When you're #2 you try harder, right? The 2003 Silverado does just that with a new hydroformed steel frame producing 65 percent more structural rigidity. And at the same time, it weighs 27 percent less. Couple that with the most powerful V8 in its class, and you've got a great truck for towing, hauling, and just plain cruising. The braking systems have also been enhanced (as well as standard four-wheel disc brakes and ABS). In the 1500 LS edition we tested, the performance and ride were outstanding, and the handling passed the "sleeping kid" test as we wound through city streets without waking the youthful passenger in the back seat.
Upscale interior quality impressed passengers with un-trucklike polish. The new Silverado has a roomier cabin and storage areas, and the seats are distinctly more comfortable. Passengers enjoyed the standard dual-zone climate control. The exterior reminds us of Chevy's Avalanche SUV/pickup - it's a cleaner, less chunky look. All models but base offer XM satellite-radio service - which is a gas - whether it's live BBC, a wild and wooly Giants (SF) playoff game or specialized music channels - it's all there. The new Silverado. It's all good.
- Mark & Katie Fulmer
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