In the ongoing war of pickup trucks, three years can seem like an eternity. Consider the Silverado and its twin, the GMC Sierra. With the 2014 redesign, GM improved handling to a point that the big 1500s have a near-car-like agility. Their cabins are as quiet as a luxury car’s. And the 5.3-liter V8 engine in our tested four-wheel-drive crew cab got a good 16 mpg overall, although throttle response was lethargic.

In addition, its relatively low ride height eases access without giving up ground clearance for off-roading. The dashboard controls are simple to use, and V8 versions have impressive towing and payload capacities.

You can choose from three engines, each mated to a six-speed automatic. We opted for the popular 355-hp, 5.3-liter V8. While the 4.3-liter V6 gets the job done, its towing and payload capacities are lower. If you want more oomph, go for the 6.2-liter V8 with a hearty 420 hp. An eight-speed automatic is optional with the V8s. And the Silverado’s 26-gallon fuel tank gives it a range of over 400 miles.

MORE ON PICKUP TRUCKS

But in the three years since its introduction, things have changed significantly in this segment. The Ford F-150 is equally quiet. The 5.3-liter V8 delivers ample power, but it lacks the thrust of the bigger 5.7-liter V8s in the Nissan Titan and Toyota Tundra. The Ford turbo V6s deliver more effortless power and are similarly economical.

The Chevy’s transmission is reluctant to downshift, making the truck feel underpowered at times. Ride comfort is on the stiff side. We also suggest looking for a Silverado with leather seats because the cloth ones lack support. A final reservation concerns braking performance on wet surfaces, where stopping distances are longer than they should be.

Overall, while the GM trucks are quiet and offer modern features, the so-so ride comfort and lackluster 5.3-liter V8 are disappointing.

Read the complete Chevrolet Silverado road test.

Why Buy One

  • Quiet cabin and responsive handling
  • Relatively low step-in height makes getting in easy
  • MyLink infotainment system is easy to use
  • Good fuel economy

Why Not Buy One

  • Long stopping distances
  • Cloth seats lack support
  • 5.3-liter V8 lacks brawn of the Toyota and Ram 5.7-liter V8s
  • Stiff ride

Best Version to Get

It’s wise to spend the extra $3,000 over the LT to get a 4WD LTZ Z71. It has better seats and a telescoping steering column. Plus you have to get the LTZ in order to get forward-collision warning. The 5.3-liter V8 is fine for most towing chores, but make sure you get the Trailering Package.

2017 Chevrolet Silverado