Luxury edition pickup trucks have become a segment of their own over the past decade and the new 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD High Country is setting the standard for the competition. However, don’t mistake this plush boss man’s pickup for some light duty cowboy Cadillac, it is an all out work truck capable of towing huge loads, hauling over a ton in the bed, running all day on the job site and negotiating arduous off road trails.
HD Power from the 6.6 Diesel
This third generation Silverado is little changed from last year externally. The new functional hood scoop is the only change most will notice. The real difference is in the 6.6 liter DuraMax power plant that has been upgraded to 445 horsepower and a staggering 910 pound feet of torque. The hood scope is a visible sign of this upgrade as the air induction system now uses that high off the ground opening to avoid taking in road dirt and water.
The marketing focus on all HD lines seems to center around high output engines and towing capacity. The 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 equipped with the DuraMax diesel and Allison transmission is rated to tow over 18,000 pounds. It’s bigger brother, the 3500 series, can pull over 23,000. It will also haul a bed payload of 3500 pounds. This places the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 at the top of this class, if not leading it.
Not all 2500 HD trucks are beauty queens. The 2017 Chevrolet 2500 is available in four trim levels starting with the base WT, work truck edition, that is just that, a work truck. Offered in a single cab, long bed with a standard 6.0 liter gas engine, rubberized floor covers, vinyl bench seats, cruise control and air conditioning. The WT doesn’t even have power windows as a standard equipment feature. You can move up in cab sizes to the Double or Crew cabs and add accessories as your budget allows. The WT base truck starts at about $34,000.
Other trim levels include the LT, LTZ and the top of the line High Country that we tested. All come standard with Chevrolet’s proven 6.0 liter gas engine making 360 horses and a 6 speed automatic transmission. Price moves up quickly with the trim and option levels and as tested our 2017 Chevrolet 2500 HD High country was just over 70 grand with destination charges included.
As with all of the HD pickups offered now, the Silverado is a big truck. Close to 80 inches wide and 20 feet long it can be challenging to maneuver in city traffic, and a bit awkward to park anyplace but a pasture. That, however, is offset by the amazing ride quality of this truck. Yes, it is an HD series and the ride is expected to be a little rough, but Chevy has smooth out most of the jarring events and built a cabin so quiet that you can have a romantic conversation with your date and never miss a whispered sweet nothing.
Comparing the HD offerings of the big 3 there seems to be little difference in performance claims. Each will tow massive loads and claim huge power numbers. The interiors of each top trim level is rich in amenities and technology. However, the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado High Country offers a more understated luxury forgoing the bold cowboy theme and saddle styling of some. The plush interior comes with well padded leather seating front and rear set off with contrasting stitching. Soft touch or leather materials are used throughout the cabin and doors get a simple wood grain insert for accent.
Driver comfort is taken care of with heated and cooled seats that adjust 10 ways to find the perfect position for any size pilot, heated steering wheel, power adjustable pedals and tilt and telescoping column. Dual zone climate control, active sound dampening, Chevrolet MyLink with Apple Car Play and Android Auto, cruise control, lane departure and collision alert warnings are just a few of the goodies adding to the comfort and safety of the Silverado HD.
If the truck cab is going to be your office you will find everything you need. Equipped with a 4 GLTE hotspot, 4 USB, an accessory plugin, a 110 volt outlet and several power point outlets within reach of the driver you can set up your portable office on wheels.
Storage is great with deep cubby holes and door pockets and a large center storage bin.
Silverado 2500 HD is made to tow trailers!
For those who tow trailers you will find build in trailer braking located just to the left of the steering wheel where it is easy to use. It incorporates an anti-sway program to help stabilize the trailer. A factory built in gooseneck/fifth wheel hitch mount and diesel exhaust brake all make the HD a natural for hauling heavy payloads. There is also an available trailer camera system that makes hooking up easier, eliminates blind spots and lets you monitor the load while driving
With almost 10 inches of ground clearance and skid plates for undercarriage protection off road is no problem for the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado 2500. Equipped with selectable 4 wheel high or low drive that includes hill decent controls the HD can go where the work, or play, is.
Missing from the many tech options on the High Country is a keyless ignition. This almost universal feature is a glaring shortcoming for such a high trim level and in an otherwise nearly perfect combination of performance, style and convenience.
The 2017 Chevrolet Silverado High Country should get serious consideration from those looking for a premium heavy duty pickup.