2020 Chevrolet Silverado vs. 2019 Ram 1500 Classic

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/21

In the past twenty years hundreds of infants and young children have died after being left in vehicles, usually by accident. When turning the vehicle off, drivers of the Silverado are reminded to check the back seat if they opened the rear door before starting out. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a back seat reminder.

The Silverado LTZ/High Country offers optional Automatic Emergency Braking, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.

When descending a steep, off-road slope, the Silverado’s optional Hill Descent Control allows you to creep down safely. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer Hill Descent Control.

The Chevrolet Silverado has Daytime Running Lights to help keep it more visible under all conditions. Canadian government studies show that driving with lights during the day reduces accidents by 11% by making vehicles more conspicuous. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer Daytime Running Lights.

The Silverado LTZ/High Country’s optional lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The Silverado LTZ/High Country offers an optional Surround Vision to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The Ram 1500 Classic only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

To help make backing safer, the Silverado (except Custom)’s optional cross-path warning system uses wide-angle radar in the rear bumper to alert the driver to vehicles approaching from the side, helping the driver avoid collisions. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a cross-path warning system.

Both the Silverado and the Ram 1500 Classic have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available four-wheel drive and blind spot warning systems.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, and with its optional front crash prevention system, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Silverado the rating of “Top Pick” for 2016, a rating granted to only 164 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Ram 1500 Classic is not a “Top Pick” for 2016.

Warranty

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The Silverado’s corrosion warranty is 1 year longer than the Ram 1500 Classic’s (6 vs. 5 years).

There are over 25 percent more Chevrolet dealers than there are Ram dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Silverado’s warranty.

Reliability

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The Silverado has a standard “limp home system” to keep drivers from being stranded if most or all of the engine’s coolant is lost. The engine will run on only half of its cylinders at a time, reduce its power and light a warning lamp on the dashboard so the driver can get to a service station for repairs. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a lost coolant limp home mode, so a coolant leak could strand you or seriously damage the truck’s engine.

To reliably power the ignition and other systems and to recharge the battery, the Silverado has a standard 170-amp alternator (220-amp - Silverado optional). The Ram 1500 Classic’s 160-amp alternator isn’t as powerful.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are better in initial quality than Ram vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet 6th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 20 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ram is ranked 21st, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Chevrolet vehicles are more reliable than Ram vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Chevrolet fourth in reliability, above the industry average. With 56 more problems per 100 vehicles, Ram is ranked 26th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Chevrolet vehicles are more reliable than Ram vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Chevrolet 3 places higher in reliability than Ram.

Engine

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The Silverado has more powerful engines than the Ram 1500 Classic:

Horsepower

Torque

Silverado 4.3 V6

285 HP

305 lbs.-ft.

Silverado 2.7 turbo 4 cyl.

310 HP

348 lbs.-ft.

Silverado 5.3 V8

355 HP

383 lbs.-ft.

Silverado LTZ/High Country 6.2 V8

420 HP

460 lbs.-ft.

Ram 1500 Classic 3.6 DOHC V6

305 HP

269 lbs.-ft.

Ram 1500 Classic 5.7 V8

395 HP

410 lbs.-ft.

The Silverado’s 3.0 turbo diesel produces 191 lbs.-ft. more torque (460 vs. 269) than the Ram 1500 Classic’s standard 3.6 DOHC V6. The Silverado’s 3.0 turbo diesel produces 50 lbs.-ft. more torque (460 vs. 410) than the Ram 1500 Classic’s optional 5.7 V8.

As tested in Motor Trend the Chevrolet Silverado V6 is faster than the Ram 1500 Classic V6:

Silverado

1500 Classic

Zero to 30 MPH

2.4 sec

2.5 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

7.2 sec

7.6 sec

Zero to 80 MPH

12.8 sec

13.3 sec

Passing 45 to 65 MPH

3.9 sec

4.2 sec

Quarter Mile

15.6 sec

15.8 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

88.7 MPH

86.7 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/21

On the EPA test cycle the Silverado turbo diesel gets better fuel mileage than the Ram 1500 Classic:

Silverado

1500 Classic

RWD

3.0 turbo diesel/10-spd. Auto

23 city/33 hwy

17 city/25 hwy

3.6 V6/Auto

4x4

3.0 turbo diesel/10-spd. Auto

23 city/29 hwy

16 city/23 hwy

3.6 V6/Auto

On the EPA test cycle the Silverado gets better fuel mileage than the Ram 1500 Classic:

Silverado

Ram 1500 Classic

4x2

2.7 turbo 4 cyl./8-spd. Auto

20 city/23 hwy

17 city/25 hwy

3.6 V6/Auto

5.3 V8/8-spd. Auto

17 city/24 hwy

15 city/22 hwy

5.7 V8/Auto

5.3 V8/8-spd. Auto

17 city/23 hwy

n/a

4x4

2.7 turbo 4 cyl./8-spd. Auto

19 city/22 hwy

16 city/23 hwy

3.6 V6/Auto

5.3 V8/8-spd. Auto

16 city/22 hwy

15 city/21 hwy

5.7 V8/Auto

In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Silverado LT/RST/LTZ/High Country/WT 2.7-liter’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.

