The latest Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra pickup trucks ride on the GM T1 platform, the same basic architecture shared with General Motors’ line of next-generation full-size SUVs, including the 2021 Chevy Tahoe, 2021 Chevy Suburban, 2021 GMC Yukon, and 2021 Cadillac Escalade. However, the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra are still equipped with whip-style antennas, whereas the new SUVs are not, leading many GM Authority readers to wonder why. Now, we have the inside scoop from GM Vice President of global product programs, Tim Herrick.
In a recent interview with GM Authority executive editor Alex Luft, Herrick provided some insight into the antenna discrepancy between the Chevy Silverado / GMC Sierra and GM’s full-size SUVs.
“The whip antenna is the best way for us to feed the [AM / FM] radio with signal,” Herrick told GM Authority. This is apparently particularly important for GM’s pickup customers, many of whom live in the countryside and prefer AM / FM radio.
“There are rural customers who buy a lot of trucks,” Herrick said.
Notably, the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra are equipped with both a whip-style antenna and a shark fin antenna, whereas the GM full-size SUVs are only equipped with shark fin antennas. It’s also worth noting that the all-new GMC Hummer EV does not come with a whip-style antenna.
GM Authority previously looked at the asymmetric placement of the shark fin on GM’s trucks and SUVs, which primarily comes down to vehicle assembly ergonomics.
Looking forward, the whip-style antenna is not necessarily a permanent fixture on the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra, but according to Herrick, it’s the right choice for customers for now.
“Will it always be there? Probably one day it won’t. But that was something where we listened to the voice of the customer and they want the ability to get a signal,” Herrick told GM Authority.