2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500/3500: New Look, New Abilities

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By Aaron Bragman

  • Looks like: Different from the half ton — just like you wanted them
  • Competes with: Ram 2500/3500, Ford Super Duty
  • Powertrains: gasoline 6.6-liter V-8 (401 horsepower, 464 pounds-feet of torque) with six-speed automatic transmission or turbo-diesel 6.6-liter V-8 (445 hp, 910 pounds-feet of torque) mated to 10-speed Allison automatic transmission, rear- or four-wheel drive
  • Hits dealerships: Summer 2019

The heavy-duty pickup truck battle is heating up in 2019, and Chevrolet has fired its guns at its crosstown rivals by unveiling the full lineup and specifications for the new 2020 Silverado 2500/3500 ahead of the 2019 Chicago Auto Show where they'll make their public debut.

Related: More 2019 Chicago Auto Show Coverage

Chevrolet revealed the full 2020 Silverado 2500 and 3500 trim range at the Flint, Mich., plant where they're built. We've seen the new 2020 Ford Super Duty (but still don't have specifications) and the 2019 Ram 2500/3500 (know what they can do); the third piece of the heavy-duty puzzle is now here.

Exterior

The goal for the new 2020 Silverado HDs was to make them immediately identifiable as heavy-duty trucks, distinctly visually different from the light-duty Silverado 1500. "Our customers said that they don't want a bigger version of a light-duty truck," said Rich Scheer, Chevrolet truck director of exterior design.

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So Chevrolet decided to make the HDs look wild based on GM's design clinics. Whether the new look will be successful is entirely subjective, but we can state that the only shared body panel between the light duty and heavy duty is the roof stamping. Everything else — from the unique grille and headlight treatments to the standard side step that will appear on every single HD (including the duallies) — is original to the Silverado 2500/3500.

The five HD trim levels all have a distinctive look:

  • Work Truck: features a black "Chevrolet" flow-through script grille
  • Custom: new for the HD lineup only as a 2500, 20-inch wheels and body-colored trim with black bumpers
  • LT: chrome-accented vertical grille elements with a bright "Chevrolet" flow-through name bar
  • LTZ: the blinged-out chrome monster version with a bright grille and inserts, LED reflector headlights with LED daytime running lights and LED taillamps
  • High Country: the luxury version with the distinctive Chevy bow-tie-badged two-tone metallic grille and LED lighting.

Under the Hood

Just like the 2020 Ford Super Duty, an all-new gas engine has been created for the 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 and 3500. It's a direct-injected 6.6-liter V-8 making 401 horsepower and 464 pound-feet of torque, and it's standard across the lineup. It's mated to a standard 6L90 six-speed automatic transmission driving the rear wheels or all four through part-time four-wheel drive. The new engine is built on a cast-iron small-block with aluminum heads and features a forged steel crankshaft and forged powdered-metal connecting rods for increased durability. The new engine delivers 21 percent more torque than the outgoing 6.0-liter V-8 engine and will be offered with dual alternators for customers with heavy electrical needs. The new engine allows for a maximum towing capacity of 17,400 pounds in the Silverado 2500, an 18 percent improvement over the old model.

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The optional powertrain will be the venerable turbo-diesel 6.6-liter Duramax V-8, now making a healthy 445 hp and 910 pounds-feet of torque. It's mated to a new 10-speed Allison 10L1000 automatic transmission, now available with a factory-installed power takeoff. The new Duramax offers a maximum towing capacity of 35,500 pounds for the Silverado 3500, a whopping 52 percent improvement over the outgoing truck. Chevrolet says that every diesel-equipped Silverado HD will be able to tow at least 30,000 pounds. This is due to improvements to the powertrain and nearly every other driveline component — axles are beefier front and rear, and prop shaft diameter is increased by 30 percent. The ring gear is an 11.5-inch unit on 2500 models, and a new 12-inch ring gear in the rear axle has been fitted to 3500 diesel models.

