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Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Performance

The 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 has an incredibly quiet ride, according to test drivers. They praise its comfortable, composed ride and well-weighted steering. Reviewers are also impressed with the ample power from its available 5.3-liter V8 and say this engine gives the Silverado quick acceleration.

  • "The Silverado's ride and handling have been dramatically improved compared to last year's model. On the road, the truck now feels more like a crossover SUV than a beefy truck." -- AutoTrader
  • "While the Silverado's fuel-economy ratings aren't dazzling, Chevy's truck satisfies with a blend of capability and civility." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "On Texas's lumpy but unbroken pavement, the Silverado delivered a compliant ride with no head toss to speak of. Chevy's truck is also as quiet as a Lexus SUV thanks to acoustic-laminated glass, triple-sealed doors, and lined front wheel wells." -- Car and Driver (2014)
  • "As well as the new Silverado handles hard work; it's the refinement that really puts this truck ahead of the old model. You don't need a sound meter to hear how much quieter it is." -- Popular Mechanics (2014)

Acceleration and Power

The base 2015 Silverado 1500 comes standard with a 4.3-liter V6 that produces 285 horsepower and 305 pound-feet of torque. Optional engines include a 5.3-liter V8 that makes 355 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque or a 6.2-liter V8 that produces 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque. Models with the V6 or 5.3-liter V8 have a six-speed automatic transmission and those with the 6.2-liter V8 have an eight-speed automatic, which is new for 2015. A V6-powered Silverado achieves an EPA-estimated 18/24 mpg city/highway, while those with the 5.3-liter V8 are rated at 16/23 mpg. Both estimates are comparable with rivals' estimates.

According to auto journalists, the base V6 offers sufficient power for day-to-day driving and light towing or hauling. Test drivers report that the 5.3-liter V8 feels strong and gives the Silverado quick acceleration. Many add that the six-speed automatic is responsive and effectively keeps the engine in its power band as needed. Others add that the Silverado's standard cylinder deactivation system in the V8 models operates very smoothly.

  • "We spent most of our time in a 2-wheel-drive Silverado crew cab with the 5.3-liter V8. This is the setup that Chevy says most buyers will order. With 355 hp, this middle engine makes more than enough power but feels as smooth as a sedan." -- AutoTrader
  • "As the smallest of the Silverado's engine choices, the base V6 provides only adequate power for acceleration and light-hauling duties. If you tow loads in excess of 5,000 pounds, we recommend the 5.3-liter V8. … The standard 6-speed automatic transmission in V6 and 5.3-liter V8 models does an admirable job of keeping power on tap, especially with the well-calibrated tow/haul mode engaged." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Unladen, the 5.3-liter V8 delivers excellent power, hustling the truck to 60 miles per hour quicker than should be feasible. Shifts from that old six-speed are solid and well sorted, but the Silverado offers a more pleasant surprise in the brake system." -- Autoblog (2014)
  • "We found ourselves watching the center 3.5-inch information screen between the speedometer and tachometer to see if we could sense any vibrations when the V-8 icon turned to V-4 or vice versa. Our attempts proved fruitless - whether towing or near full payload, the V-4 mode stayed active. The transitions were so seamless they were close to nonexistent." -- PickupTrucks.com (2014)

Handling and Braking

The 2015 Silverado 1500 comes with either standard rear-wheel drive or optional four-wheel drive. Reviewers write that the Silverado rides comfortably and maintains composure over rough roads regardless of whether or not there is a load in the bed. Some even compare its ride quality to that of a crossover SUV. They write that it has steady handling, responsive, well-weighted steering and good brake pedal feel.

  • "Road and wind noise are nicely quelled at highway speeds, while this full-size truck's suspension soaks up everything short of a sinkhole. Steering is light and precise, with responsiveness that belies the Silverado's portly dimensions." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "Beneath the exterior lies more newness - a stiffened frame, a retuned suspension and a new electric power steering system. Thanks to these revisions, the Silverado possesses a better-controlled, more comfortable ride along with more predictable handling than before." -- Left Lane News
  • "Electric power steering delivers just the right amount of road feel but also makes the Silverado easy to maneuver in a parking lot or on a boat ramp." -- AutoTrader
  • "Four-wheel disc brakes offer good bite and a firm brake pedal." -- Automobile Magazine (2014)
  • "Another standout characteristic of the new truck that impressed us is how it handles road irregularities and how stable it feels on the road, empty and loaded." -- PickupTrucks.com (2014)

Towing and Hauling

The Silverado 1500 can tow up to 12,000 pounds with the 6.2-liter V8. When properly equipped, it can haul up to 2,270 pounds. Test drivers report that a V6-powered Silverado can tow 5,500-pound loads with ease. They report that a Silverado with the 5.3-liter V8 begins to strain with trailers weighing around 9,000 pounds, and some note that the transmission's gearing isn't optimal for towing. Reviewers are pleased that a 1,000-pound payload produces minimal body squat, even though there isn't a load-leveling suspension.

  • "While towing a 5500-pound camper using a trailer hitch, the [V6] Silverado never hesitated. It accelerated quickly and the integrated trailer sway controls, which use the truck's anti-lock brakes, helped steady the trailer down the windy Texan roads." -- Motor Trend (2014)
  • "But despite the pull of the Silverado's huskier new engines, we've noticed that there's still too big a gap between the [six-speed] transmission's gear ratios when towing." -- Edmunds (2014)
  • "We got to drive Silverados with 1,000-pound boxes in the bed, which gave us the opportunity to see how the chassis dealt with heavier payloads. Although we would have liked some kind of load-leveling capability, the visual ‘squat’ to the trucks was minimal and the handling and rear-end control on our drive routes were well within our comfort zones." -- PickupTrucks.com (2014)
  • "Later, we towed a skid steer on a flatbed that checked in around 9000 pounds, and only then did the 5.3 feel a bit overmatched and the suspension a little too soft. Yes, the Silverado can handle a load this heavy (some Silverados will be rated to tow 11,500 pounds) but it felt like a job better suited to a heavy-duty pickup." -- Popular Mechanics (2014)
Review Last Updated: 3/23/15

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