2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Review: Rubbing Shoulders With The Best

The old adage says that it's tough at the top, but nobody ever talks about being constantly consigned to second- or third-best status. Quite simply, if the Ram 1500 and, even more so, the Ford F-150 didn't exist, the Silverado would reign as the top truck in the segment. With ultra-aggressive styling, the Silverado 1500 announces itself with the confidence expected of a big truck, and it backs this up with strong powertrains and a large bed for carting around just about anything you can think of. Its maximum towing capacity also leads the way. While the Chevy isn't a big letdown in any single area, Ford's all-conquering F-150 continues to find the most homes by far, while Ram's 1500 feels more polished and rides with greater composure. Despite selling in fewer numbers than these two competitors last year, the Silverado's unpretentious nature and rugged appeal make it worthy of consideration.

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Changes: 🚙What’s the difference vs 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500?

Competition is tough, so Chevrolet hasn't been resting on its laurels. For 2021, wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto have been added as standard to the infotainment systems of all models, the multi-function Multi-Flex tailgate has become available, there are new paint colors, and models with the 2.7-liter turbocharged gas four-cylinder and 3.0-liter turbocharged diesel six-cylinder engines receive higher tow ratings. In addition, a lot of trailer-assist tech has become available, in the form of trailer-length indicator, jackknife alert, and a bed viewer to help with fifth-wheel hookups. On the Custom Trail Boss, Custom, and Work Truck versions, a folding front bench that splits 40/20/40 has been added, as well as audio controls on the steering wheel, and a 4.2-inch gauge display. On the Custom and Trail Boss models only, remote start is now standard, as are lighting for the load bed and damping for the tailgate. Lastly, there are a few new packages and special editions.

Pros and Cons

  • Bold, muscular styling
  • Diverse, powerful range of engines
  • Versatile range offers multiple trims
  • Ample towing capacity
  • Good cabin space
  • Logical infotainment interface
  • Doesn't feel as upscale as other trucks
  • Some disappointing cabin materials
  • The ride can get bouncy

Best Deals on Silverado 1500

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Trims

See trim levels and configurations:

Trim Engine Transmission Drivetrain Price (MSRP)
Work Truck
4.3L V6 Gas
6-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$29,300
Custom
4.3L V6 Gas
6-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$36,500
LT
2.7L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$40,300
Custom Trail Boss
4.3L V6 Gas
6-Speed Automatic
Four-Wheel Drive
$41,700
RST
2.7L Turbo Inline-4 Gas
8-Speed Automatic
Rear-Wheel Drive
Four-Wheel Drive
$43,900

Silverado 1500 Exterior

Following a complete redesign in 2019, the Silverado 1500 is anything but subtle. The chrome grille is enormous and the truck looks like it means business, but some may prefer the less brash Ram 1500. The side and rear views are less shouty, though. As with other trucks in the segment, the Work Truck, with its semi-gloss black bumpers and 17-inch steel wheels, looks a lot more basic than the pricier versions. Moving up through the trims equips features like larger alloy wheels, LED headlamps with LED daytime running lamps, chrome mirror caps, and LED cargo area lighting. Pricier versions have a chromed grille, power-folding mirrors, a powered tailgate, and high-intensity discharge LED reflector headlamps.

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Front View Driving Chevrolet
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Front Angle View Chevrolet
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Rear Angle View Chevrolet
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Dimensions

With three bed sizes and three body styles, the Silverado's dimensions differ widely across the range. Overall length varies from 229.5 inches for the Regular Cab with the eight-foot box, to 241.21 inches for the Crew Cab with the 6' 6" box. There are multiple wheelbase lengths, starting with the Regular Cab's 139.56-inch version and going up to 157.53 inches for the Crew Cab in Trail Boss trim and with the 6' 6" box. Width varies between 81,14 and 81.24 inches (excluding the mirrors), while height varies between 75.35 and 78.5 inches. Maximum ground clearance varies between 7.8 and 10.9 inches, depending on trim.

Cargo boxes are either 5' 8", 6' 6", or eight feet in length - the Regular Cab can only be hard with the long bed, which isn't available on the Double and Crew Cabs. The cargo box width at the wheel housings is 50.63 inches and the width at the floor is 71.4 inches. The lightest Silverado in the range is the Regular Cab 2WD with a curb weight of 4,369 pounds, while the heaviest is the Crew Cab 4WD with the 6' 6" box in High Country trim, which weighs 5,279 lbs.

