NEW FOR 2008:

– XM Satellite Radio available on W/T models
– Revised gauge cluster and seats
– Available integrated trailer brake controller
– 17-inch wheels replace 16-inch wheels on HD dual-wheel models
– Exterior colours: Dark Cherry Metallic and Deep Ruby Metallic
– Classic models discontinued

Completely redesigned for 2007, the Chevrolet Silverado receives only minor changes for 2008: regular-cab models with a bench seat receive a power-adjustable driver’s seat, and there are brighter instrument pointers on the gauge cluster. The Classic models, a 2007 continuation of the last-generation due to the new trucks’ late introduction, have been discontinued.

Also sold as the GMC Sierra, the Silverado is available in regular, extended and crew cab models, in rear- or four-wheel drive, and in three box lengths: short (5-foot-8), standard (6-foot-6) and long (8-foot). Trim levels are WT, LT and LTZ.

Depending on the model, engine choices are a 4.3-litre V6, 4.8-litre V8, 5.3-litre V8 in regular or E85 capability, and in the heavy-duty models, a 6.0-litre V8 or Duramax 6.6-litre diesel V8. All regular-duty trucks use a four-speed automatic transmission; the 6.0-litre uses a six-speed automatic, while the diesel uses a six-speed Allison automatic transmission.

Features on the WT models include 17-inch painted steel wheels, rear step bumper, manual foldaway mirrors, front recovery hooks, variable intermittent wipers, vinyl flooring, upper and lower glove boxes, driver information centre, tire pressure monitoring system, tilt wheel, 40/20/40 front seat in vinyl or cloth, AM/FM stereo and OnStar. Extended and Crew Cab models include air conditioning; Extended Cab models have a rear fold-up seat that’s 60/40 split on the Crew Cab.

The LT adds 17-inch chrome wheels, chrome bumpers, fog lamps, deep-tinted rear windows, power heated mirrors, cruise control, electric rear window defogger, carpeting with vinyl floor mats, auto-dimming rear-view mirror with compass and outside temperature display, leather-wrapped wheel, power windows, power locks with keyless entry, and CD/MP3 stereo. Extended Cab models have a 60/40 split fold-up rear seat; Regular Cab models add standard air conditioning.

The LTZ adds 17-inch aluminum wheels, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated leather bucket seats with ten-way power adjustment, front body-coloured bumper, power-folding mirrors with auto-dimming driver’s side and integrated turn signals, heated washer fluid system, rain-sensing wipers, premium instrument panel with single glove compartment, seat position memory, wheel-mounted audio controls, garage door opener, remote starter, trailer tow package, premium six-CD/MP3 stereo and XM Satellite Radio.

Light-years ahead of the model it replaces, the Silverado features one of GM’s best-ever interiors – with a dash available in distinct “Pure Pickup” or “Luxury” style – along with a stiff, fully-boxed frame with hydroformed front sections, coil-over-shock front suspension, and splayed rear shock arrangement for better ride and reduced rear-wheel skitter. Performance is good, the seats are comfortable, and for heavy-duty work, the perfectly-matched 6.6-litre diesel with Allison transmission is one of the best combinations on the market.

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