Buying Your First Truck | Laurens, SC


Buying your first truck is an exciting experience! But it can also be a daunting one. There are many things to know about trucks, like the differences between light-duty and heavy-duty models, or what towing terms like GVWR mean. Fortunately, this page has all the info you need to get you started.

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Light-Duty vs Heavy-Duty Trucks

Light-duty trucks are the most common type of pickup. In the United States, they are defined as trucks with a gross vehicle weight up to 8,500 pounds and payload capacity up to 4,000 pounds. The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is an example of a light-duty truck.

Heavy-duty trucks are bigger and heavier, with an emphasis on - you guessed it - heavy-duty work. They are better suited for commercial use and job sites where they are needed to carry major loads. The Chevy Silverado 2500 HD and 3500 HD are heavy-duty trucks.

Unless you absolutely need the extreme towing and hauling capacities provided by heavy-duty trucks, your best bet is to buy a light-duty truck, which will be easier to live with.

The Advantages of Diesel

The majority of new trucks are offered with optional diesel powertrains. The main advantage of diesel engines is that they have superior fuel economy and lots of low-end torque, leading to more responsiveness at low speeds and strong towing capabilities. Diesel engines are especially efficient on the highway, so they're worth considering if you do a lot of highway commuting. If you drive in the city more often, then it's better to look at electrified powertrains.

Trucks equipped with diesel engines also tend to hold their value better than their gas-powered counterparts, and they're not much more expensive to begin with. In short, buying a Silverado 1500 with the Duramax® turbodiesel engine will give you a great combination of up-front affordability, highway fuel economy, towing capability, and resale potential. What's not to love?

What is a Lifted Truck?

You've probably turned your head to get a second look at a lifted truck on the road, but lifting a truck serves a bigger purpose than just looking cool. Many people lift their truck to raise the body, frame, and differential, which requires installing larger tires and raising the suspension system.

There's little benefit on the road besides slightly improved visibility, but off the road, the investment can really pay off. A lifted truck not only has higher ground clearance but also greater approach, breakover, and departure angles. Larger tires can benefit off-road performance as well. With a lifted truck, you can simply go more places than before.

And if you're towing a heavy load, the lifted suspension will give the rear of your truck more room to settle before bottoming out.

Common Towing Terms

There are many terms you'll want to get acquainted with if you plan to tow with your truck, some more obscure than others.

  • Gross Vehicle Weight Rating: the maximum weight of your truck when fully loaded, including fluids, cargo, and passengers.
  • Gross Trailer Weight Rating: the maximum weight of your trailer when fully loaded, including fluids, cargo, and passengers.
  • Tow Capacity: the maximum weight the truck can tow.
  • Gross Combined Weight Rating: the maximum weight your truck can handle, including itself, the trailer, fluids, cargo, and passengers.
  • Hitch types: there are many kinds to get acquainted with, such as conventional, fifth-wheel, and gooseneck.
  • Hitch classes: there are five common hitch classes. The higher you go, the higher the weight capacity, but these don't apply to fifth-wheel and gooseneck hitches.
  • Coupler: the part of the trailer that goes over the hitch and attaches to the truck.
  • Payload Capacity: the maximum weight the truck can carry in the cabin or bed, not including a trailer.

Still have questions about buying your first truck? Visit Greenlight Chevrolet in Laurens, South Carolina, to have all of your questions answered and find the right pickup for you!


    200 N Harper St
    Laurens, SC 29360

    • Sales: (864) 766-7455
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