2021 Chevy Silverado 1500 vs 2021 Ford F-150

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  • 2021 Chevy Silverado 1500

    A grey 2021 Chevy Silverado 1500 is angled left.

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    2021 Ford F-150

    A white 2021 Ford F-150 is angled right.

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    23/33Fuel Economy (city/highway) (MPG)20/27
    277-420Horsepower (HP)250-400
    89.1Max Bed Cargo Volume (cu ft)77.4

    Think about how many trucks you see on the road every day. From driveways and construction sites to farms, grocery stores, and beyond, it’s safe to say that Americans love their trucks. This love story started over a century ago when the first truck was designed by German inventor and engineer Gottlieb Daimler in the late 1890s. By the 1950s, the truck made its way to the United States with International Harvester’s debut truck. Since then, there’s been fierce competition between Ford and Chevy to build the best and most popular truck, and that’s the exact spirit we find when comparing the 2021 Silverado 1500 vs 2021 Ford F-150.

    The competition is steep between the two best-selling trucks in America in what many call a “house divided.” Ford fans will tell you that the F-150 will always hold the top spot in the American automotive landscape, but loyal Chevy fans know that the Silverado 1500 isn’t designed for second place. So, how do the models truly compare?

    Chevy and Ford deliver exceptional capability and innovation across the Silverado and F-150 lineups. Their affordability is remarkable and adds value to the trucks, with the 2021 Silverado starting at $29,300 and the 2021 F-150 priced at $29,290.* But the important differences start to reveal themselves when you look at horsepower, cargo space, and practical features that simply make life easier. When you compare these features, there’s no question that the 2021 Silverado effortlessly takes the lead.

  • Engines

    A white 2021 Chevy Silverado 1500 is towing barrels.

    Power Under the Hood of the Silverado 1500

    There’s no shortage of powertrain options on either the 2021 Silverado or the F-150. If you’re looking at the number of choices, you have more to choose from with Chevy, thanks to its six-engine lineup. The Silverado’s powertrain selection starts with the reliable 4.3-liter EcoTec3 V6 with active fuel management that maximizes efficiency. Paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission, the V6 delivers 285 horsepower and 305 lb-ft of torque to give the WT, Custom, and Custom Trail Boss plenty of standard power.

    An 8-speed automatic transmission is paired with the 2.7-liter turbo engine with active fuel management and automatic stop-start on the LT and RST to deliver 310 horsepower and 348 lb-ft of torque that makes the Silverado quick to accelerate and a capable hauler. This power, however, can’t match the Silverado’s V8 options that start with the 5.3-liter that you can customize with or without active or dynamic fuel management and automatic stop-start. These options, which produce 355 horsepower and 383 lb-ft of torque, allow you to build a Silverado that delivers all the power you need.

    The larger 6.2-liter V8 is available with dynamic fuel management and with or without automatic stop-start. Paired with a 10-speed transmission, the 6.2-liter delivers 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque that makes the truck capable both on and off-road. Of course, the Duramax 3.0-liter turbodiesel, which is one of the quietest diesel engines on the road, combines efficiency and capability to deliver 277 horsepower, 460 lb-ft of torque, and an estimated 726-mile driving range that means fewer stops for diesel and more money in the bank.

    Power Under the Hood of the F-150

    The 2021 F-150 is also available with several powertrains, but you won’t find technology like active or dynamic fuel management that maximizes efficiency. Instead, the base model is equipped with the standard 3.3-liter V6 that produces 290 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque. Upgrading to the 2.7-liter EcoBoost V6 increases this capability to 325 horsepower and 400 lb-ft of torque but, by then, you might as well spend the extra money to upgrade to the 5.0-liter V8 that delivers 400 horsepower and 410 lb-ft of torque.

    Ford’s 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 is the most impressive in its lineup and delivers 400 horsepower and 500 lb-ft of torque, but the engine comes at a premium and adds to the F-150’s sticker price. Of course, if you’re looking for a reliable workhorse that runs on diesel, you’ll want to opt for the 3.0-liter Power Stroke V6. Ford’s diesel engine produces 250 horsepower and 440 lb-ft of torque, which pales in comparison to the Duramax you’ll find on the Silverado.

