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Both Chevy and GMC have the “HD” designation for some of their pickup trucks. The obvious answer is HD stands for Heavy Duty, but what makes these GM trucks heavy duty? With so many designations and options, what’s the difference between a 2022 Silverado and an HD?

What do you get with a Silverado HD?

A 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 Harley-Davidson with great ground clearance.
2022 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD | Creative Commons

Once you go past a Silverado 1500 configuration, you’re into HD territory. The 1500 is the half-ton model of Chevy and GMC trucks. Going to a 2500 or 3500 Silverado HD or Sierra HD means a truck that is heavier, longer, taller, and most importantly, can haul a lot more. The 2500 is a three-quarter-ton truck, and the 3500 is a one-ton pickup. 

With the 1500, you have four engine options that include a 2.7-liter turbo four-cylinder, a 3.0-liter Duramax turbodiesel, and a 5.3-liter or 6.2-liter gas-powered V8. Going to either the 2500 or 3500 HD models, a 6.6-liter gas-powered V8 or 6.6-liter Duramax turbodiesel V8 are the engine choices. Obviously, your cargo or payload and towing capacities change depending on which engine you choose. 

For comparison, the 2022 half-ton 1500 has a maximum towing capacity of 13,300 when equipped with the 6.2-liter V8. That is enough for most hauling needs which is why the 1500 is the most popular GM truck. Cargo capacity varies from 1,500 to 2,300 lbs depending on how it is equipped.

What towing capacity does a 2500 HD have?

A white 2022 Chevy Silverado 2500 driving down a dirt road.
2022 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD | Chevrolet

Stepping up to a 2500 HD truck, the heavy-duty towing capacity increases to 14,500 lbs. With a gooseneck setup, that increases to 17,400 lbs. And with the 6.6-liter diesel V8 option, that number goes up to 18,500 lbs and a 3,715 lb payload. Cargo capacity increases to just under 4,000 lbs with the 6.6-liter V8 gas engine. So slightly more cargo capacity but a bit less towing capacity with the gas-powered V8. 

If you’re interested in the Silverado or Sierra 3500 HD, you’ll get a truck with extreme towing and cargo hauling capabilities. But the ride is a bit harsh, and with the dual rear wheel option, the fenders are wider. So you always need to keep that extra width in mind. 

Depending on options, payload increases to between 4,353 lbs and 4,572 lbs. Equipped with the 6.6-liter Duramax diesel engine, towing capacity sees a dramatic rise to 35,500 lbs with a gooseneck setup. But even without it, the 3500 can tow 20,000 with the Duramax. For the gas version of the 6.6-liter, the maximum towing capacity is 16,800 lbs and 17,200 lbs with a gooseneck. 

What are Silverado HD prices and trim packages?

Black 2023 GMC Sierra 3500 HD
2023 GMC Sierra 3500 HD | GMC

When it comes to trim packages, the 2500 and 3500 offer fewer choices than the 1500, but that’s because they are more of a load hauler than a passenger hauler. But there are still four trim packages offered. They are the top-of-the-line High Country, LT, LTZ, and Work Truck. 

As far as pricing, the 2500 generally starts around $35,000 MSRP for the base Work Truck. And the 3500 will generally run between $42,000 and $66,000 MSRP. 


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