Believe it or not, some people actually tow things with their full-size trucks, and no matter whether you're schlepping horses or race cars or cinder blocks or a fifth-wheel RV, everyone could use a little tech to make the process easier and safer. Chevrolet thinks it's got just the right solution.
The Advanced Trailering System (ATS) is a package that comes standard on LTZ and High Country-trim Silverado pickups and is available as an option on Trail Boss, LT and RST trims. It includes a number of features that should make towing less of a pain. To begin with, the ATS adds something called hitch guidance with hitch view to the built-in backup camera. This makes the typically arduous task of aligning your trailer hitch with the trailer way easier thanks to dedicated guidelines in the reversing display.
Once you're backed up into perfect alignment with your trailer, the last thing you want is to put your truck into park and have it roll so it's just slightly out of alignment. Chevy has something for this too, it's called auto parking brake assist and it turns on automatically when hitch view is being used.
The feature that we're most excited about is trailer tire pressure monitoring. Previously, checking the tire pressure on your trailers would have required you to pull off the road, kneel down in the gravel or mud or whatever and manually put a gauge on each tire. Not anymore. The vehicle's infotainment system will allow a driver to monitor trailer tire pressures from inside the cab, and what's more, the driver will also be able to monitor trailer tire temperatures, which should help prevent heat-related blowouts. The caveat is that this requires that some special equipment be installed by your Chevrolet dealer and we assume that won't be supercheap.
Chevy is also changing the way it displays trailering capacities on its vehicles, and while a new label on your doorjamb may not sound all that sexy, it could end up being a (literal) lifesaver when you're trying to determine whether or not your fancy new truck can actually tow something. The new label is keyed to your VIN and will give you information on your specific vehicle's gross vehicle weight rating, gross combined weight rating, gross axle weight rating, maximum payload, maximum tongue weight (not as gross as it sounds) and of course your vehicle's curb weight.
We look forward to trying out the Advanced Trailering System when thehits the streets later this year.