  • Design

    A silver 2021 Chevy Silverado 1500 is shown angled left.

    Trucks That Are Designed to Handle the Job

    For 2021, Chevrolet and Ford made the Silverado and the F-150 into capable workhorses that not only perform on the road but also work with you and for you whether you’re loading gear into the bed, working on your laptop in the cabin, or towing a trailer. On the F-150, these tools start with the power tailgate that gives you the ability to lift and lower it with the touch of a button. You can use the tailgate as a work surface whether you need to complete paperwork or operate power tools. You’ll find a second workstation in the cabin with the flat-folding center console that is ideal when you’re using a laptop or taking your lunch break on the go.

    Along with zone lighting that illuminates the area around the truck, the F-150 offers plenty of practical and functional design features. However, these features are outranked by the Silverado that offers one of the most versatile tailgates in the segment. The Multi-Flex Tailgate is paired with Chevy’s exclusive Durabed that features LED lighting, a 120-volt outlet, and 12 fixed tie-downs that make the Silverado the most functional truck in Chevy history. Add in the best-in-class 89.1 cubic feet of standard cargo bed volume, and there’s no question that the Silverado 1500 leads the pack.

    As for the Multi-Flex Tailgate, it offers six unique functions, with the Primary Gate giving you easy access to the bed and the Primary Gate Load Stop preventing longer items from sliding out of the truck bed. You can fold down the Inner Gate to reach further into the bed or make use of the full-width step that can hold up to 375 pounds. The Inner Gate is great for stacking second-tier items and gives you a flat work surface that you can use whether you’re working on a laptop, completing paperwork, or reading blueprints. If you’re hauling items at the second tier, be sure to use the Inner Gate Load Stop to keep the items in the bed.

  • Technology

    A close up shows the backup camera on the 2021 Chevy Silverado 1500.

    Chevy and Ford know that when you’re driving a truck like the Silverado or the F-150 that it’s your home away from home and your mobile office rolled into one. This is why the automakers go to great lengths to deliver innovative technology to keep you connected and safe wherever the road leads. So, how do the models compare?

    Technology That Keeps You Connected

    The 2021 Silverado and the 2021 F-150 both offer exceptional infotainment systems on oversized touchscreen displays that put everything you need at your fingertips. Both the Chevy Infotainment 3 system and Ford’s SYNC 4 allow you to seamlessly sync your smartphone using Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. This gives you access to your favorite apps like music, messages, and maps. You’ll also have access to an available Wi-Fi hotspot on both trucks, which makes working from the Silverado 1500 and the F-150 even easier when you’re away from the office.

    Unique Tech of the Silverado 1500

    The technology that truly sets the Silverado apart from the F-150 is a new suite of enhanced trailering tools that are designed to give you confidence when you’re towing heavy loads. The Silverado is the only truck in its class to offer a 15-view camera that gives you an entire view around the truck and trailer, which is remarkable whether you’re towing the family’s camper, a horse trailer, or another heavy load. Beyond this tool, you’ll have even more peace of mind thanks to features like the Trailer Length Indicator, Jack-Knife Alert, Cargo Bed View enhancement, Rear Trailer View, Trailer-Angle Indicator, and Rear Side View enhancement.

    The Trailer Length Indicator makes changing lanes with a trailer easier by using a red overlay that’s twice the length of the trailer to show you if there’s enough room to switch lanes. The Jack-Knife Alert monitors the position of the truck and trailer to limit hazardous situations, while the Rear Side View Enhancement gives you a split view of both sides of the truck and trailer, whether you’re driving in forward or reverse. The Cargo Bed View enhancement makes hitching up to the trailer a breeze, and the Rear Trailer View with the Trailer Angle Indicator takes the guesswork out of parking by adding gridlines to help you navigate the area.

    Unique Tech of the F-150

    You won’t find as many trailering features on the F-150, which may come as a surprise. The F-150’s trailering tech is part of its safety suite and includes tools like Ford’s Blind Spot Information System (BLIS) with Trailer Coverage, which alerts you to vehicles in your blind spots when changing lanes. The Rear View Camera with Dynamic Hitch Assist can help you hitch up to a trailer, but you don’t get 15 unique camera views like what you’ll see on the Silverado.

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