2011 Chevy Silverado 3500 is a 1-ton two-wheel, four-wheel drive heavy-duty pickup. The construction is a body on frame. The competitors are Ford Super duty Series and Dodge Ram heavy-duty pickups.
There are two engines to choose from:
There is the Vortec 6.0-liter V-8 sequential fuel injection that gives out 360 horsepower @ 5,400 rpm and 380 lb-ft of torque @ 4,200 rpm. This hydra-matic six-speed automatic takes regular gasoline. The emissions control is a three-way catalytic converter, positive crankcase ventilation, evaporative collection system.
The payload (amount of weight you can put in the bed) for the Silverado 3500 gasoline engine ranges from 4,085 to 6,635 pounds. The conventional towing capacity for the 3500 gasoline engine ranges from 8,700 to 14,100 pounds. Fifth wheel towing capacity for the 3500 gasoline engine ranges from 8,900 to 14,500 pounds.
The other option is a Duramax 6.6-liter turbo diesel V-8 direct injection diesel with high pressure common rail that gives you 397 horsepower @ 3,000 rpm and a whooping 765 lb-ft of torque @1,600 rpm. The allison 1000 six-speed automatic can take diesel or B20! The emissions control is a cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), EGR cooling-bypass system, diesel particulate filter system (DPF), selective catalyst reduction (SCR).
The payload (amount of weight you can put in the bed) for the Silverado 3500 diesel engine ranges from 4,038 to 5,724 pounds. The conventional towing capacity for the 3500 diesel engine ranges from 13,000 to 17,000 pounds. Fifth wheel towing capacity for the 3500 diesel engine ranges from 16,800 to 21,700 pounds.
With this type of power you need great brakes and Chevy has brought out the all new power-assisted, Hydroboost brake-apply system, four-wheel disc, four-wheel ABS.
Chevy Silverado 3500 regular cab long box is a standard front seat with room for 2-3 passengers and a seven foot long bed. The regular cab long box has a turning radius, curb-to-curb of 44.9. The overall length is 225 inches.
Chevy Silverado 3500 extended cab long box is a 5-6 passenger cab. This configuration is more like the size of a midsize car with a front and back seating. The long box is seven feet long.The extended cab long box has a turning radius, curb-to-curb of 51.8 feet. The overall length is 249.5 inches.
Chevy Silverado 3500 crew cab standard box. The standard box is four feet long.The crew cab standard box has a turning radius, curb-to-curb of 50.5 feet. The overall length is 240.1 inches.
Chevy Silverado 3500 crew cab long box. The long box is seven feet long.The crew cab long box has a turning radius, curb-to-curb of 54.8 feet. The overall length is 259 inches.
The 2011 two-wheel drive with regular cab Chevy Silverado 3500 heavy duty gasoline engine base pricing starts at $28,805, and goes all the way up to $45,455 for a 4WD Crew cab SRW-SLT. Add another $995 for destination charge. If you opt for the Duramax diesel engine and Allison transmission combination add $8,395. This is the same price as 2010.
I drove a 3500 four-wheel drive crew cab standard bed with a 9,000 pound trailer behind me. I have never driven anything that long, and first thing out of the gate I almost took out a stop sign because I didn't make the turn wide enough. There were items on the car, and technology, that made the drive a lot easier. In fact, after I got used to the length and the weight I had to remind myself that I was driving a vehicle that was longer than six Smart cars.
1. Always make sure your tires are properly inflated. This is not just for fuel economy. With this heavy of a load you need to be concerned with wearing out the components on your truck faster.
2. If you're hauling in the back of the bed make sure your load is properly constrained and distributed. The load should be centered over the rear axle.
3. Your stopping distance will be longer so leave more room to brake.
4. Accelerate moderately and smoothly
5. Don't be afraid to use a load equalizer hook between the tongue and trailer. Even if you're an expert tower, if you get caught in a crosswind this will even out the stress on your load.
6. Always get the trailering mirrors that extend, especially the ones with the 1/3 of the bottom spotter mirrors. It takes a little bit but once you learn how to use them they are lifesavers.
After towing that much length and weight I have a new appreciation for our roads and how they are built.