2013 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Hybrid Overview
The 2013 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Hybrid proves that even a half-ton pick-up has the capacity to go green. The 1500 Hybrid runs on the company’s two-mode system that combines a V-8 gasoline engine and an electric motor, and can operate on electricity only up to 30 mph. City fuel economy sees the biggest improvement over standard model Silverados, and achieves the same mileage in rear- and four-wheel drive models.
With the exception of Hybrid badging, there are no remarkable visual exterior differences between the standard and gasoline-electric Silverado 1500s. The front air dam is deeper than the standard model, low-rolling resistance tires and a standard tonneau cover over the bed aid aerodynamic efficiency. Hybrid models come only in the crew cab/short bed configuration and two trim levels. The top-of-the-line 2HY features heated, auto dimming, power side mirrors with integrated turn signals and ground lights. All models include the spring-loaded EZ-Lift locking tailgate, 18-inch alloy wheels, and a chrome grille surround. A power sunroof is optional.
Chevrolet’s two-mode hybrid system for the Silverado pickup and Tahoe SUV consists of a 332-horsepower, 6.0-liter, V-8 engine with 367 pounds-feet of torque coupled with an electric motor that’s attached to a 300-volt system with a nickel-metal hydride battery pack. The V-8 features Active Fuel Management, which shuts off four cylinders under light loads and benefits from the electric assist to stay in fuel saving mode longer. Regenerative braking helps recharge the battery and provides improved stopping distances. With 2WD, Silverado Hybrid can tow 6,100 pounds and can travel at up to 20 mph on electricity alone.
As is the case with hybrids, the Silverado 1500’s biggest fuel economy gain is in urban driving, returning an EPA-estimated 20 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway. The city figure is the highest for a full-size pickup. The hybrid achieves fuel economy gains from electrically assisted power steering and air conditioning. Start-stop technology shuts the engine off when the vehicle is stopped and seamlessly restarts the gasoline engine when demand is high enough. An auto-stop position on the tachometer informs the driver of what mode is engaged.
Inside, the 1500 Hybrid takes the standard version’s work-related layout and adds a few top-end features and options. A 40/20/40 split bench front seat is standard on the base model, while bucket seats and center console come with the upper trim level. Both models include dual-zone automatic climate control, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, and Bluetooth connectivity. The top model adds USB port and navigation radio with NavTraffic capability, and leather upholstery. Energy usage and distribution is shown on the nav screen, allowing the driver to monitor the hybrid system’s condition.
The 1500 Hybrid includes all of the standard version’s safety equipment, including six airbags, including front, front side-mounted and side-curtain for both rows; antilock brakes, stability control with roll mitigation and traction control. Front seatbelts include pre-tensioners and load-limiters. A locking rear differential is standard on all models.