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Overview of 2012 Chevrolet Express Cargo 3500 By Eric Tallberg
For maximum heavy-hauling duties look to the rear-wheel-drive (RWD) 2012 Chevrolet Express Cargo 3500 one-ton full-size cargo van. This 2-passenger workhorse boasts over 270 cubic feet of cargo capacity behind the front seats, as well as standard rear swing-out cargo doors, a passenger-side rear access door, 16-inch steel wheels, a pair of vinyl bucket seats, a trip computer, air conditioning, two speakers and phone pre-wiring. Luxurious, it’s not. But, should some extra appearance accoutrements, creature comforts or load capabilities be needed, options abound. The Convenience Package, for instance, adds power windows, door locks and outside mirrors, and the accompanying Power Package throws in heated, turn-signal-integrated outside mirrors. Then there’s the Express Access Package, which includes side bins with remote-opening doors, remote vehicle start and keyless entry, while the Enhanced Lighting Package offers upgraded dash and cabin lighting. The Chrome Appearance Package spiffs up the exterior, while an available 3.73 rear axle ratio, heavy-duty locking rear differential and heavy-duty trailer-towing equipment builds the Express 3500’s muscle. Finally, standalone options include cruise control, tilt-wheel steering, a power-adjustable driver’s seat, cloth upholstery, driver’s side swing-out rear cargo door, single-CD player with AM/FM stereo and the popular Bluetooth-interfaced OnStar Directions and Connections with emergency services.
Powered by the standard 4.8-liter ethanol-capable Flex-Fuel (FFV) V8 and the standard 6-speed automatic transmission, this big van is endowed with 280 hp and 295 lb-ft of torque. Payload capacity, meantime, is 4,238 pounds, while mileage, despite variable valve timing (VVT), is estimated at 10 mpg city/16 highway.
Available in the Express 3500 for 2012 is a VVT 6.0-liter Flex-Fuel V8 and 6-speed automatic that’ll lay out 324 hp and 380 lb-ft of torque, again to the tune of 10/16. Towing, meanwhile, is bumped up to some 10,000 pounds with the proper equipment. Additionally, a compressed natural gas (CNG) 6.0-liter V8 engine, again with the 6-speed automatic, is also available to the Express 3500 with no change in performance figures from the gasoline-burning version.
Standard safety features in Chevy’s supersize Express 3500 include 4-wheel antilock brakes (ABS), traction and stability control, front head airbags, daytime running lights, dusk-sensing headlights and a vehicle antitheft system.
This overview covers the 3500 trim only.
Please see our 2012 Chevrolet Express Cargo Overview for more information.
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