Unless you’ve been living under rocks the past decade, you already know that big pickups are all the rage with bedliners for all occasions, luscious interiors and high tech — albeit for a price.
This year there is more to hoot and holler about with some GMC and Chevy trucks taking on Super Cruise — an intuitive semi-autonomous driving system that, well, drives itself at high speeds over compatible four-lane roads. Our Silverado Crew High Country’s Super Cruise seemed fool proof. Picture (no pun intended) camera sensors everywhere merged with GPS technology from adaptive cruise control providing real-time corrections with precise locators.
Still with me? If so, the rest is a breeze. Turn on the system and set speed. The truck stays centered in the driving lane, will change lanes if needed, pass and then return to cruising lane. It will maintain a distance from traffic ahead and even move over a lane if rear traffic wants to pass.
There is about 130,000 miles of compatible highway in the US Super Cruise is a $2,200 option and will cost $25 monthly following a free trial period. More systems will be available in cars once the semiconductor chip shortage is over. A steering wheel camera monitors driver awareness and will shut down if it senses any unsafe condition. We tried to fool it and couldn’t.
Aside from techno-talk, the new Silverado serves a wide variety of uses from an affordable Work Truck in the mid $30s to a night on the town with High Country or ZR2 off-roader priced in the $70s and beyond.
The new Silverado is basically a GMC Sierra look alike in nine trim levels with four engine choices. A base 2.7-liter turbo four has decent acceleration and the 3.0-liter turbodiesel is another fuel-saver. Two V8s round-out the offerings with a 5.2-liter and our 6.2-liter in the High Country. Unfortunately, there is no hybrid option to compete with Ram and Ford.
Our High Country trim delivered a quiet and powerful ride, absorbing road imperfections while shoeed with 22-inch aluminum wheels and all-season paws.
Silverado comes in three cab types and two bed lengths with a towing capacity of 12,500 pounds — more than Ram but trailing Ford. While the “Big Three” truck manufacturers vie for consumer favor, truth is all three have record sales with Ford typically leading sales charts followed by GMC/Chevy and Ram a close third.
The 2022 Silverado made styling changes with new front fascia and grille; However, most of the sheet metal is a carryover from the previous year.
The substantial change this year is on the inside, where a pair of digital screens offers more than 2 feet of engine vitals in an adjustable instrument cluster and more than a foot of infotainment touchscreen for Google apps, cabin atmosphere and entertainment features.
It’s really impressive-looking and surpasses Ford and Ram offerings.
The Silverado also gets a new dashboard design, eliminating an outdated column shifter with an available electronic shift lever mounted on the center console.