CHOOSING THE RIGHT VEHICLE FOR YOUR GROWING BUSINESS
If you’re looking to start or grow your own business, a good work vehicle can make all the difference. Investing in a dedicated work van or truck comes with a number of advantages, allowing business owners all the cargo room and towing capacity they might need while also serving as a mobile billboard for the business itself. There’s also a lot to be said for the professionalism a commercial vehicle can lend to a business, letting customers and rivals alike know that you’re in it for the long haul and even carrying some lucrative tax benefits.
In the world of commercial vehicles, a few brands reign supreme. Chevy has long been a leader in the commercial vehicle market thanks to two flagship vehicles: the Chevy Express van and Silverado pickup. Recently crowned the nation’s best-selling full-size pickup, the Silverado needs no introduction, but the Chevy Express van might be a different story for those outside the trades. The versatile van provides the perfect starting point for building out the commercial van of your dreams, with plenty of customization and retrofitting options. Before you start your search for a commercial truck dealer near Staten Island, join us as we take a closer look at the Express and Silverado and see how these two humble Chevy models have come to dominate the world of working vehicles.
The Chevy Express 2500/3500 Cargo Van
The Chevy Express has long been one of the most adaptable vehicles on the market, with the ability to transform from a reliable people-mover to a mobile workshop, refrigerator-on-wheels, high-capacity towing beast, and more. Packed with a host of innovative features aimed at making your work day just a little bit easier, the Chevy Express is a great choice for business owners seeking a reliable, spacious vehicle that won’t give them a lot of trouble.
The Chevy Express Cargo Van is all about space and is available with either a standard wheelbase that offers 126 to 154 inches of floor space or an Extended Wheelbase option that ups the van’s usable storage space to between 146 and 173 inches for both the 2500 and 3500 models. That’s more than enough room to haul all the necessary equipment for a hard day’s work and can even accommodate larger, bulky items like furniture or motorcycles.
The Chevy Express 2500 and 3500 boast 239.4 cu.ft. of cargo room in its Standard Wheelbase form and up to 283.6 in the Extended Wheelbase version. Time is money, and that extra 40-plus cu.ft. of space can mean the difference between squeezing all your cargo in on one trip versus going back for a second round, which is why making the right decision at the time of purchase is important. The Cargo Van boasts a payload capacity of 4,280 lbs, but it’s the van’s towing capacity that might surprise some drivers. The Cargo Van has a max trailer weight of 10,000 lbs when optioned with the 401-horsepower, 6.6-liter V8 (or 7,100 to 7,000 lbs with the base 4.3-liter V6), which goes a long way in upping the van’s profile as a versatile cargo hauler both inside and out.
Power, cargo room, and towing capacity might be the factors that draw business owners to the van segment, but it’s the work-specific creature features that set the Chevy Express apart from the crowd. The rear barn doors provide 53 inches of opening width when fully opened, allowing business owners to easily load whatever equipment or supplies they might need without playing a game of cargo van Tetris. Drivers can choose between a hinged side door or one installed on a sliding track that provides easy access, which can be important when your hands are full.
The interior is replete with handy tie-down points, and a rubberized vinyl floor covering guarantees you won’t have to worry about any long-term stains or spills. Available options include integrated Thule storage bins, tool racks, exterior ladders, and the Cargo Van comes standard with a host of modern tech and convenience features, including a 120-volt power outlet, two auxiliary outlets, USB ports, and Wi-Fi hotspot compatibility.
The Chevy Silverado 1500/HD
It shouldn’t take much to sell you on the Chevy Silverado as the go-to choice for any growing business. A perennial best-seller, the iconic pickup is as well-rounded as they come, making the Silverado particularly well-suited for the working world. Starting at $36,300, the Silverado 1500 might not be the cheapest full-size pickup on the market, but it is one of the most modern.
The Silverado received a significant refresh in 2022, with Chevy bringing the latest and greatest infotainment and automation tech to bear on the best-selling truck. From the LT trim and up, the Silverado 1500 now comes with a 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster and a 13.4-inch infotainment touchscreen. These features might not be a business owner’s first concern when shopping for a new fleet vehicle, but that touch of modernity can make a big difference in overall efficiency, comfort, and employee retention.
Integrated GPS means you’ll never be late for your next appointment, and the Silverado’s standard Chevy Safety Assist suite will ensure you’ll get there safely. The biggest improvement to the Silverado might be the addition of Super Cruise, GM’s entry in the race to develop a hands-free driving system. This feature might not find its way onto many work trucks as it’s reserved for the top-tier High Country trim, but it’s an exciting look into what the future of driving could look like.
