2003 Chevy Cheyenne is the latest example of this tradition
of innovation. Inspired by a rich heritage of breaking new
ground in function and style, the thunderstone metallic
Cheyenne is a statement of what a new generation of full-size
trucks can be. Cheyenne combines ruggedly elegant styling
with new levels of cargo-carrying versatility for personal
and business use.
Cheyenne's mission is to provide a vision of the evolution
of the full-size truck," said Ed Welburn, GM's
executive director of design for body-on-frame. "This
vision builds on the equity of Chevy's tough and rugged
image while adding more versatility and refinement."
As GM designers reviewed the heritage of Chevy trucks, certain
generations left strong impressions, most notably the 1955
Cameo, the 1967 and 1973 Cheyennes, and the 1988 Silverado.
trucks featured a purity of form and purpose, and exuded
class and elegance," said Jeff Angeleri, Cheyenne's
exterior designer. "We wanted to communicate rugged
elegance by creating an integrated, refined, muscular exterior
with flowing flared wheel arches connected to soft yet tense
A significant component of "rugged
elegance" is the Cheyenne's proportions, created by
focusing on the interior environment of the cab and maximizing
the visible space for versatility and comfort. The cab is
thrust forward on the extruded aluminum chassis for a more
commanding presence. Positioning the wheels at the corners
telegraphs stability and cargo capability.
uses an independent rear suspension and rear-wheel-steering
system, similar to the QS4 system used in some of today's
GM vehicles, for enhanced maneuverability. Together, the
two innovations help enable the Cheyenne's next mission
"A significant area of opportunity to innovate
is in the cargo box of the truck," Angeleri said.
"We saw that if we could significantly add to the
usable function there, we could truly gain an advantage
and provide the truck customer with even more value."
The bed is accessible by two side-access
doors positioned directly behind the cab, in addition to
a traditional tailgate.
The tailgate has evolved to open fully in
the traditional manner, or half open for loading small cargo
or to create a work shelf. The bed floor is just 28 inches
above the ground, significantly lower than even today's
two-wheel-drive Silverado. This was made possible by the
independent rear suspension configuration.
allows the box to be more versatile in loading all sorts
of cargo, from motorcycles to construction materials,"
Also integrated into the pickup box are
multiple storage bins in the box floor and drawers in the
box sides. The box is equipped with lighting and integrated
tie-downs throughout for maximum versatility in all conditions.
"The interior cab features simplicity of surface
and enhanced functionality, and creates a sense of open
space," said Cheyenne interior designer, Wayne
Manista. The instrument panel is low and uncluttered. The
seat mechanism is integrated into the floor to provide more
usable foot room.
The seats and headliner are covered in luxurious
mottled saddle, handcrafted leather. Brushed, satin-finish
aluminum inlays in the doors and floor add polish, creating
an overall effect of up-country gentility.
assist step, developed in partnership with Amp Research,
maximizes entry and egress. The two-panel glass roof, with
integrated sunroof, and the wrap-around, "bubble back"
rear glass, accentuates the cab's openness. Manista borrowed
from the 1955 Cameo for the Cheyenne's bubble-back rear
The hood is a front-hinged clamshell design that opens to
provide full access to the front compartment, including
the supercharged all-alloy 6.0-liter Vortec engine, which
generates 500 horsepower and 580 lbs.-ft. of torque. The
V-8 engine also is suitable for GM Powertrain's Displacement
on Demand (DOD) technology,debuting in 2004 on some 2005
GM models. DOD shuts down half of the cylinders during most
driving conditions, and automatically and seamlessly reactivates
them for more demanding conditions, such as brisk acceleration
or load hauling. When opened, the hood also exposes the
all-new aluminum alloy control arms and Fox coil-over remote
reservoir shocks, which provide Cheyenne immense off-road
capability as well as refined manners.
Cheyenne rides on unique BF Goodrich 35-inch
tires mounted to 22-inch wheels. Six-piston calipers with
15-inch rotors on the front wheels slow the truck, along
with four-piston calipers with 14.75-inch rotors on the