Cooling capacity has been improved for the new Duramax as well, with a new 28-inch cooling fan up front, and a new feature that will allow the engine to idle for up to 15 minutes after the customer has shut off the truck and locked the doors. This after-run engine cooling will actually function on its own. When drivers put the truck in Park, a warning will appear in the gauge cluster requesting them to keep the engine running for a cool-down. If they shut off the engine anyway, the truck will restart on its own to idle and operate the cooling system, shutting itself off when it's reached an "acceptable temperature."

As for that 910 pounds-feet of torque being a little bit less than the 1,000 pounds-feet available in the new Ram 3500, Chevy has a response. "Torque like that only matters if you can get all that torque to the axles," said Jaclyn McQuaid, Silverado HD's chief engineer. Chevy claims that the new Allison transmission can do just that — deliver all 910 pounds-feet of torque to the pavement in 1st gear.

Another performance upgrade is a new two-speed transfer case for all 4x4 models that has a 4 Auto mode, which allows the truck to shift between two- and four-wheel drive based on changing road conditions.

Interior

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The cabins of the new 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 and 3500 are dimensionally bigger than the outgoing models, with crew-cab versions getting about 3 inches of stretch to them. The shapes and materials should look familiar, as they're similar to the light-duty models. Chevy says that it's chosen "durable materials" for its interiors, which come off as they did in the light-duty models: only as nice as they need to be and still not as nice as the new Ram HDs' cabin.

New Tech

A host of new technology that aims to improve trailering and connectivity make up for that perceived material quality issue, however. With 90 percent of heavy-duty owners using their trucks for towing, Chevrolet has added the Advanced Trailering System to the Silverado 2500 and 3500 to make towing easier. It starts with lots of cameras — eight of them in various places around the truck — offering up to 15 unique camera views. The most unique view is the transparent trailer view, which uses a combination of camera feeds stitched together to make it appear that the trailer isn't actually there and providing an unobstructed view of the rear. That view requires the purchase of a remote accessory camera mounted to the rear of the trailer.

The ATS can be integrated with ASA Electronics iN-Command control systems, which allow owners to share data, monitor and control a variety of systems such as water tank levels, climate controls and even power slide-outs on recreational trailers. Chevy's Trailering App delivers all kinds of data to the driver via a smartphone or the Silverado HD's multimedia system, including stored trailer profiles, a pre-departure checklist, and tire pressure and temperature monitoring.

Each 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 and 3500 has its own trailering information label specific to that[JB9] truck with its unique specifications and capabilities. The label includes gross vehicle weight rating, curb weight, gross combined weight rating, maximum payload, max tongue weight, gross axle weight rating, and fifth wheel and gooseneck ratings, all determined by what equipment that truck was built with. No more guessing at a truck's capacities by poring over charts to figure out what it'll haul. We don't know why every truck ever built doesn't have this feature.

Thoughtful Touches

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Chevrolet listened to its customers (including ours, judging by gripes we've had with GM trucks in the past that the new trucks eliminate) and improved a lot of the little touches on the new 2020 Silverado 2500 and 3500. The engine block heater plug is now integrated into the front bumper behind a spring-loaded door. No more cords hanging out of the grille for customers living in frigid climates, just pop the little portal and plug in when weather requires; it's standard on diesel models and optional on gas trucks.

The new bumper also has been redesigned for easy removal of the air dam and skid plate. That means snowplow users no longer have to cut or drill anything out of the front end to install a plow.

On diesel models, the diesel exhaust fluid tank filler has been relocated from under the hood to next to the diesel fuel filler on the rear fender. And wonder of wonders: There's now a DEF gauge to tell you just how much is in the tank, instead of merely "enough" and "refill" readings in the current vehicles.

Finally, new trailering mirrors will be standard on all Silverado HD models, with either manual or power-folding operation. The surface area of the mirrors is larger, and a new forward-facing spot lamp on each mirror can illuminate a job or campsite. Some trims will feature new side-view cameras as well, contributing to the Silverado HD's eight possible total cameras, as well as puddle lamps and rearward-facing spotlights.

The new 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 and 3500 go on sale this summer; pricing will be released closer to the on-sale date.

Manufacturer images

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Comments

GM is executing their plan perfectly - cut 4000 workers, close Lordstown OH, Oshawa and maufacture the new Blazer in Mexico.

