Jones Ford Buckeye Compares 2009 Ford F-150 VS 2009 Chevrolet Silverado Near Avondale, AZ

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2009 Ford F-150

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2009 Chevrolet Silverado

Safety Comparison

The F-150 has standard head airbag curtains for front and rear seats which act as a forgiving barrier between the driver and outboard passenger's upper bodies and the window and pillars. Combined with high-strength steel door beams and lower side airbags this system increases head protection in broadside collisions. Head airbags cost extra in the Silverado.

The F-150 has standard AdvanceTrac™, which uses the antilock brake hardware along with powerful software and additional sensors to detect the beginning of a skid. The AdvanceTrac™ then intervenes by automatically applying the brake at one appropriate wheel, preventing a skid. A skid prevention system is only available on the Silverado V8.

Both the F-150 and the Silverado have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four wheel antilock brakes, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding and available four wheel drive.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates the general design of front seat head restraints for their ability to protect front seat occupants from whiplash injuries. The IIHS also performs a dynamic test on those seats with “good” or “acceptable” geometry. In these ratings, the F-150 with power recline seats is safer then the Silverado:



Overall Evaluation



Head Restraint Design



Distance from Back of Head

22 mm

68 mm

Distance Below Top of Head

6 mm

45 mm

Dynamic Test Rating



Seat Design



Neck Force Rating



Max Neck Shearing Force



Max Neck Tension



(Lower numerical results are better in all tests.)

For its top level performance in frontal, side and rear impact tests, and its standard AdvanceTrac™, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety rates the F-150 SuperCrew as a “Top Pick” a rating only granted to 64 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Silverado was not a Top Pick.

Warranty Comparison

The F-150’s corrosion warranty is unlimited miles longer than the Silverado’s (unlimited vs. 100,000 miles).

Reliability Comparison

The Ford F-150’s engines use a cast iron block for durability, while the Silverado’s 5.3 V8, 6.0 V8 hybrid, 6.0 V8 and 6.2 V8 engine uses an aluminum block. Aluminum engine blocks are much more prone to warp and crack at high temperatures than cast iron.

For smoother operation, better efficiency and fewer moving parts, the engines in the F-150 have an overhead cam design, rather than the old pushrod design of the engines in the Silverado.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2008 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Chevrolet vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 1 more problems per 100 vehicles, Chevrolet is ranked 10th.

J.D. Power and Associates’ surveys of the owners of three-year-old cars provide the long-term dependability statistics which show that Ford vehicles are more reliable than Chevrolet vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford 17th in reliability, above the industry average. With 5 more problems per 100 vehicles, Chevrolet is ranked 19th.

Engine Comparison

As tested in Motor Trend the Ford F-150 5.4 SOHC V8 is faster than the Chevrolet Silverado 5.3 V8:



Zero to 60 MPH

7.6 sec

8.2 sec

Quarter Mile

15.8 sec

16.2 sec

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the F-150 4x4 5.4 V8 gets better fuel mileage than the Silverado 4x4 6.0 V8 (14 city/18 hwy vs. 13 city/18 hwy).

To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Ford F-150 uses regular unleaded gasoline. The Silverado LTZ 6.2 requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 25 to 50 cents more per gallon.

The F-150’s optional fuel tank has 2 gallons more fuel capacity than the Silverado Long Box’s standard fuel tank (36 vs. 34 gallons).


The F-150 has a standard capless fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation which causes pollution. The Silverado doesn’t offer a capless fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The F-150’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs standard on the Silverado are solid, not vented.

The Ford F-150 has standard antilock four wheel disc brakes for better stopping power and improved directional control in poor weather. Rear drums are standard on the Silverado. Drums can heat up and make stops longer, especially with antilock brakes which work much harder than conventional brakes.

The F-150 stops much shorter than the Silverado:



70 to 0 MPH

196 feet

202 feet

Car and Driver

60 to 0 MPH

133 feet

150 feet

Motor Trend

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The F-150 has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Silverado’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the F-150’s wheelbase is longer than on the Silverado:



Regular Cab Standard Bed

126 inches

119 inches

Extended Cab Standard Bed

144.5 inches

143.5 inches

Extended Cab Long Bed

163 inches

157.5 inches

Crew Cab Short Bed

144.5 inches

143.5 inches

Crew Cab Standard Bed

157 inches


The F-150’s front to rear weight distribution is more even (56.1% to 43.9%) than the Silverado’s (57.8% to 42.2%). This gives the F-150 more stable handling and braking.

The F-150 5.5 ft. bed King Ranch SuperCrew 4x4 handles at .73 G’s, while the Silverado 1500 short box LTZ Crew Cab 4x4 pulls only .72 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the F-150’s turning circle is tighter than the Silverado’s:



Extended Cab Short Bed

43.5 feet

44.6 feet

Crew Cab Short Bed

47 feet

47.2 feet

Extended Cab Short Bed 4x4

43.5 feet

44.6 feet

Crew Cab Short Bed 4x4

47 feet

47.2 feet

Crew Cab Standard Bed 4x4

50.4 feet


For greater off-road capability the F-150 8 ft. bed SuperCab has a greater minimum ground clearance than the Silverado 1500 long box Regular Cab (10 vs. 9.5 inches), allowing the F-150 to travel over rougher terrain without being stopped or damaged.

Chassis Comparison

As tested by Car and Driver, the interior of the F-150 5.5 ft. bed King Ranch SuperCrew 4x4 is quieter than the Silverado 1500 short box LTZ Crew Cab 4x4:



At idle

42 dB

44 dB


75 dB

78 dB

70 MPH Cruising

70 dB

71 dB

Passenger Space Comparison

The F-150 Regular Cab has .1 inches more front legroom and 1.4 inches more front shoulder room than the Silverado Regular Cab.

The F-150 SuperCab has .1 inches more front legroom, 1.4 inches more front shoulder room, .5 inches more rear headroom, 4.7 inches more rear hip room and .5 inches more rear shoulder room than the Silverado Extended Cab.

The F-150 SuperCrew has .1 inches more front legroom, .7 inches more front shoulder room, 4.8 inches more rear legroom and .5 inches more rear shoulder room than the Silverado Crew Cab.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The F-150 shortbed has a much larger cargo box than the Silverado Regular Cab shortbed (65.5 vs. 60.7 cubic feet). The F-150 Regular Cab longbed has a much larger cargo box than the Silverado longbed (81.2 vs. 75.5 cubic feet).

The F-150 SuperCrew shortbed has a much larger cargo box than the Silverado Crew Cab shortbed (55.5 vs. 53.2 cubic feet).

The Ford F-150 has a standard tailgate assist feature, which prevents the heavy tailgate from falling with a crash and causing injury. It allows adults and children to easily open and close the tailgate with one hand to better facilitate loading and unloading. Tailgate assist costs extra on the Chevrolet Silverado, and isn’t available on the Silverado WT/LS.

Ergonomics Comparison

In case you lock your keys in your vehicle, or don’t have them with you, you can let yourself in using the available exterior keypad (not available on F-150 XL/STX). The Silverado doesn’t offer an exterior keypad entry system, and its OnStar® can’t unlock the doors if the vehicle doesn’t have cell phone reception.

The F-150 (except XL/SXT/XLT)’s optional air conditioned front seats cool the driver and front passenger and help take the sting out of hot leather in Summer. The Silverado doesn’t offer air conditioned front seats.

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