Chevy’s claim to best-in-class towing for its 2021 Chevy Silverado 3500 HD has stirred up an interesting debate with the automaker’s chief rival which may be settled by brand loyalty and price.
Chevy says its max tow rating is now 36,000 pounds—an increase of 500 pounds over the 2020 models. Chevy says that’s the best rating you can get among Class 3 pickups.
Ford, however, disagrees with Chevy’s characterization of Class 3 trucks. So, the automaker came out swinging shortly after Chevy made its claim.
“The Ford F-450 pickup and Silverado 3500HD pickup are both Class 3 trucks topping out at 14,000 pounds GVWR,” a Ford spokeperson told Equipment World sister site Hard Working Trucks. “We continue to beat Silverado 3500HD hands-down with max towing up to 37,000 pounds. We will continue providing this information to consumers shopping for the most capable truck, despite Silverado’s misleading claims, and will focus on delivering the best capability for truck owners instead of claims gamesmanship.”
As expected, Chevy didn’t take the news lying down.
“We stand behind our best-in-class claim, which is based on a one-ton, 3500 series truck (e.g. Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD, Ford Super Duty F-350 and Ram 3500), not a 1.5-ton truck like the F-450, which is not considered by consumers to be in the same class – and also starts at roughly $14,400 more,” a Chevy spokesperson told Hard Working Trucks. “We know customers cross-shop by tonnage ratings, not GVWR classes, so we compare apples-to-apples for clarity and transparency with our customers.”
Chevy said that when comparing pickup capabilities, it was appropriate to conduct head-to-head comparisons based on vehicle tonnage “which is consistent with GM’s methodology, and so there is an even playing field on the features and capabilities being tested.”
Chevy added, “We’re unsure why Ford is straying from the industry-accepted classifications. In this case, the Ford F-450 doesn’t compete; the Ford Super Duty F-350 can tow up to 35,750 lbs., while the Silverado 3500 HD can tow up to 36,000 lbs. The bottom line is, GM’s pickups have gained considerable share this year and the Chevy Silverado HD has played a big role in that thanks to its capability. Needless to say, it’s caught our competitor’s attention.”
This is far from the first time the automakers have traded barbs and we’re pretty sure it won’t be the last. Their last memorable exchange centered around truck bed durability battles. Honda soon challenged them both with Ridgeline’s composite bed.