@grnzel

So according to your comment, you must think it's cool that Ford shares are headed into the cr*pper... (?). Is Ford doing anything that their shareholders like? GM shares were up this morning---what would Ford executives give to see THEIR shares headed up?

New Chevy is consistent with GM’s light-duty, weekend warrior, approach to building “HD” trucks. 👍🏼

@papa
Did not comment on Ford. Just the latest actions of the GM management team.
I don’t own any stock of GM, Ford or Fiat directly or indirectly.
Sometimes management can be incompetent, lack vision or strategy but make a good product - however, that’s unsustainable. Tick tock...

@grnzel

GM is successfully executing its plan. You may not like the plan, but this CEO's management team was hand picked by the GM board to do what they're doing.

Unless you're running a hot-dog stand this is how businesses run. Strategies are created, tactics are chosen.

For GM it appears to be working. Ford is pursuing a similar approach (exiting weak foreign markets) but it's taking them longer to get the desired results.

It's amazing the influence Ford has on the industry!

It's amazing the influence GM has on the industry.

Ford is going back to push-rod motors b/c they see the longevity, durability, and superior performance they have. For example the 5.3/6.0L/ and then 6.2L have dominated the half tons for 20 years, and the HD models, the 6.0L has been as bullet proof a motor as they come. This new 6.6L gas motor will be another performance leader!!

They are again following GM.

@ Grnzl

I for one am with you on the job cuts GM is doing. I don't agree with them at all. That's all big business these days and it's a shame. It's very sad and hurtful to have to come home to your family and tell them you have no job. Luckily, with the man in charge, our economy is better than it's been in more than 30 years. So hopefully all those men/women can find new ones swiftly.


@papa
I’d argue there are hot dog stand owners who could do a better job than some F500 managers. People rise to their level of incompetence.
@TNT
Brand loyalty aside I don’t like to see mfg jobs like these move out. I get it, but I’ve lived it. My father was a steelworker. I ate a lot of deer meat through many layoffs and closures.

The new GM HD twins remain as the most advanced and now most capable HD trucks in it class.

@grnzel

So, why aren't you a F500 manager (if it's so easy)?

Your comment frankly makes you sound like a fool. There is no competitive marketplace on earth that's more challenging than the one you dismissed so casually.

Seriously--give it a try and let us know how it goes.

@papa

First - you don’t know that I’m not a F500 manager, or a dishwasher for that matter. I never said it was easy, nor did I dismiss it. You clearly did not understand the simple point I was making. And yes, there are other markets that are equally or even more competitive - electronics, semiconductor mfg just to name a few.

@papajim
you are the new birdbox
take your blindfold off

you don’t know that I’m not a F500 manager, or a dishwasher for that matter. I never said it was easy, nor did I dismiss it...

@grnzel

Walkin' it back...almost like a moonwalk

It's amazing the influence GM has on the industry.
Ford is going back to push-rod motors b/c they see the longevity, durability, and superior performance they have. For example the 5.3/6.0L/ and then 6.2L have dominated the half tons for 20 years, and the HD models, the 6.0L has been as bullet proof a motor as they come. This new 6.6L gas motor will be another performance leader!!
They are again following GM.

Posted by: TNTGMC | Feb 6, 2019 11:59:29 AM

GM does not dominate the 1/2 ton market nor does their 5.3, 6.2 dominate the market. That is wishful thinking on your part. The 5.3 does not dominate anything. Fords 2.7, 3.5 and 5.0 make the 5.3 look weak as water.
GM knows better than to send a 5.3 to any comparison.
The 5.3 is likely a main cause of GMs shrinking market share.

GM does not dominate the 1/2 ton market... Posted by: Just the truth | Feb 6, 2019

@JTT

Please remind us. Which company sells more pickups than anybody else?

Bonus Question: If you were building a modern muscle car or updating an old coupe or roadster, can you think of a more popular engine today than the 6.0 GM V8?

Let us know.

mark my words, this thing is gonna be a game changer!! I know, because I know everything.

