GM considered bigger shocks, but got it right


As production of the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 approaches, we MC&T plan to bring you several ideas from people who made this possible.

I recently caught up with Scott Janson, Vehicle Performance Manager for Performance Variants, Parts and Motorsports, about the engineering behind the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2. During our chat we talked about the unique engineering that went into Chevrolet’s newest, biggest and meanest off-road truck. It was also revealed why the ZR2 doesn’t feature hardware like bigger tires or bigger Multimatic DSSV shocks. And if that didn’t reduce costs and complexity, it boiled down to undeniable performance data.

Image via Chevrolet

“We were concerned about the perception of the shocks because they are similar in size to the Colorado ZR2. When you see some of our competition and other shock manufacturers, they have some really big off-road shocks. We worked on some of that, but as we found out, it doesn’t have to be that big.

It was data from champion desert racing driver Chad Hall that determined that Chevrolet did not need to fit a larger Multimatic DSSV shock into the Silverado ZR2’s suspension.

“We used a similar strategy (between the Colorado ZR2 and the Silverado ZR2). It has similar parts with DSSV shocks, for us it is one of the staple of the suspension. The Colorado ZR2 was very successful so we wanted to keep going. The most important part with the racing truck was adjusting the suspension. Although this truck is always different – different springs, different damping settings – we also tried different sizes of shock absorbers, ”explained Janson.

Image via Chevrolet

A proven conclusion in the race

“We found that Chad can run on the same shocks with a different melody, so we thought it didn’t make sense to pass that expense on to the customer,” Janson said. “If we can make it as comfortable off-road as it is on-road with the same shocks, that’s what we’re doing. “

Ultimately, Chevy’s partnership with Chad Hall Racing saved all parties money on the suspension.

“For me that was huge because without Chad I think we would just have gone for a bigger, more expensive shock that we didn’t really need,” Janson continued.

Chevrolet and Chad Hall Racing have officially worked together since 2017, when the team launched a special Colorado ZR2 designed for the Best In The Desert Racing series. Its inaugural competition was the 550-mile Las Vegas Desert Race to Reno; the longest off-road race in the United States.

From there, it was a smooth transition to integrate Chad Hall Racing into the development of the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2.

Image via Chevrolet

“We already had Chad Hall on board… this time (with the Silverado ZR2) we wanted to know a bit more ahead of time,” Janson said. “So what we did was buy a truck from Chad Hall, set it up to look like a ZR2, and he’s been using it for a year and a half, so we’ve got a lot learned from him on the Silverado, before developing (ZR2) and as we developed it.

Janson described the relationship between Chevrolet and Chad Hall as successful.

“He’s really good with us, he doesn’t just beat trucks. He knows we need feedback, so he’s happy to help us develop it. He had some issues which we fixed and incorporated into our design. It’s a big part of that on the Silverado that we didn’t have on the Colorado.

To conclude that the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 did not need an increase in the size of the Multimatic DSSV shocks, the team monitored the temperatures of the fluids in the shocks, which can lead to heating or even failure of the shocks. ‘equipment.

“Once we even decided to fit the Chad (Silverado ZR2) with a similar size shock (like the Colorado ZR2) – and because it has different springs it gets a different tune, but it push it a little harder than a hobbyist – we did Sure the damper fluid temperatures were good and they weren’t overheating, and that’s a big deal for the gaskets. Especially this top seal. If that rod gets too hot, it starts spitting liquid all over the place. That was the last thing we wanted was to make it happen.

Doing something for the sake of doing it is not what Janson and his team were looking for.

Image copyright Manoli Katakis, Muscle Cars & Trucks.

“We have ideas and we try to prove ourselves wrong. To go with something different or bigger, this truck didn’t need it. The shocks that we have with the suspension geometry work, so why change just for the sake of change? We already had something working, we were able to make it look different, we made some tweaks to the spring rates, and off we go. We just came to terms with the ride and handling, and stuff like that.

