|9,400 lbs||Towing Capacity||8,000 lbs|
|2,020 lbs||Payload||2,329 lbs|
A rivalry of titanic proportions, the 2017 Chevy Silverado vs 2017 Ford F-150 in Cincinnati, OH have been clashing with each other since birth. Destined to fight in the never-ending war that is dominance over the truck market, their respective brands try everything and anything to one-up each other. It’s in this attempt to better their models that they will either succeed or fail. It’s no secret that the F-150 has been slipping in sales over the past few months, with the Silverado actually outselling the F-150 when it comes to sales of monthly units. Threatening the F-150 to lose its crown of best-selling full-size pickup for many years, it’s also no secret that Chevy has been poking holes in the F-150’s design — literally — to prove that their Silverado is superior in durability.
So the question for 2017 is, which brand does it better? The chart reveals everything you need to know, and the expanded sections about performance, durability, and safety provide deeper insight into the matter. The Silverado might cost more than the F-150 when it comes to the starting MSRP, but the question remains: is cheaper better?
In the SUV and truck market, safety never used to be a concern. But in 2017, the shoe is on the other foot. Now, safety is one of the top priorities for consumers. Even those looking to buy trucks and SUVs.
Therefore, the Silverado and F-150 are going share many safety features. But, the Silverado has a few pivotal safety features over the F-150. Mainly, Teen Driver technology and OnStar’s Automatic Crash Response. Sure, the F-150 has 911 Sync Assist that automatically connects you to emergency services. But, the only person you interact with is the 911 call taker. What happens if you’re unable to respond? The system itself relays your location, not a person. Enter Chevy’s OnStar Advisor. Chevy's OnStar system alerts a real person called an OnStar Advisor who interacts with you through the system. If he or she notices you’re unable to respond, then that Advisor will automatically contact emergency services on your behalf.
Teen Driver Technology is a suite of features and parameters that are all meant to promote safe driving habits for your teenaged son or daughter. With a PIN, you can gain access to a slew of information, such as if any overspeed warnings (that you set) were detected, or if any advanced safety features or driver assist aids like forward collision alert were activated.
With it, you can also set your own parameters. Like how fast the vehicle should travel, muting the audio until front passengers are buckled, setting an audio volume limit, and even restricting how far the vehicle should travel, etc.
It all helps promote safe driving habits for teenagers even when you’re not there.
Apart from the durability of a truck’s frame and body, performance is the second-biggest concern. Without the proper performance, the truck won’t be able to tow, plow, or carry its way through the workplace.
Chevy clearly understands this. If they didn’t, the 2017 Silverado wouldn’t have a best-in-class rating for each one of their engines. The base 4.3-liter V6 engine receives the accolade of best-in-class V6 torque, which is a huge factor when it comes to towing and getting out of deep snow or mud. The 5.3-liter V8 engine has a best-in-class V8 fuel economy rating, allowing you to balance fuel-efficiency with capability. Finally, the 6.2-liter V8 engine lands itself a best-in-class V8 towing rating. Proving that when it comes to towing, the 2017 Silverado can tow the heaviest load out of all other full-size pickup trucks. Including the F-150.
The Silverado’s 4.3-liter EcoTec3 V6 engine produces 284 horsepower and a best-in-class 305 lb.-ft. of torque. It’s able to tow up to 7,600 pounds when properly equipped, and returns up to 18 mpg city/24 mpg highway.
The 5.3-liter V8 engine produces 355 horsepower/383 lb.-ft. of torque, and gets a towing capacity of 11,100 pounds. That best-in-class V8 fuel economy is quite noticeable, with the engine sitting at 16 mpg city/23 mpg highway.
The 6.2-liter V8 engine is the largest and most powerful engine offered on the Silverado 1500, producing 420 horsepower/460 lb.-ft. of torque. Returning a surprisingly decent 15 mpg city/21 mpg highway for an engine of this caliber. Plus, it gets that 12,500 pound best-in-class tow rating.
As far as best-in-class ratings go, the F-150 (obviously) fails to match the Silverado’s. Meaning that if you’re looking for the best standard torque, best V8 fuel economy, or best V8 towing, then the Silverado is for you.
As far as fuel economy goes, the models are essentially tied. The Silverado’s base 4.3-liter gets the same 18 mpg city/24 mpg highway the F-150’s comparable 3.5-liter gets. The only way the F-150 is able to achieve better fuel economy is if you upgrade (which will cost you money) to the 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine paired to its new transmission. In which case, the F-150 attains a possible best of 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway. When it comes to V8 engines, the F-150 clearly loses out on the fuel-efficiency front, returning up to 15 mpg city/22 mpg highway on the V8 engine. Or else, the Silverado wouldn’t have a best-in-class V8 fuel economy rating.
Towing is a no-brainer, and far more important than fuel-efficiency. Meaning if you’re looking to get the best possible performance for a full-size truck, the Silverado is the way to go.
Those commercials about the F-150 suffering a hole in its bed from the impact of an empty toolbox is true. Also, it’s a perfect example of why the aluminum-alloy used in most of the F-150s is a huge disadvantage compared to the high-strength steel found in the Silverado.
The 2017 Chevy Silverado cabin is made up of 2/3 high-strength steel, and the truck bed is made up of roll-formed steel, which is stronger than stamped-steel (found on the Ram1500), and far stronger than aluminum (F-150’s bed). The rocker panels and underbody are made of an even heavier-duty ultra strength steel for added protection in the workplace.
The frame of the F-150 is still made of steel, like the Silverado, so what’s the problem? The problem is that Ford decided to make the rest of the F-150 — including body and bed — mostly out of an aluminum alloy. This compromises the durability of the truck, which was proven in the commercials mentioned earlier. If an empty toolbox can puncture a hole in the truck bed, imagine what getting into an accident will do?
Sure, the aluminum body helps greatly with speed and fuel-efficiency, but compromises safety and durability in turn. Not a good trade-off.
Furthermore, fixing an aluminum alloy body or truck bed costs way more than fixing a steel one. It also requires special tools, materials, and methods that only the manufacturer mechanics know. Making it even more expensive. It takes longer, too. Meaning that $1,000 you saved upfront buying a F-150 won’t do much if you damage your truck on the worksite or in a collision, which can happen very easily.