Chevy Silverado vs. GMC Sierra - Comparison
2009 Chevy Silverado
The 2009 Chevy Silverado is among the smoothest riding and quietest of all full-size pickups, at any comparative price point and will face stronger competition from the redesigned for 2009 Dodge Ram and Ford F-150. In addition to adding a huge 6.2-liter engine to the lineup for 2009, Chevy will also debut a new model designed for fuel efficiency: The Silverado XFE (Xtra Fuel Economy) has aerodynamic enhancements, an aluminum-block 5.3-liter flex-fuel V-8, a six-speed automatic transmission and 3.08:1 rear axle ratio. More V-8 models will get the six-speed automatic transmission, and an electronic stability system is now standard on all models except those with a V-6. GM also updated some electronic features; OnStar adds Turn-by-Turn Navigation, Bluetooth and Destination Download, and vehicles with XM Satellite Radio can now get NavTraffic. A rearview camera system is available on extended and crew cab models.
Driving the Silverado
There are five engine sizes to choose from: 4.3-liter V6, 4.8-liter V8, 5.3-liter V8, 6.0-liter V8 and 6.2-liter V8; and two transmissions: a four-speed automatic and a six-speed automatic. Like all Silverado's, the 1500 is available in a wide array of bed sizes, wheelbases, drive types and cab sizes, as well as a variety of trim levels. The 2009 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 benefits from brakes much improved over pre-2007 models, whether equipped with disc or drum brakes. Suspension choice is important to the driving characteristics of the Chevy Silverado. The basic Z83 suspension is best chosen for the price tag. The Z85 is similar except that it uses better shock absorbers and is calibrated for how today light-duty pickups are often has used as daily transportation.
Cabin for 2009
Chevrolet says the interior of the new Silverado is 20 percent quieter than its predecessor (pre-2007 and Silverado Classic models), thanks to enhanced insulation materials, much like those used in the company's sport utility vehicles, and to aerodynamic improvements that reduce wind noise. The Silverado offers two distinct interiors. The WT, LS and LT get an interior that's more work-oriented, while the LTZ draws inspiration from the SUV lineup. Besides interior fabrics and colors, the dash layouts are different, and the work trucks have larger controls. The easiest way to tell the difference is that work trucks have two glove boxes and LTZs have one. The Silverado cab is spacious and well-organized.
Chevy Silverado Design
On the 2009 Silverado, the large, gold Chevy bowtie badge is set against a wide, three-bar chrome grille. Big front fenders wrap over the front wheels and incorporate the headlights within their forward sweep. The rear quarter panels are punctuated by large wheel wells. The hood has a wide power dome. The grille is flanked by stacked headlights sporting the latest reflector optics. The Chevy Silverado may not have the aggressive styling of competitors, but its upright design may be considered both bold and appealing to its customers.
Safety features on all Silverado models include dual front airbags, anti-lock brakes, and a tire pressure monitoring system. Safety options include side-curtain airbags, StabiliTrak electronic stability control with rollover mitigation technology, Autotrac active transfer case, rear park assist, and OnStar.
2009 GMC Sierra
The 2009 GMC Sierra is similar to the Silverado, but it is often positioned as a more upscale offering. Mechanically, the trucks are the same. There might be slight differences in curb weight and payload, but they share the same powertrain and chassis components. There are eight engines and five suspensions in the lineup. The Sierra comes in regular, extended and crew cab forms. Standard (6-foot, 6-inch) and long (8-foot) cargo beds are available on regular and extended cabs, while the crew cab gets a short (5-foot, 9-inch) bed. All configurations are available in two- or four-wheel drive. The Sierra comes in four trim levels: Work Truck, SL (crew cab only), SLE and SLT. Most V-8 models are rated to tow around 9,000 pounds, but some models get more than 10,000 pounds with an enhanced trailering package. Like the Silverado, the Sierra gets an XFE model intended to get better fuel economy in 2009. The Sierra also offers more power in the 6.2-liter V-8 that's now available in crew cab trucks. Hands-free Bluetooth is now available with OnStar, and vehicles with XM Satellite Radio get NavTraffic. There are also three new exterior colors.
The 2009 GMC Sierra has unique front fenders, bumpers, hood, grille and cargo-box styling. The two trucks'(Sierra and Silverado) overall silhouettes are quite similar. The truck's stance remains aggressively athletic, but it's easy to personalize without diminishing its character.
Cabin Features for Sierra
The Sierra, like the Silverado, gets to different cabin designs. The Work Truck and SLE models are more utility-minded, with large controls and door handles. The SLT offers upgraded materials and a different dash design. The Sierra's cab is spacious and well-organized. Storage options aren't as high-priority as they are in other trucks, but the interior looks cleaner. Leather seating is available on the SLE and standard on the SLT. The SLT also gets a Bose stereo, a 10-way power-adjustable driver's seat and a heated windshield-washer system.
Safety for 2009
The Sierra earned a five-star frontal crash-test rating. OnStar is also standard. The Sierra offers roof-mounted side curtain airbags as on option on the SLE and SLT. Seat-mounted side airbags are not available. GM has made electronic stability control standard on V-8 models.
The 2009 Silverado actually shares its GMT900 platform with the GMC Sierra 1500, but there are some styling and interior differences to appeal to shoppers with different tastes. The 2009 Chevy Silverado is highly capable for towing or hauling. There is a wide range of size and equipment, and options available. For more pictures and information, click here. Engines include one V6 and four V8s. The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is a bread-and-butter, all-American pickup with more emphasis on work than on gimmicks. The Silverado doesn't offer fancy luxury packages, but rather provides an outstanding foundation to tackle tough chores while giving owners freedom to personalize their truck. The Sierra, similar in dimensions to the Silverado, is designed to be a bit more upscale, yet it still offers a work-specific cabin. For further research, read Motortrend's Sierra Review. The Silverado has a starting MSRP of $19,375 - $41,355; the Sierra goes from $19,375 - $44,020.