The 2022 Chevy Silverado ZR2 has debuted as the new flagship off-road entrant in the automaker’s light-duty pickup portfolio.
Like the mid-size Chevy Colorado ZR2, the Silverado ZR2 features advanced Multimatic DSSV dampers, which feature three separate spool valves and three fluid flow chambers for enhanced damping control. Retuned springs work in conjunction with the dampers to deliver increased maximum front and rear suspension travel, while front and rear e-lockers further enhanced the truck’s loose surface traction and rock crawling capability.
Many readers will immediately notice the Silverado ZR2’s high-approach steel front bumper with removable end caps, which gives the truck a more aggressive exterior experience and also enables an improved 31.8-degree approach angle. Other off-road-focused equipment includes 18-inch off-road alloy wheels wrapped in 33-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory tires and additional underbody skid plates. Finally, the exit area for the dual exhaust system has been relocated in front of the rear bumper, reducing the chance that it will get dented or damaged when off-roading and rock crawling.
Cosmetic add-ons for the Silverado ZR2 include various exterior and interior ‘ZR2’ badges, a new black hood insert, a unique grille with integrated lighting and a “flow-tie” emblem. The only available engine option will be GM’s 6.2L L87 V8 engine, which produces 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque. It will come standard with the GM 10-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel-drive, of course. A new Terrain Mode setting is also standard and allows for one-pedal driving when rock crawling.
Chevy says the max payload of the Silverado ZR2 is 1,440 pounds and the conventional trailer weight rating is 8,900 pounds. It will be available to order in the four-door Crew Cab body style only. It will also feature the redesigned 2022 Chevy Silverado 1500 interior, including a standard 13.4-inch-diagonal color touchscreen and a 12.3-inch-diagonal configurable digital instrument cluster.
Dom Lester, General Motors’ chief engineer for Performance Variants and Motorsports, says the Silverado ZR2 was engineered using lessons learned from racing a near-production Chevy Silverado ZR2 prototype in the Best in the Desert racing series with the Hall Racing team, and from visiting Moab, Utah with camouflaged prototypes.
“Chevrolet has been competing on some of the most grueling, toughest off-road courses with a prototype Silverado ZR2 in the Best in the Desert race series,” said Lester. “We applied what we learned in racing and Moab testing to the new ZR2 to offer a supremely capable and confidence-inspiring package, but one that doesn’t beat you up on the highway with its ride quality. It’s equally capable and comfortable.”
Pricing for the 2022 Chevy Silverado ZR2, along with availability information, should be disclosed in the coming weeks or months.