Is there anything more American than a Chevy Silverado? Don McLean didn’t think so when he sang “American Pie,” and that’s only one song in a repertoire of many that mention the beloved automaker. Perhaps it’s because Chevy is an easy rhyme, more so than Toyota. Or, more likely, the reason is best explained when you slate heavy-hitting workhorses like the 2022 Chevy Silverado 1500 vs the 2022 Toyota Tundra and see how the numbers really stack up.
Comparing the trucks proves that America’s love of the Chevy Silverado has less to do with the easy rhyme of the Chevy name and everything to do with capability, value, and reliability. Since its inception in the early 1900s, Chevy has proven its ability to deliver that remarkable trifecta to American drivers without forcing them to dig deeper into their pockets. This acute ability, and Chevy’s keen awareness of what drivers want and need in a truck, position the 2022 Silverado 1500 legions ahead of rivals like the 2022 Toyota Tundra.
The Money Factor
America is a land where dreams come true; it’s a melting pot of individuals looking to pursue their highest aspirations. The 2022 Silverado 1500 embodies this with its affordable starting price of $34,600. The Chevy’s MSRP makes the best-selling truck far more accessible to the masses, especially compared to the higher-priced 2022 Tundra, which starts at $35,950.
Just as crucial as the MSRP is the value that each truck offers. The entry-level 2022 Silverado 1500 is an everyday workhorse that blends functionality and practicality with capability and convenience. Its Durabed offers class-leading cargo volume and 12 tie-downs, while the 40/20/40-split folding front seat adds versatility to the cabin. Its standard Chevy Safety Assist optimizes your safety, and features like Remote Keyless Entry and push-button start add convenience.
Despite its higher starting price, the entry-level Tundra is little more than a bare-bones model. Its composite bed leaves much to be desired, and its interior isn’t as configurable or plush as its rival. However, it does offer comparable conveniences and safety features, such as push-button start and Toyota’s standard Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 suite.
The Capability Factor
The early truck was born of necessity as American drivers looked for ways to improve their workload, ultimately replacing the trusty steed with a more capable workhorse. Over the years, that capability has dramatically improved as automakers fight to build the most competent and powerful trucks. This rivalry is apparent today, especially when looking at the Silverado’s multi-engine lineup compared to the single powerplant that powers the Tundra.
The 2022 Tundra comes standard with a 3.5L turbocharged V6 engine and 10-speed automatic transmission. The gas-guzzling V6 engine produces up to 389 horsepower and 479 lb-ft of torque. This power makes the Tundra incredibly capable, with a maximum towing rating of 12,000 pounds and a 1,940-pound payload maximum. However, this capability comes at a high cost at the pump, as the Tundra averages 18 MPG in the city and 24 MPG on the highway.
Unlike Toyota, Chevrolet believes in the power of choice, learning this vital lesson with the 1918 One-Ton pickup by giving drivers several options for customization. The trend continued decades later, with the first-ever Silverado in 1999 offering three available engines. Today, the 2022 Silverado builds on that list with four capable powerplants that leave the Tundra in the dust.
The Silverado’s standard powerplant is a 2.7L turbocharged high-output four-cylinder engine and 8-speed automatic transmission that delivers 310 horsepower and 430 lb-ft of torque. Chevy increases this output with two unique V8 engines––a 5.3L EcoTec3 that produces 355 horsepower and 383 lb-ft of torque and a 6.2L EcoTec3 that churns out 420 horses and 460 lb-ft of torque. The V8s are mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission, and the 6.2L pushes the truck to its highest towing rating of 13,300 pounds. This truck’s payload maxes out at 2,270 pounds.
The absolute powerhouse in the Silverado lineup is its 3.0L Duramax Turbo-Diesel engine. Toyota’s lack of a diesel powerplant eliminates the Tundra as an option for diesel-lovers or those looking to maximize efficiency. The Duramax answers both needs, producing 277 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque with an exceptional fuel economy of 23 MPG in the city and 31 MPG on the highway.
The Tech Factor
Technological advancements across the automotive industry are making trucks more innovative than ever, allowing automakers to integrate cutting-edge technology to improve the driver and passenger experience. We see this firsthand in trucks like the 2022 Silverado, which adds a new 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster for the driver and an expansive 13.4-inch center touchscreen display. In addition, for the first time in Chevy history, the Silverado comes standard with Google Built-In, a tool that equips the truck with Google Assistant, Google Maps, and Google Play. This connectivity is in addition to standard smartphone integration via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
For 2022, the Tundra sees its first significant redesign in decades, which ushers in a new wave of technology. Long overdue, the truck now offers a 14-inch display with smartphone integration. This is the only area where the Tundra leads the Silverado. However, it quickly loses this advantage with the display’s limited functionality and the absence of comparable features like Google Built-In.
When looking beyond connectivity, the Silverado 1500 and Tundra offer comparable safety and driver-assist technology. Both trucks cover the basics via the Chevy Safety Assist and Toyota Safety Sense 2.5 suites. However, the Silverado takes a significant lead with advanced technology like its towing-capable Super Cruise. As the industry’s first true hands-free driver-assist technology, Super Cruise allows you to take your hands off the wheel without risking your safety. It’s compatible with over 200,000 miles throughout the United States and Canada. Even more impressive is that the 2022 version of Super Cruise can sense the additional drag of a trailer and calibrate the truck’s performance accordingly for safe acceleration and braking. You won’t find anything comparable on the Tundra and likely won’t for some time.
The Time Factor
Along with its many favorable attributes, Chevy is also renowned for frequently updating its lineup. We see this in the first-ever Silverado ZR2, a flagship truck that rolls off the production floor ready for the trail. Off-road components like the truck’s uniquely tuned springs, skid plate, and beefy 33-inch tires distinguish it in the Silverado lineup, but they do far more than that.
Toyota might be a crowd favorite among off-roaders, but the Silverado ZR2 is designed to disrupt the segment and proves that Chevrolet is acutely aware of what drivers want in a truck. Toyota is often criticized for its inattentiveness to its lineup, failing to update its models and outfit them with the latest technology. The 2022 Tundra marks the first time the truck has undergone a redesign since its debut in 2007. While Toyota is comfortable with the status quo, Chevrolet is not.
Models like the Silverado ZR2 and Chevrolet’s ongoing advancements of the Silverado showcase Chevy’s constant evolution. It’s the time factor that few people consider when purchasing a vehicle. Think about it this way; a Toyota may hold its value incredibly well, but it’s not attractive to drivers looking for modern technology and premium materials. Instead, you get this with every Silverado and the confidence knowing that Chevy will continuously work to improve its best-selling truck so that it can more readily meet your driving, hauling, and towing needs.
The Deciding Factor
As you shop for a truck, evaluate your priorities and your must-haves. Are you looking to invest in an automaker deeply ingrained in American tradition? How much value do you place on an automaker’s willingness to progress its lineup, updating its models with the latest technology to add value for drivers? The deciding factor comes down to what you need in a truck and the spirit that fuels your American dream.