If off-road pickups are good, then more off-road pickups are better. At least that’s what it seems like, as the segment is currently exploding with popularity. Not to be left out of the game, General Motors is prepping a new ZRX variant of the Chevrolet Silverado—as we first reported in September. And now, we believe we have the very first spy shots of the future Chevy to prove it.
First, the backstory: in August, GM Authority was first to report on fresh trademark filings for the ZRX name, first in the U.S., and later in Canada. The following month, we reported that the ZRX name would grace a new off-road variant of the Chevrolet Silverado that will slot in above the Silverado Trail Boss.
Now, these new spy shots bring us our first look at the upcoming Silverado ZRX variant. The particular model seen here appears to be an early development model. It is clearly based on the Silverado LT Trail Boss model, as per the designations on the bed and tailgate, as well as the overall appearance of the truck.
The most noteworthy part of the shots is the front bumper, which is much shorter than any other front bumper offered on the Silverado to date. It’s also missing the fog lights typically found on the Silverado LT Trail Boss. The shorter nature of the bumper enables a significantly better approach angle. There’s also a peculiar metal bar protruding from that bumper, which may have something to do with the upgraded suspension components hiding underneath.
The rear end of this prototype appears identical to the Silverado LT Trail Boss currently on sale, though we expect that to change as development progresses. Keep in mind that we’re looking at a very early prototype of the final vehicle, and all the pieces are far from being in their place on this unit.
The upcoming Chevrolet Silverado ZRX will essentially adopt the formula introduced by the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, but applied to the larger Silverado pickup. As we outlined in our full report, the ZRX will offer a big-and-burly suspension setup with DSSV dampers from Multimatic, electronic lockers front and rear, and new bumpers to improve the pickup’s approach and departure angles.
Power is not expected to be upgraded, as it is expected to be sourced from the naturally aspirated 6.2L V8 L87 EcoTec3 engine. It’s the current range-topping option in the Silverado lineup, which is once again expected to produce 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque. The new GM 10-speed automatic transmission will be responsible for cog swaps. It’s also possible the new Chevrolet Silverado ZRX could offer the turbo-diesel 3.0L LM2 inline-six Duramax engine.
When it’s released, the ZRX will slot in above the Silverado Trail Boss in terms of the model cadence, providing an indirect rival to the Ford F-150 Raptor. But unlike Ford’s dune-jumping trophy truck, the Silverado ZRX will be more of a trail machine and rock crawler with regard to off-road speciality.
One other noteworthy piece to the puzzle: when the driver of this Silverado ZRX prototype saw our spy, he peeled off faster than any other dev driver in recent memory. Clearly, this early development model was not meant to be seen.
We’ll keep following this story and report back when we know more. In the meantime, subscribe to GM Authority for more Silverado ZRX news, Chevrolet Silverado news, Chevrolet news and around-the-clock GM news coverage.