Comparing its fuel economy with a V8 makes for grim reading.
While the redesigned 2019 Chevrolet Silverado is a better full-size truck than its predecessor in almost every way, one key feature appears to be somewhat underwhelming. That feature would be the new 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that replaces the previous 4.3-liter V6. Swapping a V6 for a turbo four is nothing new. Just look at Ford. However, we previously reported that the EPA rated the turbo four equipped Silverado with a lower fuel economy than expected, at 20/23/21 mpg city/highway/combined.
And now Car and Driver is reporting this engine returned a not so impressive fuel economy than a similarly equipped 5.3-liter V8 Silverado. The publication conducts its own real-world highway fuel economy testing at 75 mph. By comparison, the EPA tests at only 48 mph.
The EPA also claims the 5.3-liter V8 will return 17/23/21 mpg. After realizing both engines returned similar fuel economy figures, C&D decided to directly compare the two trucks in a 75 mph test. Now, it must be said the two trucks were not entirely identical, save for the engines. The 2.7-liter Silverado was an RST double cab while the 5.3-liter was an RST Crew Cab, which also happened to weigh 314 pounds more. The turbo four Silverado returned 18 mpg and the V8 averaged 21 mpg. Not a big difference.
However, – and here’s the kicker – C&D then conducted the same highway fuel economy test with a 6.2-liter V8-engined GMC Sierra 1500 Denali, paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission.
Lo and behold, it also returned 18 mpg, exactly the same as the 2019 Silverado RST turbo four. For a supposedly more fuel-efficient truck, the 2019 Silverado turbo four isn’t so fuel efficient. In fact, C&D noted that the Ford F-150 Raptor also returned 18 mpg. Only a 2017 Toyota Tundra SR5 with the TRD Off-Road package returned a worse figure, 17 mpg. Given everything, is there any point in buying a turbo four Silverado? Why not just opt for the good old 6.2-liter V8 instead? In this case, there’s no replacement for displacement, fuel economy wise.