The Silverado has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Environmental Friendliness

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In its Green Vehicle Guide, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rates the Chevrolet Silverado higher (5 to 6 out of 10) than the Ram 1500 Classic (3). This means the Silverado produces up to 23.4 pounds less smog-producing pollutants than the Ram 1500 Classic every 15,000 miles.

Transmission

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A ten-speed automatic is available on the Chevrolet Silverado, for better acceleration and lower engine speed on the highway. Only an eight-speed automatic is available for the Ram 1500 Classic.

Brakes and Stopping

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For better stopping power the Silverado’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Ram 1500 Classic:

Silverado

1500 Classic

Front Rotors

13.5 inches

13.2 inches

Rear Rotors

14.1 inches

13.8 inches

The Silverado stops much shorter than the Ram 1500 Classic:

Silverado

Ram 1500 Classic

70 to 0 MPH

175 feet

199 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

123 feet

138 feet

Motor Trend

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

148 feet

154 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels

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The Silverado’s optional tires provide better handling because they have a lower 50 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Ram 1500 Classic’s optional 60 series tires.

For better load carrying, ride, handling and brake cooling the Silverado offers optional 22-inch wheels. The Ram 1500 Classic’s largest wheels are only 20-inches.

The Chevrolet Silverado’s wheels have 6 lugs for longer wheel bearing life, less chance of rotor warping and greater strength. The Ram 1500 Classic only has 5 wheel lugs per wheel.

The Silverado has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling

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For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Silverado’s wheelbase is longer than on the Ram 1500 Classic:

Silverado

Ram 1500 Classic

Extended Cab Standard Bed

147.5 inches

140.5 inches

Crew Cab Short Bed

147.4 inches

140.5 inches

Crew Cab Standard Bed

157 inches

149.4 inches

The Silverado 1500 Standard Bed RST Double Cab 4x4 handles at .81 G’s, while the Ram 1500 Classic short bed Crew Cab 4x4 pulls only .71 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The Silverado Short Bed High Country Crew Cab 4x4 executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver 1.6 seconds quicker than the Ram 1500 Classic short bed Crew Cab 4x4 (27.5 seconds @ .64 average G’s vs. 29.1 seconds @ .6 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Silverado’s turning circle is tighter than the Ram 1500 Classic’s:

Silverado

Ram 1500 Classic

Regular Cab Long Bed

44.6 feet

45.1 feet

For greater off-road capability the Silverado Short Bed Crew Cab Lifted has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Ram 1500 Classic short bed Crew Cab w/Air Suspension (10.9 vs. 10.8 inches), allowing the Silverado to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis

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To almost totally eliminate engine vibration in the passenger area, the Silverado Diesel has an electronically controlled liquid-filled front engine mount. A computer-controlled electric current in the liquid changes its viscosity, allowing the mount to dampen the engine completely at all RPMs. The Ram 1500 Classic uses conventional solid rubber engine mounts.

As tested by Car and Driver while at idle, the interior of the Silverado Short Bed High Country Crew Cab 4x4 is quieter than the Ram 1500 Classic short bed Crew Cab 4x4 (37 vs. 41 dB).

Passenger Space

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The Silverado Regular Cab has 3.2 inches more front headroom, 3.5 inches more front legroom and .1 inches more front shoulder room than the Ram 1500 Classic Regular Cab.

The Silverado Double Cab has 2 inches more front headroom, 3.5 inches more front legroom, .2 inches more rear headroom and .5 inches more rear legroom than the Ram 1500 Classic Quad Cab.

The Silverado Crew Cab has 2 inches more front headroom, 3.5 inches more front legroom, .2 inches more rear headroom and 3.1 inches more rear legroom than the Ram 1500 Classic Crew Cab.

Cargo Capacity

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The Silverado Regular Cab has a much larger cargo box than the Ram 1500 Classic Regular Cab shortbed (89.1 vs. 57.5 cubic feet). The Silverado has a much larger cargo box than the Ram 1500 Classic Regular Cab longbed (89.1 vs. 74.7 cubic feet).

The Silverado Double Cab has a much larger cargo box than the Ram 1500 Classic Quad Cab shortbed (72.7 vs. 57.5 cubic feet).

The Silverado Crew Cab shortbed has a much larger cargo box than the Ram 1500 Classic Crew Cab shortbed (62.9 vs. 50.3 cubic feet). The Silverado Crew Cab longbed has a much larger cargo box than the Ram 1500 Classic Crew Cab longbed (71.7 vs. 57.5 cubic feet).

The Silverado’s cargo box is larger than the Ram 1500 Classic’s in almost every dimension:

Silverado

Double Cab

Silverado

Regular Cab

Ram 1500 Classic Quad Cab

Ram 1500 Classic Regular Cab

Length (short/long)

79.4”

98.2”

76.3”

76.3”/98.3”

Max Width

71.4”

71.4”

66.4”

66.4”

Height

22.4”

22.4”

20.1”

20.2”

A standard locking glovebox, optional locking center console and optional locking underseat storage drawer (which can’t be accessed with the valet key) keeps your small valuables safer in the Silverado. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer locking storage for small valuables.

