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Chevrolet Silverado Z71 Truck Review


The Z71 package adds versatility to Chevrolet's Silverado. The Z71 package gives the truck more off road capability but it really doesn't make the vehicle any less civilized. It's still runs smooth on city streets and inside it's quiet even with the beefy wheels and off road capable tires.

Versatility and a wide range of trim packages are what make the Silverado is the best selling truck in the General Motors line up. It's offered with three cab layouts, three bed sizes and three engine choices across six distinct trim levels. Whether you want a bare-bones work truck or something with more luxury there's probably a Chevrolet Silverado that will fit into your lifestyle. Our test vehicle was equipped with the 5.3 litre engine and all wheel drive.

Z71 OFF-ROAD PACKAGE The Z71 Off-Road Package provides true off road capability. You get all-terrain tires, an off-road tuned suspension with Rancho mono-tube shocks, skid plates, Hill Descent Control and an Eaton® automatic locking rear differential that none of the Silverado's competitors offer. The Z71 is available in Double Cab and Crew Cab LT Z71 and the top of the line LTZ Z71 models.

TOWING CAPABILITY • Available Max Trailering Package offers up to 12,500 lb. (5670 kg) of towing capability1,2 • Available Integrated Electric Trailer Brake Controller • Tow/Haul Mode • StabiliTrak® with Trailer Sway Control • Hill Start Assist • Auto Grade Braking • Standard Rear Vision Camera • 4-wheel disc brakes with Duralife™ rotors

The Silverado is available in 5’8", 6’6" and 8’ box lengths.

Inside our test vehicle was well equipped and packed with luxury. Chevrolet's infotainment system is easy to learn and easy to use. The backup camera enhances safety. Navigation makes trips easier. We found an abundance of power outlets. It's even equipped with a built in wireless phone charger. The seats were comfortable and supportive. The power driver's seat even came with memory settings. The stereo was powerful and the audio was clean. The rear seating area provides tons of leg room, and the rear window opens.

Acceleration was smooth. Our test truck was responsive. The suspension soaked up off road bumps, and city road potholes, yet still felt nimble for a vehicle this size.

You will pay for the towing capacity and power at the pump, but the fuel economy was better than we expected. We got about 22 miles per gallon on the highway which is where we put on most of our miles, and about 19 miles per gallon combined city and highway. The Chevy is heavier than the Ford F150, but we really didn't notice any appreciable difference in performance or economy.

The main competitor for the Silverado is Ford's F150 which now has an aluminum body. The Silverado is still all steel and Chevrolet is using that as a selling point. In fact the truck bed is now made with roll-formed steel, making it even stronger than truck beds made from stampings. The frame has eight cross members. In short Chevy is promoting the Silverado as a durable tough truck, but it's more.

Our test truck came with the redline sports appearance package. It does look sharp, adding special badging, red line stripes on the wheels, and red tow hooks.

Advanced safety features are a big plus like Low Speed Forward Automatic Braking 19 to help prevent a potential collision. Inside you're protected with a safety cage made of high-strength steel. OnStar® is available with Automatic Crash Response. Our test vehicle also had lane keep assist, forward collision alert, and rear park assist.

The durable bed liner is a big plus. It's attractive and really protects, giving you a functional truck that you can actually use to haul stuff for work, and still keep your truck looking good.

When it comes to trucks brand loyalty still plays a big role at the time of purchase, but we can honestly say that with all brand preferences aside, the new Silverado is one tough customer that is tough to beat.

Rick Walker SST Car Show news.



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