  • Length 229.5 in
  • Wheelbase 139.6 in
  • Height 75.6 in
  • Max Width 81.1 in

Exterior Colors

The Silverado's color palette comprises ten shades, including basic Summit White and Black, along with Red Hot and Cherry Red Tintcoat (the latter new for 2021), Iridescent Pearl Tricoat, and an array of metallic hues like Silver Ice, Satin Steel, Shadow Gray, Northsky Blue, Shadow Gray, and Oxford Brown - the last two hues are new for 2021. Color availability varies by trim and even body style, though, with the conservative Work Truck having a reduced palette (Cherry Red and Iridescent Pearl aren't available on this trim), while higher up in the range, Cherry Red and Iridescent Pearl become available. On trims like the LTZ and High Country, for instance, these two colors cost an extra $495 and $995, respectively, and on the Custom trim, Iridescent Pearl is not available. Last year's Cajun Red Tintcoat and Havana Brown are no longer on the 2021 palette.

Silverado 1500 Performance

The Silverado range is well-served by multiple engine/transmission combinations, along with both 2WD and 4WD configurations. At the lower end of the range, a 4.3-liter V6 is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission; this V6 produces 285 horsepower and 305 lb-ft of torque. Following this is a 5.3-liter V8 and a 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. The most powerful engine available is a 6.2-liter V8 with 420 hp and 460 lb-ft. Producing the same amount of torque is a 3.0-liter six-cylinder turbodiesel with 277 hp. Six-, eight- and ten-speed automatic transmissions are available as well.

While all the engines are strong, the 6.2-liter V8 is one of the hottest performers in the segment. Independent testing revealed a 0-60 mph time of 5.4 seconds for a four-wheel-drive Crew Cab equipped with this engine, which is superb acceleration for a truck. However, Ford has an Ecoboost-equipped version of the F-150 that proved even quicker, but really, nobody is going to need more power than this in a truck. The turbocharged 2.7-liter version requires a more modest time of around seven seconds for the benchmark sprint.

For a truck, towing capability is generally even more important than acceleration off the mark. When properly equipped, the Silverado 1500's maximum towing capacity of 13,300 lbs (for the 4WD Double Cab with the 6.2-liter V8) is 700 lbs less than the top-rated Ford F-150. In terms of payload, the best model in the Silverado range is unsurprisingly the lightest: the 2WD Regular Cab can carry 2,280 lbs.

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Front View Driving 1 Chevrolet
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Rear View Driving Chevrolet
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Rear View Driving 1 Chevrolet

Engine and Transmission

There is an engine choice for every need within the Silverado range, beginning with the 4.3-liter V6, which is exclusively paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. This engine generates 285 hp and 305 lb-ft of torque. Next is a 5.3-liter V8 with 355 hp/383 lb-ft - this engine uses a six-speed automatic and active fuel management by default, but a version with dynamic fuel management can be paired with either an eight- or ten-speed automatic gearbox. The dynamic fuel management system increases the engine's cylinder deactivation abilities, with the dual benefit of improving performance and fuel efficiency. The only four-cylinder in the range - a 2.7-liter turbo - is paired with an eight-speed automatic and produces 310 hp and 348 lb-ft. The most powerful engine is the 6.2-liter V8 with 420 hp and 460 lb-ft, paired exclusively with a ten-speed automatic. Finally, there is a 3.0-liter six-cylinder turbodiesel with a ten-speed automatic and outputs of 277 hp and 460 lb-ft.

All of the engines are powerful enough to make easy work of daily driving and lighter loads, with only the smaller V6 showing some notable strain when fully loaded or towing a heavy rig. In our test of the LT Trail Boss with the 5.3-liter V8, we found the engine to offer adequate power around town and on the highway and smooth shifts from the eight-speed 'box, although the pushrod 6.2-liter V8 does feel appreciably more muscular. The latter's ten-speed gearbox has reasonably quick shifts, but it's not as polished as the ten-speeder in the Ford F-150.

