Jason travels the country full-time with his wife Abigail, and three children in a converted school bus.
Chevrolet has announced a new towing package that looks to be a perfect fit for long-haul towing, especially RVs. Dubbed the “Advanced Trailering System” or “ATS,” it includes several features designed to make towing easier.
ATS adds a feature called hitch guidance to the built-in backup camera, which gives the driver a composite overhead view of the truck and trailer, with dedicated guidelines in the reversing display to aid in lining everything up when hitching.
A common problem that crops up when trailering is getting lined up to connect the hitch, only to put the vehicle into park and roll slightly out of alignment. Chevy has answered with “auto parking brake assist” which turns on automatically when hitch view is being used, engaging the parking brake to keep the truck from budging when shifting into park.
Tire pressure monitoring has become an essential way to keep abreast of heat and pressure issues, avoiding an oncoming blowout. The ATS package now integrates tire pressure monitoring into the vehicle infotainment system, and four sensors are included with purchase.
The infotainment display also allows customers to track the mileage, fuel economy and transmission temperature of their truck while towing, storing up to five profiles for different trailers. Brake gain memory is part of this system and works with the Integrated Trailer Brake Controller, which provides fingertip control of the trailer brakes, to let the driver set and save the controller’s brake gain setting for each trailer within their profile.
Another new feature — which is so simple we can’t believe it’s just now been thought of — activates the truck’s alarm system if the wiring harness of the trailer is disconnected. Customers enrolled in the OnStar Safety & Security Plan will receive a theft alert to their phone.
This all-new camera package enhances trailering views with three cameras that provide a 270-degree view through the standard rear vision camera and two cameras mounted in the side view mirrors. An optional fourth accessory camera to mount to the rear of the trailer is available.
Chevy is also changing the way it displays trailering capacities on its vehicles via a new door label that is keyed to your VIN, providing information on your specific vehicle’s gross vehicle weight rating, gross combined weight rating, gross axle weight rating, maximum payload, maximum tongue weight and curb weight.
The ATS package comes standard on LTZ and High Country-trim Silverado pickups and is available as an option on Trail Boss, LT and RST trims, but Chevy has one more goodie in store for all new Chevy trucks – a smartphone trailering app that offers a pre-departure step-by-step towing checklist, and a trailer light test that uses an automatic exterior light sequence to help confirm that the trailer is properly connected.