Which new Silverado is best for towing a hefty trailer? How does the all-new 2019 Chevy Silverado 1500 5.3L V8 and an 8-speed automatic compare to the 6.2L V8 and a 10-speed automatic with about 6,000 lbs of trailer behind them? Find out in this first drive comparison review.
2019 Chevy Silverado 1500
The fully-redesigned truck will eventually offer six powertrain options, but the two trucks we are comparing here are V8-powered. The 5.3L V8 is available in two flavors: the older design with Active Fuel Management (AFM) V4/V8-cylinder deactivation that is mated to a 6-speed automatic, and a new version with Dynamic Fuel Management (DFM) cylinder deactivation that can run in more than a dozen modes with an 8-speed automatic transmission. In both cases, the smaller V8 is still rated at 355 hp and 383 lb-ft of torque. The truck being tested here is the new design with the 8-speed automatic.
The other truck is powered by the 6.2L V8 with DFM and a 10-speed automatic. The rating on the big V8 also stay the same at 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque. Chevrolet invited many journalists to test drive these trucks in Wyoming last week, and they also provided these trailers – loaded up to 6,000 lbs of total weight.
The 2019 Silverado is completely redesigned. It rides on an updated frame. The new truck is around 350 lbs lighter (depending on the configuration) than the predecessor due to aluminum hood, doors, and tailgate. It is a physically bigger truck, and it rides on a longer wheelbase.
After spending several hours behind the wheel, we can say that the new truck rides on a cushy suspension that is able to soak up rough surfaces and a variety of terrain. It does not ride like a big boat. It is still controlled. It’s impressive for a big truck with a solid rear axle with rear leaf springs. The new truck also tends to shrink around you at speed. It often feels like a smaller truck or an SUV while on the highway. You need to remind yourself that this is indeed a large full-size truck.
GM did not go for outright best towing and payload ratings for the new Silverado. The maximum towing rating is 12,200 lbs, which is less than the latest Ford and Ram trucks. Maximum payload stands at a respectable 2,500 lbs, which is more than any other half-ton other than the F-150.
Chevrolet focused on towing confidence with several technologies, including a towing checklist, surround-view camera, trailer-mounted camera, trailer tire pressure monitoring system, and more. Special towing mirrors will not be available until later in the year, but the new 2019 Silverado 1500 trucks are already now arriving at dealerships.
Which one of these trucks tows the trailer better? Naturally, the big 6.2L V8 offers more pulling power and quicker loaded acceleration. However, the 5.3L V8 is also no slouch. Both trucks were stable with a trailer, and the transmissions were smooth. The 5.3L V8 is really matched well against the 6,000 lbs trailer. If you need to tow heavier trailers, or if you are towing often – then the 6.2L V8 would be a worthy upgrade.
The 2019 Silverado 1500 crew cab 2WD pricing starts at $36,095. Please see the full Silverado 1500 pricing list in a previous post.
You can bet that we will be running all of the new trucks on the Ike Gauntlet™ – World’s Toughest Towing test very soon!
Watch the full video at TFLtruck Youtube channel.