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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I finally put in a reservation for the Silverado EV WT this week. I came close to ordering an F-150 Lightning but it's very large loss of range at highway speeds in winter stopped me. To me, highway performance is the most important thing in getting an EV pickup. to my eye, the Silverado looks like they did a much better job with aerodynamics than the Ford with it's old traditional upright body.

How would you rank the current and future EV pickup aerodynamically? If I say that the Hummer is a 1 and a Tesla X (I know it's not a pickup) is a 10, how would you rank the pickups that are now available or might be soon?

Here are my rankings;

10 Tesla X ( just for reference)

6 Silverado EV

4 Rivian
3 Lightning
1 Hummer

What do you think?
 

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The way something looks doesn't necessarily translate into a good drag coefficient. I don't think GM has published it for either the Hummer or the Silverado.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
While I agree that ''looking aero'' doesn't necessarily translate to good aero numbers, I have to disagree about the Silverado compared to the Lightning. If you look a pics of both in profile, you see that the Ford has much more of traditional pickup shape, while the Chevy is getting into a more teardrop shape. Ford was smart to keep the shape of the best selling truck in the US and they are selling a lot of trucks. Chevy, with a completely new design has moved the pickup shape forward and I think it will pay off at highway speeds.

At highway speeds, unless you are going uphill all the way, aero becomes much more important than weight. I'm mostly concerned with highway driving. We will have to wait and get reports from actual truck owners, but I think the Silverado is going to be stellar on the highway!
 

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While I agree that ''looking aero'' doesn't necessarily translate to good aero numbers, I have to disagree about the Silverado compared to the Lightning. If you look a pics of both in profile, you see that the Ford has much more of traditional pickup shape, while the Chevy is getting into a more teardrop shape. Ford was smart to keep the shape of the best selling truck in the US and they are selling a lot of trucks. Chevy, with a completely new design has moved the pickup shape forward and I think it will pay off at highway speeds.

At highway speeds, unless you are going uphill all the way, aero becomes much more important than weight. I'm mostly concerned with highway driving. We will have to wait and get reports from actual truck owners, but I think the Silverado is going to be stellar on the highway!

I hope the Silverado EV has an air suspension and can get really low to the ground at highway speeds.
 

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Rivian R1T, Suburban 2500, VW ID.4
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I'm pretty sure that they have air suspension, except for the WT. I don't know how low thy will let you go though.
Only 2 inches of adjustment, so I would assume 1 up and 1 down, but maybe it is just 2 down. My R1T has almost 6 inches, which is spread across 5 preset height, and at it's lowest the ride is terrible. I sometimes let it go down one level at highway speeds, but usually keep it at standard height. It really doesn't make that big of a difference.
 

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According to the Ford marketing guy, he F150 team had to sell the idea to management, the key part being it had to be profitable on every vehicle. The only way to do this is by leveraging the ICE F150 scale. And since it was an experiement - actual sales seriously exceeded their estimates and expectations, the Lightning is an ICE retread with minimal outside the box thinking. They reused as much as possible to leverage that F150 pricing power (and since it was some kind of skunkworks probably run on a comparative shoestring).

Compare to the Silverado which fits squarely into GM's strategy of 100% electric as a centerpiece being their #1 selling vehical, and their 30 year history with EV's going back to the EV1 with 30 years continuous EV R&D, and finally this is a ground up from scratch effort, I don't expect the two to compare at all. GM is playing the long game, I expect the Silverado to blow the doors off the Lightning and we reservation holders will be patting ourselves on the back.
 

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Lol I love the evolution of the Ford vs Chevy debate... things have changed a lot...

Boss 302 vs Z28... Ford 351 MPI vs GM 350 with TBI... Windstar vs Astro ... DC fast charging speeds and stop duration while trying to tow 4,000 lbs.
 

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while the Chevy is getting into a more teardrop shape
As a professional pilot, I know a few things about aerodynamics, maybe not as much as a wind tunnel engineer but more than most.

The Silverado does not look at all "teardrop" to me. I don't see any attempt to utilize "area rule" progressive changes longitudinally. The sail pillars behind the cab might give it a bit more structural rigidity but they will not help aerodynamics much, if at all. Squared off midgate wall, open bed, and vertical tailgate are not good for aero at all. A tonneau helps some but not as much as one might think. Underbody smoothness is something I haven't been able to see or guess at, but that could make a huge difference. F150 Lightning apparently has an active aero dam underneath to try to cut underbody drag, but there's only so much lipstick that can be put on such a pig. I do see a ton of places where "interference drag" between neighboring panels, turbulent vortices, etc are likely on the Silverado.

I'm guessing the Cd of the Silverado is still going to be in the mid .4's, maybe even .5 . Cybertruck may have not awesome looks but some people did some CFD modeling and it came out surprisingly well, down under .4 with the vault cover closed.
 
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