It’s been a while since we took a LONG term tester and as we refer to something LONG, how about a LONG Chevrolet Silverado? It is long, massive and truly menacing on road. We got the LTZ variant of a 2014 Silverado which is staying with us for another month.
How about we see what’s in and out for now? While in our next issue, we’ll get a deeper insight about the drive, but on different ground.
In America, it’s a hardcore heavy duty truck known for its practicality; whereas, in the Middle East, the Silverado is a lifestyle statement. Adding to the massive body, this year Chevrolet has invested some brains on the design part. It’s got more muscles and the front looks more imposing with a gigantic twin port grille, an extensive bumper and dual power dome hood. Molded body sides and fender flares have a new shape. Measures were taken to reduce some weight, like the usage of high strength steel for the frame and cab, aluminum alloys in the engine, front suspension components and hoods. This year we have a corner step integrated in the bumper for easy access to the rear bed. Wheels are wider with four wheel disc brakes with Duralife rotors.
We spot many changes inside. There’s no way one can complain about the cabin space and storage options. Every door has bottle and cup holder along with three other storage slots. Second row is spacious with a standalone foldable seat on the right side. Leather seats, bits of wood and soft touch material in the box bring in a premium feel. The tall center panel was a simple board with easy switches and knobs. The driver gets a good view on the six-gauge instrument cluster for all important figures. Silverado features Chevrolet’s MyLink on a 4.2 inch display on the dashboard; so we’ve got Bluetooth audio streaming, AM/FM stereo, hands-free calling, two USB ports, an SD card slot and auxiliary jack for MP3 devices. All this for a pickup truck!
The LTZ variant has a 5.3 liter V8 block that sends out 355 HP and 519 Nm of torque through a 6 speed automatic gearbox. The engine features direct fuel injection, active fuel management and continuously variable valve timing. So while cruising on long roads, the engine automatically deactivates 4 cylinders saving some fuel. For comfort, a revised set of front and rear suspension is introduced.
I took the car up to a multi-story car parking building and when turning to go around a corner that is quite cramped, I stopped. Here’s what my co passenger said, “Happy realization; you are driving a truck.” After a brief stunt, I somehow managed to go up and thereon kept a better presence of mind. Trust me, it was easy and gradually you could even learn to park at busy malls in a parallel parking spot.
Steering is direct which is electric powered and revised. It’s a jittery ride on city humps and shaky on gravel roads. On a straight run with full V8 throttle, the thrust is astonishing. Body roll is an obvious effect due to the height, but then I can adjust my speed accordingly.
I’d like to finish my note with a figure related to the fuel consumed so far: 13.2L/100km and on its best a 10.6L/100km.