  • Engines
    2.7L Turbo Inline-4 Gas, 3.0L Turbo Inline-6 Diesel, 4.3L V6 Gas, 5.3L Turbo, 5.3L Turbo V8, 5.3L V8 Gas, 6.2L Turbo V8
  • Transmissions
    10-Speed Automatic, 6-Speed Automatic, 8-Speed Automatic
  • Drivetrains
    4X4, RWD

Handling and Driving Impressions

Even though rugged capability is a key consideration for a large truck, shoppers now also expect them to be refined and smooth on the highway, something that Ram has proven is possible with its 1500. On the positive side, the Silverado's steering is effortlessly light, which is at odds with the truck's sizable proportions but does make it much easier to maneuver around town. As the speeds pick up and the road begins to curve, the Chevy acquits itself surprisingly well, with good agility and well-managed body control that belies its size. On glass-smooth surfaces, the Silverado bowls along smoothly enough, but broken stretches of asphalt see bumps sending shudders through the chassis, and mid-corner bumps require adjustments from the driver that eventually become wearisome. Here, the Chevrolet can't match the smooth-riding Ram 1500, and Ford's F-150 feels a touch more refined, too. At faster speeds of 70 mph and above, the steering also requires regular corrections from the driver.

Off-road, the Chevrolet Silverado delivers the goods, especially if you go for the aptly-named Trail Boss. This version gets the Z71 Off-Road Package as standard, which encompasses the Autotrac two-speed transfer case, a metal underbody shield, Goodyear Wrangler Duratec tires, and Rancho shocks. It manages steep inclines and bumpy trails with ease, helped by a two-inch increase in ride height. An automatic mode will switch to 4WD when the vehicle detects that you need it, and the system operates seamlessly. Back on smooth tarmac, buyers of the LTZ and High Country trims will appreciate the available adaptive cruise control, taking the effort out of longer trips.

Silverado 1500 Gas Mileage

Unsurprisingly, the turbodiesel is the most fuel-efficient model in the range, returning EPA estimates of 23/33/27 mpg city/highway/combined in 2WD guise, which is an improvement on the Ford F-150 turbodiesel's best numbers of 20/27/23 mpg. The 2.7-liter turbocharged four-pot is the next most efficient engine, managing a best of 20/23/21 mpg in 2WD guise. Economy predictably dips for the V8s, but surprisingly, the V6 model is no better, as both have combined consumption of as low as 15 mpg depending on the drivetrain and trim. The worst-performing single model is the 5.3-liter V8 4WD when running on E85 gas, which manages a meager 11/13/12 mpg.

There are three gas tank sizes depending on the model: the Regular Cab has a 28-gallon tank, the Double/Crew Cabs have a 24-gallon tank, but all models have a 22-gallon tank when equipped with 2WD and the diesel engine. Based on this, a range of around 594 miles is achievable in diesel-equipped models with 2WD and the 22-gallon gas tank. The 4WD diesel is marginally heavier on fuel, but due to its bigger 24-gallon tank, it can manage a range of 600 miles. At the other end of the scale, the 5.3-liter V8 4WD has a much poorer range of 288 miles when running on E85 fuel.

  • Fuel Tank Capacity
    28.3 Gallons
  • Fuel Economy
    City/Hwy: 16/21 mpg
* 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 2WDRegular Cab 140" Work Truck

Silverado 1500 Interior

Climb inside the Silverado, and it's clear that it's more a case of function over form in the Chevy's cabin. There is loads of space, especially in the Crew Cab, and the controls are generally logically presented. But the Silverado lacks the more luxurious feel of the Ram 1500 and Ford F-150, with some ordinary materials that are fine in the context of a truck, but mediocre alongside these competitors. An old-school column-shifter that requires a firm tug is another sign that Chevy hasn't moved the game on as much in the interior. Equipment levels vary widely across the range, with the basic Work Truck getting single-zone air conditioning, a rearview camera, and a driver information display, and, new for 2021, audio controls on the steering wheel and a folding 40/20/40-split front bench. Moving up through the range introduces keyless entry, cruise control, more opulent leather seats, and dual-zone climate control. Available features include adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, a head-up display, a power sunroof, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and ventilated front seats.

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Dashboard Chevrolet
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Dashboard 1 Chevrolet
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Infotainment System Chevrolet
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Seating and Interior Space

Depending on the body style and trim, the Silverado 1500 seats either three, five, or six occupants. Basic vinyl or cloth upholstery makes way for smart leather upholstery on higher-spec variants. The Regular Cab has a 40/20/40-split bench seat for three, with covered armrest storage. On more expensive Double and Crew Cab versions, the front bench seat is replaced with two separate chairs, decreasing overall capacity to five occupants. All models besides the Regular Cab have a standard rear bench seat. The seats offer good comfort and are spacious; the Crew Cab has especially abundant legroom for those seated at the back. The driving position is good, with power-adjustable front seats on higher trims. Visibility isn't perfect, though, because the A-pillars are quite large and the tall hood hampers the front view out to an extent. Assist handles make it easier to enter the big truck, but it would have been helpful if the rear doors opened a bit more widely than they do.

