2006 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 Extended Cab Review | Edmunds.com

2006 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 Extended Cab

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Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) is a category of used car. Often late-model vehicles, they have been inspected, refurbished, if necessary, and are under warranty by the manufacturer.
Chevrolet Silverado 3500 Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 6.0 L V 8-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Rear Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 300 hp @ 4400 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 0/0 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2006 Chevrolet Silverado 3500

  • Although the one-ton Silverado still has the capacity to tackle just about any job, its newer competition has a slight edge when it comes to overall refinement and maximum towing power.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Multiple drivetrain configurations, substantial towing and hauling capacities, compliant ride quality.

  • Cons

    Interior design is showing its age, low-quality interior materials, below-average build quality.

  • What's New for 2006

    For 2006, the Duramax diesel engine receives a host of power and refinement upgrades, as well as reduced emissions. The Allison automatic transmission is now a six-speed, and features a tap-shift range selection mode. The optional camper-style mirrors have been replaced by a folding and extending design with a built-in convex spotter glass. Trim levels and packaging have also been juggled.

Full 2006 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 Review

What's New for 2006

For 2006, the Duramax diesel engine receives a host of power and refinement upgrades, as well as reduced emissions. The Allison automatic transmission is now a six-speed, and features a tap-shift range selection mode. The optional camper-style mirrors have been replaced by a folding and extending design with a built-in convex spotter glass. Trim levels and packaging have also been juggled.


Chevrolet's modern full-size pickup has been around in one form or another since the early '60s. Now into its sixth generation, the Silverado, as it's now called, boasts classic styling and some of the most powerful drivetrains available anywhere. A perennial competitor to the full-size offerings from Ford and Dodge, Chevrolet typically finishes a close second to Ford in sales, mostly due to the fact that it shares customers with the almost identically equipped GMC Sierra.

Often first to market with exclusive features, the Silverado 3500 continues that tradition by offering XM Satellite Radio, a worthwhile upgrade if you use your truck for long-distance trips. Chevy trucks also offer the OnStar communications system that provides the convenience of 24-hour on-call assistance for everything from tow truck requests to dinner reservations. Between its potent Duramax diesel and strong gas V8s, the 3500 can tackle just about any hard-core towing and hauling duties you could throw at it. Combine this with modern styling on the outside and plenty of available features on the inside, and this Silverado presents a compelling package for anyone in the market for a no-holds-barred work truck.

As capable as it is, however, the Silverado is starting to show its age while its competition has been slowly upgrading its offerings. Both Dodge and Ford offer powerful engine options, larger towing capacities, and interiors that are more refined. Needless to say, it's worth shopping around before settling on the one-ton Silverado.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 3500 is available in regular, extended- and crew-cab body styles with 8-foot boxes and either single or dual rear-wheel configurations. Single rear-wheel models come in 4WD only, while dual rear-wheel versions offer two-wheel drive on extended- and crew-cab models. Available trim levels include Work Truck, LS and LT1, LT2 and LT3. Work Trucks offer basics like 16-inch steel wheels, a vinyl 40/20/40 bench seat, dual-zone manual air conditioning and an AM/FM radio. LS models add chrome-finish wheels, grille and bumpers, cloth upholstery, cruise control and a CD player. The LT1 adds power windows and locks, and keyless entry. The LT2 includes a power driver seat and Bose audio. The LT3 includes leather seats and a CD changer.

Powertrains and Performance

The 3500's base engine is a 6.0-liter V8 rated at 300 horsepower and 360 pound-feet of torque. If that's not enough grunt under the hood for you, Chevrolet offers two more powerful options: an 8.1-liter V8 and a 6.6-liter turbodiesel V8. The 8.l-liter engine boasts an impressive 330 hp and 450 lb-ft of torque, while the updated-for-'06 diesel makes 360 hp and 650 lb-ft of torque. The standard transmission for the 6.0-liter V8 is a five-speed manual with a heavy-duty four-speed automatic optional. The 8.1-liter V8 and Duramax diesel can be hooked up to either a six-speed manual or a heavy-duty Allison six-speed automatic. Properly equipped, a dual-wheel 3500 can pull a 12,000-pound load.


All Silverados feature standard four-wheel antilock disc brakes. In government crash tests, the Silverado earned a three-star rating (out of five) for driver protection and four stars for the front passenger. In frontal offset crash testing, the Silverado was given an overall rating of "Marginal" (second lowest).

Interior Design and Special Features

Silverado buyers will find a logically laid-out interior, with an easy-to-use dual-zone climate control system and clear, uncluttered gauges. Materials quality is unimpressive, but build quality, though improved over the last few years, is still behind the competition. However, the cabins are roomy, and the front seats are comfortable on long trips. Standard rear doors on the extended cab make entry and exit to the rear bench seat easy.

Driving Impressions

The 3500HD is a dedicated work truck, so don't expect the plush ride of its lighter-duty siblings. Any of the three available engines provide swift acceleration and ample towing power, but the diesel is probably the best choice for those who tow heavy loads.

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews


by on
Vehicle: 2005 Chevrolet Silverado 3500

What a truck. The Z-85 is a real looker and all that I expected. 20" wheels, 5.3L, 4sp with posi - what more could ya want ?

Chevy 3500 with a recovery

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Chevrolet Silverado 3500

I purchased an '05 3500 this year, and I have nothing bad to say about my truck. I have always been a Ford man, but after hearing about their problem with that 6.0 powerstroke motor, I decided to go with the Duramax, and let me tell you, it is the most fuel efficient, most powerful and responsive diesel I have ever had. I've gone though three different super dutys, and I am over the headaches with the Fords. The Ford may look meaner, but I have high hopes for my new Chevy.

Chevrolet c3500 evaluation

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Chevrolet Silverado 3500

This is an excellent vehicle, equipped with 6.6L Duramax diesel engine and Allison five speed automatic transmission. Have gotten 16 miles per gallon on highway trip, driving at the posted speed limit (70+).

My review of my 3500

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Chevrolet Silverado 3500

My 3500 is the most reliable vehicle I've ever owned. If I hadn't bought this vehicle then I would be out of a job. When I looked at the price on my truck, I thought I would never find the vehicle I wanted. When I finally found my truck I thought I was going to faint. The salesrepresentative I spoke with was very understanding about my money problems. He gave me a good deal.

Chevy's rule

by on
Vehicle: 2005 Chevrolet Silverado 3500

I have put the Banks powerpak and the exaust system on this truck, and it is unbeleivable. The Allison transmission is great and has saved my life many times by stopping my 9 horse rig. Awesome truck!

Talk About The 2006 Silverado 3500

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Read more about the 2006 Chevrolet Silverado 3500

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