|277 - 420 HP||Horsepower||277 - 420 HP|
|13,400 LBS||Towing Capacity||12,100 LBS|
|2,250 LBS||Payload||2,240 LBS|
The full-size, light-duty truck market is a big one, with at least one model available from all the major manufacturers, which gives you a lot of options to choose from. Sometimes the differences between two models can be quite minor and make it very difficult to determine which of them is a better choice for you. For example, if you look at the 2020 Chevy Silverado vs 2020 GMC Sierra 1500, you can see that on paper, they look like very similar trucks.
Both of these trucks have the same engines available, with the same maximum horsepower and torque on them, and very similar designs. They both have fairly comparable trims that give you similar standard and available features, including dedicated off-road trims. Due to some differences in design, however, you can get higher towing capacity and a higher maximum payload capacity with the Silverado. And yet, the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 starts at about $3,000 more than the 2020 Chevy Silverado. So, why is that?
Ultimately, the GMC Sierra 1500 has a number of interior and exterior features that set it apart and can justify the price. The 2020 Chevy Silverado is designed more as a work truck first and foremost, hence the higher towing and payload, with great comfort, tech, and safety features available. While the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 gives you the ability to get a little less work done, but has more of a focus on sophistication and luxury. To be honest, you will get a fantastic experience with either of these trucks, but choosing the 2020 Chevy Silverado will save you money to get more done.
For the most part, the engines you can get on these two trucks are essentially the same. They both start with a 4.3L EcoTec3 V6 engine that offers up to 285 hp and 305 lb-ft of torque; this engine is paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission. They also both have an available 5.3L V8 engine that produces up to 355 hp and up to 383 lb-ft of torque. This engine is available with either active fuel management and a 6-speed automatic transmission or dynamic fuel management with an 8-speed automatic transmission – this is true for both trucks.
Then they have an available 2.7L Turbo engine that offers up to 310 hp and 348 lb-ft of torque, which comes with an 8-speed automatic transmission. Both the 2020 Chevy Silverado and the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 also have an available 6.2L EcoTec3 V8 engine that delivers up to 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque, which comes with a 10-speed automatic transmission. Finally, a Duramax 3.0L Turbo-Diesel I-6 engine is available for both trucks, which offers up to 277 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque and comes with a 10-speed automatic.
These are excellent engines available on both trucks. They both have trim restrictions on them, as you would expect, and deliver an excellent driving experience. You are just likely to pay a bit more for them on the GMC Sierra.
Although the 2020 Chevy Silverado and the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 have a lot in common, in terms of towing and payload you can actually see some significant differences. Despite having the same engines and a host of identical features, the Silverado is ultimately designed with a greater focus on getting work done. That comes through in this area.
When properly configured, the 2020 Chevy Silverado can have a maximum towing capacity of up to 13,400 lbs. The 2020 GMC Sierra 1500, on the other hand, has a maximum towing capacity of up to 12,100 lbs when properly configured. As you can see, this is not a huge difference, but it is more than 1,000 lbs and can certainly come into play if you do a lot of towing and need to push the limits of what a light-duty truck can handle.
In terms of payload, the 2020 Chevy Silverado has a maximum payload of up to 2,250 lbs if you configure it appropriately. By comparison, the GMC Sierra can have a maximum payload of up to 2,240 lbs. We admit that it is a negligible difference. It is highly unlikely that you will ever be in a situation where you load up the Sierra with too much weight, but the Silverado could handle it. But it does illustrate the design intent for the Silverado and its focus on working hard.
If you ask someone in the know about the difference between the 2020 Chevy Silverado and the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500, they will probably tell you that the Sierra is a more sophisticated and luxurious option. While that might be accurate, it is a much more qualitative statement than a quantitative one. Looking at the tech and safety features on these two trucks, they are quite comparable.
Available features on the 2020 Chevy Silverado include an 8-inch HD infotainment system with navigation, a 7-speaker Bose premium sound system, and heated, ventilated, leather-trimmed 10-way power driver and front passenger seats. The Silverado also has an available wireless charging pad, an 8-inch driver digital display, and an available 15-inch full-color heads up display. Available safety features on the Silverado include an HD rear vision camera, rear cross-traffic alert, a lane change alert with a side blind zone alert, front pedestrian braking, and a safety alert seat.
Available features on the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 include an 8-inch HD infotainment system with navigation, a 7-speaker Bose premium sound system, and heated, ventilated Forge leather-appointed 10-way power driver and front passenger seats. The Sierra also has an available wireless charging pad, an 8-inch driver digital display, and an available 15-inch full-color heads up display. Available safety features on the Sierra include an HD rear vision camera, front and rear park assist, a lane change alert with a side blind zone alert, and a safety alert seat.
The price is one of the most important differences between the 2020 Chevy Silverado and the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500. Across the board, the Sierra will typically cost you more. No matter what trim you look at or features you are interested in—the comparable version of the Sierra costs more than the Silverado. This is by design, and often arguably warranted, but it is certainly worth keeping in mind.
As we look at prices, remember that incentives, special deals, and other factors can all impact these prices, so do not take them as guaranteed – but they give us a general frame of reference. For example, the 2020 Chevy Silverado has a listed MSRP starting at $28,300 for the baseline model; by comparison, the 2020 GMC Sierra 1500 has a listed MSRP starting at $31,195. That is not a huge difference to start with, but it shows you that from the get-go, the Sierra costs more.
Comparing similar specs or trims continues to show this trend. For example, the Silverado Custom Trail Boss, which is a dedicated off-road trim for the Chevy pickup, starts at $39,500. The 2020 GMC Sierra AT4, the Sierra’s off-road trim, starts at $51,000. In fairness, that includes a more powerful engine than the Custom Trail Boss starts with, but even if you choose the same engine, the Chevy still starts at $46,365. The sophistication of the Sierra is impressive, but you get more options and more affordable prices with the 2020 Chevy Silverado.