Even after completely redesigning the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 for 2019 and announcing various updates for 2020, the bowtie company has yet to offer a real off-road pickup in the full-size class to closely rival the Ford F-150 Raptor, not to mention the upcoming Ram Rebel TRX.
However, that could change in about two years.
- Also: 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Receives Many Updates, Too
- Also: 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Duramax: The Diesel is Back
The automaker recently filed to register the ZRX name, both in the U.S. and Canada. And today GM Authority reports that it will be used for a hardcore variant of the Silverado positioned above the current Trail Boss.
That latter, remember, gets a two-inch lift kit with Rancho shocks and skid plates, Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires, a two-speed transfer case, a locking rear differential and a 355-horsepower V8.
Sources familiar with future GM products told the website that the Chevrolet Silverado ZRX will feature a more robust suspension, DSSV dampers from MultiMatic (also found on the smaller Colorado ZR2), front and rear electronic locking differentials along with modified bumpers for improved departure and approach angles.
A Fox Racing suspension is another possibility as Motor1 discovered that Fox applied for a ZRX trademark to use on "custom pickups" shortly after GM filed its application.
The Silverado ZRX would be offered with the naturally aspirated 6.2-litre V8 engine mated to the new 10-speed automatic transmission, although as is the case with the Colorado ZR2, output is not expected to increase from the current 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque.
That sure would be a big letdown for Chevy enthusiasts. In comparison, the F-150 Raptor boasts a high-performance 3.5-litre EcoBoost V6 that produces 450 horsepower and 510 pound-feet of torque. There’s even a rumour that Ford plans to add a V8 derived from the Shelby GT500 in the future, no doubt in response to the 700+ horsepower that could find their way under the hood of a Hellcat-motivated Ram Rebel TRX.
What about a diesel option that’s missing from the competition? Would GM’s 3.0-litre Duramax six-cylinder be a viable alternative in the Silverado ZRX with its 277 horsepower and 460 pound-feet? Probably not.
Anyway, we will first see an updated Silverado (and Sierra) interior for the 2021 model year. A concept for the Chevrolet Silverado ZRX could be revealed right around the same time with a production model to follow for 2022.
Oh, one last thing: If the ZRX name rings a bell, it’s because GM previously sold a GMC Sonoma ZRX with a street-style body kit and a sportier suspension.