  • Seating capacity
    3-seater
  • Front Leg Room 44.5 in
  • Front Head Room 43.1 in

Interior Colors and Materials

On the base Worker Truck, the Silverado is as spartan as it gets, with a black interior and seats in hard-wearing Jet Black vinyl and with a rubberized vinyl floor covering. Cloth upholstery is available, though. The Custom is a gentle step up, with default cloth and carpeted flooring, but it's only once you get to the LT trim that the Silverado feels a bit more comfortable for daily use - this trim has access to leather-upholstered seats and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Depending on the exterior color, you can also choose a less drab Gideon interior color. At the higher end of the range, the Silverado gets perforated leather seats, while the range-topping High Country adds a Jet Black/Umber interior color option and front bucket seats.

Silverado 1500 Trunk and Cargo Space

With three bed sizes, the Silverado can cater to a wider variety of cargo-hauling needs. The short five-foot-eight bed measures 62.9 cubic feet, increasing to 71.7 cubes for the standard bed (6' 6") and a massive 89.1 cubes for the long bed (eight-foot). The Silverado's short, standard, and long beds provide a good amount of extra cargo storage than the Ford's equivalents. The high-strength steel floor can handle heavy loads, while 12 standard tie-downs are useful for securing various items. On higher-spec models, the power-up/power-down tailgate makes it more convenient to access the bed area.

In the cabin, there is a large reconfigurable center console storage compartment and well-sized door pockets. The cliff-like dashboard is big enough to accommodate two gloveboxes on the passenger side. Some versions with the front bench have a fold-down armrest/storage compartment in front, while the 60/40-split-folding rear bench seat (Double Cab and Crew Cab only) can fold up on one or both sides to increase interior storage space. An Uplevel Rear Seat with Storage Package (Crew Cab only) features rear under-seat storage and is standard on the LTZ and High Country, but optional on most other trims; this upgrade includes a rear center fold-out armrest with cupholders.

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Trunk Space Chevrolet
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Trunk Space 1 Chevrolet
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Trunk Space 2 Chevrolet

Silverado 1500 Infotainment and Features

Features

The WT Regular Cab is the worker of the range, so it gets little more than single-zone air conditioning, a rearview camera, a 12-volt front power outlet, and four-way manually-adjustable front seats. It has old-school manual window winders, too, but thankfully has six airbags and a tire pressure monitoring system. The Custom trim adds LED taillamps, power-adjustable and heated mirrors, and cruise control, while the LT gets remote keyless entry, dual-zone automatic air conditioning, and a heated, multi-function steering wheel. Pricier trims enjoy additions like ten-way power-adjustable front seats, front/rear park assist, heated front/rear seats, and a rear-window defogger. Only the top-dog High Country has standard wireless phone charging, an eight-inch digital gauge cluster, and driver's seat memory, but adaptive cruise control, hitch guidance with hitch view, rear cross-traffic alert, and trailer tire pressure sensors are available. The Advanced Trailering Package with trailer view and guidance, trailer tire-pressure monitoring, and trailer brake controller is available on the LT trim and up, as well as an even more fully-featured Max Trailering Package.

Infotainment

The Chevrolet Infotainment 3 system is, like most of the other interior controls, easy to understand and use at first glance. Even the cheaper trims get a decent seven-inch color touchscreen with standard Bluetooth audio streaming, an AM/FM stereo, voice commands, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. The mid-range trims have a larger eight-inch touchscreen, while the LTZ uses an eight-inch HD touchscreen with in-vehicle apps. On the High Country model, navigation comes standard along with enhanced voice recognition. A 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot is optional on every trim, but HD Radio is only available or standard on the LT trim and above. The WT trim is the only one that doesn't have access to SiriusXM satellite radio. A front USB port is standard on all trims, with more expensive trims having rear USB charging ports, too.

