Chevy’s Silverado LT Crew Cab –
CAN IT CREW FOR YOU?
It must be a blast being a pickup truck engineer these days; with the numerous variations, the chances to be creative seem to grow with each model year. The pickup truck used to be a symbol of toughness, built from the ground up to live at the construction site or in the oil field. But somewhere along the way truck marketers added a touch of (gasp!) luxury in a truck…and the race was on.
A walk around the recent Houston Auto Show gave me a taste of what’s new and tempting, enabling truck buyers to jump into a pickup and bathe themselves in luxury. That said, a pickup truck in any configuration is still capable of doing the job it was originally designed to do; no amount of leather or interior tech can (or should) diminish its true purpose.
A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to test drive a Satin Steel Metallic 2021 Chevrolet Silverado LT Crew Cab 4WD pickup with a $53,845 window sticker. The price tag is about $15,000 more than a plain vanilla crew cab truck. The one I drove was powered by the Duramax 277 hp, 3.0 liter turbocharged diesel mated to a ten-speed automatic transmission. The Duramax diesel engine is a $2,390 upcharge. But if plan to do any towing, the 460 ft-lbs of torque generated by this engine will make towing most trailers a breeze. I pulled a loaded twelve-foot U-Haul trailer from Dallas to Houston and the Duramax diesel didn’t break a sweat.
Minus the trailer on the back of the Silverado, the truck gets very impressive EPA estimated fuel economy ratings of 22 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. A 2WD Silverado powered by the same engine gets an almost unbelievable 33 mpg on the highway. Yes, diesel fuel is about fifty cents more expensive than regular unleaded, but it delivers so much more in a truck.
The Silverado LT I drove is hardly a luxury truck, but it did drive like one. It’s really remarkable how refined and small this full-size pickup handles. The immediate low-end torque from the Duramax diesel is another reason the truck is fun to drive. My wife, who grew up driving Ford F-150s, declared that she might have become a “Chevy girl” after a week in the Silverado.
There are nine different powertrain configurations to satisfy most Silverado buyers. The LT trim is priced for that middle-of-the-road truck buyer that wants a little more inside. Of course, there were a lot of safety tech features, including lane change alert with blind spot alert, which comes in handy when small cars sneak up alongside. This feature has graduated from only alerting you once a blinker has been activated to now being a constant monitor that alerts you by a little light on your side rear view mirror. OnStar Services, which adds yet another safety layer to the Silverado, continue in GM vehicles, should buyers wish to subscribe.
Test driving pickup trucks is always a pleasure. The latest Silverado is an impressively capable machine, even though I never pushed it anywhere near its limits. As capable as it is, it also handles well, perfect for any driver who may haul nothing but air and never tow.