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Learnings From The Colorado ZR2 Bison Program Helped Shorten The Process

2023 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 Bison NAIAS Detroit Auto Show
Image copyright Mattheus Pach, Muscle Cars & Trucks

The Bowtie Brand and American Expedition Vehicles have recently pulled back the curtain on a uniquely capable, uniquely positioned off-road pickup truck that seeks to appeal to the more tactical overlanding crowd instead of the Baja-blasting Ford Raptor and Ram TRX trucks. Building off the success of the Colorado ZR2 Bison, which came to market in 2018, AEV and GM engineers and designers once again collaborated to bring forth the 2023 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 Bison, which follows the same formula as its smaller predecessor.

You would think that a truck like this would have taken a bit of time to get put together. But with so much learnings from that of the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison, the first-ever Silverado ZR2 Bison program was actually a much shorter project than you would expect.

“A year in a half, so approximately 18 months,” Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 Bison engineers told MC&T.

“We did learn some key touch points that were able to agree across from the (Colorado) Bison program that allows us to brand this market much faster. So, every time we work with a special department, we learn; they learn; I think it’s a two-way street. But, yeah, this here actually came to the market pretty fast based on the lessons learned with the current (Colorado ZR2 Bison).” Chevrolet engineers said.

Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 Bison
Image copyright Mattheus Pach, Muscle Cars & Trucks

Chevy Silverado ZR2 Bison: Details

The Chevy Silverado ZR2 Bison features upgraded front and rear bumpers, which improves the approach and departure angles in the Bison over the ZR2. As a result, the front approach angle on the Bison is an estimated 32.5 degrees (compared to 31.8 degrees on ZR2), and the departure angle improves to an estimated 23.4 degrees (compared to 23.3 degrees on ZR2). The suspension geometry, tires, and axles are all left alone, making the ride height of the 2023 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 Bison 11.2 inches, the same as the base ZR2. The front and rear AEV bumpers on this package consist of 3-millimeter-thick stamped steel and are powder and e-coated, giving added protection to the truck.

Speaking of protection, the Chevy Silverado ZR2 Bison package also features a swathe of extra underbody armor. The press-hardened steel used for the underbody skid plates is three-and-a-half times stronger than an equivalent cold-stamped high-strength steel plate and provides incredible resistance to underbody damage. There’s an entire list of additional features for this rock-crawling full-size truck.

The Silverado ZR2 Bison can be identified by its body-color crossbar and black grille design that displays the signature ZR2 badge on the front and the sporty “flow-tie.” A black matte finish on the tailgate also helps the Bison stand out. Inside, AEV decals are found on the headrests and all-weather floor liners. The 2023 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 Bison is expected to start production early next year with an MSRP of $78,490 USD, including destination. That’s slightly less than its mechanical equivalent, the GMC Sierra AT4X.

2023 Chevrolet Silverado ZR2 Bison

Written by Zac Quinn

Zac's love for cars started at a young age, after seeing the popular Eleanor from Gone In 60 Seconds. From there, fascination and enthusiasm blossomed and to this day the Ford Mustang remains a favorite. His first job started out detailing cars, but also provided the opportunity to work on restoration including an 1968 Ford Mustang, Pontiac Firebird, and a C3 Corvette, though he left that job before further work and experience could be had. From there, he was a detailer at a car dealership before quitting that job to try and finish college.

Much of his free time while studying was spent watching YouTube videos regarding new cars, or off-roading. 4WD247 is a personal favorite channel which rekindled a dying flame in car enthusiasm, now tailored towards trucks and SUVs and the fun that can be had building up an overlanding rig, and going on adventures, though, that chapter remains unwritten for the time being.

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