The sound system starts with a simple two-speaker unit on the Regular Cab, with the Double Cab and Crew Cab variants using six speakers. A seven-speaker Bose premium sound system with a Richbass subwoofer is standard on the High Country and optional on the RST, LT Trail Boss, and LTZ.

Silverado 1500 Problems and Reliability

J.D. Power's overall rating for the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is a solid 85 out of 100, and for quality and reliability, it's 85/100 too - the same scores as 2020. The 2020 model racked up a total of nine recalls, according to the NHTSA, for problems ranging from seat-belt to driveshaft issues. The 2021 model has not been much better, with three recalls already so far. These are for the wrong bolts used to secure the seat belts, a faulty seat-belt bracket, and over-secured tires that can fail, increasing the risk of a crash.

Chevrolet's basic warranty runs for three years or 36,000 miles, whichever comes first - this matches Ford's basic warranty for the F-150. The Silverado also has a three-year/36,000-mile rust-through warranty and rust-through cover for six years or 100,000 miles. A single scheduled maintenance visit is covered for one year. A five-year/60,000-mile powertrain/drivetrain warranty is standard, with the mileage limitation increasing to 100,000 miles for the diesel and/or any qualified fleet purchase. Finally, five years or 60,000 miles of roadside assistance is inclusive; again, opting for the diesel or qualifying fleet purchases raises the mileage limitation to 100,000 miles.

Warranty

  • Warranty Note:
    Preliminary 2021 Warranty \ 
  • Basic:
    3 Years \ 36,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Drivetrain Note:
    HD Duramax Diesel: 5 Years \ 100,000 Miles; Qualified Fleet Purchases: 5 Years
  • Rust-Through:
    6 Years \ 100,000 Miles
  • Corrosion:
    3 Years \ 36,000 Miles
  • Roadside Assistance:
    5 Years \ 60,000 Miles
  • Roadside Assistance Note:
    HD Duramax Diesel: 5 Years \ 100,000 Miles; Qualified Fleet Purchases: 5 Years
  • Maintenance Note:
    1 Year \ 1 Visit

Silverado 1500 Safety

The NHTSA gave the 2021 Silverado 1500 a four-out-of-five star rating for overall safety - the truck got a full five stars for the side crash, but four stars for the frontal and rollover tests. According to the IIHS, the Chevy performed well in most crashworthiness tests, but it only received a Marginal rating for the small overlap front passenger-side test. The truck's headlights were also rated as Poor, so there are definitely some improvements to be made.

US NHTSA crash test result

  • Overall Rating
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
  • Side Crash Rating
  • Rollover Rating

Key Safety Features

All Silverado's get a complement of six airbags, comprising dual front airbags, front side airbags, and head-curtain airbags for front and rear outboard seating positions. Every variant also gets daytime running lamps, a rearview camera, stability control, tire-pressure monitoring, and a teen driver feature. Most trims have access to driver aids like rear cross-traffic alert, lane change alert, blind-spot monitoring, and front/rear park assist. The top two trims can be equipped with automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, a following-distance indicator, forward collision alert, and lane-keep assist with lane departure warning. Only the High Country trim has standard rear cross-traffic alert and front/rear park assist.

Several trailering packages are available or standard, including hitch guidance, hitch view, and an integrated trailer brake controller. These packages include the Advanced Trailering Package and Max Trailering Package.

Verdict: 🏁Is the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 a good Truck?

The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 isn't trying to be all things to all people, and there lies its endearing charm. Yes, it doesn't ride as smoothly as other trucks, but this isn't a luxury sedan. And yes, the interior is rugged and functional rather than opulent, but again, this approach doesn't feel out of place. Where it counts, the Silverado impresses. The engines are not only powerful, but diesel, gas, and turbocharged four-cylinder power offers something for everyone. All the bed sizes can accommodate loads of cargo, the cabin is massive, and the Silverado feels perfectly at home when towing or going off-road. Ram's 1500 is still the top contender for on-road comfort, and Ford's F-150 is a massively accomplished all-rounder, but for the most part, the Silverado matches its two chief rivals and should be on any truck fan's shortlist.

🚘What's the Price of the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500?

The cheapest way into Silverado ownership is with the Work Truck (WT) in 2WD, Regular Cab guise, which carries an MSRP of $29,300. This price excludes taxes, licensing, registration, and a destination freight charge of $1,695. Next is the Custom trim at $36,500, the LT at $40,300, and the RST at $43,900. The Custom Trail Boss can only be had in 4WD guise and goes for $39,500; likewise, the LT Trail Boss, that costs $51,100. The LTZ carries an MSRP of $43,000. The High Country tops the range with a starting price of $53,900. All trims are listed here in their cheapest body style and/or with the default engine option.

