Thursday, September 5, 2013

50 Silverados caravan to the Royals game for a good cause

Chevy trucks.  You gotta’ love ‘em.  There’s hardly a major structure built in the last 95 years for which there wasn’t some kind of Chevrolet truck involved.  From the farm to the city, and everything in between, you are going to find a cab, a box, and a bowtie. 

But the main function of trucks rarely changes, so you don’t see all-new models very often.  That’s why when they do, you know it’s for a good reason.  Enter the all-new 2014 Chevy Silverado.  With stiff competition from the Ford F-150 and the Ram 1500, Chevrolet really needed to hit a home run with this one.

And speaking of home runs, the Kansas City Chevy Dealers gave me the opportunity to join a drive-away, where 50 new Silverados had a police escort from the Cabella’s in Kansas City, Kan., over to Kauffman Stadium for the Royals vs. Mariners game.  Now if you’ve never experienced something like this, you’re missing out.  The police literally closed down I-70 and all the exit ramps while our caravan sailed on through.  If only my normal commute was this awesome. 

The trucks were each owned by different Chevy dealerships in Kansas City.  The bright red LT that I rode in was chauffeured by Terance Echols from Roberts Chevrolet in Lee’s Summit.  He did good—stayed in his lane, didn’t hit a police motorcycle, and parked straight.  He also endured my yammering and bad jokes without tossing me out on the highway.  Thanks, Terance.

Now I’ve got a pretty good reference on trucks, as I’ve spent time with new Fords, Rams, and the older offerings from GM.  So I think I can tell you with some certainty that this is a fine vehicle.  That probably seems like a strange way to describe a pickup.  But by “fine,” I mean, refined, Cadillac-like, exquisite.  If you are serious about a smooth ride, minimal road noise, and a quiet cabin, trucks are the new luxury vehicles.  Just try and come up with a car that soaks up the miles like one of these new Silverados.  I don’t think you can do it.

The new Silverado doesn’t share one body panel with the old one, but it doesn’t look radically different.  So what’s the point?  Well, truck buyers tend to be leery about change, so the big differences are under the skin.  Now Chevy does offer a V6 in these, but unlike Ford and Ram, they still focus their spotlight on the 5.3-liter V8.  That engine is good for a claimed 23-mpg on the highway, which is quite respectable on a rig this big and brickey (that’s my own word).  It’ll even tow up-to 11,500 pounds.  The very thought that they can ride like they do, work like they do, and get the kind of mileage they do is amazing to me.

This event wasn’t all about the trucks, though.  Chevrolet Sponsors the “Everyday Heroes Come Home” program, where wounded veterans are presented with newly-refurbished homes.  On this day, former U.S. Army Specialist Rodney Price threw out the first pitch, and then was surprised with his new home after the fourth inning.  Price received a serious shrapnel injury to his legs in 2005.  So the Silverado drive was more of a secondary reason for GM officials to be at the game.  This presentation was the main thing.

Oh, and there was a Royals game happening during all of this.  I have to admit, I assumed the Royals were going to be totally blown out.  At one point, the score was five-to-nothin’.  But incredibly, the Royals battled back.  In fact, they tied the thing up, and ended up playing 13 (!) innings.  And finally, Mike Moustakas nailed a walk-off home run, winning the game, and keeping the Royals' playoff hopes alive.

If you want to see the new Silverado, check out the slideshow below, or click this link for a nicer version.

1 comment:

  1. C,

    Kudooooooooos to all the Chevy dealers, staff, drivers, police dept,
    Royals............That was neat..............

    I see you even made the photo shoot in one pic !! Good goin"

    Don - Basehor, Ks
    "Basehor Boys"