The Chevy Silverado ZR2 Bison is the latest recipe from General Motors, which has been cooking up a storm of off-road machines lately. Trucks like the newly-redesigned GMC Canyon and Sierra 1500 AT4X AEV Edition are proof of GM’s intention to keep pace with automakers like Ford and Toyota regarding off-road savvy trucks. Like the Sierra 1500 AT4X AEV Edition, the AEV team helped bring the Silverado ZR2 Bison to fruition.
“Our most recent collaboration with AEV resulted in the much-acclaimed Colorado ZR2 Bison,” said Scott Bell, Chevrolet Vice President. “We’re thrilled to team up again to bring customers Chevrolet’s next chapter of off-road dominance, this time on Silverado.”
Setting The Stage
AEV, or American Expedition Vehicles, worked with Chevrolet previously on the 2019 Colorado ZR2 Bison. It was the first collaboration between the two companies, and the Silverado version is dressed just as nicely as the smaller Colorado.
“The Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 Bison is the ultimate half-ton truck for backcountry adventures,” said Dave Harriton, AEV CEO. “The Silverado ZR2 Bison checks all the boxes — robust stamped steel bumpers, complete underbody protection, a factory-tuned off-road suspension, and locking differentials front and rear.”
The Chevy Silverado ZR2 Bison has an estimated approach angle of 32.5 degrees and a departure angle of 23.4 degrees. By comparison, the standard Silverado ZR2 has a 31.8-degree approach angle and a 23.3-degree departure angle (although both trucks are expected to have the same ground clearance at 11.2 inches).
The Silverado ZR2 Bison is standard with gloss black 18-inch AEV wheels and 33-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory Mud Terrain tires.
Man of Steel
The front and rear bumpers are AEV-stamped steel three millimeters thick, with powder and e-coat treatments. Heavy-duty recovery points and step pads are also part of the front and rear bumper design, while the front can support a winch. Five hot-stamped boron steel skid plates protect the front, rear differential, transfer case, and fuel tank.
The press-hardened steel used for the underbody skid plates is three-and-a-half times stronger than an equivalent cold-stamped high-strength steel. “We are confident off-road enthusiasts are going to love this truck,” Harriton added.
Supporting all that steel is a robust and off-road specific chassis and suspension with front and rear e-lockers and Multimatic 40-millimeter DSSV spool-valve dampers. The Multimatic units feature three separate spool valves to control damping and three connected chambers for fluid flow. Alongside uniquely tuned springs, the Multimatic spool-valve dampers provide maximum front and rear suspension travel. “The 2023 Silverado ZR2 Bison unlocks the pinnacle of the nameplate’s off-road capability,” Bell said.
Chevy Silverado ZR2 Bison Availability
Production of the Chevy Silverado ZR2 Bison is expected to begin in early 2023. Starting MSRP is $78,490, including destination. GM’s evergreen 6.2-liter V8 with 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft. of torque will power the Silverado ZR2 Bison. The engine is paired to a 10-speed automatic. The Multi-Flex tailgate from the current Silverado is also standard for the ZR2 Bison.