Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD Research & Reviews

Overview & Reviews

Average Score

4.30/5 Average
16 Total Reviews
Model Overview:

The "HD" part of Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD does not, in fact, indicate that this truck features crystal-clear wide-screen picture quality. In this case we're using the old-fashioned meaning of HD: "Heavy Duty." Thanks to its stiffened suspension, sturdy frame, powerful engine choices and available dual rear wheels, the 3500HD is a true workhorse meant for serious towing and hauling. Having said that, the latest model does offer an HD-quality 8-inch touchscreen, so it's not the one-trick pony it used to be.

Indeed, the Silverado 3500HD has evolved into a multitalented star. Compared to past Silverado trucks, the current model boasts a radically improved interior that enhances this big pickup's desirability. Nonetheless, it will always be the durable, capable mechanicals underneath that keep generations of Chevy loyalists coming back to the gold bowtie. The original definition of "HD" is alive and well in Chevy's toughest truck.

Current Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
The current Silverado 3500HD has been redesigned for the 2015 model year. Like the 2500HD, it shares its comprehensively upgraded interior layout and technology features with the latest Silverado 1500. The exterior styling has also been updated to bear a family resemblance to the 1500. As expected, regular-, extended- or crew-cab body styles are offered, but the extended cab has been reinvented, featuring a new official name ("double cab") and four conventional doors rather than the traditional reverse-opening rear doors. The regular and double cabs come with a long cargo box only, while the crew cab offers either a short box or a long box.

The powertrains are borrowed from the previous generation, so a 6.0-liter V8 with 360 horsepower and 380 pound-feet of torque is the standard engine. A "bi-fuel" option permits this V8 to use compressed natural gas (CNG), with CNG output falling to 301 hp and 333 lb-ft. Either way, a six-speed automatic transmission handles the shifting duties. The optional 6.6-liter Duramax diesel V8 (397 hp, 765 lb-ft) continues to be paired with an exclusive Allison six-speed automatic. Every 3500HD can be equipped with either rear- or four-wheel drive, and all cab styles can be outfitted with a dual-rear-wheel setup. An automatic locking rear differential is standard across the board.

The double- and crew-cab body styles have three trim levels -- Work Truck, LT and LTZ -- while the regular cab is limited to Work Truck and LT trims. Standard equipment is more generous than ever on the Work Truck, including cruise control and an audio system with a 4.2-inch color display and USB connectivity. The "WT" also provides basics like a front bench seat, steel wheels, a tilt-only steering wheel and air-conditioning. The LT throws in alloy wheels, tinted glass, heated power mirrors, an "EZ-Lift and Lower" tailgate, cloth upholstery, OnStar, MyLink smartphone integration, Bluetooth phone connectivity and a six-speaker CD audio system with satellite radio. The LTZ cranks up the luxury with foglights, extended chrome trim, leather upholstery (with optional power front bucket seats), heated front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, a rearview camera and an 8-inch MyLink touchscreen.

Some of the 3500HD's upscale standard features are optional on lesser trims. Other options include power-adjustable pedals, front and rear parking sensors, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, a heated steering wheel, Bose audio and the Z71 Off-Road package with special suspension components. New for this 3500HD is the High Country package, which matches high-end rival models with a saddle-brown leather interior and basically every premium feature in the book. Also new are optional safety technologies like lane-departure warning and forward-collision alert.

In terms of towing and hauling capability, the current Silverado 3500HD isn't much more capable than its predecessor. The engines are the same, after all, and although the structure has been reinforced here and there, it was already extremely stout. The interior, however, is a giant leap for Chevy-kind. The formerly crude Work Truck dashboard looks downright respectable these days, while the LTZ's leather trim and 8-inch touchscreen would do a luxury SUV proud. We've been knocking the 3500HD's lackluster cabin appointments for years, but now they're fully up to snuff. We're also fans of the new double cab with its four normal doors; it's a "Why didn't they think of that before?" kind of idea (of course, Ram thought of it years ago with its Quad Cab). Throw in the monstrous, battle-tested Duramax diesel, and you've got a full-spectrum product that's tough to top. But trucks in this class are always jockeying for pole position, so don't sleep on the latest from Ford and Ram.

Used Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD Models
The previous-generation Chevy Silverado 3500HD was produced for the 2007-'14 model years. Although its appearance remained largely unchanged, the 2011-'14 truck gained a stronger, fully boxed frame, beefier suspension components and additional electronic aids. The standard engine was initially a 6.0-liter gasoline V8 that made 353 hp and 373 lb-ft of torque, while the 6.6-liter Duramax diesel was rated at 365 hp and 660 lb-ft. The gas V8 crept up to 360 hp and 380 lb-ft for 2010; the Duramax, meanwhile, was overhauled for 2011 and re-rated at 397 hp and 765 lb-ft. Both engines had a six-speed automatic transmission, with the diesel upgrading to an Allison unit with manual shift control.

This 3500HD was available in regular-, extended- or crew cab designs, with rear- or four-wheel drive and optional dual rear wheels. The extended cab, which was dropped for the 2014 model year, employed reverse-opening rear doors. Extended- and crew-cab models were offered in three trim levels: Work Truck, LT and the more luxurious LTZ that featured an upgraded cabin with the same higher-quality dashboard found in the Tahoe and Suburban. The regular cab came in Work Truck and LT trims only.

