Car Review

2012 Chevrolet Silverado 1500: Used Car Review

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ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Ron Sessions July 2015

The 2012 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 light-duty pickup is available as a 2- to 3-passenger regular cab, a 4- to 5-passenger extended cab or a 5- to 6-passenger crew cab. The regular cabs come with a standard 6.5-foot bed or a long 8-foot bed. Extended cabs have wider choices with a short 5.7-foot bed, a standard 6.5-foot bed and a long 8-foot bed available. Because the crew cab has two full rows of seats, it uses the short 5.7-foot bed. Both rear-wheel drive and 4-wheel drive (4WD) are offered, and 4-wheel anti-lock brakes, stability control, front-seat side airbags and overhead airbags are standard. Maximum towing capacity is 10,700 pounds. New for 2012 are a standard spare-tire lock and cruise control on all trims, plus upgraded chrome grilles on the LS and LT, an available hard-drive navigation system, and heated and cooled seats on the LTZ.

Navigation, dealer-installed Wi-Fi, a power sunroof, 20-inch alloy wheels, an EZ-Lift tailgate, a locking tailgate, automatic climate control, power adjustable pedals, remote start, ultrasonic rear park assist, a power-sliding rear window, rear-seat entertainment, cargo management, rain-sensing wipers, a rearview-mirror backup camera and power heated leather front seats with memory are available.

What We Like

Dual glove boxes on Work Truck, LS and LT trims; OnStar; standard stability control; side airbags and side-curtain airbags

What We Don't

No manual transmission; small air-conditioning and audio buttons on LTZ model; poor fuel economy of 6.2-liter V8

Fuel Economy & Engine Specs

2012 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 regular and 2-wheel-drive (2WD) extended cabs are available with a 4.3-liter V6 that makes 195 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque. Two-wheel-drive versions are rated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at 15 miles per gallon in the city and 20 mpg on the highway, while 4-wheel-drive versions get a 14 mpg city/18 mpg hwy rating. All use regular unleaded fuel and a 4-speed automatic transmission.

A 4.8-liter V8 mated to a 4-speed automatic is available on regular, extended-cab and crew-cab models. It develops 302 hp and 305 lb-ft of torque and can burn regular unleaded or E85. EPA ratings are 14 mpg city/19 mpg hwy for the 2-wheel-drive version and 13 mpg city/18 mpg hwy on the 4-wheel-drive version.

A 5.3-liter V8 is available on regular, extended cabs and crew cabs, burning regular unleaded or E85. It produces 315 hp and 335 lb-ft of torque. Equipped with a 6-speed automatic, EPA ratings for both 2WD and 4WD Silverados are 15 mpg city/21 mpg hwy. The 5.3-liter V8 uses Active Fuel Management that idles four of the eight cylinders to save fuel under light cruising conditions.

Extended and crew cabs are available with an E85-capable 6.2-liter V8 with 403 hp and 417 lb-ft of torque. Premium unleaded is recommended but not required. EPA estimates are 13 mpg city/18 mpg hwy for 2WDs and 12 mpg city/18 mpg hwy for 4WDs. A 6-speed automatic comes standard.

Standard Features & Options

The Silverado 1500 comes in WT, LS, LT, XFE and LTZ trims.

The WT (Work Truck) comes with rubberized flooring, vinyl seats, air conditioning, 245/70 tires on 17-in steel wheels, a 4-speaker AM/FM radio, OnStar, cruise control, a cloth 40/20/40-split front bench seat, dual glove boxes, intermittent wipers, a tilt steering wheel, auto headlamps, a black grille and front bumper, a chrome rear bumper, a lockable spare tire, dual cargo lamps, an overhead console, a trip computer and folding manual outside mirrors.

The LS mirrors WT equipment but comes only as a crew cab with the 4.8-liter V8, remote keyless entry, SiriusXM radio, auto headlamps and power windows, mirrors and door locks.

