New trucks offer such a wide range of possible configurations, trim levels, and packages that it can be tough to figure out how to compare them. The Chevy Silverado and Ford F-150 are two top contenders vying for the top spot in sales for 2020. Both trucks feature many options and configurations to offer the ideal build to any buyer, so how does the 2020 Chevy Silverado 1500 vs 2020 Ford F-150 compare?
The new Silverado is redesigned to be both stronger and lighter than models from the past. It comes in your choice of ten different exterior paint colors. Its twelve standard tie-downs are three times more than you can find in other pick-ups on the market. With loads of cargo volume and a power-up/power-down tailgate, it’s a well-functioning towing machine.
The Ford F-150 features trims that are basic, luxurious, and built for off-roading, like the Raptor, which offers impressive statistics for off-road capability. There are fourteen different color choices and several appearance packages to change the styling of your truck, although being part of the older generation has its setbacks in comparison to the more updated Silverados. Here we’ll take a look at the most basic models and the highest trims to see what both brands have to offer at either end of the spectrum.
Decisions, Decisions, Decisions
The Silverado and F-150 come in several trim levels. Chevy offers the Silverado 1500 as a Work Truck, Custom, LT, RST, Custom Trail Boss, LTZ, LT Trail Boss, and High Country. Prices start at $28,300 but generally range around $35,000 to $45,000 depending on your selections. The Ford F-150 comes in seven trims for 2020, including the XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum, Raptor, and Limited. The Fords are a bit more expensive. Although they also start at $28,495, most models will range from about $35,000 to $55,000, and around $65,000+ for a truly impressive Raptor. Both makes come in several cab lengths and engine options, so there are seemingly endless possibilities for designing your own customized truck, depending on your budget.
The Chevy Silverado was brought into its next generation in 2019. This provided a more modern, updated look both inside and out. The 2020 Ford F-150 is still part of the generation that was introduced in 2015. Although a few years might not seem like much, with the rapid pace of technology and truck design ever-evolving, the F-150 is commonly criticized for being a bit outdated. This might not be a major consideration for new truck buyers, but you plan to resell or trade in your truck after a decade of use, it helps to start out with the most up-to-date looking model you can find. The Silverado can give you an upper hand in that department, especially in terms of the standard technology features that are included, starting at the base trim.
Looking at the Base Models
The Chevy Silverado 1500 Work Truck Crew Cab offers about the same fuel efficiency as the F-150 SuperCrew Cab XL, with 15 miles per gallon on the highway. Both get a 5.0 safety rating on Kelley Blue Book and have identical warranties of three years or 36,000 miles. Chevy seems to offer more available and standard safety features on its lower priced base model. For instance, blind spot alert and lane departure warning are optional on the Silverado Work Truck but not on the F-150 XL. Parental controls are standard for the Work Truck but only option on the lower F-150 trims.
Technology is also a bit more generous on Chevy’s Silverado Work Truck. While optional on the F-150, hands-free phone, touch screen monitor, voice recognition system, USB port, smartphone interface, and Bluetooth wireless technology are all included as standard features for the Silverado base model. Even power windows are just an optional feature on the F-150 XL (while standard on the Silverado). It seems that Chevy has a leg-up on Ford when it comes to high-tech features. Whether or not that is a priority for the average truck buyer really depends. If you are using the truck just for towing, you might not care about in-vehicle tech. However, if you truck doubles as a family vehicle, or if you need to stay connected while using it for work, these features are vital components.
The 2020 F-150 Limited and the Silverado 1500 High Country are both on the higher end, but a fully-loaded F-150 could easily cost over $10,000 more. The Silverado High Country features many standard options such as hitch guidance, cross traffic alert, lane change alert, park assist, an HD rear vision camera, and more. The Blind Spot Information System, rear vision camera, and Dynamic Hitch Assist are standard on the F-150 Limited. For the extra cost, certain features are included on the Limited, such as a pedestrian detection system and parking sensors. Teen Driver technology is also standard across all trims for the Silverado, but not available as an option for the Limited or any F-150 trim. Both trucks provide heated mirrors and steering wheels, along with the convenience of an integrated garage door opener.
The 2020 F-150’s base engine is a 3.3-liter V6 that produces 290 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque. The Chevy Silverado’s base is a 4.3-liter EcoTec3 V6 engine with 285 hp and 305 lb-ft of torque, and though similar in horsepower, significantly better than the F-150 for torque. In addition, the Silverado offers two different V8 engines, while the F-150 has one. The top option for the Silverado is its 6.2-liter V8 with 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque and features a best-in-class towing capacity of 13,400 lbs (the maximum towing for the F-150 is 13,200 lbs). The Ford features a 5.0-liter Ti-VCT V8, with 395 hp and 400 lb-ft. When it comes to diesel options, Chevy’s 3.0-liter, with 277 hp and 460 lb-ft, beats out Ford’s 3.0-liter Power Stroke at 250 hp and 440 lb-ft. Ford’s 3.5-liter EcoBoost option does give it an edge, however, as it puts out 450 horsepower and 510 pounds per foot of torque. Because it’s exclusive to the Limited and Raptor models, this engine comes with a steeper price tag. Weighing the cost and benefit of fuel efficiency, power, and other features that are included in the specific model you’re considering will provide a more comprehensive overall view of your options.
Chevy and Ford both have a long history of producing strong, American pick-ups that are capable of just about anything. Towing capacity on the new Silverado is tough to beat, even for Ford. Of course, with either truck, you ultimately get what you pay for. With a price range of about $40,000 from the base trim to the higher-end models, there’s quite a difference in what you can expect based on your budget. Both new trucks come with the same warranty and an overall strong track record in quality construction and reliability. Any deciding factors between these two tried and true options would likely be based more on the details and personal preference.
In many ways, Chevy gives you more bang for your buck. Even cheaper Silverados come with high-end technology and safety features that can be tough to find in trucks in general and are not available on comparable F-150s. As usual, these two competitors are expected to be neck-and-neck for the top spot in truck sales. Ultimately, the decision is up to the buyer. If you have a personal history with a certain brand, this might influence your choice more than just the statistics on how these current models stack up. Only a test drive can help you decide which truck to hedge your bets on for 2020.