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Chevrolet’s 2014 Silverado is ready for work and play
WILLIAM J. GIBBS JR./Reprints at wilsoncountynews.com
The Chevrolet Silverado Z71, shown in “White Diamond Tricoat,” is suitable for a day at the ranch or a night on the town.
At first glance, the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 might look like a fresher rendition of the previous year’s model. But the automaker boasts that the half-ton variant is all new “from hood to hitch.”
Thanks to Richardson Bros. Chevrolet Polaris in Floresville, the Wilson County News had the opportunity to test drive a crew-cab Z71 Silverado in July. Unlike Z71s of previous model years, the 2014 version looks less like it is ready for a day on the ranch and more like it is dressed for a night on the town. Our tester was adorned in “White Diamond Tricoat” paint and sat on polished chrome 20-inch wheels wrapped in Goodyear Wrangler all-terrain tires.
On the inside, the Silverado Z71 looks better than some man caves. Its cavernous interior offers leather seating for five and Chevrolet’s MyLink infotainment system -- available in some form in all models -- that integrates navigation, audio, and telephone controls. There also are enough power ports -- USB, DC, and an AC outlet with built-in power invertor -- to accommodate devices such as Smartphones, MP3 players, and laptop computers.
Is the Z71 all show and no go? Far from it! Under the hood is a 5.3-liter EcoTec3 V8 engine with variable-valve timing and active fuel management. Mated to the six-speed HydraMatic automatic transmission, the truck is factory rated at 355 horsepower, with 383 foot-pounds of torque. When properly equipped, the Silverado can tow up to 12,000 pounds and the bed has a maximum payload of 1,933 pounds.
The Silverado is proof that the modern truck buyer does not have to trade a comfortable, quiet ride for a truck that is functional and powerful. Chevrolet has made the cab more comfortable and quiet than ever before, thanks to its high-strength steel frame, hydraulic body mounts, and doors with triple-seal weather strips that keep the outside from coming indoors. The truck also sits on a new front and rear suspension.
But just as it is important for a pickup truck to be able to carry the load, it is equally crucial that it can stop. Thanks to new, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes with Duralife rotors, bringing it all to a halt is not a hair-whitening experience.
The Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD models are due for an update in the 2015 model year. But meanwhile, the latest 1500 is available in seven different variations. Low-end models start at $23,590, while the crème de la crème High Country edition has a base price of $45,100. Our option-laden Z71 tester had a sticker price of $50,215.
2014 Chevrolet Silverado
•Base price: $23,590
•Price as tested: $50,215
•Engines/EPA fuel economy:
•4.3-liter (262-cubic-inch) flex-fuel V6; 18 city/24 highway 2WD, 17 city/22 highway 4WD
•5.3-liter (325-cubic-inch) flex-fuel V8; 16 city/23 highway 2WD, 16 city/22 highway 4WD
•6.2-liter (376-cubic-inch) V8; 15 city/21 highway 2WD, 14 city/20 highway 4WD
•Transmission: Hydra-Matic 6-speed automatic
Where to buy:
•Richardson Bros. Chevrolet Polaris, 1406 10th St. (U.S. 181), Floresville; www.chevydeal.com; phone 830-216-4216.
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