2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 Pros vs Cons. Should You Buy?
Whether you need a powerful workhorse or a family vehicle perfect for hauling an RV, the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD can get the job done right. This massive heavy-duty pick-up truck can, when properly equipped, tow up to 36,000 pounds. If you are in the market for a new full-size RV, then you're going to need a truck like this to pull it.
Towing is far from being the only good thing the Silverado 2500HD has going for it. This truck comes with an abundance of trailering technology that is remarkably advanced for being rather new. There are also handy features like integrated bed steps, options for massive beds, and a powertrain option that pairs a smooth 10-speed automatic transmission with a powerful diesel engine.
Of course, there are some downsides to getting the new 2500HD. First of all, the interior design comes off as a bit bland and lacking in creativity, unlike some of its top rivals. You will also have to pay almost $10k more to get the diesel engine option, which is truly the best pick of the litter. You are also going to just have to accept that the front fascia looks like it was ripped off of a locomotive, given the Chevrolet lettering, and made to fit the Silverado. It isn't hideous, but it seems almost cartoonish.
That being said, the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD retains all of the good things that were added for last year's total overhaul. Now in its second year of the fourth generation, Chevy seems to know what people want from the Silverado 2500HD. The third generation catered to the power aspect of a pick-up, but it lacked refinement when it came to the interior design and technology.
So, what can you expect from the 2500HD? Read through this review to find out what is new for 2021, what we like about the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD, what we would like to see changed, an how it stacks up against some seriously staunch rivals.
What's New for 2021?
Very little changes for 2021, given last year's huge revamp. In 2020, the Silverado 2500HD was given a brand new list of powertrain options, an elongated wheelbase, and the impressive 15-camera trailering view system. More space was carved out in the rear seats, and payload and towing capacities were massively boosted. The fact that you can now tow up to 36,000 pounds (up 500 from last year) is cool, and the jackknife alert is a cool new feature that is sure to prove helpful.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 – The Pros
1. Plenty of Power
Every trim level comes with a standard 6.6-L V8 matched up with a 6-speed automatic transmission. This produces a power output of 401 horsepower and 464 lb-ft of torque, which is nothing to scoff at. However, the 6.6-L turbodiesel V8 does even better, getting 445 hp and 910 lb-ft of torque and is paired with a smooth-to-shift 10-speed automatic transmission.
2. Snappy Acceleration
Quick acceleration is not something you will find in every heavy duty truck. But Chevy nails it in the Silverado 2500HD. This truck can get from 0 to 60 mph in about 6.7 seconds - a respectable showing for such a heavy vehicle. The diesel's 10-speed automatic transmission handles the power boost with ease, smoothly delivering it to the wheels without interruption.
3. A Spacious Cabin
The Silverado 2500HD has a cabin that is more spacious than what you might expect. The 2020 revamp saw an increase in rear seat space, which was truly necessary as it used to feel a bit cramped back there. Now, even taller adults can extend their legs and sit upright without feeling cramped for head room. Even the massive dashboard and bulky center armrest leave you with enough space up front for getting nice and cozy.
4. Plenty of Storage Areas Inside of the Cabin
Speaking of the center bin, there are plenty of well-sized storage areas inside of the cabin. Stash your tablets in the big bin, underneath the armrest or slide your favorite book into the door bin. Cup holders are large and spaced out for everyone to be able to access their own.
5. The 15-view Camera System
The 15-view trailering camera system is one of our favorite additions to the Silverado 2500HD. This camera system gives you 15 different views from its cameras all around your trailer. It is optional but definitely worth the purchase if you plan on doing a lot of towing. Keeping that trailer centered will be a whole lot easier with this system, and there is even one camera that helps you see through the trailer to know what is going on.
6. A Longer Wheelbase
Last year, the wheelbase was extended. You can now gets wheelbases ranging between 141.6 (on the regular cab) to 172 inches in length. This means you get a lot of space both in the cabin and in the bed. More length equals more abilities for hauling payload as well as passengers. The 2500HD does both well and offers a series of well-sized configurations.
