Considering its off-road prowess, the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD ZR2 immediately comes to mind. With or without the AEV Bison package, its 35-inch wheels, elevated suspension, and advanced spool-valve dampers perform exceptionally on rugged terrains and smooth highways.
While towering pickups have been around for a while, with many regions seeing their fair share of these giants, the factory-made Ford Super Duty Tremor and Ram 2500 Power Wagon have made their mark. However, the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD ZR2 stands out primarily due to its unique independent front suspension. It's a game-changer.
The Power Wagon, equipped with a built-in winch and a detachable front anti-roll bar, is designed for rocky terrains. The Tremor, conversely, appeals to a broader audience with its slightly raised suspension, robust dampers, and large tires. While purists might argue in favor of the solid front axles found in both these models for rock challenges, such components add significant unsprung weight, which can be a disadvantage in many scenarios.
The Silverado 2500HD ZR2's independent front suspension and reduced unsprung weight enhance daily driving experiences. It offers a smoother ride, precise steering, and reduced vibrations on uneven dirt paths. This was evident when the ZR2 was tested in California's Johnson Valley, the infamous location of the King of the Hammers off-road race.
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Features of the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD ZR2
The ZR2 variant of the Silverado HD boasts 35-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory MT mud-terrain tires, 18-inch rims, a 1.5-inch lift in its suspension, and an electronic rear differential lock.
However, its standout feature is the Multimatic DSSV dampers. These dampers have an aluminum body for efficient heat dissipation, robust spool valves for position-sensitive damping, and external oil reservoirs for enhanced heat rejection. This feature is unparalleled in its competitors.
On the rugged roads leading to Johnson Valley, the ZR2 showcased minimal vibrations, limited shock from impacts, and an unexpectedly quiet ride, given its large Goodyear tires. The journey remained undisturbed even when transitioning to the uneven dirt path, devoid of the usual jitters seen in large pickups. The ZR2's control and stability on the various dirt paths, shaped by countless dirt bikes and UTVs, was commendable. The truck's setup made it feel agile, effortlessly navigating terrains that seemed challenging due to its size and heft.
Venturing deeper into the off-road sections, the ZR2 continued to impress. In the rocky and secluded trails of Johnson Valley, the truck maneuvered with the grace of a hiker with trekking poles. While solid front axles might have their merits, as some purists suggest, the ZR2's performance in these conditions was spectacular.
ZR2 Bison Enhancements
For those who frequently traverse rugged terrains, the ZR2 Bison package is a must-have. It equips the vehicle with a robust AEV steel front bumper for winch compatibility and integrated fog lights. Additionally, two substantial recovery points are at the front and the rear. The package includes 18-inch AEV wheels, even for the spare, and boron-steel protective plates beneath the engine, transfer case, and fuel tank. Interestingly, the HD ZR2 doesn't feature the typical differential shield, given that its rear-end housing is already a solid chunk of iron. And, while not strictly necessary for off-roading, GM's Multi-Flex tailgate is a part of this package.
2024 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD Performance in Johnson Valley
Taking the 2500HD ZR2 to Johnson Valley is for more than just a show. Many adventurers tow large toy haulers to this location using 2500-series trucks, and the Silverado 2500HD ZR2 doesn't disappoint in this department. Its standard 6.6-liter V-8 engine, running on gasoline, can tow up to 16,000 pounds. Opt for the turbo-diesel variant, and the towing capacity increases to 18,500 pounds. However, regarding fifth-wheel towing, both versions can handle just over 18,000 pounds, provided you choose the Gooseneck/Fifth Wheel Prep package. Once the trailer is detached, one can easily load up the crew in the HD ZR2 and venture off to observe the more agile UTVs and specialized Jeeps navigating the challenging trails of the King of the Hammers course.
Inside the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD ZR2
The interior of the ZR2 has seen significant improvements in the 2024 model. Both versions benefit from a revamped control layout, a customizable 12.3-inch instrument display, and an enhanced 13.4-inch infotainment touchscreen. This larger screen proves particularly useful when navigating rocky paths, providing drivers with a clear view of potential obstacles. While it doesn't replace the need for a spotter in particularly challenging terrains, it offers commendable assistance. A possible addition could be a camera-lens washer to clear off any accumulated dust.
2024 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD Pricing and Value
The gas-engine 2500HD ZR2 is priced at $72,595, which is only a slight increase from the 1500 ZR2. Opting for the diesel variant will set one back by $82,085. While this might seem steep, it's on par with competitors like the Ram Power Wagon and the Lariat-level F-250 Tremor. The ZR2 offers good value, especially considering its unique suspension and advanced Multimatic DSSV shocks. The Bison package, however, adds $9135. Whether this is justifiable depends on individual preferences for AEV bumpers, skid plates, unique wheels, and GM's Multi-Flex tailgate.
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2024 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD ZR2 Specs Overview
- Vehicle Type: Front-engine, rear/4-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door pickup
- Price Range: ZR2, $72,595 to ZR2 Bison diesel, $91,220
- Engines: 6.6-liter V-8, 401 hp; 6.6-liter diesel V-8, 470 hp
- Transmission: 10-speed automatic
- Dimensions: Wheelbase of 159.1 in, Length ranging from 250.0–252.0 in, Width of 81.9 in, and Height of 82.6 in
- Performance: Acceleration from 0 to 60 mph in 6.6–6.9 seconds, 1/4-Mile in 15.0–15.4 seconds, and a Top Speed of 98 mph.
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