It's a bold claim, to be sure. But established automotive analysis outfits concur that the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado will have the lowest "ownership cost" of any new truck you can buy in America, almost any way you crunch the numbers.

Vincentric, which provides analysis for several valuation firms including NADA Guides, announced Chevrolet is the "Best Value Truck Brand in America." So what does that mean?


They tabulate depreciation, fees and taxes, financing, fuel, insurance, maintenance, opportunity cost (loss of interest earnings that could be earned with the funds spent on a new vehicle), and estimated repairs. They then approve their "the Best Value in America" award by comparing those measures with a vehicle's market price.

As their President David Wurster says; "our statistical analysis used over 1,000 pickup truck configurations to identify the best value truck line in the United States."

Tired of all this number-talk already? Take a quick break in the Arizona mountains.


But Vincentric isn't the only data farming game in town, so who agrees with them?

Kelley Blue Book compiles state fees, insurance, repairs, maintenance, financing, and deprecation to spit back their own 5-year ownership cost report. And it's a pretty one, too! They assume 15,000 miles per year and a 2.65% APR over a 60 month loan with a $4,381.40 down payment.

Their "best in class" display for full-size half ton trucks had GM pretty much running the board:

Here's where work trucks from other brands land on their scale:

Bottom-trim trucks are fine for fleet and business buyers, but what about the fancier stuff you're more apt to actually want to spend time in? Silverado is still the leanest in four-door upper trim pickups:

Edmunds' is particularly proud of their own set of formulas that create what they call a "True Cost to Own"— a five-year estimate based on depreciation, insurance, financing, taxes & fees, fuel, maintenance and repairs, and any applicable tax credits.

They assume 15,000 miles of annual driving, "traditional financing" (not leasing) over a 60 month term with an "above average" credit score and 10% down payment. Unfortunately, they do not provide a sexy infographic.

Edmunds is still a year behind with the Ram and Titan, but the Silverado is the cheapest on their abacus too:

Edmunds "True Cost to Own" Over Five Years
2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Crew Cab LTZ$58,089.00
2013 Ram 1500 Crew Cab Laramie$60,946.00
2014 Toyota Tundra CrewMax Limited$63,165.00
2014 Ford F-150 SuperCrew Lariat
2013 Nissan Titan Crew Cab SL$69,637.00

There might be some discrepancies over trims and option packages, but I tried to get these trucks as close to their equivalents as the calculators would allow. Basically, upper-trim full four-door 4WD V8 trucks with leather. For the sake of consistency, they're all measured in the 12543 zip code. Location and buyer's credit rating will of course affect running costs of just about anything.


I know many of you will lament the absence of the Ram EcoDiesel, but I am sad to report there doesn't seem to be any long-term ownership cost data available for it yet.

To help you get a better idea of where these valuations are coming from, here's how each firm I queried broke down their calculation on the five-year running costs of a 2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ Crew Cab 4WD V8:

2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ Crew Cab 4WD V8

VincentricYear 1Year 2Year 3Year 4Year 5After 5 Years
Fees & Taxes$2,477.00$147$153$133$140$3050
Opportunity Cost$74.00$104$149$183$216$726
Yearly Total$16,839.00$9252$11525$9326$9060$56002


2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ Crew Cab 4WD V8

Kelley Blue BookFive-Year Ownership Totals
"Fair Purchase Price"$43,814.00
State Fees$3,913.00
Total 5-Year Cost To Own$52,191.00

(Kelley Blue Book doesn't provide a by-year analysis)


2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZ Crew Cab 4WD V8

Edmunds "True Cost to Own"Year 1Year 2Year 3Year 4Year 5After 5 Years
Taxes & Fees$3,513.00$21$84$21$84$3723
Tax Credit$0.00

True Cost to Own ®$19,521.00$9610$9244$10597$9117$58089


I'd love to know how that compares to what pickup owners are actually seeing, and hear about what other factors that might be missing from the calculations above. If anyone sees the scales tipped another way at different trim levels, I'd be interested to learn about that as well.


But based on what the more reputable brands in automotive market analysis are saying, the 2014 Silverado is the cheapest truck on the market right now for buyers who will run it for the next five years.