Chevrolet is readying a refresh for its trusty Silverado pickup, and these spy shots give us our first glimpse at what might be in store. The front and rear fascias of this prototype are covered, obscuring some styling tweaks (with LED accents up front).
More interestingly, our spies suggest that many of the Silverado’s body components could move to aluminum with this mid-cycle update. The hood will go from steel to the lighter alloy, and it’s possible the front fenders could benefit from the weight-saving material, too.
Ford’s latest F-150 is extremely aluminum-intensive, and by switching the construction, 700 pounds was trimmed off the truck’s weight. We’ve already heard that General Motors is working with a similar plan for its next-generation fullsize trucks.
Beyond that, expect the smaller 5.3-liter V8 to ditch its six-speed automatic transmission in favor of the eight-speed unit that’s already mated to the larger, 6.2-liter V8. Neither transmission will stick around very long, as the trucks will likely adopt a 10-speed automatic around 2017.
Look for the updated Silverado to debut later this year, likely as a 2016.5 model.