For those looking to upgrade the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2’s suspension even further, look for a series of performance accessories that are sure to show up by SEMA 2022. Based on what we see offered on the Colorado ZR2, we should see a suspension lift kit, long-travel shocks and shocks, long-travel leaf springs, rebound shocks, and more.

Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 2022: Details

MC&T can confirm that Chevrolet dealers have started pricing the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2, with an MSRP of $ 66,795, which includes a destination charge of $ 1,695.

The design of the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 ZR2 is easily distinguished from the rest of the lineup thanks to a unique steel front bumper that has been designed with removable end caps for easier replacement in the event of a close encounter with rocks or other off-road objects. At the rear, the dual exhaust system was placed before the rear bumper to eliminate potential damage.

2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 1500 Design
Image via Chevrolet

The 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2’s overall design helps the truck deliver a best-in-class 31.8-degree approach angle. These state-of-the-art standard measurements continue with a break angle of 23.4 degrees and a respectable departure angle of 23.3 degrees. By comparison, the F-150 Tremor has an approach of 27.6 degrees, a threshold of 21.2 degrees, and a departure angle of 24.3 degrees. Better yet, the Silverado ZR2 beats the standard Ford F-150 Raptor (35-inch tires) in approach and crossover angles (31-degree approach, 22.7-degree crossover, and 23.9-degree departure for the Raptor).

Ground clearance for the Silverado ZR2 is just under a foot, at 11.2 inches. All of these measurements are made with 33 inch tires.

Minor exterior finishes for the Silverado ZR2 are a black hood insert, unique grille with integrated lighting and flow-tie emblem, ZR2 badges, unique 18-inch wheels and a unique interior trimmed in black leather. jet / stone gray.

The Silverado ZR2 is only available in a crew cab configuration, with a short box. That might change later, but considering the take rates on double cabins, we wouldn’t expect that.

2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 ZR2 approaches starting breaking angles msrp price
Image via Chevrolet

2022 Silverado ZR2 Engine and Powertrain

As MC&T first reported, the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 will only have one engine choice, with the 6.2L L87 V8 engine producing 420 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque. All that pushrod goodness is sent to the wheels via GM’s 10-speed automatic transmission, which is now controlled via a console-mounted gear selector instead of a shifter on the steering column. Power is sent to the rear wheels or all of them via an electronically controlled transfer case.

Following the same formula as the smaller Chevrolet Colorado ZR2, the Silverado ZR2 will also feature locking differentials up front and rear, which will help the truck excel at rock exploring. A one-pedal low-speed driving mode is also a standard feature, which will help drivers during low-speed events, which could be the difference between the truck overcoming an obstacle or receiving a nasty trail battle scar.

The 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2’s maximum payload is 1,440 pounds and conventional towing capacity is 8,900 pounds.

Interior Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 2022
Image via Chevrolet

Suspension And Chassis

The Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 T2022 will feature a set of Mutlimatic DSSV shock absorbers and single springs as the main suspension upgrade, measuring 40mm in diameter. These dampers are enriched with three separate distributors to control damping and three connected chambers for fluid flow and thermal management. Chevrolet claims that the maximum front and rear suspension travel is also increased compared to the Silverado Trail Boss. The underbody is also reinforced with a unique skid plate set that protects critical truck components, such as the oil pan and fuel tank.

The Silverado ZR2 shares most of the chassis and drivetrain components with the Hall Racing truck, including the frame, drivetrain, 2-speed transfer case, and the 6.2L L87 V8 engine.

The Goodyear Wrangler Territory MT tire size on the Silverado ZR2 is 33 inches. They are eclipsed by the standard 35-inch BFG KO2 tires on the Ford F-150 Raptor, and even more so with the truck’s 37-inch giant tire set (a $ 7,500 option). And those big rubbers are great for low speed crawl, this is where the ZR2 would be most comfortable. Unlike the Hummer EV, the Silverado ZR2 does not have a built-in wheel speed sensor calibration in case customers choose to upgrade their tire size.

The 2022 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 will be available at dealerships starting in the first quarter of 2022.

2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 ZR2
Image via Chevrolet

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