COMING SOON: 2023 Chevrolet Silverado EV
Thursday 13th January, 2022 - 6:30am
Who: General Motors
What: An all-electric version of the iconic US ute
Why: Because even utes need to make the electric switch
Anything Ford can do, Chevrolet will try and do better.
Ford made a splash in 2021 when it revealed the F-150 Lightning, an all-electric version of its popular pick-up. Chevrolet has retaliated with its own battery-powered ute, revealing the all-electric Silverado EV.
Set to hit US showrooms in the first half of 2023, the Silverado EV utilises the same ‘Ultium’ electric vehicle architecture as the GMC Hummer. Chevrolet claims it will boast a range of more than 640km, have nearly 500kW and run 0-60mph (96km/h) in just 4.5 seconds.
“The Ultium Platform enabled our design and engineering teams to start from a clean slate and create a pickup with impressive performance and capability,” explained Silverado EV chief engineer, Nichole Kraatz. “The result is a truly impressive testament to the creativity and innovation our teams can bring to market with speed and at scale.”
The 2023 Silverado will debut with a pair of electric motors that will make 495kW and 1057Nm of torque.
All this performance comes while the Silverado is still being a capable workhorse ute, with a towing capacity of more than 3600kg and a 550kg payload in its flexible tray – and that’s just on the initial model.
Chevrolet has confirmed it’s working on a “fleet model” which will boast a maximum towing capacity of more than 9000kg.
It will also come loaded with technology that the petrol-powered models in the Silverado range simply can’t match, such as four-wheel steering. This is technology General Motors has already previewed on the Hummer, which allows for greater manoeuvrability when parking such a big vehicle.
The Silverado also comes with independent front and rear suspension and high-grade models will get adaptive air suspension and 24-inch alloy wheels.
Will the Chevrolet Silverado EV come to Australia?
This is the big question surrounding this newest addition to the Chevrolet fleet – and the official answer is it’s too early to say.
However, given the success of the Silverado 1500, 2500 and 3500 for General Motors Speciality Vehicles (GMSV), it seems to be a straight-forward decision, assuming all technical hurdles can be cleared.
GMSV was set-up to be a ‘niche’ brand in the Australian market for General Motors, forsaking Holden’s quest for volume in favour of less vehicles at a higher margin. So far that plan has worked well, with the Silverado popular and the Corvette a sell-out success.
While ensuring the Silverado EV can be converted to right-hand drive isn’t a lay-up (although it should be in the 21st century), if it can be done it would make the ideal model to help usher in GMSV’s electric future.
We already know GM is making a wholesale switch to EVs by the middle of next decade, which means more and more EVs are coming in the next few years. What better model to convince Australians of the merits of an EV than a big, powerful and practical ute?
If it follows the trend we’ve seen with the Silverado and Corvette, a 2023 on-sale date in the US will likely mean you could be able to buy a Silverado EV in Australia sometime in 2025 or 2026.