Every trim comes standard with 2WD besides the Custom Trail Boss and LT Trail Boss, both of which are equipped with 4WD as standard. On the WT Regular Cab, upgrading from 2WD to 4WD will add $4,600 to the price. However, the cost of upgrading to 4WD differs from trim to trim, with the Custom Double Cab's price increasing by $3,300 when 4WD is added. On the fully loaded High Country, adding 4WD will cost an extra $3,500.

Of course, every trim can be optioned with one of the more powerful engines, with prices also differing for these upgrades. The base Regular Cab WT uses the 4.3-liter V6 by default, but for an additional $1,740, it can be equipped with the 5.3-liter V8. The Double Cab Custom can be upgraded to the 5.3-liter V8 for the same price, too. Higher up in the range, the Crew Cab High Country 4WD uses the 5.3-liter V8 as standard, but can be upgraded to the 6.2-liter V8 for $2,495 or the 3.0-liter turbodiesel for $995. Finally, bed size also affects the price. On the WT trim, the Crew Cab with the standard bed costs $300 more than the Crew Cab with the short bed.

Without delving into standalone options or available packages, the priciest combination of trim, body style, and powertrain is the High Country 4WD with the standard bed and either the 6.2-liter V8 or the 3.0-liter turbodiesel - it carries an MSRP of $60,195.

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Models

The 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is available in a choice of eight main trims: Worker Truck (WT), Custom, Custom Trail Boss, LT, RST, LT Trail Boss, LTZ, and High Country. The range is served by three body styles, three bed sizes, and six engines: a 4.3-liter V6, a 5.3-liter V8, a 2.7-liter turbo-four, a 5.3-liter V8 with dynamic fuel management, a 6.2-liter V8, and a 3.0-liter turbodiesel. The V6 and the 5.3-liter V8 with active fuel management use a six-speed automatic, while the 2.7-liter has an eight-speed auto. The 5.3L V8 with dynamic fuel management can be had with either an eight- or ten-speeder, while both the 6.2L V8 and the turbodiesel exclusively use a ten-speed auto 'box. 2WD is standard on most trims, but 4WD is optional on all.

The WT starts off the range as the clear workhorse. It uses the V6 by default, but the 5.3L V8 and the 2.7L turbo are available optionally. This is the only trim available for the Regular Cab. Standard gear includes a seven-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, single-zone air conditioning, vinyl seat trim, manual seats, and six airbags.

Next is the Custom which gets body-color bumpers, alloy wheels, LED taillamps, and cloth upholstery. The same engine choices remain, but features like remote keyless entry and cruise control are added.

The Custom Trail Boss features 4WD by default, along with a two-speed transfer case and the Z71 off-road package. It's identifiable by its mesh grille with a high-gloss black bar. The 6.2L V8 becomes available on this trim, while the 2.7L turbo falls away.

The LT is more comfortable inside thanks to available leather seats, dual-zone automatic air conditioning, a larger eight-inch touchscreen, and a front bench seat with covered armrest storage. By default, the 2.7L turbo is fitted.

Moving up to the RST adds keyless open and start, remote vehicle starting, additional USB ports, a rear-window defogger, 18-inch bright silver alloy wheels, LED cargo area lighting, and LED fog lamps.

The LT Trail Boss is the best option for off-road enthusiasts with its sporty styling and two-speed transfer case, off-road suspension package, and standard ten-speed automatic transmission.

Near the top of the range is the LTZ, with more luxury features such as chrome door handles, power-folding mirrors, an HD rearview camera, heated and power-adjustable front seats, and a heated steering wheel.

Finally, there is the High Country. Available solely as a Crew Cab with a choice of bed lengths, this trim has LED reflector headlamps, a power-up/-down tailgate, a Bose premium audio system, navigation, front/rear park assist, wireless phone charging, ventilated front seats, driver's seat memory, heated front and rear seats, and lane-change alert.

