After several years of patiently waiting and guessing, GM has finally unveiled their new ½-ton pickups, the 2014 Silverado and Sierra. This is the first complete redesign in seven years and was long overdue, especially since both Ford and ram have redesigned their trucks in that time.
One of the changes we begged for and finally received was in the gauges. The previous gene
Since it's the volume seller among many truck enthusiasts, we'll start with the Silverado. From the outside, chevrolet has kept many of the styling cues that make the Silverado a popular truck. But don't be misled; this is far from just a frontend refresh. The entire cab has been redesigned. The windshield received added rake for better aerodynamics. The doors are now sucked into the side of the cab instead of going up over the top, considerably reducing wind noise inside the cabin. Speaking of the doors, on crew cab versions, the rear door is larger giving easier access to the back seat. In extended cab models, the rear doors open rearward, like a traditional door, rather than suicide. This makes ingress and egress easier in tight parking spaces.as was mentioned earlier, the frontend was refreshed with a larger, bolder-looking grille, refined headlights, and a sculpted bumper. The end goal of these changes being a better-looking and more aerodynamic truck. Finally, the bed received optional cargo hooks that can be moved to any of nine locations around the bed. also, to make seeing cargo at night easier, LED lighting is offered under the bedrail, a first for the truck segment. The tailgate is now easier to open and close with the help of a torsion bar that runs laterally between the hinges.
Looking to increase the handling and safety of their light-duty truck, the engineers at GM designed a fully boxed, hydro-formed frame. also, new beefier axles come in the v-8 rucks and automatic locking rear differentials are standard in the 4x4 models. You may be wondering about the engines. Those are all new as well. Gone are the lS-based Vortecs. In their place are a line of engines called EcoTec3, which come in three popular sizes, 4.3l v-6, 5.3l v-8, and 6.2l v-8. The buzzwords with these powerplants are power and efficiency. To achieve both, the engines feature direct injection, active fuel management, and an 11.0:1 compression ratio. Power and EPA fuel figures have not yet been released.
Exterior and drivetrain changes are nice, but what really sets great trucks apart from the rest of the pack is the interior. Chevrolet knows this and completely redesigned the interior. The center stack features a new intuitive 8-inch touchscreen screen with large controls and large dials that can be used even with gloves on. This screen is used to control the all-new MyLink connectivity suite. MyLink features the ability to connect up to 10 devices wirelessly. users can listen to the music on their device, control different apps, and make phone calls, all with voice commands. With all of those devices, there will come a time that charging is a necessity. To whet the appetite of the power-thirsty truck owners, the interior designers have integrated three USB ports, two power ports, and a 110v outlet into the center stack. Safety is also a big factor, and the new trucks have features seen only before in luxury cars and SUVS like lane departure warning, collision avoidance system,and a tactile feedback seat to alert the driver of possible dangers. Gm listened to their customers who asked for more storage, now offering a giant center console, large pockets in the door, and a dual-compartment clam shell-style glovebox.
The interior on both trucks received the biggest change in our minds. A ton of storage mak
Moving to the GMC we see a much more refined look, offering projector headlights with LEDs and a much more chiseled look to the grille. Interior-wise, the Sierra has more standard features than the Silverado. other than that, the two trucks share much of the same DNA, just marketed at different customers. The Silverado is for the workingman who busts his hump at the worksite and uses his truck for what it was made for. The Sierra, however, is a much more modern-looking truck used by the guy or gal who wants a more luxurious
and more options, and who isn't afraid to pay for them.
These trucks should be arriving in dealerships in mid- 2013. So far there haven't been any updates announced for the heavy-duty or SUV lineups, but we don't imagine it will take too long. Stay tuned for driving of the new half-ton trucks.
1. Get rid of the square fenders
We understand that since 1973, GM trucks have had square fenders, but it is time for a change. Wheels and tires are round—it's not complicated. Embrace change.
2. Give us more engine/drivetrain options
Ford has the twin-turbo V-6 and it's selling like hotcakes. Ram has the new eight-speed auto for better performance and fuel mileage. How about a 4.5L Duramax diesel with 600 lb-f that debuted in the Suburban 2500 at SEMA 2011 or even a freshly engineered 10-speed automatic with tow/ haul, manual, and eco modes? The current three rebadged engines and an old sixspeed auto isn't the best option for 2014
3. Don't be afraid to make dramatic body changes
Looking at the 2013 and the 2014 trucks, the uneducated would say there doesn't appear to be many changes. Dramatic things like the streamlined body, sleeker grille and headlights (as seen here on the '03 Cheyenne concept truck and '11 global Colorado concept) would drop jaws. Even simple things such as LED taillights, better designed headlight LED strips, and new bed shape would help differentiate the new versus old.
4. Groundbreaking new suspension
Ram has the coil sprung rear suspension, so why not design the Silverado/Sierra with an independent rear suspension with helper airbags for towing and hauling. Yes, it would be expensive, but it would also set the benchmark for ride quality and handling.
5. Bring back the muscle truck
Remember the SS? Sigh. Chevrolet had a golden opportunity with the redesign to stir the fullsize pot with a tire-roasting muscle truck. Ram has the Express Hemi regular cab, Ford has the of-road Raptor and Chevy has zilch. Rumor has it an of-road-ready Sierra is on the horizon, but a supercharged 6.2L in a regular cab would have made our hearts skip a beat.
6. Fuel mileage leader
No EPA figures for the new trucks have been released, but imagine if GM took the aluminum hood to the next level and created aluminum front fenders and doors. Combine that with smooth front bumpers,the new mirrors, and low rolling-resistant tires and you just may have a 30-mpg truck. Obama would have loved that.
7. What's in a name?
GM dubbed their new engine line EcoTec3, as in direct fuel injection, active fuel management, and variable valve timing. Touting technology that isn't new, just new to you, as the greatest thing since sliced bread is pushing things a little too far. And is that the best name you could come up with? Was C-3PO already taken?
8. Diamond-plate bumper step—really?
A bumper step isn't a new idea, just look at the Avalanche, but what we don't like is the cheesy plastic diamond-plate covering. Somewhere, a designer is crying himself to sleep. A traditional ribbed design would have gone a long ways to making this look
9. Customizable bed configurations
The Honda Ridgeline has a trunk in the bed thanks to its IRS, Ram has the RamBox storage on top of the bed, and GM missed the boat with the 2014 truck. Going to a dealership and seeing a bed opening up like a Swiss army knife would have buyers signing on the dotted line. Everyone loves more utility, and this truck could have had it in spades.
10. Don't wait seven more years
Since 2007, the Ford and Ram released four new trucks. The market share lost during that time will be difficult for GM to recoup.