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15 Silverado/Sierra 1500 towing capacity lower with J2807 standard


Zane
  • General Motors has announced that starting with the 2015 model year it will report towing capacity determined using SAE J2807 recommended testing practices. The more rigorous testing procedure has been held at arms length by the big three for years. Pickup producers have long overstated the capacity of their trucks using internal test procedures. The new J2807 standard brings everyone up to the same playing field. This means every pickup is finally being rated for towing capacity in the exact same manner from the 2015 model year forward.

     

    That's great news for consumers but the much more rigorous test lowers the "official" capacity numbers that many automakers love to throw around in ads.The Silverado and Sierra 1500 will see their towing capacity adjusted slightly down for the 2015 model year due to the new testing requirements. Only one Silverado and Sierra configuration, a 2-wheel-drive double cab with the optional 6.2L engine and the Max-Trailering package, will retain the prior year's rating of 12,000lbs.

GM describes the new SAE J2807 test like this:

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Performance standards for trailering vehicles: To help ensure that vehicles can confidently tow the rated maximum trailer weight under a variety of real-world driving conditions, SAE J2807 establishes specific test protocols. These include:

 

Cooling capability on a long highway upgrade modeled on the Davis Dam grade on Arizona SR 68;

Launch and acceleration performance on a level road and a 12 percent upgrade;

Combined handling performance – understeer and trailer sway;

Combined braking performance – stopping distance and parking brake-hold on grade; and

Structural performance for the vehicle and hitch or hitch receiver.

New calculations for trailer weight ratings: In addition to the performance standards, SAE J2807 also uses a specific set of assumptions to calculate maximum trailer weight ratings:

 

For light-duty full-size pickups (GVWR < 8,500 lbs.), SAE J2807 assumes that the tow vehicle includes any options with higher than 33 percent penetration;

It assumes there is both a driver and passenger in the vehicle, each weighing 150 pounds;

It assumes that tow vehicles also include up to 70 pounds of aftermarket hitch equipment (where applicable); and

For conventional trailer towing, SAE J2807 assumes that 10 percent of the trailer weight is on the tongue.

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Here's how some of the most popular Silverado/Sierra 1500 configurations compare with last year:

 

Configuration

2014 Rating / 2015 J2807 Rating

 

Regular cab 2WD 4.3L V-6 6.5’ box 3.43 axle

6,400 lbs. / 6,100 lbs.

 

Double cab 2WD 5.3L V-8 6.5’ box 3.08 axle

6,900 lbs. / 6,500 lbs.

 

Crew cab 2WD 5.3L V-8 5.7’ box 3.42 axle

9,800 lbs. / 9,400 lbs.

 

Regular cab 4x4 4.3L V-6 6.5’ box 3.42 axle

7,600 lbs. / 7,600 lbs.

 

Double cab 4x4 5.3L V-8 6.5’ box 3.42 axle

9,600 lbs. / 9,200 lbs.

 

Crew cab 4x4 5.3L V-8 5.7’ box 3.73 axle

11,200 lbs. / 10,800 lbs.


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On the bright side of all the manu's using J2807 is GM is the only pickup manufacturer that DOESN'T require the use of a weight-distrubuting hitch on the HDs when towing a trailer that weighs more than, say 8,000 pounds (as Ford and Ram do) to be "properly equipped." That says a lot about the new truck's stability control system and chassis.

Edited by Bassboats
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I have a 14 Silverado Double Cab 4WD with the 6.2 and the 3.42 axle. The 14 rating was 9500, or 100 lbs. less than a similar configured 5.3. I see now the same configured 2015 6.2 with the 3.42 axle is rated 11,800 or an increase of 2300 lbs. I know the 14 with the 3.42 was not the NHT where the 2015 does. The NHT option increases the ring gear from 9.5 to 9.76; rear axle rating from 3950 to 4100 with no increase in the overall 7200 GVWR. Doesn't seem likely the NHT bits account for much of the 2300 lbs. increase. I believe the 2014 6.2 was way under rated.

