For 2007, Chevrolet offers an all-new version of its venerable Silverado pickup truck, but since it was introduced late in the model year, the company simultaneously offers the new truck as well as a carried-over version of the 2006, which it has renamed the Silverado Classic. Both are 2007 model-year versions.

The new vehicles are offered in regular, extended and crew cab models, in three box lengths: short (5-foot-8), standard (6-foot-6) and long (8-foot). There are three trim levels and five distinct suspension packages, including one for a maximum towing capacity of 4,763 kg (10,500 lbs). Trim levels are WT, LT and LTZ (LS badging is available through an exterior styling option package).

The styling is all-new, with tighter tolerances and reduced body gaps, including a 50 per cent tighter gap between the cab and box; a wider and lower stance; a more aerodynamic 57-degree windshield angle; new 17-, 18- and 20-inch wheels, and new, 170-degree opening rear access doors on the extended cab models.

The interiors, which in the past tended to look cheap, have been substantially upgraded, with premium materials, lower gloss levels, flush fits and fully-concealed seat hardware. Two new trim design levels are offered, including a luxury trim edition.

The new trucks feature stronger and stiffer fully-boxed frames with hydroformed front sections, new coil-over-shock front suspension, new rack-and-pinion steering system, improved brakes with new-generation Bosch ABS system, and new splayed rear shock arrangement for better ride and reduced rear-wheel skitter. As well, all extended-cab models come standard with StabiliTrak stability control.

Engines include the fourth generation of Chevrolet’s small-block V8 family; choices are a 4.3-litre V6, 4.8-litre V8, 5.3-litre V8, and 6.0-litre V8. The 5.3-litre V8 is also available as a flexible fuel vehicle (FFV) capable of using E85 fuel.

Heavy-duty models are available as the 2500HD (3/4-ton) and 3500HD (one-ton) models, in 4×2 or 4×4 configuration, and with optional dual rear wheels. Engine choices are the standard 6.0-litre V8 gasoline engine or optional Duramax 6.6-litre turbodiesel, with 365 hp and 660 lb-ft of torque. For the first time, the new Z71 Off-Road Package is offered on heavy-duty models, along with the retuned Z85 smooth-ride suspension. The heavy-duty models include what GM calls a segment-best gross combined weight rating of 8,392 kg (18,500 lbs) with the 6.0-litre V8, and best conventional trailer maximum weight rating of 5,897 kg (13,000 lbs). The heavy-duty models also come with the “Pure Pickup” or luxury interiors.

Available features on the new Silverado include 12-way heated power seats, six-CD stereo, rain-sensing wipers, rear-seat audio system, power sliding rear window, StabiliTrak stability control with rollover mitigation, curtain airbags, safety belt pretensioners, remote vehicle starting, ultrasonic rear parking assist and tire pressure monitoring system.

Also available is a new, innovative cargo management system, consisting of three rails that run the length of the box sides and the forward box wall, with upper and lower tracks, that can be fitted with a range of dealer-ordered accessory packages including storage boxes, sliding bed divider and bicycle rack.

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