Chevrolet Silverado introduced all-new heavy-duty pickups during the 2007 model year. They were highlighted by all-new and differentiated exterior designs, two unique interiors and class-leading power and efficiency. They roll into 2008 ready for work or leisure, with minor refinements and enhancements, while still loaded with segment-leading and segment-exclusive features.
Silverado heavy-duties are offered in a range of 2500HD (three-quarter-ton) and 3500HD (one-ton) models; and are available in WT, LT and LTZ trim. The range of configurations — three cab styles, three cargo box styles and five wheelbase lengths — delivers tremendous choice. Some full-size truck manufacturers do not even offer three-quarter-ton or one-ton heavy-duty trucks. And among those that do, the 2008 Silverado HD pickups offer many segment-best capabilities, including 18,500-pound (8,392 kg) gross combined vehicle weight rating for vehicles with a gas V-8 and a 13,000-pound (5,897 kg) conventional trailer weight rating enabled by a larger-capacity trailer hitch platform. Maximum towing capacity is 16,700 pounds (7,575 kg), when equipped with a fifth-wheel hitch.
Changes to the Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD for 2008 are minor, and include standard XM Satellite Radio on all models, availability of a power-adjustable driver's seat on regular cab models with a bench seat, brighter instrument pointers in the gauge cluster and two new exterior colors: Dark Cherry Metallic and Deep Ruby Metallic.
Dually models in 2008 receive new, larger 17-inch wheels (replacing 16-inch wheels), which are available with bright wheel covers. Also, the 6.6L Duramax diesel engine is capable of running on B20 biodiesel.
Silverado heavy-duty models have bold, muscular designs that are differentiated from their light-duty siblings. This includes specific grilles, headlamps, hoods and front fenders — all conveying broad-shouldered, ready-for-anything strength.
Silverado HD models have a wider and taller dual-port grille, with a prominent gold bow tie emblem at the center. Large, reflector-optic headlamps and corner lights wrap around the front end and flow into flared front fenders, enhancing the truck's broad stance. The fender flares have a chiseled, squared-off appearance and complement the strong power dome hood design.
The trucks are refined looking, too, with doors that extend over the rockers for a smooth, uninterrupted look, and lamps that have a jeweled appearance. The door handles feature large, grab-style designs that are easy to open with gloves. Tolerances between panels are minimal — including a 50-percent reduction in the space between the cab and cargo box — which enhances the overall sleekness of the design.
Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD are offered in regular, extended and crew cab configurations, which are complemented with standard (6-foot 6-inch) and long (8-foot) cargo box lengths. Silverado 3500HD models also are available with the Dually dual rear wheel configuration on a long (8-foot) box. Features such as 170-degree-opening (164 degrees with dual rear wheels) rear access doors with fully retractable power windows on extended cab models, offer increased versatility.
The pickup boxes have great versatility, strength and capacity. A one-piece wheelhouse and inner box side offer strength and a smoother, more integrated appearance. The boxes are 1.18 inches (30 mm) deeper in the front and 1.57 inches (40 mm) deeper at the rear than previous-generation models, with stronger inner walls that offer improved performance when fitted with ladder racks, tool boxes and other accessories. Cargo bed volume is 60.7 cubic feet (1,718 L) with the regular box and 75.5 cubic feet (2,138 L) with the long box.
Dually cargo boxes are made of all steel, including hydroformed sheet metal outer fenders. They have a smooth, integrated appearance and enhanced strength. All Dually models feature marker lights on box side panels and sleek cab roof lights that are aerodynamically integrated into the top of the cab.
The tailgate designs include a lock and an available EZ Lift feature, with torque-rod assist. The tailgates are also easily removed by simply opening to 45 degrees and pulling straight out and away from the vehicle.
An innovative cargo management system is available and is complemented by a range of dealer-ordered accessory packages. Three rails that run the length of the box sides and the forward box wall are secured with high-strength anchors and, unlike competitors' systems, incorporate upper and lower tracks. Four adjustable tie-down brackets are included with each system and can be located anywhere on the tracks, each rated for a load of 500 pounds.
