Chevrolet introduced the trail-ready Silverado ZR2 last year and now the company is going even more extreme with the new Silverado ZR2 Bison.
Built in collaboration with American Expedition Vehicles, the new edition of the Silverado pickup builds on the success of the smaller Colorado ZR2 Bison and is designed to be the “ultimate half-ton truck for backcountry adventures.”
In order to claim that title, the Silverado ZR2 Bison has been equipped with heavy duty bumpers that are powder coated and feature steel that is 0.1 inches (3 mm) thick. The bumpers also have recovery points and step pads, while the front bumper has been designed to accommodate an available winch.
Speaking of protection, buyers will find press-hardened steel underbody skid plates that are “three-and-a-half times stronger than an equivalent cold-stamped high-strength steel plate.” The truck also has steel rock sliders and exclusive 18-inch AEV wheels, which feature a gloss black finish as well as 33-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory MT tires.
Thanks to these changes, the approach angle is expected to climb from 31.8 to 32.5 degrees while the departure angle should also improve slightly to 23.4 degrees. That being said, the truck’s ground clearance is expected to remain at 11.2 inches (284 mm).
Another thing that doesn’t change is the ZR2’s impressive collection of off-road kit that includes Multimatic DSSV spool-valve dampers, travel maximizing springs, and a Terrain Mode that allows for one-pedal rock crawling. The truck also sports front and rear e-lockers as well as a 6.2-liter V8 pumping out 420 hp (313 kW / 426 PS) and 460 lb-ft (624 Nm) of torque.
Putting the off-road features aside, the Silverado ZR2 Bison is distinguished by an exclusive body-color grille bar and a matte black accent on the Multi-Flex tailgate. Buyers will also find Bison decals as well as a classy interior with AEV badging on the headrests and all-weather floor mats.
The Silverado ZR2 Bison is expected to go into production early next year and pricing will start at $78,490 including destination. That makes for a pricy pickup as the model costs roughly $8,000 more than the 2022 Silverado ZR2.
2023 Silverado Gains A More Powerful Diesel Engine
Besides the ZR2 Bison, the 2023 Silverado gains an upgraded 3.0-liter turbodiesel inline-six. Now in its second-generation, the engine features new steel pistons with a revised combustion bowl, a retuned turbo compressor, new fuel injectors, and improved temperature control features.
These updates enable the engine to produce 305 hp (227 kW / 309 PS) and 495 lb-ft (670 Nm) of torque, which is an increase of 28 hp (21 kW / 28 PS) and 35 lb-ft (47 Nm). Those are significant gains and they should help to improve what was already one of our favorite diesel engines.
The updated diesel is slated to become available by the end of the year and it will continue to be paired to a ten-speed automatic transmission. It will be offered on a handful of trims including the Custom Trail Boss, LT, RST, LT Trail Boss, LTZ, and High Country.