Chevrolet hopes to bring electrification to the masses by pelting the Silverado, one of the best-selling vehicles in the United States, into EV territory. Unveiled on the sidelines of CES 2022, the 2024 Silverado EV offers impressive specifications and a ton of technology.
While the Silverado nameplate has been around for decades, the electric model shares more with the GMC Hummer EV than with the truck that’s currently in showrooms. It’s built around the Ultium Platform that General Motors developed to underpin a wide range of electric models, meaning it offers through-the-road all-wheel-drive thanks to a pair of electric motors. Their output depends on the trim level.
The most basic version of the Silverado EV is the WT, an acronym that stands for work truck. Its motors jointly develop 510 horsepower and 615 pound-feet of torque, figures that unlock an 8,000-pound towing capacity and a 1,200-pound payload. At the other end of the spectrum, the RST delivers 664 horsepower and 780 pound-feet of torque when Wide Open Watts mode is engaged. Chevrolet pegs the RST’s zero-to-60-mph time at 4.5 seconds, which is quick for a pickup. More importantly, it can tow 10,000 pounds and haul up to 1,300 pounds.
Unsurprisingly, the Big Three’s towing war continues in the EV segment. Ford’s F-150 Lightning (which was unveiled in 2020) has a 10,000-pound towing capacity and, depending on how it’s configured, a 2,000-pound payload. Comparing the electric Silverado with its piston-powered sibling is also telling: get the 3.0-liter turbodiesel straight-six or the 6.2-liter V8 and you’ll be able to tow up to 13,100 pounds.
The maximum driving range should check in at about 400 miles, which falls short of the turbodiesel-powered model’s 572-mile range rating, while quick-charging technology will allow motorists to add about 100 miles to the battery pack in approximately 10 minutes when using a 350-kilowatt-hour charger. And, the Silverado EV can be optionally ordered with up to 10 outlets that provide a total of 10.2 kilowatts of power, which is enough to run power tools, camping gear, or even your house if the power goes out. The truck can charge other EVs as well.
Four-wheel steering promises to tighten the turning radius while making the Silverado more stable at high speeds, Super Cruise enables true hands-free driving (even when towing a trailer!) on about 200,000 miles of compatible roads in North America, and an adaptive air suspension system allows users to adjust the ride height by about two inches. There’s a lot more tech inside: The driver faces an 11-inch digital instrument cluster, a 14-inch head-up display, and a 17-inch touchscreen for the infotainment system. Chevrolet has also chosen the Silverado EV to inaugurate a Linux-based platform that separates software and hardware to enable quick and frequent over-the-air updates.
Offered only as a crew cab, the Silverado EV wears a futuristic-looking design characterized by a tall front end with thin lights. There is no separation between the cab and the cargo box and designers added flying buttresses behind the rear doors; in other words, it looks a lot like the Avalanche‘s distant successor. The connection between the two trucks doesn’t end there: the cargo box is 5 feet 11 inches long but RST buyers can pay extra for a Multi-Flex Midgate, which is a folding panel that separates the cabin and the bed and gives owners over nine feet of loading space. The Avalanche had it, too. What it didn’t have is a frunk, and the Silverado EV’s is big enough for a suitcase, lockable, and waterproof.
Chevrolet will build the 2024 Silverado EV in the same Detroit-Hamtramck factory that manufactures the aforementioned Hummer EV. Buyers who want to secure an early spot in line can place a reservation starting on January 5, 2022, but they’ll need to be patient. The first model scheduled to roll off the assembly line is the WT, which will initially be sold only to fleets. It will enter production in the spring of 2023. The flagship RST First Edition will follow in the fall of 2023 with a base price of $105,000 excluding delivery and available incentives.
Additional models will join the range later in the production run, including an off-road-focused Trail Boss version and an evolution of the WT capable of towing up to 20,000 pounds. Chevrolet notes that the most accessible member of the line-up will be the WT, which will carry a base price of $39,900. For context, a 2022 Silverado WT costs $30,400 when ordered with rear-wheel drive and a four-cylinder engine.
It sounds like buyers will have a choice: As of writing, nothing suggests that the Silverado EV will replace the piston-powered model.