What’s the Difference Between 1500, 2500, and 3500 in Trucks?

April 30th, 2018 by

2018 Silverado 2500

What is the difference between 1500 vs. 2500 vs. 3500 trucks? Around North Pole, you’ll see 1500, 2500, and 3500 designations used across popular manufacturers, including Chevy, GMC, RAM, and Ford. However, it’s common not to understand what the difference truly is between 1500 vs. 2500 vs. 3500 trucks. Here’s a rundown on everything you need to know about these pickup weight and capability classifications to help you choose which kind of new truck works for your driving needs, on or off the job site.

View 1500 Trucks View 2500 Trucks View 3500 Trucks

What’s the Difference Between 1500 vs. 2500 vs. 3500 Trucks?

These truck differences used to come down to the amount each one could haul in tons. The estimation was rough, but things generally broke down like this:

  • 1500: Half-Ton
  • 2500: Three-Quarter-Ton
  • 3500: One Ton

You’ll still sometimes see 1500 trucks referred to as half-tons, but these days, those labels don’t really describe these trucks’ true capabilities as such all the time.

Instead, today:

  • 1500 designates a light-duty truck
  • 2500 and 3500 designate heavy-duty trucks

1500 badging is commonly used for trucks that are suitable for light work and general driving. 2500 and 3500 designations are preferred by Fairbanks service workers and other truck drivers who need to tow and carry extremely heavy loads.

 1500 vs. 2500HD vs. 3500HD: Chevrolet Silverado Trucks

It’s probably easier to explain truck designations with an example from Buick, Chevrolet, GMC:

  •  Chevy Silverado 1500: First up is the Chevy Silverado 1500 which is a fan favorite due to its powerful
    5.3L EcoTec3 V8 engine with DFM along with the versatility of up to 89.1 cubic feet of cargo space to transport everything you need in one trip.
  • Chevy Silverado 2500HD: Next is the Silverado 2500HD which delivers unleashes 910 lb-ft. of torque and can tow up to 18,100 lbs thanks to the power of a 6.6L Turbo-Diesel V8 engine paired perfectly with a 6-speed, heavy-duty, electronically controlled automatic transmission.
  • Chevy Silverado 3500HD: The Chevy Silverado 3500HD shares the same engine as the Silverado 2500HD and gets up to 401 horsepower and delivers extra power with a payload capacity of 4,365 lbs.

1500 vs. 2500HD vs. 3500HD: GMC Sierra Trucks

Much like Chevy, GMC offers Fairbanks customers these three model types that offer their own enticing advantage and features highlighted below:

  • GMC Sierra 1500: The latest GMC Sierra 1500 features a powerful 3.5L Duramax turbo engine that generates up to 460 lb-ft of torque along with advanced features such as a six-function multi-pro tailgate as well as a carbon fiber composite bed.
  • GMC Sierra 2500HD: If you opt for the GMC Sierra 2500 HD you’ll have access to a powerful Duramax® 6.6L Turbo-Diesel V8 engine and cutting-edge features such as a ProGrade Trailering System and air filtration monitoring to ensure your truck can tackle any job with ease.
  • GMC Sierra 3500HD: Another stellar option is the GMC Sierra 3500HD which features the same engineering as the Sierra 2500HD but is supported by upgrades such as StabiliTrak which is an electronic stability control system and an integrated trailer brake controller to secure items when towing.

Learn More at Chevrolet Buick GMC of Fairbanks

Still, comparing vehicles? We’ve got you covered. Contact us today to explore our inventory! We have plenty of trucks in stock – including those in fun colors. Learn more about what a 2500 truck can do for you in our GMC Sierra 2500 towing capacity guide today!

Fairbanks Truck Inventory Quick View

More GM Models & Features

  • 2022 GMC Canyon Configurations and Pricing

      The GMC Canyon is a midsize pickup truck that has the necessary power and premium features to get you around North Pole and beyond. Trim levels for the 2022 GMC Canyon start at $26,800 and come in 3 different trims that Fort Wainwright drivers can select from when visiting Chevrolet Buick GMC Of Fairbanks. Find out more about GMC Canyon…

  • Discover the 2022 Chevrolet Malibu Color Options

    Looking for a family-friendly sedan in North Pole that meets your driving needs and then some? When it comes to car shopping, matching for personality fit is equally as important as hard, cold specs. It’s with that in mind that we offer the following exposé of 2022 Chevy Malibu colors. Whether you’re looking for information on…

  • 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV Specifications

    This first-ever all-electric 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV will be the first of its kind and sure to impress! The electric truck power, electric Silverado range, and electric Silverado horsepower are all unique aspects of the 2024 Chevrolet Silverado EV that make it one of the most anticipated pickup trucks in the market. At Chevrolet Buick GMC Of Fairbanks, we’re…