2014 Chevy Silverado is Bigger, Stronger, More Fuel Efficient
The redesigned 2014 Silverado 1500 is equipped with a choice of three new EcoTec engines: a 4.3-liter V-6, 5.3-liter V-8, or a 6.2-liter V-8. Each is equipped with direct fuel injection, continuously variable valve timing, and Active Fuel Management technology that shuts down half of the engine's cylinders under low driving-load conditions to help conserve fuel.
Chevrolet says each engine is more powerful and more fuel-efficient than the one it replaces. Official horsepower, torque, towing, and payload ratings are not finalized as this post is written, but Chevrolet says the new 4.3-liter V-6 provides enough torque "to power a crew cab pickup and tow a substantial trailer" while the 6.2-liter V-8 is "engineered to be the most capable engine in any light-duty pickup."
A 6-speed automatic transmission is standard, and includes a new Auto Grade Braking feature that downshifts when the truck is traveling down a hill to help reduce brake wear. Speaking of the brakes, the 4-wheel-disc system is equipped with new DuraLife brake rotors, which Chevrolet says will last twice as long as conventional rotors. Additional hardware upgrades for the 2014 Silverado include electric steering, wider wheels to reduce sidewall flex and to improve handling, and a 30% stiffer coil-over-shock front suspension employing aluminum upper and lower control arms.
Chevrolet says that two-thirds of the new 2014 Silverado is constructed from high-strength steel, with hydroformed components forming sections of the frame rails and major cross members. Truck cabs are equipped with new shear mounts designed to better isolate them for a more comfortable ride, and both the extended- and crew-cab variants are equipped with hydraulic body mounts. New "inlaid" and triple-sealed side door designs do not wrap into the truck's roof, helping to reduce cabin noise, Chevy says.
The new Silverado's cargo box is constructed of roll-formed steel rather than stamped steel to improve strength and reduce weight. Three lengths are offered: a 5-foot 8-inch short bed, 6-foot 6-inch standard bed, and an 8-foot long bed. CornerStep rear bumpers, handgrips on the bed rails, two-tier bed loading, a cargo box light, and a locking tailgate are standard, with optional adjustable tie-down cleats, LED under-rail lighting, and an EZ Lift and Lower tailgate.
The Silverado Z71 returns for 2014, offered with LT and LTZ trim levels and including off-roading upgrades such as Rancho monotube shock absorbers, automatic locking rear differential, skid plate for the transfer case, and all-terrain tires wrapped around unique 18- or 20-inch aluminum wheels. The Silverado Z71 models also get hill-descent control, front tow hooks, and unique styling details inside and out.
Although the new 2014 Silverado looks similar to the outgoing model, mainly due to the signature grille appearance and flared front and rear fenders, the pickup is completely redesigned to make it more aerodynamic. To that end, the dual power-dome hood lifts air up and over the windshield wipers, while subtle spoilers on the trailing edge of the truck's roof and tailgate help reduce aerodynamic drag, according to Chevy. Additional details include a fully sealed front end, cab-to-box seals, underbody panels, and specific side mirrors designed to smooth airflow around the Silverado to achieve the goal of maximizing fuel economy.
Inside, Chevrolet says the Silverado's cab is quieter than ever, and offers logically arranged controls that can be operated while wearing work gloves. Multiple storage areas, several USB ports, and both 12-volt and 110-volt power outlets are standard, and Chevrolet says that most Silverados will have a 4.2-inch color information display embedded into its 6-gauge instrument cluster.
The new Silverado's seats are constructed of dual-density foam and are offered with wear- and stain-resistant cloth upholstery. Leather seats are optional, along with Chevrolet MyLink connectivity technology, navigation system, and an 8-inch in-dash touch screen.
Chevrolet says the new Silverado is roomier inside, with crew cab models adding 2 inches of rear-seat leg room and longer rear doors for easier passenger entry and exit. The Silverado Extended Cab is equipped with front-hinged rear access doors, replacing the rear-hinged doors on the previous truck.
Occupants are likely to feel safer in the new Silverado, too, due to extensive use of high-strength steel in the roof pillars and surrounding the truck's cab. Standard equipment includes traction control, stability control, and trailer sway control, as well as 4-wheel-disc anti-lock brakes. OnStar telematics is also included, with a limited-time subscription to Automatic Crash Notification service.
Safety-related options for the 2014 Silverado include blind-spot side mirrors, reversing camera, and front and rear park-assist sensors. A forward-collision warning system is also optional, as well as a lane-departure warning system and an Active Safety Seat feature that emits tactile or audible warnings as is necessary.
Additional details about the new 2014 Silverado will be available closer to the truck's official debut at the 2013 North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January.
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