No one starts their search for a new car with a completely clean slate. Even if they claim to be unbiased, everyone has pre-conceived notions about brands, vehicle types, and pricing. You may think that mini-vans are too ugly or remember your aunt disliking her Toyota Camry. Eventually, most people are able to settle on a vehicle type and a list of brands in serious contention. For truck customers, however, there is another step to conquer. Even after you’ve decided to go half-ton, full-size, or heavy-duty, you now have make a choice between different trims, cab sizes, and bed lengths. How do you choose the right cab size for your truck? Use the below guide as a helping hand when considering what kind of truck you want to drive home from the dealership.


High Country Silverado Badge

It may seem like putting the horse before the cart, but trim level might be a determining factor in what cab size you decide to buy. As with the other factors listed below, trim is not an independent variable in the equation of choosing a cab size. It can often tie in with bed length and trailering. If you want to be pampered in the cocoon of a top-of-the-line High Country Silverado 1500, you’ll have to select a crew cab. The same goes for off-road ready Trail Boss models. The spartan WT model, on the other hand, is available for all cab sizes. If you’re looking for a certain level of luxury, your cab size may have already been determined by the executives in Detroit.

Bed length & Trailering

Silverado with Truck Bed Open

Although some trucks will unfortunately never see any hard work, you’ll hopefully use your Chevy truck for all of the utility it offers. If you plan on using the bed for transport on a regular basis, you will want to consider how bed length can affect what cab sizes are available. Trucks with longer beds need shorter cabs while longer cabs need shorter beds. On the Silverado, the 8.1-foot long bed is only available with the regular cab (two-door). Crew cab Silverado 1500s come with a standard (6.6 feet) or short (5.8 feet) bed. On the Colorado, a short box is only available with the crew cab.

Conversely, those who plan on doing the bulk of their work with a trailer may be tied down by engine choice. The Silverado 1500’s 5.3-liter V8 with Dynamic Fuel Management is the perfect choice for those who occasionally tow a boat or heavy load. This smart engine makes use of 17 different cylinder patterns to optimize power delivery and efficiency. Drivers have V8 power when they need it but could use as few as two cylinders when not putting the truck to work. This engine is only available on double cab and crew cab models. The 2.7-liter four-cylinder mill is similarly excluded from regular cab models.

Cab overviews

If you aren’t restricted by trim, bed length, or trailering, you’ll get to make your cab choice on your own:

Regular Cab

2019 Chevrolet Silverado LT Regular cab Side Profile

This is the classic truck style and is probably what most people picture when they think of a pick-up. Today, only 16% of GM trucks sold are regular cab models. It seems most buyers want to have at least some room behind the front seats. Regular cab models are best for people who don’t need to transport more than two people very often. As the only cab size available with a long bed, they’re also good for hauling wood and rebar to a job site. The only trim available for Silverado 1500 regular cab models is the WT.

Double Cab and Extended Cab

Silverado Double Cab
Chevrolet Colorado Extended Cab Side Profile

The double cab (Silverado 1500) and extended cab (Colorado) offer a second-row seating without the full trappings of a crew cab model. While they can seat four, five or six people, owners probably don’t want to force passengers into the back on an everyday basis. If you’re looking for a cheap-ish truck that’s a little nicer than the WT trim, this cab size could be your ticket. This cab size is also good for customers who occasionally need a back seat or feel more comfortable leaving belongings in the back and not the bed.

Crew Cab

Chevy Silverado Crew Cab

This is the cab size of the family man and the work crew, with seating for up to six available. It’s also the driver of the current luxury truck trend in which trucks regularly retail for well over $60,000. The back seats in crew cab trucks are large enough for adults and comfortable enough for long journeys. A crew cab is perhaps the best of both worlds – the flexibility of a truck bed with the seating of a two-row SUV. These are the most popular models; there’s a very good chance your next Silverado or Colorado will be a crew cab.


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