See All 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Trims and Specs

Additional Packages

A broad range of over 40 trim-specific packages can be equipped to add features, spice up the Silverado's looks, or enhance its rugged capability. There are countless permutations, so the same package on one trim will cost a different amount on another trim. Because the basic Work Truck is stripped of most extras to keep costs down, it can be upgraded via several packages. The most notable of these is the WT Value Package at $2,055, adding power windows, remote keyless entry, and the trailering package. The $1,660 WT Convenience Package adds many of the same features but does without the trailering package. Rear cross traffic alert and blind-spot monitoring are among the safety features available via the $1,140 WT Safety package. These prices are all for the Regular Cab 2WD with the V6 engine.

The Custom trim gains access to the Rally Edition upgrade for $2,415. On the Double or Crew Cab, this adds a host of aggressive exterior upgrades like 20-inch wheels and black rally stripes. Other special editions like the All Star Edition, Texas Edition (only in Texas and surrounding areas), Realtree Edition, Redline Edition, and Midnight Edition each have their own styling elements and features.

The Custom Trail Boss and the LT Trail Boss are the only two trims to have the Z71 Off-Road Package (4WD only) equipped as standard, but it can be equipped to most other trims; on the LT, it adds $1,150 to the base price. Also enhancing capability is the Max Trailering Package, adding the likes of a 9.76" rear axle, heavy-duty rear springs, and a trailer brake controller. On the RST, it costs $1,125. One of the most impressive upgrades comes via the Technology Package - available on the top two trims, it adds HD surround vision, a bed-view camera, and a head-up display. It costs $2,070 on the LTZ.

There are many standalone options, too, although selecting one option adds on a bunch of others by default. On the mid-range LT Double Cab 4WD, you can get an automatic locking rear differential ($395), an upgraded infotainment system for $1,075, and 20-inch alloy wheels ($1,100).

🚗What Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Model Should I Buy?

Starting at under $30,000 and going all the way up to around $60,000, the Silverado 1500 you choose will be dictated by your individual needs and your budget. If it's a rugged truck you are after, the Custom Trail Boss offers access to 4WD, aggressive looks, and the off-road package at a price that is still at the lower end of the range. For a more leisure-oriented truck, we suggest the LT trim and above, along with the Crew Cab body style as it offers excellent space for rear-seat occupants. The V8 engines offer the grunt that most will expect in a large truck, but the other engines are worthwhile for added efficiency - we'd skip the V6, though, as it isn't as powerful as either of the V8s and is similarly heavy on fuel.

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Comparisons

Ford F-150 CarBuzz
Chevrolet Colorado
CompetitorHorsepowerMPGPrice (MSRP)
Chevrolet Silverado 1500285 hp16/21 mpg$28,500
Ford F-150 290 hp20/24 mpg$28,940
Chevrolet Colorado 200 hp19/25 mpg$25,200

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 vs Ford F-150

Despite the Ford's lead on the sales charts, the reality is that the Silverado 1500 is a lot closer than you'd think. The Chevy maximum towing capacity is nearly as good and it has two off-road specific trims that do a fantastic job of handling the rough stuff. Ford counters with its highly capable Raptor and better payload and maximum towing capacities. Both have spacious cabins, but the F-150's interior feels a bit more upscale and posh across the range. On the road, these trucks each do a good job of handling daily trips to the grocery store or longer cross-country jaunts, but both can be a bit bumpy over imperfect roads. Each truck offers several engines, but the Ford's powertrains are more refined overall, and its ten-speed automatic is superior to the Chevy's equivalent. The F-150 also achieved better overall safety scores. It's a close call, but the F-150 just about edges its rival for another year.

See Ford F-150 Review

2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 vs Chevrolet Colorado

If you don't need the Silverado's capability, the cheaper Colorado could be the ideal truck for you within the Chevrolet lineup. Starting at $25,200, the Colorado comes in at $4,000 less expensive than the Silverado. It's not the same powerful hauler, though, with the Colorado managing a maximum towing capacity of 7,700 lbs (as opposed to the Silverado's 13,300 lbs) and a maximum payload capacity of 1,578 lbs. The Colorado also misses out on the Silverado's brawny engines, with the former's most powerful engine being a 308-hp 3.6-liter V6. Both trucks have interiors that don't quite match the best for quality, but the Silverado has more space. If the decision is between these two trucks, we're in favor of a low-spec Silverado over a more expensive Colorado, but the latter is a good choice in its cheaper trims for shoppers who don't require the Silverado's greater capabilities.

See Chevrolet Colorado Review

Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Popular Comparisons

The most popular competitors of 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 1500:

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