@papajim
Ford sells more full-size trucks than gm sales
take off the blindfold when you try reading


@papajim
Again
You can’t fix stupid

GM does not dominate the 1/2 ton market... Posted by: Just the truth | Feb 6, 2019
@JTT
Please remind us. Which company sells more pickups than anybody else?
Bonus Question: If you were building a modern muscle car or updating an old coupe or roadster, can you think of a more popular engine today than the 6.0 GM V8?
Let us know.

Posted by: papajim | Feb 6, 2019 8:51:17 PM

Papajim defending his little boy tntonline by changing the subject. Try one time staying on the subject.
Ford likely sells more trucks with ecoboosts than GM does with V8s.

@papa

Did you ever think my initial comment was nothing more than a ruse to simply bait you into a response - for fun? Then it’s just a rhetorical sing along. You’re too easy.

@ full of $h!t

Find me a motor more durable and bullet proof as the 6.0L

One that is mass produced today. It's a little underpowered but all the construction guys around here would prefer durability over unrealibilty

That's all that's around the midwest here, especially on I29 going to lake.

@tntonline I actually never mentioned the 6.0. But it appears the 6.0 is being replaced by the 6.6. Is the 6.0 now an obsolete engine. As far contractors preferring the 6.0 I don't think so. GM is third in sales in the 3/4 and 1 ton market.

@ Full of $h!t

Of course the 6.0L is getting replaced. It has been in market since 2002. Other then GMs own 5.3l, there is no other engine in production longer. The next in line would be Ram's Hemi.

And Papajim was not defending, he was just making a point, and I'm far from a little boy old man.

You on the other hand, no one defends or likes, bc we all know you are multiple username poster hiding behind a computer screen

BTW.....have you bought a truck yet? Or are you just running your trap like always.

How can you ever RELATE to real world experiences when you don't own a truck, and then also comment on them? SAD

I guess I should go over to the escort/topaz forum and comment over there! NOT!

Did you ever think my initial comment was nothing more than a ruse...Posted by: Grnzel | Feb 7, 2019

Sorry but I've never been impressed by anything you put on PUTC. I thought your lame comments were par for the course

@tntonline You are so insecure it is not funny. You need to grow up little boy.

@ full of $h!t

Insecure...ya, keep deflecting bc your the sap using other names. Always wanting to be more than u really are....

You truly are hopeless, you old fool.

U are good for a laugh though....Mr. car driver.

@papa

You’re entitled to your opinion.
Where do you ever get the notion I was trying to impress you?? Your just easy to spin up ;)

NEWS*NEWS*NEWS*

Ford boys grab your Kleenex.

GM today announced Q4 financial numbers: Earnings UP---Profits---UP---Revenues---UP

Ford boys: WAAAAAAA


Posted by: papajim | Feb 6, 2019 9:17:22 AM

Ahh, papaweirdo and his Bernie Sanders math. GM earnings up, profits up, revenues up. The $11.2B sham job of the American taxpayers was "free" obviously, because GM and Hussein Obama said they paid it back. ;-) ;-). Clean slate after bankruptcy and profits are up because the economy is thriving and their debt was sent to the working man. Funny how that works. Only a scumbag would buy GM.

Ram selling more because they put $10k on the hood. Chevy selling over MSRP and can't build new 2019 Silverado fast enough. Retro interior is in HIGH demand!!

https://www.cars.com/vehicledetail/detail/756017555/overview/

Only a dip💩 tries to imposter someone else.

Calling someone a scum bag bc he chose a truck that has been bullet proof for 10 years is ridiculous

I own a 98 that's been in family for 17 years and has been flawless. More than I can say for the:

04 f150 that blew up at 167k---step dads
07 edge that had more leaks than your syphilis peter
05 f150 blew up 150k--- nephews
05 f150 rusted out and rear main seal out by 60k miles---father in laws
16 f350 that been in shop 3 times for screwed up torque converter

So what do they now...they lease or trade in every 3-4 years bc they wont buy anything, but yet dont trust truck past warranty....

I have a 2007 F-150 with 5,000,000 miles and never changed the oil. Compared to:

2012 Silverado that needed lifters @ 59k
2009 Silverado that needed lifters and engine at 44K.
2008 Silverado that needed liberal funding to survive.

Sorry Impostor, you lose. Loser.

10.8 to 1 compression, that's going to require premium fuel isn't it?



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