At the heart of a comprehensive accessories portfolio for the pickups is a group of specific accessory products designed to integrate into the cargo management system. The rails enable the use of an overhead utility rack rated at 500 pounds loading capacity, a sliding diamond plate toolbox, a sliding bed divider, diamond plate side storage boxes or a bicycle mount. These accessories use either the upper or lower rails, allowing numerous combinations that can easily fit together or bypass one another as they slide along the rails. The tool boxes and bicycle mount use a codeable lock, enabling the vehicle key to be used for locking and unlocking these accessories.
Chevy Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD are quieter, more spacious and refined inside, with increased passenger comfort and storage space. They each feature two new and distinct interior designs that reflect their respective brand identities, including specific trim, appointments and gauge cluster appearance.
Base- and midlevel-trim models include a functional pure pickup interior design theme with a contemporary adaptation of GM's ergonomic cockpit instrument panel design. In addition, this interior includes specific door panels with large door pull and release handles, as well as unique seat configurations; center console and underseat storage systems; and two glove boxes (a traditional lower glove box and a covered upper storage compartment).
Luxury-inspired premium interiors are standard on LTZ models. They offer richly appointed features, including a distinct instrument panel design, large-capacity center console (20.1 L), specific door panels, seats and other trim elements. Features on the premium interiors include power-adjustable heated bucket seats, leather surface seats, leather-covered steering wheel and selective chrome trim.
Spaciousness in each interior trim level is enhanced with new, “low and forward” instrument panels that provide a more airy feel to the cabin as well as a panoramic field of vision. The instrument panels are mounted approximately 3.5 inches down and forward on the pure pickup interiors, while the premium interior instrument panel is located 5 inches down and forward. Both instrument panel designs are integrated into their specific door panels to create a swept appearance.
A new, Hydra-Matic 6L90 six-speed automatic transmission is paired with the engine. This powertrain combination offers a higher maximum gross combined weight rating (GCWR) — 18,500 pounds (8,392 kg) — than previous gas-powered combinations and is the segment leader for vehicles with a small-block V-8 gas engine. The 6L90 has a wide, 6.04:1 overall ratio — including two overdrive gears — that helps deliver an excellent balance of performance and fuel economy. It also offers manual range selection and tap up/tap down control.
A cleaner, more powerful Duramax 6.6L turbo-diesel engine is available. It continues to lead the segment in power and torque, with power ratings of 365 horsepower (272 kW) and 660 lb.-ft. of torque (895 Nm). Upgrades to the engine introduced in 2007 include a new diesel particulate filter system that helps provide a 90-percent reduction in particulate matter and a 50-percent reduction in NOx (compared with pre-2007 standards), meeting a new federal government mandate that went into effect on Jan. 1, 2007.
New for 2008, the Duramax engine is enabled at the factory to run on B20 biodiesel fuel (fleet only).
The renowned Allison 1000 six-speed automatic transmission is partnered with the Duramax 6.6L turbo-diesel engine. It delivers good fuel economy, quietness and control. It features a class-first range selection function, which allows the driver to easily select the desired gears to match driving conditions, such as towing a trailer on a steep grade.
Working in concert with the powertrains are a strong chassis and responsive suspension systems. The vehicle frame is comprised of a sturdy ladder design that is reinforced with cross braces. It features a segmented design that enables easy and accurate adaptation of numerous lengths to accommodate the trucks' five wheelbase lengths. The frame sections are joined with strong, overlapping segments that bolster overall strength and rigidity.
The strength of the frame and enhanced capabilities enabled by the powertrain systems allow the Silverado heavy-duty trucks to offer a larger, 2.5-inch trailer hitch receiver platform. This enables the trucks to pull a segment-leading maximum of 13,000 pounds (5,897 kg) with conventional trailers. Trucks with fifth-wheel hitches can tow up to 16,700 pounds (7,575 kg), when properly equipped.