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Towing Specifications of a 2008 Chevy Silverado 1500

by Amy L. Gouger

The Chevy Silverado has its roots in the first trucks built between 1918 and 1930. General Motors created the Silverado as a work-horse style truck, nearly identical to the Sierra, which offered more luxuries and customization. The Silverado became Silverado 1500 in 1999 to specify the heaviness of the truck and basic level of hauling and ability. Chevy added Silverado 2500 and 3500 to its lineup around 2001.


Towing capable Silverados have a 4.8-liter V-8 engine or greater. The 5.3-liter V-8 engine or greater engines tow with less strain on the truck than weaker models. The 2008 model has a 6-liter V-8 for maximum towing ability. All engines, 5.3-liter or greater, come with a four-speed transmission.


The 6-liter V-8 can haul up to 10,500 lbs. This necessitates a class five hitch for those wanting to take advantage of the large towing capacity. The 5.3-liter engine tows up to 7,500 lbs. The 4.8-liter V-8 handles about 6,500 lbs. Other factors impact towing capacity besides engine type and size, such as horsepower and horsepower rpm.


Two packages offered in 2008 focus on improving and readying the truck to haul. The Towing package includes a tow hook, seven-wire harness, heavy-duty alternate suspension, a 34 mm front stabilizer bar, high-capacity air cleaner, HD external transmission cooler, and locking differentials. The second option called the Trailering Special Equipment: HD, includes a tow hook, seven-wire harness, HD external transmission cooler, and high-capacity air cleaner. In addition, the trailering special equipment option requires a Vortec 5.3-liter V-8 SFI FlexFuel Engine with Active Fuel Management or the Vortec 4.8-liter V-8 engine or the Vortec 5800 V-8 engine with Active Fuel Management or the heavy-duty alternate suspension and a 34 mm front stabilizer bar. Both options cost extra.

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