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Towing Capacity of a 1997 Chevy Silverado 1/2 Ton Pickup

by Justin Cupler

Chevrolet's 1997 half-ton truck -- the C/K1500 -- had three different trim-levels. These included "Work Truck," "Cheyenne" and "Silverado." The Silverado and Cheyenne trim-lines had the same towing capacities despite their external differences.

Standard Towing

The standard towing capacity is the maximum weight the Silverado can tow regularly. The 1997 Silverado half-ton trucks were broken down into two main body styles, the regular cab and extended cab. The regular cab had a standard towing capacity of 2,000 lbs. with two-wheel drive to 2,500 lbs. with four-wheel drive. The extended cab's standard towing was rated at 2,500 lbs. The two-wheel-drive extended cab with an 8-foot bed was rated at 2,000 lbs.

Maximum Towing

The maximum towing capacity is the most that the vehicle can tow safely. The regular cab models had a maximum towing capacity of 7,000 lbs. with four-wheel drive to 7,500 lbs. with two-wheel drive. The extended cab models -- in both two-wheel and four-wheel drive -- had a maximum towing capacity of 7,500 lbs.

Payload

Another concern when towing is payload capacity. This is the maximum weight the Silverado's chassis can bear. This is a concern as the trailer's tongue weight -- the weight at the point where the trailer connects to the truck -- adds to the payload weight. The four-wheel drive versions have the lowest payload capacity, ranging from 1,668 lbs. to 1,938 lbs. The two-wheel drive models range from 1,804 lbs. to 2,229 lbs.

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