Chevy Reaper

The 2015 Chevrolet Reaper takes the soul right out of the competition

By Salvador Huxley

I THINK I’M JUSTIFIED in having had a relative amount of trepidation when it came to taking the wheel of the Reaper, Chevy’s latest concoction that melds the durability and strength of the Silverado, the performance edge of Lingenfelter and the aesthetic appeal of Southern Comfort Automotive. Yeah, the name is ominous enough and with my driving record effectively acting as a death note there was some intuitive hesitation too, but that wasn’t the stem of it. See, the Reaper had one primary objective: give the Ford Raptor a chase. It’s hard to believe that any factory vehicle could take on the hardened chassis, all-terrain maneuverability and horsed-up engine the Ford Raptor brought to the line.

I had no doubt the Reaper could out toe the line, but that’s not all I was looking for. Taking the Raptor 50 mph in the desert with confidence, like U.S. Border Patrol does, was insane. While I didn’t get to take the Reaper off-road, I did have the opportunity to really open her up on the street, which is where she really shows off. To be perfectly honest it’s not necessarily an equal showing despite the media angle that the Reaper is meant to take on the Raptor head to head. Chevy was smart about the Reaper. The truth is that the Reaper maximizes on the shortcomings of the Raptor. It depends on how liberal your definition of “factory” is since the Reaper technically comes out as a Silverado Z71. Similar to say the Corvette Z06, the Reaper is made to order. It first heads off to Lingenfelter Performance Engineering for a serious power boost. The 2015 Reaper package includes a 550 hp Lingenfelter TV1900 Magnuson Supercharged 6.2 liter engine. From there the Reaper heads south to Southern Comfort Automotive for some cosmetic styling. SoCo shines up the grill, loads a Rigid Industries Floodlight system and Fox Racing remote reservoir shocks with a Ride Tech suspension package.

When The Four Horsemen Come They’ll Be Driving This Monster!.

Chevy was smart about the Reaper. The truth is that the Reaper maximizes on the shortcomings of the Raptor. It’s easy to write off the Reaper as a show truck rather than a functional sand romper thanks to the 20-inch wheels, custom stitched headrest covers and Reaper graphics, the fact of the matter is when you hear the Corsa Performance exhaust pipes grumbling you know you’re looking at more than the prettiest ballerina in the fruit cup. Pulling out of Freeway Chevrolet and onto Ray Road, I felt like a king among peasants as I looked down from on high. The Silverado is already a pretty tall truck and with a 3-inch lift you go Goliath real quick in the Reaper. I wanted to get on the supercharger sooner than later so I pulled onto the I-10. Dropping the pedal to the deck I was sucked back in my seat, as there was no lag on the blower. What pleasantly surprised me the most was the fact that there isn’t a lot of body roll for a lifted truck. Usually a couple inches creates a compromise in handling, but the Reaper felt secure and was responsive at every turn. When it comes to raw power the Chevy Reaper takes the roar right our of the Ford Raptor!

You wouldn't believe what this thing is capable of. With up to 550 Horsepower, a Corsa performance exhaust, off-road tuned Fox Racing suspension, and rugged 33" off-road tires, the Reaper can handle any terrain you throw at it!

You wouldn’t believe what this thing is capable of. With up to 550 Horsepower, a Corsa performance exhaust, off-road tuned Fox Racing suspension, and rugged 33″ off-road tires, the Reaper can handle any terrain you throw at it!

AZSAL FAST FACTS

  • The 2014 Silverado has the most legroom in the second row for any crew cab pick-up truck.
  • The Reaper comes in with a five-foot-eight-inch short bed, but can be lengthened to six to eight feet long.

As far as towing the line actually goes, the Reaper is rated at 9,600 hundred pounds with the four-wheel drive. There is no rating with the supercharger but a little common sense and some imagination will take you the rest of the way. While the Raptor could do a lot of tricks—boulder climbing, sand running and so on, it fell short as a street presence. The Reaper can play in the sandbox and on the asphalt, which might be why 2014 Raptor was the last year for them. The Reaper can still be a Silverado, an expensive Silverado ringing in at $86,000. That’s the hit that took me back to reality. I guess if you like the power of a Camaro and showiness of the Corvette, but are of the high riding, monster towing persuasion, the Reaper is your long awaited solace in a world that was dominated by mediocrity and wannabees. Yes, the Raptor was sick, and at half the price of the Reaper why not get some joy out of that ride, but when it comes to the all important duality of any vehicle, fun versus function, the Reaper makes the most of its price tag. Competitors be warned; Blue Oyster Cult would have got it all wrong singing about this one.