SEATTLE – June 19, 2014 – Without question, the battle for full-sized truck supremacy is one of, if not the most, competitive vehicle segments going. Ford has been at the top of the roost for years with its best-selling F-150 series and has had many formidable challengers and this newest from Chevrolet poises quite a threat. Known by many as “luxury haulers”, these new breed of refined pick-ups have really taken off; we’ve seen it with Ford’s “King Ranch” and “Harley-Davidson” editions as well as GMC’s Denali.
Priced at around the $52,000.00 dollar mark, this Silverado “High Country” treats the driver to about as a luxurious cab-area as one could hope for in a pick-up truck. Its quad-cab design ensures plenty of comfort for four adult passengers and still retains quite a useful-sized bed in the back.
There are two available engines for the High Country, the standard 5.3L EcoTec3 V8 rated at 355hp with 383 ft-lb of torque and the 6.2L EcoTec3 V8 rated at 420hp/460 ft-lb respectively (using premium unleaded). Our test model had the 6.2L and we’re happy to report it is easily one of the most responsive engines we’ve driven in any pick-up truck to date. It seems to have endless power with a rated maximum conventional trailering of 11,700lbs. Because it’s a 1500-series chassis, its maximum payload is limited to 1746lbs.
There’s only one transmission to choose from and that’s a six-speed automatic with a manual mode and there’s trailer assist as well. The 4-wheel drive mode is easily adjusted for with a dash-mounted control knob and allows you to switch between the non-low modes on the fly.
Curb weight on this fully decked-out High Country tips the scales at 5429lbs and has an estimated fuel economy of 14/20 with the 6.2L V8. If you drop down to the standard 5.3L, the rating bumps up to 16 in the city and 23 on the highway. Fuel tank capacity is 26 gallons.
Inside the cab is where the bulk of spoils await. Its “saddle brown” leather interior welcomes driver and passengers with a sense of ruggedness and luxury at the same time – yes, it is the only available interior color with the High Country trim package.
The trim is definitely upscale, not only with the combination of stitched leather and other materials but also with its use of a premium sound system (which actually sounds rather great), but other features such as DC/AC power outlets, multiple USB ports, advanced collision system, navigation and satellite radio. We haven’t see this many USB ports this side of a desktop computer. Seat comfort is outstanding, even on longer drives for all seating locations, however, rear passengers have no recline room to speak of – an issue all pick-up trucks must endure.
Other creature comforts include a heated steering wheel, heated and cooled front seats, memory adjusted seats, remote vehicle start, park assist and the Mylink Audio system with an 8-inch color touch screen.
Chevy also offers two different bed sizes for the High Country, small and standard – ours had the standard which is likely what most folks will opt for who want a pick-up. Regardless, however, it’s great to have the option to choose and no matter which bed size you go for, we’d highly recommend getting the factory bed liner. There are plenty of tie-down locations and even bed lights to accommodate just about any possible load scenario, again, a very nice touch.
Driving this truck rewards those inside with a very quiet ride – for a truck – and it does an admirable job of smoothing out most bumps in the road without feeling as if it has sacrificed itself of being a truck. It’s still very much a truck through and through with tons of ample power for getting the big jobs done. It corners well, especially when one considers its overall height and would even be a great vehicle for a road trip. Its great torque and overall sense of refinement are very welcomed in a balanced package that makes it a very formidable choice in such a touch segment as the half-ton truck market.
While it could easily be argued that such a “fancy-pants” truck has no place at a job-site, trucks like the “High Country” are for those who want to get stuff done but still be rewarded with a great “daily driver” that can just as easily pull double duty. Of course, it’ll likely be confined to that of a “pavement princess” but let’s face it, at the going price of this truck, it’s going to be the worksite boss who’s shopping for a truck like this anyways. And, honestly, how much hard work do they do, anyways? 😉
All joking aside, Chevrolet has provided a world-class pick-up truck that will cater to those with a greater sense of refinement who also know how to work hard. Chevy’s tagline is “Chevy runs deep” and it’s hard to imagine a truck that more closely fits that than the 2014 Silverado High Country 4×4.