How 1950’s Chevy Pick Ups Measure Up to Today’s Silverado
The year was 1918 when Chevy sold its first pickup truck. That same year, Chevrolet Motor Company merged with GM. That was the start of it; the start of what would become an unstoppable force in the world of automotives, more specifically, pickup trucks. Since then Chevy has been a leading contender and more often than not, top ranked in the world of trucks.
America has always been a culture that progresses and changes, Chevy has changed with it. In times of economic prosperity as well as depression, war time or not, the last century has proven that the Chevy truck dealer has learned to listen to the American people and deliver the product they want.
During the 1950’s Chevy was producing a new line of pickup trucks; “Task Force”. This line up of pickups became what every pickup there after that would strive to be. The ingenuity and advances Chevrolet made with their first small block V8 engine became that which would be borrowed from for the rest of time. Their image became iconic and would forever hold a page not just in American history, but in American nostalgia as well.
As Chevy continues to outdo itself in production of new pickup trucks, one needs to look no further than the new 2015 Chevy Silverado to understand its constant progression and desire for being the best.
Can the trucks from Chevy’s iconic past measure up to the Chevy pickups of today? In taking a look at the era that defined Chevy’s pickups and comparing it to the 2015 Chevy Silverado, we get to see just how far Chevy has come if they do in fact still hold up.
Last year Chevy introduced its 2015 Silverado model. After receiving an overhaul in style and design the year before, it was nice to see Chevy return to making a pickup truck for people who love pickup trucks. The 2015 Silverado is that kind of truck again; rugged and strong. It operates to the capacity that its design suggests it can handle, and then some.
The ‘15 Silverado comes available in three different engines; a V6 and two different V8’s; your choice of the most fuel efficient pickup engine ever or the most powerful that Chevrolet has ever offered in a full-size pickup. Even the V6 outranks the competition with the most torque available in its class.
Those engine specs aside, the Silverado boasts a spacious cabin that spares no expense on quality material interior. Quality of the drive is smooth. It is the perfect juxtaposition for the dual personality that make pickup trucks unique.
1950’s “Task Force”
In the late 1940’s Chevy had produced a pickup that was to leave such an imprint on not only the American Automotive Industry, but also on the American people. Having simply designed a pickup that reflected the post-WWII economy that America was now a part of, Chevy was redesigning for a new era as well as a new driver.
The culture was changing and what it meant to be American was changing. Therefore, what it meant to be a pickup truck in America needed to change with it. It was during this time of adjusting that Chevy would come up with the first small block V8 engine; the engine that would redefine the Chevrolet pickup truck. Also known as the ‘modern V8’ it was a the first lightweight engine that could fit in a truck midsize pickup but provide the power of a much larger vehicle.
“Modern Design for Modern Hauling”
When the Task Force was introduced, it was a redesign from the 3100 Half Ton pickup. Providing flashier and more sleek design with a larger, roomier interior, it style that was being emphasized. The whole body was now made with more aesthetic appeal. Chevy took from their newly redesigned sedans and translated that style to their pickups.
The point was clear; they wanted the American people to look at the pickup and see passenger car.
Offering upgrades like custom built cabs helped escalate its popularity. Clocks, radios and heaters were all offered to enhance passenger comfort. Chrome was an additional choice for front and rear bumpers.
V8 Block Engine
In 1955 was a very important year for Chevy. In the midst of changing designs they came up with and introduced the very first small block V8 engine. Pure innovation, It has become the most famous Chevy used engine ever. This lightweight engine weighed about the same as the V6 but provided all the power of a V8. It was pure ingenuity.
The block engine forever changed the Chevy and its pickups. With a new design inside and out, it was the 1955 model year that the iconic American made Chevy truck image would be forever embedded into our history and our minds.
The Little Engine that Could
In a time when America was trying to rediscover and redefine who we were as nation it made sense that American made cars would also redefine their image. For Chevrolet it happened 1955 when they introduced the first small block V8 engine. That was their defining moment in pickup truck history.
So impressive was the lightweight block engine created 60 years ago, that they’re still using it’s prototype with only slight changes to it.
When Chevy introduced the 2015 Silverado they offered their a 6.2L V8 engine in an 8 speed transmission. The reviews rave about the amount of power in this engine for a light-duty pickup truck.
With 60 years of growing, redesigning and changing, it should only make sense that eventually the pendulum would swing back to its beginning. That’s what we are seeing in the 2015 Silverado.
Today’s pickup trucks have become so big, so luxurious some would argue they’ve lost what made them great in the first place, what originally attracted Americans to them. The 2015 Silverado has reintroduced America to the Chevy pickup. Keeping the modern engineering and technology, the ‘15 Silverado is a return to the original 1955 Chevy.
No one wants to be lost in nostalgia, but we don’t want to be blinded by shiny chrome anymore either. Chevy’s ‘15 Silverado is the return to that. Strip down the bling, go back to basics, and Chevy still produces a monster of a pickup.
In my opinion, the question isn’t if the 1950’s Chevy truck can measure up to the 2015 Silverado, its if the 2015 Silverado can measure up to the 1950’s Chevy pickup.