Trucks & SUVs

SVE’s Yenko Chevrolet Silverado Off-Road Is More Than a Name-Drop

Now that the Ram 1500 TRX is here, the Chevrolet Silverado risks falling behind in the sand. And the upcoming 725-hp Ford F-150 Raptor isn’t helping matters. Chevrolet is working on a Silverado ZR2, but it won’t be here until the 2023 model year. Luckily, Specialty Vehicle Engineering, the New Jersey shop behind the reborn Syclone, has a solution. It’s a Silverado gifted with a special name: Yenko.

This isn’t the first time SVE has put the Yenko name on a Chevrolet Silverado

The Yenko name is as closely associated with Chevrolet as Carroll Shelby’s name is with Ford, Hemmings reports. Customers looking for extra performance sought out racer-turned-dealer Don Yenko, who used Chevy’s special-order parts program to modify Corvairs, Novas, and Camaros, Road & Track reports. It’s partially because of the latter that today’s COPO program exists.

Today, the Yenko trademark belongs to SVE. And while the shop’s used it on several high-power Camaros, it’s also appeared on other Chevrolet products tuned by SVE. Such as, back in 2018, the first Yenko Chevrolet Silverado, The Drive reports.

The 2018 Yenko Chevrolet Silverado is based on the Z71 4×4 trim. However, in place of the standard engine, it has a supercharged 6.8-liter V8 with a custom stainless-steel exhaust. As a result, it has 800 hp and 750 lb-ft. Luckily, it also has Brembo brakes to keep the truck’s speed in check. And to give the Yenko Silverado sharper handling, it has a lower ride height and upgraded sway bar.

A black 2021 SVE Yenko/SC Chevrolet Silverado
2021 SVE Yenko/SC Chevrolet Silverado | Specialty Vehicle Engineering

SVE only built the 2018 Yenko Chevrolet Silverado on Z71 4x4s with short beds and standard cabs. However, the 2021 model is available in 2WD and 4WD form in a variety of bed-and-cabin combinations. It doesn’t have the 2018 model’s 6.8-liter V8, though. Instead, SVE gives the Silverado’s optional 6.2-liter V8 an upgraded fuel system, stronger internals, a supercharger, and an air-to-water intercooler, R&T reports. The result is 800 hp and 720 lb-ft linked to a strengthened 6-speed automatic.

The rest of the 2021 model’s modifications mirror those on the 2018 model, Autoblog reports. Namely, a lower ride height, progressive springs, upgraded bushings, larger front sway bar, Brembo brakes, and lighter-than-standard aluminum wheels.

The 2021 Yenko Chevrolet Silverado Off-Road brings the performance off-pavement

But, while these mods are fine for the street, what happens if the 2021 Yenko Silverado’s owner wants to go off-road? That’s what the recently-announced Off-Road package is for, Autoweek reports.

A black 2021 SVE Yenko Chevrolet Silverado Off-Road climbs a mountain
2021 SVE Yenko Chevrolet Silverado Off-Road | Specialty Vehicle Engineering

RELATED: A Skid Plate May Not Be Enough Off-Road Protection

The 2021 Yenko Chevrolet Silverado Off-Road still has the 800-hp supercharged 6.2-liter V8, heavy-duty 6-speed transmission, and Brembo brakes. However, instead of being lower-than-stock, the truck has a 4” BDS lift kit, Motor1 reports. SVE also installs Fox performance shocks and a larger rear sway bar. And instead of 22” wheels with Nitto performance tires, the 2021 Yenko Silverado Off-Road rides on 20” wheels with Nitto Ridge Grappler off-road tires.

The rear view of a red-with-white-stripes 2021 SVE Yenko/SC Chevrolet Silverado
2021 SVE Yenko/SC Chevrolet Silverado rear | Specialty Vehicle Engineering

RELATED: Before the Dodge Durango SRT and Hellcat, There Was the Shelby SP-360

Like the ‘standard’ Yenko Chevrolet Silverado, the Off-Road model has a Yenko-branded grille bar and composite tailgate overlay. The truck has a composite hood insert as well, plus Yenko rear-quarter panel graphics. And potential owners can presumably upgrade their Silverados with the optional leather interior package.

Pricing and availability

A red 2021 SVE Yenko Chevrolet Silverado Off-Road climbs a rocky desert mountainside
2021 SVE Yenko Chevrolet Silverado Off-Road front 3/4 | Specialty Vehicle Engineering

RELATED: Is the 2021 Ram 1500 TRX Faster Than the Ram SRT-10?

The 2021 SVE Yenko Chevrolet Silverado Off-Road is based on the 4WD Custom trim and can be ordered in any factory color. Potential buyers can order one from their local Chevrolet dealer in either crew cab or double cab form.

But if you want one, you’ll have to act fast. SVE is only making 50 of these trucks, and they don’t come cheap. The base version adds $79,995 to the price of a 4WD Custom, Motor Trend reports. And as of this writing, SVE hasn’t released the Off-Road trim’s official pricing. However, it does come with a 3-year/36,000-mile warranty. And it gives the Chevrolet Silverado the means to potentially put the TRX and Raptor in its rearview mirror.

Follow more updates from MotorBiscuit on our Facebook page.