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LOL Nargg! I was just about to post that I don't know many 150 lb people!!! And most boats calculate passenger capacity using an average of 140 lbs...my boat hasn't sank yet :-)

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LOL Nargg! I was just about to post that I don't know many 150 lb people!!! And most boats calculate passenger capacity using an average of 140 lbs...my boat hasn't sank yet :-)

That's why you need to pay attention to the PAYLOAD amount. Someone will go and buy a truck that is "rated" to tow 9,000 plus pounds and never open the driver's door to check the payload amount. Then they go over to the "towing forum" and try to figure out how to tell their wife they can't buy that 32' trailer she wants. Happens all the time.......

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I often wonder if anyone who posts on topics like this has ever towed a RV. These ratings are all smoke and mirrors. Sure a 1/2 ton can "pull" a 30 ft trailer but give me a break it wouldn't be safe to do this in a Walmart parking lot much less on the open road. I even saw one poster who was happy about not having to use an equalizer hitch because GM says it is not neccesary. I mean - so what if the back end feels like a sponge and cross winds shove you into the opposite lane or going up hills causes traffic backups because you can only do 30 miles an hour. These ratings make the RV manufacturers smile because they can say to the empty headed customers "you have a Sierra 1500 - sure you can tow this 32 ft fifth wheel just look at the GM web site". As you may be able to tell these "capacity ratings" get me a KindaCranky

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I often wonder if anyone who posts on topics like this has ever towed a RV.

I have, several times as I own one. I also have towed enclosed trailers, cargo trails, motorcycle trailer, dump trailers............

 

What's your question?

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That's why you need to pay attention to the PAYLOAD amount. Someone will go and buy a truck that is "rated" to tow 9,000 plus pounds and never open the driver's door to check the payload amount. Then they go over to the "towing forum" and try to figure out how to tell their wife they can't buy that 32' trailer she wants. Happens all the time.......

Payload and towing capacity are not the same. The only correlation is the more you have in the bed the less you can have in the trailer, but if a truck is rated for 9,000 plus pounds what does checking your payload lead to a such a surprise. My truck is rated for 7,400 lbs and a load capacity of 1,600 lbs. So if I don't load up the bed or the cab, only me and my fuel I only subtract a few hundred lbs...say maybe 400 lbs max. So my towing capacity would drop down to 7,000 lbs, not accounting for tongue weight of course.

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Payload and capacity go hand in hand. You can't get away from payload-because that will dictake how heavy of a trailer you will be able to tow. Because you have to take in to account tongue weight-which in many instances will take up the vast majority of your payload. BTW-all trailers weights are DRY as quoted by the manufacturer and don't include water, propane, clothes, bedding, pots, pans, tools, etc.

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I often wonder if anyone who posts on topics like this has ever towed a RV. These ratings are all smoke and mirrors. Sure a 1/2 ton can "pull" a 30 ft trailer but give me a break it wouldn't be safe to do this in a Walmart parking lot much less on the open road. I even saw one poster who was happy about not having to use an equalizer hitch because GM says it is not neccesary. I mean - so what if the back end feels like a sponge and cross winds shove you into the opposite lane or going up hills causes traffic backups because you can only do 30 miles an hour. These ratings make the RV manufacturers smile because they can say to the empty headed customers "you have a Sierra 1500 - sure you can tow this 32 ft fifth wheel just look at the GM web site". As you may be able to tell these "capacity ratings" get me a KindaCranky

 

Correct...right on! I towed a 5,500 pound travel trailer 8,000 miles in 8 months around the USA last year. Would I have wanted heaiver? Nope not one bit. Thankfully, alot of these guys who buy that "condo on wheels" only tow to the lake and back and don't put the rest of us at risk.

 

Alot of truck owners just hate to tell their wife-"Honey I didn't buy enough truck...I can't tow the 32 foot trailer with 3 slides that you want!"

Edited by CKNSLS
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What I meant was if I have a 1,600lb load capacity what does that number tell me I can tow? Nothing, I still have to know what the truck can tow apart from load capacity. What I said what you have to know load capacity to subtract it was max trailer weight but load capacity tells you nothing more than what the truck can haul not tow.

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