Trucks & SUVs

The Chevy Silverado Fell Behind Other American Trucks in Q3 Sales

The automotive industry has had a long-standing obsession with everything about trucks. Whether you’re talking performance, style, or even sales figures, drivers love tracking the market of what is easily quantified as the automotive embodiment of Americana. The Chevy Silverado is a fan favorite amount pickup aficionados, and some may find the Q3 2020 results of the iconic truck to be as interesting as ever. 

As usual, the Ford F-Series remains atop the chart, despite an impressive showing from Ram pickups. The Chevy Silverado earns the bronze medal after giving up ground to an American rival.

These results come as a surprise, as the Chevy Silverado had sold quite well in the previous quarter amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Notably, these sales figures include all models under the Silverado nameplate – 1500, 2500HD, 3500HD, 4500HD, 5500HD, and 6500HD.

How do the Chevy Silverado’s Q3 sales figures compare to past quarters and its competitors? Let’s look at the numbers and break down if the Silverado has what it takes to be a top contender. 

The Chevy Silverado takes a step back

A blue 2020 Chevy Silverado 1500 driving on a road with a mountain range in the background
The 2020 Chevy Silverado 1500 in action | Photo via Chevrolet

2020 has been an unpredictable year, especially for the automotive industry. However, several things will always hold true, and one of these assertions is that trucks sell.

The Chevy Silverado’s latest sales data comes via GM Authority. The website reported that Chevrolet’s iconic truck sold 147,484 units in the United States during the third quarter – a 5.14% decrease compared to Q3 2019.

The Chevy Silverado 1500 took the biggest hit, as its sales decreased by 18.5% compared to last year – resulting in just 89,465 units. The heavy-duty 2500HD and 3500HD remained relatively stagnant, selling 31,279 units. Ironically, the 4500HD, 5500HD, and 6500HD fared much better, rising by 65.2% – totaling 1,688 units sold.

Despite the setback, the Chevy Silverado is outpacing its year-to-date (YTD) 2019 sales by 2,391 units. Additionally, Chevrolet remains ahead of Ram in YTD 2020 figures. However, the Ford F-Series holds a nearly insurmountable lead over the competition, with a YTD 2020 figure of 589,034 trucks sold.

Meanwhile, the GMC Sierra, Toyota Tundra, and Nissan Titan take fourth, fifth, and sixth place, respectively, in Q3 and YTD 2020 sales.

Is the Chevy Silverado better than its rivals?

Many drivers have their flag firmly planted when it comes to their favorite truck. However, there are still a significant number of shoppers who want the best-of-the-best when it comes to the new model year.

The 2021 Chevy Silverado 1500 puts up quite a fight against the Ram 1500 and the Ford F-150. All the Silverado’s powertrain options are quite capable. Plus, its available 3.0-liter turbo-diesel engine delivers a best-in-class fuel economy rating of 27 MPG city/highway combined, according to EPA estimates.

Unfortunately, the 2021 Silverado tows less than 2020 models, which had best-in-class statistics. Now, the towing crown goes to the Ford F-150, which has an available hauling capability of 14,000 pounds. Meanwhile, the 2021 Silverado tops out at an available towing capacity of 13,300 pounds.

However, the Chevy Silverado lags behind its American counterparts in terms of interior quality and comfort. Silverado owners have taken issue with the inferior cabin since the truck’s fourth-generation debut during the 2019 model year. However, Chevrolet has recognized those concerns and announced improvements to the 2022 Silverado.

The final verdict

RELATED: The Chevy Silverado 1500 Is Surprisingly the Truck Owners Hate Most

The truck sales race has always come down to which model will take second place. The Ford F-Series has been America’s best-selling truck for 43 consecutive years, and it’s poised to repeat.


Meanwhile, Chevrolet and Ram are duking it out for the silver medal. Many experts would have considered the Silverado to be a lock after the second quarter. However, Ram is now within striking distance. The Chevy Silverado will need a decent showing during the final stretch to maintain second place. The good news is that the refined 2022 Chevy Silverado’s debut should make the truck a stronger contender next year.