The LT adds a chrome front bumper, chrome grille, carpeting, upgraded cloth seats, front-seat lumbar adjustment, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, lockable front-seat storage, a USB port, a CD/MP3 player, a rear-window defogger, an auto-dimming inside mirror, a compass and an outside-temperature gauge.

The fuel-saving XFE 2WD model has aerodynamic enhancements, a 6-speed automatic transmission, 17-in alloy wheels, tall gearing and a 5.3-liter V8 rated at 15 mpg city/22 mpg hwy.

The range-topping LTZ brings a body-color front bumper and grille surround, leather seats, heated power front seats, a memory driver's seat, auto climate control, a 7-speaker Bose stereo with a 6-disc CD changer and steering-wheel controls, a premium instrument panel, an automatic locking rear differential, 18-in alloys, a trailer hitch, fog lamps, power-folding turn-signal mirrors, remote starting, heated windshield washers, a garage-door opener and rain-sensing wipers.

The off-road-oriented Z71 package includes 265/65-18 on-/off-road tires on alloy wheels, increased ground clearance, wheel flares and off-road suspension with Rancho monotube shocks.

Pricing

Crew cabs are the priciest because they have four conventional doors and the most enclosed space and room, although they also come with the smallest beds. Four-wheel-drive models exact a premium, especially in northern or mountain states.

To get a good idea of the prices of used 2012 Silverado 1500 pickups, check out the used-car values on KBB.com. You can also search the Autotrader Classifieds to see what models are for sale in your area.

Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has announced the following recall for the 2012 Chevrolet Silverado 1500:

The ignition switch may bind in the start position and revert to the accessory position, switching off the engine, power brakes, power steering and airbags. This increases crash and injury risks.

Recall repairs are required by law, even if the vehicle is out of warranty. Your dealer can check to see if the repairs were performed and, if not, will fix the car at no charge to you.

Safety Ratings & Warranties

NHTSA gave the 2012 Silverado four stars overall, with four for frontal impacts, five for side impacts and four for rollover performance.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) rated the 2012 Silverado crew cab as Good for moderate-overlap front impacts, Acceptable for side impacts and head-restraint and seat crash performance, and Marginal for roof strength. IIHS did not rate regular or extended cabs.

Chevrolet covered the 2012 Silverado with a 3-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty, a 5-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty with roadside assistance and a 6-year/100,000-mile corrosion-perforation warranty.

Chevrolet certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicles cannot have more than 75,000 miles on the odometer and must be 5 years old or newer. Every CPO Silverado undergoes a 172-point inspection. Those that pass receive a 12-month/12,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty, plus whatever remains on the transferable, original 5-year/100,000-mile powertrain coverage. Also included is a 2-year/30,000-mile maintenance plan with roadside assistance.

Other Cars to Consider

2012 Ford F-150 -- Ford adds a 365-hp twin-turbo EcoBoost V6 to the existing lineup of a 302-hp 3.7-liter V6, a 360-hp 5.0-liter V8 and a 411-hp 6.2-liter V8. Max towing capacity is 11,300 pounds.

2012 RAM 1500 -- For 2012, the RAM model becomes a brand, keeping the big-rig look and smooth-riding coil-spring rear suspension, along with a choice between the 215-hp 3.7-liter V6, the 310-hp flex-fuel 4.7-liter V8 and the 390-hp 5.7-liter HEMI V8 powertrains. Max towing capacity is 10,450 pounds.

Autotrader's Advice

Extended and crew cabs with the midlevel 5.3-liter V8 are what most people want. We'd recommend at least the LS trim to get power windows, power door locks and power mirrors. Avoid modified trucks, and look for lower-mileage examples that have seen obvious care and maintenance. Be sure to get a vehicle-history report, and make sure all safety recalls have been performed.

Find a Chevrolet Silverado for sale

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2012 Chevrolet Silverado 1500: Used Car Review - Autotrader