By now you've seen them on the street, and other than the number of lug nuts, the new 3/4- and 1-ton Chevy and GMC trucks look similar to their younger 1/2-ton siblings, for the most part. Of course the drivetrain is the important part of any 4x4, but good looks make for an important selling point. So much so that GM has made a big point of having different sheetmetal, trim, and bumpers not only to differentiate the big boys from the light-duty trucks, but even between the GMC and Chevy brands. Underneath, however, GM stuck with what works well, and that tips the scale.
Trucks like these are for work, whether that work is play for the owner such as hauling horses to a show, or oil field crews hauling tons of equipment to the far reaches of Montana. Either way, GM has it covered from the pure work-truck interior which is simple and so nicely functional, to the foo-foo "luxury-inspired" SUV interior which leaves us wanting to uh, leave. But with more than 30 different variations for the 2500 series and the same number for the 3500 series, surely everyone should be happy. With three cab styles, three box lengths, two trim levels, two suspensions, and two powertrain combos, you can't say that choices aren't available, unless you want a manual transmission.
The new 6.0L gas engine offers 353 hp and 373 lb-ft of torque, funneled through a new six-speed 6L90 tranny, giving it up to an 18,500 GCWR. But for real meat, the new Duramax puts out 365 ponies and 660 lb-ft of torque, which of course only turns the durable Allison 1000 six-speed auto. We tested both recently and found that while the gas engine was a big improvement over previous iterations, it's no big-block. With the demise of the 454, the only way to really pull a load is the Duramax version, and it certainly gets the job done, bar none. We'll be testing these rigs in our 4x4 of the Year competition in just a few months, and the head-to-head 4x4 abuses these rigs will endure should shake out the details we need to know. Stay tuned!
Vehicle: '07 Chevy and GMC HD 2500 and 3500
Base Price: $24,575-$55,000
Engine: 6.0L V-8 gas or 6.6L V-8 diesel
Gas: 353 @ 5,400 rpm
Diesel: 365 @ 3,200 rpm
Gas: 373 @ 4,400 rpm
Diesel: 660 @ 1,600 rpm
Transmission: Gas; six-speed 6L90 auto, Diesel; six-speed Allison 1000 auto
Curb Weight (lb): 5,308 (2500 2WD reg. cab) 7,371(3500 4WD crew cab dualie)
Wheelbase (in): 133-167
Length (in): 224.7-258.7
Width (in): 80
Height (in): 76.3-77.1
Seating Capacity: Five
Head Room (in., front/rear): 41.2/40.5
Leg Room (in., front/rear): 41.3/39
Approach Angle (degrees): 29
Ground Clearance (in): 9.5 (with Off-Road Package)