Competition is good for consumers. Even when a company competes with itself. Chevrolet has the power of its upcoming 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV before the first customer ever sees the vehicle in a showroom.
Why? To keep up with its corporate cousin GMC.
Most automakers build and sell their full-size pickup trucks under one name. However, General Motors sells two vehicles that are arguably the same truck.
The Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra share the same chassis, engines and transmissions. Each is styled slightly differently, with the Chevrolet arguably the more mainstream vehicle and the GMC the more premium-leaning truck.
But even that difference is mainly a matter of marketing. You can buy a Silverado with all the luxury the automaker knows how to make. And while GMC doesn’t make a true bare-bones work truck, you can find a Sierra for under $40,000.
Taken separately, they are the second and fourth best-selling trucks in America for most years. If GM treated them as one vehicle, they would take the overall sales crown from the Ford F-150 for most years.
GM’s Twin Electric Trucks
GM is going electric – the automaker has promised a mostly electric lineup by 2035.
To get there, it needs to electrify its best-selling vehicles.
Chevrolet arrived first and announced its all-electric . at 2024 Silverado EV earlier this year. At the time, Chevy promised horsepower from 510 to 664 and prices from $39,900 to over $100,000.
GMC joined them last week and debuted as a 2024 GMC Sierra EV with, as you would expect, a slightly more luxurious look. The Sierra, GMC said, would peak at 754 horsepower.
Chevy doesn’t have it.
Shortly thereafter, we received the following statement from Chevrolet:
“As we prepare for production of the Silverado EV, our engineering team has further refined the estimated performance specifications for the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV RST First Edition. GM now estimates power to be up to 754 horsepower and torque to an estimated 785 lb-ft when Wide Open Watts mode is engaged.
This could be a simple software tweak
Chevy’s engineers, in particular, probably didn’t have to redesign anything to get the boost. Many EVs have their power limited by software. EV builder Polestar has even released software downloads that add extra horsepower for a fee.
Chances are the Silverado EV was capable of this output all along. Chevrolet just made more of it accessible to owners to match GMC’s marketing.
It is part of a future where many car features may be locked behind software walls and unlocked for a fee. Or, in this case, to keep up with a business rivalry.