Naturally, the Silverado isn’t hurting for power, with four engines ranging from a turbocharged four-cylinder to two V8s and a Duramax diesel inline-six. For business owners looking to minimize fuel costs, the four-cylinder is the most efficient of the gas engines, getting 19 MPG in the city and 22 MPG on the highway; impressive figures for any full-size pickup. The 5.3-liter and 6.2-liter V8 lag slightly behind regarding fuel efficiency but more than makeup for in horsepower, offering 355 and 420 hp, respectively.
The 5.3-liter engine can tow 11,300 lbs, while the 6.2-liter version matches the Duramax diesel with a remarkable 13,300 lb towing capacity. This level of towing prowess is all the more impressive for how easy Chevy makes it. The Silverado is available with a range of towing-specific features like Trailer Sway Control and 15 different camera views that allow you to keep an eye on your precious cargo at all times.
Those who plan on doing some serious hauling will also appreciate the Silverado’s 12 integrated tiedown points spaced throughout the bed, as well as the recent addition of Chevy’s Multi-Flex tailgate. The tailgate can not only be lowered remotely by pressing the truck’s key fob but it can also be deployed in a number of ingenious positions that go a long way in extending the functionality of the Silverado’s bed. Fold down a section near the top to accommodate longer loads, or use a flap on the inner gate to act as a load stop.
The tailgate can even be used as a convenient step when folded down, making it easy to access the bed without straining or risking a costly injury. Speaking of the bed, Chevy has taken the Goldilocks approach, including a number of different sizes so that every driver can find one that’s just right for their own business needs. Selectable driving modes allow drivers to enhance control and safety with options like Sport, Tow/Haul, Off-Road, and Snow/Ice Mode.
The Silverado 1500 certainly isn’t hurting for power, but if your business involves the sort of loads that would make the average pickup blush, you might want to take a closer look at the Silverado HD. Short for “Heavy Duty,” the Silverado HD takes everything to love about the 1500 and kicks it up a notch. In addition to its full suite of heavy-duty components, drivers will enjoy a 401-horsepower, 6.6-liter V8 paired with a six-speed automatic transmission for a tow rating of 17,370 lbs.
If that’s not enough to satisfy your business needs, the Silverado HD’s diesel engine might be just the ticket. Combined with an Allison 10-speed automatic transmission, the Silverado HD’s Duramax diesel V8 gives drivers 445 hp and a world-moving 910 lb-ft of torque to play with. That’s enough power to tow up to 36,000 lbs when properly equipped, which should put almost any towing task well within reach.
The Silverado HD might prioritize power, but it doesn’t come at the expense of comfort and convenience. The heavy-duty pickup can be just as cozy and luxurious as any truck in its class, with a range of features spanning a 10-way power driver’s seat and LED cargo-bed lighting to a heated steering wheel, heated front seats, and remote start. The pickup even comes with Chevy’s Infotainment 3 software, which includes a voice-command feature so you don’t have to worry about workers fiddling with the system as they go to a job.
Safety is an important consideration for any business with accidents and worker’s comp claims threatening to derail operations at a moment’s notice. Chevy has addressed this potential pitfall by loading the Silverado HD with the aforementioned Chevy Safety Assist suite, giving drivers access to valuable tools like Automatic Emergency Braking and Forward Collision Alert.
Elevate Your Business With a Great Chevy Van or Truck
The Chevy Express Cargo Van and Silverado 1500/HD Truck represent two intriguing options for business owners looking to build their fleet without breaking the bank. With a roomy cabin, clever storage solutions, and seating for up to 15, the Express is an ideal vehicle for a range of industries. From serving as a mobile workbench and supply closet for plumbers and electricians to navigating tight city streets as a delivery or livery vehicle, not to mention its outstanding towing capacity, the Chevy Express is one expense you won’t regret.
The Silverado 1500/HD is ideal for those jobs that tend to get a little more down and dirty, from dusty job sites and gravel pits to oil fields, adventure tourism-based businesses, and more; Chevy’s rugged and dependable pickup has built its reputation on the sort of go-anywhere performance that is so important when you’re on the clock. No matter which vehicle you choose, the demands of your business will be all in a hard day’s work for each outstanding commercial vehicle. Looking to enhance your business’ productivity and power? Speak with our team at Richard Lucas Chevrolet today, and let them help you discover a vehicle that is sure to take your company to the next level!