|104 - 445||Horsepower (hp)||370 - 410|
|401 - 445||Torque (lb-ft)||429 - 850|
|83.5||Max Cargo (cu.ft.)||74.7|
Heavy-duty pickup trucks are the cornerstone of enthusiast and professional towing and trailering. Pickups are also some of the most popular vehicles in the country, and with good reason. Many truck shoppers are often on the lookout for the latest offerings when it comes to the big three automakers, and 2021 is ripe with heavy-duty model years from some of the biggest brands. If you have been mulling over the decision to purchase a pickup between a 2021 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD vs 2021 Ram 2500, the competition is definitely fierce. Both trucks have a lot to offer, even on the base models. With tons of desirable features and technology to make towing a breeze, it's hard to go wrong with either truck. However, the advanced capability and options of the Chevy Silverado 2500 are definitely hard for any truck to beat.
The under-the-hood performance of any heavy-duty truck is the heart and soul of the vehicle. It needs horsepower for propulsion and torque to move heavy loads and carry large hauls. For those shopping for a heavy-duty pickup in the form of a 2021 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD or 2021 Ram 2500, you don't have to worry about either truck being a slouch in the performance department. Although, the Silverado very clearly edges out the Ram where it counts when it comes to horsepower and torque.
The 2021 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD has five available trims and several special editions you can select. You can have it configured with long or regular beds in rear-wheel or four-wheel drive and with either a regular cab, double cab, or crew cab format. With the 2021 Silverado 2500 HD, you have two distinct powertrains available across the different trim configurations, including a 6.6-liter V8 direct injection gasoline engine with variable valve timing that delivers 401 horsepower and up to 464 lb-ft of torque. The powertrain is paired with a 6-speed automatic transmission that comes equipped with an overdrive gear, auto grade braking for the engine when traveling downhill, and a rear axle ratio of 3.73:1.
For even more power, the Silverado 2500 HD can be paired with a 6.6-liter Duramax Turbo-Diesel V8 engine, which produces 445 horsepower and up to 910 lb-ft of torque. The rear axle ratio is 3.42:1, and it comes with an engine after-run feature to maintain engine cooling. To help with maximizing the output of torque from the Duramax, the V8 turbo-diesel is paired up with the always venerable Allison 10-speed transmission.
The Allison 10-speed automatic transmission features an electronically controlled overdrive function to maintain smooth shifting, along with the ability to switch to tow/haul mode to reduce gear scavenging when cycling through shifting. The tow/haul mode helps maintain cooling for the powertrain for especially heavy loads where the engine has to work that much harder to tow/trailer. An integrated power take-off is also available with passenger-side access and in-cabin control mechanisms, exclusively for the Allison 10-speed automatic transmission.
The 2021 Ram 2500 is available in six trims, with regular or crew cab configurations, along with rear-wheel or four-wheel drive options. Both standard and long-bed formats are also available, giving truck drivers plenty of variety when it comes to customization. This also extends to the powertrain, where two beefy engines are available for the 2021 Ram 2500.
The first engine is the highly popular 6.4-liter V8 heavy-duty Hemi engine, which produces 410 horsepower and up to 429 lb-ft of torque. The Hemi comes with the multi-displacement system (MDS) that helps conserve fuel and is paired with an 8-speed automatic transmission that is optimized to deliver as much torque to the axles as possible based on road conditions and the cargo load. Alternatively, there is the 6.7-liter turbo-diesel that can be fitted to a 6-speed automatic transmission. The engine is rated at around 370 horsepower and can deliver up to 850 lb-ft of torque, which is quite the downgrade compared to the Silverado's highly impressive 445 horsepower and 910 lb-ft of torque, giving a very clear and decisive edge to the 2021 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD.
The 2021 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD and 2021 Ram 2500 both come packed with technology, both inside and out. The Chevy Silverado 2500 HD includes features like halogen reflector headlamps, LED signature tail lamps, power-adjustable mirrors along with vertical trailering mirrors, solar absorbing glass, available cargo bed lighting, power tailgate, power sunroof, and remote start. Inside, the Silverado 2500 HD boasts the availability of a 10-way power driver and front passenger seats, with driver-side power lumbar support. 12-volt auxiliary front power outlets come standard, with available 120-volt box-mounted power outlets.
