Overview

The Chevy Express Cargo has been around since 1995 and still is performing well in the market. The American workhorse still serves the purpose well with its powerful engines and simple ladder on frame chassis. Express has made a reputation for itself with its overbuilt components and reliability as a result Chevrolet decide to go forth with the same express for another year. Although the 2020 Chevy Express Cargo has some minor changes, but all over the van is the same as the previous year model.

The diesel and gasoline power plants can sustain quite an abuse and can be maintained quite easily. The sheer number in which the express is made means that dearth of parts or costs of parts would never be an issue and the number also means that you will find plenty of forums on the Express which makes it really easy to maintain. It stays true to its American background with an optional 341 hp 6.0L Vortec V8 that will get you places quickly. However, the vehicle is big and the regular wheelbase variant turns in 49.2 ft and the longer wheelbase versions need 54.5 ft wide road to make a complete turn.

2020 Chevy Express Cargo
2020 Chevy Express Cargo

Trims and Features

The 2020 Chevy express van comes in two models, the 2500 and the 3500, both of which can be had with a long-wheelbase version which extends the length of the cargo section of the van by around 20 inches. The express van comes with 4 engine options featuring 2.8 L Duramax diesel engine mated to an updated 8-speed automatic transmission that boasts a diesel specific torque convertor and centrifugal pendulum-type absorber. It comes with a 31-gallon fuel tank that gives it a decent range.

ConfigurationTrimEngine optionPayload
2500 regular wheelbaseWT$33295$34290$345903507 lbs.
2500 extended wheelbaseWT$35195$36190$364903280 lbs.
3500 regular wheelbaseWT$36395$37390$376904503 lbs.
3500 extended wheelbaseWT$37195$38190$384904250 lbs.

Note:- Chevrolet is offering a cash allowance of $3500 on all models

The Chevy express van does not come with a high roof variant however its low roof height does allow for easy access to the roof-mounted cargo. The express van largely remains the same as the 2019 gen with a few alterations in the trims offered.

What’s new in 2020 Chevy Express Cargo?

The Chevrolet express cargo does not offer the optional cargo package anymore which was offered earlier on all 2500 models. The package included a 6.0L V8 Vortec L96 engine, spray-in cargo liner and 12 months of GM commercial link. Furthermore, the upfitter electrical provisions are also extinct from the Express.

New features include an 8-speed automatic transmission coupled with a diesel specific torque convertor and centrifugal pendulum-type absorber that will be mated to the 2.8L I4 Duramax diesel engine. Well to compare this year’s Express Cargo Van to last year’s read our review on 2019 Express Cargo Van.

Read the 2019 Express Cargo Review

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Performance

Engine

Chevy express van still offers the 4.3L V6 engine and the 6.0L V8 Vortec engine with an option of the flex-fuel package with the latter. Apart from this, the diesel unit comes in the form of a 2.8L inline-four Duramax engine that produces a respectable 189 hp and a torque value of 369 lb-ft, which is enough to give it a towing capacity of 7000 lbs and GCWR of 13000 lbs. the gasoline engines are no inferior units with the smaller 4.3 L V6 producing 276 Hp @ 5200 RPM and 298 Lb-Ft of torque at 3900 rpm mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission this unit provides enough to haul around 7400 lbs.
For high demanding work, the 6.0 L V8 serves the purpose well with a 341 HP output and 373 lb-ft of torque. The power is delivered through a 6-speed automatic transmission that features a tap up/ tap down driver enabled gear shift.

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Van Engine
2020 Chevy Express Cargo Van Engine

Transmission

Both the 8 speed and 6-speed transmissions are well tested and reliable units that feature some sophisticated driver aids such as powertrain grade braking, cruise grade braking and tow-haul mode. In both the powertrain grade braking and the cruise grade braking the transmission downshifts to use engine braking more effectively. The powertrain grade braking comes in to effect when the vehicle is going downhill and the cruise grade braking comes into effect when the vehicle exceeds the cruise speeds. The tow hall mode increases the shift points of the transmission to ease the pulling of a heavy trailer and reduce stress on the engine.

The express also comes with an external transmission oil cooler that helps to reduce stresses on the transmission. The build quality and the transmission oil cooler makes these units pretty much indestructible.

Tow capacity

The express has a decent payload and tow capacity which varies with the diesel capable of the least amongst the three units However, with a towing capacity of 7100 lbs still shows enough capability. The 4.3L V6 has a payload of 4503 lbs and tow capability of around 7400 lbs for the express 3500. The mighty 6.0L V8 enough to pull a 10000 lb trailer and offers a maximum payload of a similar 4503 lbs. extended wheelbase cost around 1000 lbs in payload and approximately 300 lbs in tow capacity irrespective of the trim.

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Towing
2020 Chevy Express Cargo Towing

The express does offer tow adapters of different ratings but none comes as a standard. The tow adapter stays an optional extra however, it does have adapters to suit different work requirements. The top of the load floor comes at 30 inches from the ground which ensures easy accessibility and it also has a step down on the passenger side but that can be accessed with only the optional sliding door.

Acceleration

Chevrolet has not announced any official acceleration figures for the 2020 Chevy Express Cargo van, however, people have claimed a time of 8 to 9 seconds from 0-60 mph for the 4.3 L V6 unit.  