The Chevrolet Silverado has a standard CornerStep, which allows for much easier access to the cargo area. A Fold-Out Bumper Step costs extra on the Ram 1500 Classic.

To make loading and unloading groceries and cargo easier, especially for short adults, the Silverado LTZ Texas/LTZ Convenience/LTZ Plus/High Country has a standard power cargo door, which opens and closes automatically by pressing a button. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a power cargo door.

Payload and Towing

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The Silverado’s minimum standard towing capacity is much higher than the Ram 1500 Classic’s (7400 vs. 4430 pounds). Maximum trailer towing in the Ram 1500 Classic Regular Cab is only 10620 pounds. The Silverado 1500 Standard Bed Double Cab 4x4 offers up to a 13400 lbs. towing capacity.

The Silverado has a much higher standard payload capacity than the Ram 1500 Classic:

Silverado

Ram 1500 Classic

Extended Cab 1500

2040 lbs.

1880 lbs.

Crew Cab 1500

2040 lbs.

1640 lbs.

Regular Cab 1500 4x4

2130 lbs.

1583 lbs.

Extended Cab 1500 4x4

2020 lbs.

1700 lbs.

Crew Cab 1500 4x4

2020 lbs.

1510 lbs.

The Silverado has much higher optional payload capacities than the Ram 1500 Classic:

Silverado

Ram 1500 Classic

Regular Cab 1500

2250 lbs.

1880 lbs.

Extended Cab 1500

2190 lbs.

1880 lbs.

Crew Cab 1500

2180 lbs.

1820 lbs.

Regular Cab 1500 4x4

2130 lbs.

1690 lbs.

Extended Cab 1500 4x4

2180 lbs.

1700 lbs.

Crew Cab 1500 4x4

2170 lbs.

1510 lbs.

Ergonomics

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To help each driver find a more comfortable driving position, the Silverado (except Work Truck/Custom) offers a telescoping steering wheel. Much better than just a tilt steering wheel or adjustable seat, this allows a short driver to sit further from the steering wheel while maintaining contact with the pedals. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a telescoping steering wheel.

When two different drivers share the Silverado LTZ/High Country, the memory seats and mirrors make it convenient for both. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position and outside mirror angle. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a memory system.

The Silverado LTZ/High Country’s standard easy entry system glides the driver’s seat back when the door is unlocked or the ignition is switched off, making it easier for the driver to get in and out. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer an easy entry system.

The Silverado LTZ/High Country offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The Silverado’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Ram 1500 Classic’s parking brake has to released manually.

The Silverado’s basic optional front and rear power windows all open fully with one touch of the switches and its driver’s window also automatically closes, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Ram 1500 Classic’s basic optional power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically.

On a hot day the Silverado’s driver can lower all the windows from a distance using the keyless remote (optional feature). The driver of the Ram 1500 Classic can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

Keyless Open and Start standard on the Silverado LT Convenience Package/RST/LT Trail Boss/LTZ/High Country allows you to unlock the doors, tailgate and start the engine all without removing a key from pocket or purse. This eliminates searching for keys before loading cargo, getting in the vehicle in bad weather or making a hurried start to your trip. The Ram 1500 Classic’s available Keyless Enter ‘n Go doesn’t unlock the tailgate.

The Silverado’s power window, power lock, power mirror and cruise control switches are lit from behind, making them plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The Ram 1500 Classic’s power mirror switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.

Consumer Reports rated the Silverado’s headlight performance “Very Good,” a higher rating than the Ram 1500 Classic’s headlights, which were rated “Good.”

While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors available for the Silverado LTZ/High Country detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.

When the Silverado LTZ/High Country is put in reverse, both rearview mirrors tilt from their original position. This gives the driver a better view of the curb during parallel parking maneuvers. Shifting out of reverse puts the mirrors into their original positions. The Ram 1500 Classic’s mirrors don’t automatically adjust for backing.

Both the Silverado and the Ram 1500 Classic offer available heated front seats. The Silverado LTZ Convenience Package/High Country also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the Ram 1500 Classic.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Silverado LTZ Convenience Package/High Country keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in summer. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Silverado LTZ/High Country offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

Bluetooth wireless connectivity is standard on the Silverado, connecting the driver and passenger’s cell phones to the vehicle systems. This allows them to use the vehicle’s stereo and hand controls to place calls safely and easily. Bluetooth costs extra on the Ram 1500 Classic.

To quickly and conveniently keep personal devices charged without cables tangling and wearing out, the Chevrolet Silverado LTZ Convenience Package/High Country has a standard wireless phone charging system (Qi) in the center console. The Ram 1500 Classic doesn’t offer wireless personal charging.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2019 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2019/10/21

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Silverado second among large light duty pickups in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Ram 1500 Classic isn’t in the top three.

A group of representative automotive journalists from North America selected the Silverado as the 2014 North American Truck of the Year. The 1500 was Truck of the Year in 2013.

The Chevrolet Silverado outsold the Ram Pickup by 9% during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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