ugly.

I expect new power trains, I'm guessing from the spy photos I've scene probably a facelift of the exterior and interior.

I don`t know why people are so hung up on what name is on a truck?
I always said if you could take a Chevy, Ford and Dodge and build one truck out of the three, then you would truely have a great truck.
I have a 01 Silverado that has given me minor problems some I did think were inexcusable.
I like the body style they ruined it starting in 03.
As long as GM is hell bent on make ugly Chevy trucks they need GMC.
Right now if I had to have a GM I would buy the GMC or jump ship.
It`s good to have the GMC choice.
In a beauty contest Dodge wins hands down. I still call it Dodge!

@Lou -

Chevrolet Silverado - Redesigned interiors


I tell you, Lou, I like this interior. I don't think I have ever seen a truck with this great of an interior. This is a true truck interior. It's got large controls and big grab handles that you can use even if you've got gloves on. And they give you a choice with their premium LTZ interior. Check it out. There is a lot of room. Chevy has really raised the bar.

Chevies are cramped inside compared to everyone else.

@Rob-I agree. I love this Chevy interior. I have never seen a truck with this nice of an interior.

The GMC Denali interior too me looks like a 1990's limited interior with navigation. The good news is atleast the current GM trucks have all the current features for a top level trim but they just look really outdated and small. The guy in this review http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dSHkCn97q9M @ the 15:00 minute mark barely fits in it and he is not a giant.

upcoming truck are really foo foo on interiors compare to current. see seats small as colorados, 36 inch + waist and fogetabout it. no legroom either, much smaller interior.
see all 4 small gages now on side of big ones are all on top in a row, pretty pink and blue lites. Like the currrent trucks but these coming ones more for 19-23 yr old girls

WOW!!!!!! Carbon copy of FORD"S SUPER DUTY. GM LOSES and FORD WINS AGAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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