A 4.2-inch diagonal color driver information display comes standard with personalization features, warnings, and vehicle information. 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity also comes standard, along with a 6-speaker audio system, Bluetooth support, steering-wheel-mounted infotainment controls, and Chevrolet Connected Access with available OnStar services and navigation support. There's also an available Chevrolet Infotainment 3 Plus system that features an 8-inch HD color touchscreen with cloud storage, in-vehicle app access, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support. With cruise control, driver memory, power locks, availability of SiriusXM 360L satellite radio, Teen Driver mode, and available dual-zone automatic climate control, you not only have access to a great selection of comfort features but also plenty of tech to help to complement the power and performance of the Silverado.
The Ram 2500 comes with an available 8-way power-adjustable front passenger and driver seat with 2-way lumbar support. Uconnect with an available 12-inch screen and navigation support is paired with a media hub with 2 USB ports and GPS antenna input. Bluetooth support with voice-control, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto support are also included, along with the availability of SiriusXM Satellite Radio.
Ram Telematics comes standard, along with steering wheel mounted audio controls and the availability of 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot functionality on select model trims. Dual-zone climate control, the availability of a premium 17-speaker audio system, Adaptive Cruise Control, and 12-volt auxiliary power help round out the features, along with a 115-volt power outlet. While you have more luxury features with select trims of the Ram 2500, it lacks the 120-volt output like the Silverado and is also bereft of standard tech features available for the Silverado, such as Teen Driver mode, which is quite handy if you plan on allowing teenagers or new drivers to drive the truck.
Safety is an imperative feature for any driver, especially when handling a heavy-duty pickup that is trailering or towing thousands of pounds of cargo. Whether you go with the 2021 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD or the 2021 Ram 2500, both vehicles are outfitted with some great safety features, but you get just a bit more with the Silverado.
The Silverado 2500 HD comes standard with 6 airbags, OnStar connected services, and the Teen Driver mode. A rear vision camera also comes standard, while the availability of HD Rear Vision Cameras, bed view cameras, and auxiliary trailer cameras can help with trailering. Hitch Guidance with Hitch View, however, comes standard with all Silverado 2500 HD models. It gives you a visual display of how the truck aligns with the trailer, which is further improved thanks to the availability of Hitch View, allowing you to see how the hitch is in use during travels and can automatically apply the electric parking brake when the vehicle is put into park.
Other safety features include the Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert, tire pressure monitoring with the availability of tire temperature sensors, as well as StabiliTrak for stability control and traction control optimization, which comes standard on all models. StabiliTrak also comes equipped with Hill Start Assist, Trailer Sway Control, and Automatic Emergency Braking. The availability of other safety features includes Front and Rear Park Assist, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, perimeter lighting, and Forward Collision Alert.
The 2021 Ram 2500 comes packed with Electronic Stability Control with Electronic Roll Mitigation, Hill Start Assist, All-Speed Traction Control, and trailer sway damping, as well as a ParkView Rear Back Up Camera. Blind Spot Monitoring and Rear Cross Path Detection are available safety features, along with Forward Collision Warning, LaneSense Lane Departure Warning with Lane Keep Assist, and ParkSense Front and Rear Park Assist. Tire fill alerts are standard while tire pressuring monitoring is available, along with Hill Descent Control, but the latter is only available on specific trim models.
The additional trailering technologies for the Silverado, such as hitch guidance, as well as the standard implementation of StabiliTrak, means that you don't have to pay extra for safety features like Hill Descent Control, which is only available on select models of the Ram 2500. In short, you have access to more safety features right out of the box with the 2021 Chevy Silverado 2500 HD vs the 2021 Ram 2500. With added family-friendly technology like the Teen Driver mode, it's quite obvious that the Chevy Silverado 2500 HD is the better heavy-duty pickup in this category.