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2013 Chevrolet Silverado Hybrid Overview
Although it’s sort of eco-friendly and significantly more fuel efficient than the average gas-burning full-size pickup, the 2013 Chevrolet Silverado Hybrid comes across as more gimmick than “git ‘er done.” Nevertheless, this 5/6-passenger half-ton pickup offers a Crew cab with four independently opening doors, a 5.8-foot bed and a bunch of exterior doo-dads and cabin goodies, while on-demand 4-wheel drive (4WD) is a notable and, in some locations, necessary option. It also sports 20 mpg city/23 highway, not to mention a hefty base price. Virtually unchanged from 2012, Chevy’s latest version of its green-leaning medium-duty truck offers only a few additions and deletions to exterior color selections.
In any case, two trim levels will likely grace this somewhat dainty hauler, the base 1HY and the considerably more posh 2HY. The former should again boast 18-inch alloy wheels, a trailer hitch and wiring, premium cloth upholstery and full power accessories, including heated outside mirrors. Complementing all this are cruise control, tilt-wheel steering, simulated cabin trim accents, dual-zone climate control and an MP3-capable single-CD player with 6 speakers and satellite radio. Of course, Bluetooth-integrated OnStar Directions and Connections with emergency communications services should remain standard, as well.
The 2HY gussies things up with the standard hard bed cover, heated and power-adjustable leather front bucket seats, reverse-tilt outside mirrors, power-adjustable pedals and a universal remote garage door opener. Rear parking sensors additionally come standard with this top-shelf trim, as does a rear-view camera and auto-dimming rear-view mirror. Bose premium speakers, complete with a subwoofer, amp up the tunes, while a hard-drive-based navigation suite is complemented by NavTraffic satellite radio.
Of course, the 1HY is eligible for a number of upgrades that come standard with its more polished sibling, while the 2HY remains in line for an optional power sunroof.
Getting to the nitty-gritty of this prettified pickup, a 6.0-liter hybrid V8 powerplant will again combine with two 60-kilowatt electric motors to put out 379 total hp. The shiftable 4-speed automatic should ensure some 367 lb-ft of torque, good enough for the RWD edition to tow up to 6,100 pounds of trailer with the standard towing gear. This true two-mode hybrid system means that the Silverado 1500 Hybrid can be driven for short distances on electric power alone, while regenerative braking helps the V8 charge up the traditional nickel-metal hydride battery pack located beneath the rear seat. Finally, a locking rear differential comes standard in all trim levels.
As is traditional, GM’s Autotrac system should once again equip those versions so designated. This on-demand 4WD configuration boasts electronic hi-lo gear selection and auto-locking hubs, complemented by a driver-selectable automatic mode that instantly shifts power from the wheels that slip to the wheels that grip.
Safety-wise, both 2013 Silverado Hybrid editions are expected to retain standard 4-wheel antilock brakes (ABS) as well as traction and stability control, front side-mounted airbags, front and rear head airbags and daytime running lights. Both should also carry a post-collision safety system, remote antitheft alarm and OnStar emergency communications services, while the 2HY ought to additionally sport standard front fog/driving lights and turn-signal-integrated mirrors.
by Eric Tallberg
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