7. The LT Trim Level
The LT trim level is the third trim up, coming in after the base Work Truck (WT) and the Custom. The LT takes everything you get on these two trims (such as cruise control and smartphone app integration) and makes them standard. It also adds power-adjustable heated side mirrors, upgraded cloth upholstery, a remote locking tailgate, and a steering wheel that is wrapped in leather. For the price, it actually feels well-packed with creature comforts.
8. Standard Equipment Abounds On the Work Truck
Work trucks are usually pared down to the bare minimum when it comes to creature comforts, but the 2500HD's WT trim level feels pretty well-equipped. It has standard smartphone app integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and a 7-inch infotainment display for accessing the vehicle's entertainment and info.
9. The Z71 Off-Road Package
If you plan on doing a lot of off-roading, then the Z71 Off-Road package is a 'must-have'. This package is 4WD-only, and there are all-terrain tires that come with the 18-inch wheels. An upgraded suspension, underbody protection, and a spray-in bedliner get tacked on as well since they all enhance off-roading performance and durability. The Z71 is - and has almost always been - a popular option, and for a good reason. We recommend it.
10. An Optional Head-up Display
Another recommendation we want to make is adding the optional head-up display. This feature projects important vehicle data onto the windshield, treating it like a screen. Instead, you just look forward, not down. It is super cool and high-tech but also really practical and full of helpful data to keep you safe on the road.
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Reasons Not to Buy a 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 – The Cons
1. An Outdated Interior Design
The biggest issue we have with the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD is the interior design. We should have seen more upgrades and higher quality materials added in during 2020's make-over, but the work seems minimal. This leaves the interior looking rather basic. Some of the wood paneling looks old and tacky, and the color options don't always pair well together.
2. Forward Visibility is Hindered By the Hood
The hood, which is brought up high and made to be broad, gets in the way of the driver's forward visibility. You won't know exactly where your front bumper is in relation to what is in front of it, so you will need to give extra space when parking or coming to a stop behind another vehicle.
3. The Cost of the Diesel Engine
As much as we love the diesel engine, we do not love the price tag. Paying almost $10,000 more for the diesel is a price a lot of buyers cannot justify but might have to swing for anyway if they need to get the max towing and payload capacities from it. Some competitors do offer more affordable diesels that put up just as much torque.
4. The Front Fascia Looks Like a Train
This might sound like a silly complaint, but doesn't the front fascia look like it came off of a train? The way it is designed does not have the same aggressive, sporty vibe you will find on trucks like the Ram or Ridgeline. Instead, you get something that is nearly cartoonish in design.
How It Stacks Up to the Competition:
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD vs. 2021 Ram 2500
Speaking of the 2021 Ram 2500, we simply have to compare it to the Silverado. Price-wise, it is pretty similar, but the available diesel engine runs slightly cheaper and puts forth ample torque. The Ram's cabin is what gives it the edge, though, as it is both packed with comfort and high-tech gadgets that are user-friendly. For such a large truck, the seats are genuinely some of the most comfortable. And, if you get the Power Wagon, it offers a lot of off-roading capabilities, akin to the Z71.
2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD vs. 2021 Ford F-250 Super Duty
Ford's new F-250 Super Duty is also priced within the same range as the Silverado and comes with a V8 diesel engine that creates a mind-blowing 1,050 lb-ft of torque. That number blows everyone else right out of the water. However, the F-250 Super Duty has a taller ride height that makes getting in and out a workout, and its brakes don't bode well during panic stops, leaving too long a distance.
Overall, the 2021 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD is a truck with some striking mechanical specs and performance capabilities. However, it lags behind in looks and is working to catch up when it comes to technology. Work Truck buyers will like how many standard features they get, and everything is pretty straightforward. The 15-camera trailering system is what really impresses us; with the high max towing capacity, this makes the 2500HD quite an attractive option.
• Why buy a 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 2500? w/ pros vs cons