All Chevrolet pickups have their beginnings in 1924, when the first Chevy pickup went on sale. Another milestone was 1930, with the first in-house design. By the time most of us can remember, three quarter ton pickups were already a big part of the Chevy legend. In 1999 the full-size Chevrolet pickup took the name Silverado, and in 2001 the modern Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD 2WD was born.
The 2500HD started life with a 300 horsepower 6.0 liter Vortec 6000 V8 gasoline engine standard. Also available were the 8.1 liter Vortec 8100 (catch on to the relationship between the engine name and the displacement?) gasoline and a 6.6 liter Duramax diesel. The bigger gasoline engine had 340 horsepower and the diesel had 300. However, the diesel had a higher torque than either of the gasoline engines.
The 2500HD had a four or five-speed automatic transmission through 2005. From 2005 through 2007 the five-speed was replaced with a six speed automatic transmission. The 2500 HD came in a variety of body styles including two-door, a three or four-door extended cab or a four-door crew cab. In 2003 both the front and rear ends were changed, though the rear only slightly. The original 2500HD 2WD could tow up to 16,100 pounds and haul more than four thousand pounds in the bed, depending on equipment.
In 2007 the 2500HD underwent a major upgrade in just about every category. It received a more aerodynamic look modeled on the Chevy SUVs and the smaller Colorado pickup. The 8.1 liter engine disappeared. The 6.0 liter engine was upgraded to 353 horsepower and the Duramax 6.6 liter diesel to 365 horsepower. Each engine had its own six speed automatic transmission.
The 2008 2500HDs offered three body styles. The three-door was gone, but the two-door and both four-door models remained. The extended cab doors opened much wider for easier access. The new models started at $24,575 and helped the Silverado line win Motor Trend Magazine's Truck of the Year award.
The future offers yet more changes. A new 6.2 liter V8 engine is planned that will provide 403 horsepower. And it's rumored that a 7.5 liter V10 will eventually replace the 8.1 liter V8. Six speed automatic transmissions are expected to continue as the norm.
The Chevrolet 2500HD 2WD and its ancestors have already contributed in a major way to the storied history of Chevy trucks. More changes are coming, and you can expect that trend to continue.