By Joe Tralongo, Contributing Editor
KBB Expert Rating: 8.5
The 2017 Chevrolet Silverado full-size pickup finds itself in a styling and power war not only with rivals like the Ford F-150 and Ram 1500, but Nissan’s new Titan and Toyota’s Tundra. Even with its recent styling upgrades, the Silverado’s look remains tastefully conservative, which for many truck buyers is a good thing. For these folks, the measure of a pickup’s value is in how much it can haul, tow and carry. Chevrolet’s Silverado has a higher trailering rating than the Tundra, and a host of new safety features to challenge the F-150. Unlike the Ram and Titan, the Silverado doesn’t offer the option of diesel engine, but its choice of three powerful gasoline engines helps keep the price down without sacrificing power or capability.
With its vast configuration options, engine choices and trims, Chevy’s 2017 Chevrolet Silverado full-size pickup is as much about capability as it is technology and comfort. If loud styling isn’t your thing, we think the Silverado’s tasteful exterior will likely hold strong appeal.
If you’re seeking untraditional features in a traditional pickup, Ford’s aluminum body F-150 is lighter and more fuel-efficient than the Silverado, while the Ram 1500 and Nissan Titan offer the option of a diesel engine. Chevy’s smaller midsize Colorado can haul nearly as much cargo and offers a diesel engine.
KBB Expert Ratings
Chevy’s 2017 Silverado pickup leads the Crew Cab segment with a 12,500-pound trailering rating. Teen Driver is made standard while the Enhanced Driver Alert Package gains low-speed autonomous braking.
Despite its boxy design, there is an eerie lack of wind and road noise when driving the full-size Chevrolet Silverado pickup, a testament to just how far GM’s suspension and...
... body engineering technologies have come. Over big dips, the suspension does an admirable job soaking up impacts, although this same ability translates into a sometime soft and bouncy ride when traveling off-road. The Silverado’s steering feel is perfectly weighted, making for precise cornering and ease of use when negotiating crowed parking lots. The Silverado’s standard V6 offers good fuel economy but feels sluggish. We prefer either the 5.3- or 6.2-liter V8, although the latter’s poor fuel economy makes the 5.3-liter engine the best fit. GM’s excellent 8-speed automatic transmission delivers smooth operation and helps the Silverado achieve fuel economy on par with the F-150’s EcoBoost V6. We only wish it offered better response to throttle input.
12,500-POUND TRAILERING RATING
On the Crew Cab models, a 12,500-pound trailering rating places the Silverado at the head of its class, with the Tundra limited to 9,500 pounds and the F-150 at a close 11,900 pounds.
Even pickup owners want the latest and greatest in infotainment, which is why the availability of Apple CarPlay in the 2017 Chevy Silverado makes so much sense. With CarPlay, owners can integrate their Apple smartphones, making many of the apps and features available via the truck’s touch screen.
Even more basic models of the 2017 Chevy Silverado benefit from the sensible layout and ample storage, and the plastics are nicely textured and feel upscale. Of course, if you opt for higher-end models, you get higher-end materials, with the High Country models laying on the luxury nice and thick. There are three cab styles, with passenger capacity ranging from three in regular cabs to up to six in double-cab or crew-cab configurations. With up to five USB plugs, two 12-volt ports and a 110-volt outlet, the Silverado can juice several devices.
Chevy’s full-size Silverado pickup’s exterior styling is rugged and distinctive without going overboard. The 2017 Silverado features a bold, aggressive grille that changes design from trim level to trim level. The LTZ gets an especially chromed-up look, while the standard Silverado sports a more subdued look. Missing from the Silverado body are helpful step-up tools, such as the Ford F-150’s built-in tailgate stepladder, although like the Nissan Titan, the Silverado does offer an optional rear-bumper step assist.
Starting at the lowest-end 2017 Silverado WT, you get the basics, such as air conditioning, power windows, cruise control and AM/FM audio system with 4.2-inch display and inputs for USB, Teen Driver safe-driving system, auxiliary jack and SD card. It also includes the Silverado's new projector-beam headlights and LED accents, and the CornerStep cutout on the rear bumper to make it easier to access the truck's bed. Safety equipment includes front, side and curtain airbags, anti-lock brakes and stability control. All 2017 Chevrolet Silverados also include two years/24,000 miles of complimentary factory-scheduled maintenance.
Aside from picking either a 5.3-liter or 6.2-liter V8 engine over the standard 4.3-liter V6 for your 2017 Silverado, there are an 8-speed automatic or a 6-speed automatic, rear- or 4-wheel drive, and bed and cabin size to consider. Luxury-truck buyers should start with the High Country, with its big V8, leather upholstery, navigation, Apple CarPlay, a premium audio system, and more. CarPlay is also available in the nicely equipped LT and LTZ models. One option that isn't available at any price is push-button ignition, odd since it's available in the Silverado-based Tahoe SUV.
The three engines for the 2017 Chevy Silverado remain the same. There's the base 4.3-liter EcoTec3 V6, while the 5.3-liter V8 powers higher trims, with the High Country getting a 6.2-liter V8 with up to 12,500 pounds of towing power. All engines are available with 4-wheel drive (4WD) instead of the standard 2-wheel-drive (2WD) setup. Standard on the V6 and 5.3-liter V8 is a 6-speed automatic transmission, while the 6.2-liter V8 and 5.3-liter V8 LTZ models get an 8-speed automatic. All three of the engines run on regular unleaded, and the V6 and 5.3-liter V8 are flex-fuel compliant, meaning they can use the E85 ethanol blend.
4.3-liter V6 Flex-Fuel
285 horsepower @ 5,300 rpm
305 lb-ft of torque @ 3,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/24 mpg (2WD), 17/22 mpg (4WD)
5.3-liter V8 Flex-Fuel
355 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
383 lb-ft of torque @ 4,100 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 16/23 mpg (2WD), 16/22 mpg (4WD 6-speed, 2WD 8-speed), 15/21 mpg (4WD 8-speed)
6.2-liter V8 Flex-Fuel (4WD only)
420 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
460 lb-ft of torque @ 4,100 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/21 mpg
Note: Due to changes in EPA testing to more effectively reflect real-world conditions, some 2017 models show slightly lower fuel-economy scores than their 2016 versions.
An entry-level 2-wheel-drive regular-cab 2017 Chevy Silverado work truck carries a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of about $28,000, including the $1,195 destination charge. A 4WD crew-cab, standard-box High Country Silverado will run close to $57,000 before you start adding options. Of course you can get a very nicely equipped Silverado just the way you want it for considerably less…or more, depending on how crazy you go with options. Regardless, the 2017 Silverado prices are right in the hunt compared to the Ford F-150, Ram 1500 and the Silverado's GMC sibling, the Sierra; the V8-only Toyota Tundra starts a few thousand higher. Be sure to check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their new Silverado truck. The 2017 Silverado is expected to retain its value well in the years ahead, but still fall short of the Toyota Tundra.