The Silverado 1500 1/2-ton pickup truck is the smallest full-size truck Chevrolet offers. The rest of the lineup includes the F-250 and F-350 and the commercial F-450 and F-550 models. The Silverado 1500 has cab configurations of regular, extended cab and the four-door crew cab models. Trim levels range from the basic work truck to the luxury-oriented LTZ. The truck also features short-, standard- and long-bed versions, with wheelbases varying in length.
The base engine for the 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is the 195-horsepower, 4.3-liter V6 although few Chevy owners order such a small engine. Engines that are more common are the 302-horsepower 4.8-liter and the 315-horsepower 5.3-liter V8s. The 5.3-liter V8 can also run on 85 percent ethanol. Special orders can include a 403-horsepower, 6.2-liter V8, but it is a rare option on the 1500. A four-speed automatic transmission equipped with a tow/hauling package is standard equipment. However, the extended cab models with the long bed are equipped with a six-speed automatic with overdrive. Fuel economy for all Silverado 1500 models ranges from 14 to 15 MPG in the city to between 18 and 21 on the highway.
The regular cab Silverado 1500 with the standard bed rides on a 119-inch wheelbase and measures 205.6 inches from bumper to bumper. It’s 79.9 inches wide and stands 73.6 inches tall. The frame at the cab area is 7.7 inches above the ground. Standard beds are 78.7 inches long, and long beds are 97.8 inches long. Short beds found on the crew cab models are 69.3 inches long. Headroom in the regular cabin is good at 41.5 inches, and it seats three adults comfortably. Curbside weight ranges from 4,461 to 4,765 pounds, depending on options. The extended cab has a 157.5-inch wheelbase and is 249.2 inches long. It can seat six adults. The crew cab model, which can also accommodate six people, sits on a 143.5-inch wheelbase. Its bumper-to-bumper length is 230.3 inches. The crew cab version is 80 inches wide and 73.8 inches tall. It can weigh up to 5,290 pounds.
The regular cab Silverado model has a payload capacity of 1,937 pounds with a trailer capacity of 9,100 pounds. The extended cab version with the long bed has a payload capacity of 1,656 pounds with a hauling ability rated at 9,500 lbs. The payload capacity on the short-bed crew cab can reach 1,705 pounds, and it can haul up to 10,600 pounds.
The final drive axle ratio for the Silverado 1500 two-wheel drive versions are 3.08:1 or 3.23:1, depending on the engine and bed size. Four-wheel drive versions are equipped with a 3.42:1 axle ratio. The chassis specifications are consistent throughout all models. The front suspension is an independent strut system with two-stage, multi-leaf suspension in the rear. The front features disc brakes, and the rear has drums. The trucks also feature a four-wheel, anti-lock braking system (ABS), traction control and the Chevy StabiliTrak Electronic Stability Control system.