We recently had the chance to drive two of the newest Chevrolet pickup trucks through the streets of Phoenix and in the nearby desert. The first was the half-ton 2019 Silverado 1500 powered by — of all things — a . The other was the all-new mid-size , which you'll be reading more about Dec. 5 when we can share our First Drive impressions.
What you might not know (how could you?) is that we had the chance to take each of these pickups — aimed at very different types of buyers — for a quick spin near Los Angeles. Our route took us right past a local truck stop complete with a CAT Scale. Naturally, we thought it might be interesting to see the weight difference between the half-ton Chevrolet Silverado 1500 housing a 2.7-liter four-cylinder and the mid-size Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison — also powered by a four-cylinder, but this one the turbocharged 2.8-liter diesel — with all the extra bumper and skid-plate armor.
The actual weights of the test vehicles we drove were 4,920 pounds for the all-wheel-drive 2019 Chevy Silverado 1500 RST and 5,240 pounds for the 4×4 2019 Chevy Colorado ZR2 Bison, which makes the smaller mid-size pickup 320 pounds heavier than the larger half ton.
The gross vehicle weight ratings for the two were 7,000 pounds for the Silverado 1500 and 6,200 pounds for the Bison, giving the half ton an 800-pound benefit. That meant the Silverado 1500 had an actual payload capacity of 2,080 pounds, whereas the Colorado Bison had a payload of 960 pounds (down 232 pounds from the door-tag listing of 1,192 pounds).
To sum things up, the smaller Colorado Bison weighs more and carries much less payload than the Silverado 1500; however, the diesel-powered Bison provides greater undercarriage protection, provides a touch more towing capacity (7,300 pounds for the Bison versus 7,080 pounds for the Silverado 1500) and offers more torque (369 pounds-feet for the Bison, 348 for the Silverado 1500). The larger Silverado 1500 turbo four weighs less, has a bigger bed, can haul (a lot) more and delivers more horsepower — 310 versus the Bison's 186 — for pavement-hugging performance. The half-ton turbo four also has a slight fuel-economy edge comparing of 21 mpg combined to the EPA's Colorado ZR2 combined rating of 19 mpg.
Cars.com photos by Mark Williams