Braking

Although the Chevy express is an old design the 2020 Chevy Express Cargo is equipped with modern age technology that makes it competitive amongst the newer models. Braking is a very important aspect of driving experience and with disc brakes on all four corners and the ABS system makes the express a capable stopper. but the express is a heavy vehicle and if it is being driven at its rated GCWR, it puts a lot of stress on brake pads under braking and to counter this Chevy has incorporated smart tech in the transmission system that increases engine braking and helps divide the load on brakes.

Ride and handling

The 2020 Chevy express is suspended on coil springs in the front and hybrid drive rear suspension. The rear suspension is stiff to allow for a high payload to be carried. The regular wheelbase variants turn in 49.2 ft but the extended wheelbase versions take around 54 ft to turn. The ride is made safer with the StabiliTrak electronic stability control system.

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Interiors

Chevy express van has been a long-run model and that shows in the interiors of the vehicle. The dashboard of the vehicle is outdated and has a dull feel to it. The equipment that is being offered in the express cargo, however, does alleviates the feel. The OnStar infotainment system is Chevrolet connected services capable.

 The two-tone interior is basic but utilitarian with plenty of storage spaces and three cup holders placed on the engine cover. High back bucket seats offer a comfortable seating position and can be had with a 6-way adjustable option for an extra $275 each. The seats are covered in vinyl and can also be ordered with custom cloth fabric for an extra $70. The cargo floor is covered with a rubberized vinyl mat that can sustain quite a lot of abuse and will protect your floor. The low body does mean that the wheel arches affect the interior space but the custom business packages cleverly use space and cover the arches to minimize its effect on the space.

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Interior Images

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Exterior

Chevrolet has been making the express for a long time now and the body has stayed true to its predecessor and still follow the same lines with only minor changes in the facia mainly headlamps. It is 0ffered in four basic colors with red being the brightest and the other remains the same basic options.

One of the key exterior features of the express is its sloping nose. The engine is mounted almost in the middle of the front tires and partially takes the space from the cabin. Which reduces its overall dimensions.

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Exterior Images

Safety

Safety is crucial for any kind of vehicle and the express offers decent safety features such as the front airbags and electronic stability control system with traction control. Door beams provide increased safety against the side impacts. The tire pressure monitoring system and the oil life monitoring system helps in keeping the vehicle on the road and helps in the maintenance costs.

Forward collision alert, lane departure warning and side blind zone are some sophisticated safety features that are also offered in the express however, some of these features fall in the category of optional extras.

How much would the 2020 Chevy Express Cargo cost?

The 2020 Chevy Express Cargo 2500 regular wheelbase costs around $33,295 but the cash allowance of $3500 means the vehicle can be owned at a cost of $29,795. Financing is also an option with a plan of $489 a month for 72 months at an APR of 1.9% and 0 down payment. The amount financed would be $33,295. The Chevrolet express does offer a huge list of optional extras and the vehicle can be ordered according to the requirement.

Cost of ownership

The cost of ownership for extended wheelbase 3500 van with a 4.3 L 6 cylinder engine over a period of 5 years is $48,771 of which the biggest chunks of cost are a fuel cost and depreciation. Fuel cost is an average of $3100 per year for a vehicle that is driven 1500 miles a year but this may vary depending on the load and driving conditions. The 3500 express van depreciates by $8717 in the first year and by the end of a 5 year run the depreciation cost adds up to $15,941.

Financing costs $5421 for 5 years assuming the vehicle is financed with a 10% down payment and a loan term of 60 months. Even if the vehicle is bought with cash, this amount will be added but under the heading of opportunity cost. $4,269 will cover the insurance of the vehicle for the next 5 years. Maintenance and repairs amount to a total of approx. $5000 of which repair is about ¼. The warranty period is included in the consideration.

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Competition

2020 Chevy Express VS Mercedes Sprinter & Nissan NV

Mercedes sprinter and Nissan NV are two of the highest-rated competitors of the express. Both of which are newer and outclass the express in terms of equipment. the Mercedes in the least powerful amongst the three with an output of only 188 hp from both of its 2L four-cylinder gasoline and 3.0L V6 diesel engine with the latter producing 325lb ft of torque at a rather low 1600 RPMs. The sprinter has a payload capacity of 6735 lbs and tow capability of 7500lbs with its diesel power unit. The Nissan NV is the Arnold of vans with the 5.6 L DOHC 32 valve V8 engine producing 375 hp and 387 lb-ft of torque. The Nissan power unit boasts a continuously variable valve timing control system (CVTCS) and is mated to a 7-speed automatic transmission. Nissan also offers a smaller 4.0L V6 in the NV that produces a decent 261 hp.

The express excels in terms of towing capacity with Nissan close behind with a towing capacity of 9400 lbs with the V8 engine. Mercedes does fall behind in terms of payload and tow capacity but the interior is where it shines. The up class feel and the quality of the interior do come at a price and that’s what makes it the most expensive with the starting price of $33,790 with the NV at the second with the V6 NV1500 starting at $29,890. The express remains the most outdated in terms of interior and aesthetics. Mercedes is the only competitor that offers a 4 wheel drive version mated to its V8 drivetrain. To improve traction the express does have an option of automatically locking differential but it does stay an optional extra.

Our Final verdict

2020 Chevy Express Cargo Van although being an old running model still provides the best bang for the buck. With its optional extras, it can be made suitable for the cold regions and costs the least among the 3 and offers higher payload and tow capacity as compared to others. Suitable technology advancements have been made to keep it up to date and it still performs well amongst competition.