In a comparison test of heavy-duty pickups, the mechanically identical GMC Sierra HD came out on top against its Dodge and Ford competitors. Though we found its cabin less inviting, the big GM trucks' recently revised frame, suspension and diesel engines proved hard to beat. Although multigenerational brand loyalty may dictate which heavy-duty pickup you take home, sticking with (or switching to) a used Silverado 3500HD of this vintage would be a solid decision.

Aside from the structural and powertrain updates noted above, changes were minimal during this 3500HD's production run. Most notably, a rearview camera was made available for '09 and the Work Truck got standard air-conditioning for 2010.

From 2001-'06 the truck was known simply as the Chevrolet Silverado 3500. Before 2001, Chevy's full-size pickups had just a C or K designation, with rear-wheel-drive trucks indicated by a "C" (e.g. "C3500") and four-wheel-drive trucks by a "K."

User Reviews:

Showing 1 through 10 of 16.00
  • 6.6L diesel ain't what it should be. - 2007 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    Great truck for the ride & comfort. The 6.6 Diesel has exhaust re-gen problems, GM says there is no fix, get used to the smell of exhaust in the cab. I would not recommend the $8,000 for the diesel, go with the 6.0 gas engine. I get 7-8 MPG pulling a 34' 5th wheel...lots of power, lots of exhaust fumes to contend with. The Allison trans is a great feature!

  • WORK Truck Is What This Truck Is - 2009 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    First, you are buying a truck like this to Work, not to Daily Driver. But, you can outfit these trucks very nicely with the LTZ package. Interior leather,finish and layout is very well done, not exceptional - it's not a Denali. Exterior new body style has intriguing design elements, ride is exceptionally smooth for this class of truck. The real appeal is the Duramax diesel with the Allison 1000 trans; this truck has literally more power than you can ever use in this class of truck. GCWR is restricted over 20K, this engine and trans combo can exceed that. Economy is what you expect from this type of truck - 18 hwy unloaded, 12 hwy loaded w/18K. This truck exceeds it's intended purpose.

  • Great RV hauler - 2007 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    Chevy has done a great job of combining comfort and usable power into one vehicle. I use my 3500 to tow a 35 foot fiver through mountain areas with no problems. the Allison tranny is great for hauls done or up long grades.

  • Poor replacement for a 94 Dodge - 2009 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    I knew within the first 100 miles driving this truck I had made a poor choice. It is so under powered. It supposed to be 352 HP and 380 lb ft torque. There is no way. Constantly shifts up and down to maintain highway speeds. Any slight grade will send the 6 speed auto to 4th and a little steeper grade will put it in 3rd.This is with no load, just the 12' flatbed. This truck cannot handle a good load.My old 94 Dodge with a 190,000 miles on it will wear this truck out. Trucks pulling real loads pass me on the interstate going up hills and I am empty. First real load I tried pulling the transmission starting slipping. Poor excuse for a truck.

  • It changed my mind - 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    This truck was my first Chevy in almost 15 years. I was a ford guy 100% till I actually put one of these to work. We camp a lot and we tow a Keystone Raptor 3612ds. This is a HUGE toy hauler!! I cant compare it to my ford as it was a 2002. But the Duramax/Alison match is awesome. I tow that trailer up the steepest hills in AZ at 55 MPH and the truck doesn't even break a sweat. My lease is up in January on this truck and I will be getting another. It has held its value very well and I have not had one problem with the build quality. I has gone back to the dealer for one minor recall and service. That's is no broken anything! I am a Chevy guy now

  • don't judge a book by it's cover - 2009 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    I bought an 09 chevy 3500 because the salesman told me that it could do everything I needed it to he even showed me charts and graphs on how much weight it could pull and how the torque band runs and everything else and then I used this truck and I don't care how good something looks on paper unless it performs in the field papers just that paper. I'm telling you right now I'm going right back to dodge if you want prissy the chevy works if you want something that works you get a dodge.

  • Very Happy with my Truck - 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    This is the first non big block gas truck that will actually tow and haul large loads without having a gear too high and a gear too low to tow with. The 6 speed with 4:10 gears works great and doesn't hunt. I can haul my slide in camper with a towed or hook on to the 30ft enclosed 6 place sled trailer and head to the mountains 1200 miles away. It handles remarkably well for its hulk size and the ride quality is excellent. I get 12-13 in the city and 14-16 on the highway which I can't complain. I had a 1500 5.3 which did great but I couldn't do anything with it. I have had absolutely no issues with this truck and love it.

  • Great truck - 2007 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    We have three of these trucks that see severe duty on a large farm. Everyone has nothing but good things to say about them.

  • Forever Truck - 2016 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    Husband finally got his Forever Truck - it has every thing he ever wanted , 4WD, Diesal, Moon Roof etc and it will take forever to pay for ! High Country makes you feel like you are getting the luxury truck. Love the heated seats - my husband loves the cooling , but that I don't need. Pulled trailer with son's car with no problems. Tried watching movie in back but either I have very sensitive hearing because I could still hear conversations and radio in front so it did not work for me. Still breaking in , city getting 13 mpg , 16 mpg on Highway - but much better than 8-10 mpg he got on his 2010 gas engine.

  • Pretty happy - 2008 Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD
    By -

    Great truck if you want to turn people's head. Mileage not as good as the 2005 I traded in. Both were equiped the same way. Maybe it will get better. My 05 keep improving till about 35,000 miles. Interior much improved. The navagation is really nice to have, I also have it on my 07 1500. My crew that works out of it really do love driving the 08 LTZ dully. It does every thing we ask and more.

Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD Reviews By Year:
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