Ford, Chevy and Toyota: No Plans for Diesel Half-Tons

Ford, Chevy and Toyota: No Plans for Diesel Half-Tons

Chrysler’s Ram truck brand announced an industry first diesel engine option in the Ram 1500 today, a move which the company’s rivals will be watching closely, though none of them have any plans to emulate. 

Ford’s U.S. truck communications manager Mike Levine told that Ford has no plans for a diesel F-150, and that Ford’s EcoBoost engines will remain competitive in the segment.

Toyota’s chief truck engineer Mike Sweers said something similar; that the Japanese brand’s V8 engines are tried, tested and true, and diesel is not on the docket.

When asked about diesel engines for the Silverado, Chevrolet truck communications manager Tom Wilkinson responded: “[Chevrolet] looked at diesels for [light-duty] pickups but [we] don’t have plans for one at this point.” Essentially, he said, it “comes down to cost of ownership, with the slightly higher fuel economy offset by the higher cost of the truck and relatively high cost of diesel fuel.”

Cost of ownership was also brought up by Toyota engineer Mike Sweers, saying that the company, “can’t justify a diesel engine” in the new 2014 Tundra, because the cost of ownership would be too high.

SEE ALSO: RAM 1500 Becomes Industry-First Half-Ton Diesel Pickup

Diesel engine parts are more expensive than gas engine components, and on top of that, diesel fuel is more expensive at the pump. Clearly Ram thinks that the diesel option will pay off, while its rivals say customers won’t be willing to pay the extra money for the oil-burning engine.

The 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee is expected to achieve 30 mpg highway when equipped with the same 3.0-liter diesel and 8-speed automatic transmission that will find its way under the hood of the Ram 1500.

The 3.5-liter EcoBoost powered F-150 is EPA rated at 21 mpg highway, while the 2013 Silverado achieves 21 mpg highway when equipped with the 5.3-liter V8. The 2013 Toyota Tundra brings up the rear with 19 mpg highway when equipped with the 4.6-liter gas motor, leaving the Ram as the clear fuel economy winner, assuming it achieves around the same numbers as the Grand Cherokee is estimated to hit.

While the brands seem to be united in their plan not to offer a comparable diesel half-ton truck, their opinions might change if the 3.0-liter diesel Ram turns out to be a hit.

  • bloggin

    Actually the V6 Ecoboost is EPA rated at 22hwy.  365 hp and 420 lb-ft torque.  The Ecoboost engine is a $2,300 upgrade($23,965) from the base F-150 at (302hp/278 lb-ft torque) starting at $21,665,  

    The V6 Diesel for the Cherokee and Ram 1500 is only 240 hp and 420 lb-ft torque.  The V6 Diesel engine is a $4,500 upgrade for the Cherokee which already has the 8 speed transmission.  

    So expecting $5k – $6k cost to upgrade Ram 1500 to diesel($30k – engine+ transmission), along with .50 cent more per gallon for fuel.  Which will cost $13 more per tank to fill up, with the 26 gallon Ram 150 tank. 

    To get the current Ram with the V6 (305hp/269) and 8-speed transmission that gets 25mpg hwy, it’s a $5k($27,700) upgrade from the base Ram 1500 starting at $22,640.  $5k for 5 more hwy mpg.  

    The base V6 in the F-150 has 302hp/278) and 17 city/23 hwy at just $21,665.  

    It seems Ram/Cherokee is moving to more expensive diesel to meet CAFE standards, simply because they don’t have more efficient/powerful gasoline engines, and are behind with hybrid technology.  Very much like VW/Audi, Mercedes Benz and BMW.  

    Going diesel works in Europe due to government support that artificially keeps diesel fuel cheaper than unleaded, and which spurred a higher take rate of diesel engines, that brings their price down a bit.  But it’s still a premium.  

    Going diesel sounds like a good idea, until you do the math.  Cost of ownership does not add up.   

  • just saying

    Comparing max HP and Torque between gas and diesel engines is like comparing apples to oranges. The max HP and Torque of a gasoline engine is produced at high rpm’s where you don’t normally operate. A diesel usually produces max torque at rpm’s where you drive all day. If you have ever towed heavy with gas and diesel you would chuckle at anyone ever trying to convince you a gasoline engine is comparable to towing with a diesel.

  • Upsetllama

    Also he is full of shit. Fuck Hybrids, they are not the future. The US’s investment in them is ridiculous. Comparing a Diesel getting 50mpg to a Prius getting 50mpg is like comparing a Nuclear reactor to a Nuclear bomb. On creates energy and can be dismantled and re-purposed the other is temporary and damaging.

  • Upsetllama

    AND, it costs less to maintain a diesel.

    When is the last time you saw a Petroleum powered car make it over 500K miles? Why do you think Ambulances and Firetrucks use Diesel motors?
    They are more reliable and just won’t break. 
    So even if you pay more for the fuel you can drive the car/truck for more miles then a gas car/truck would last. Thus you save.
    Gas engined vehicles these days are disposable. They are meant to be.
    But my Powerstroke diesel has 170K miles on it and it gets 25mpg on the highway. It will last far longer than whatever you drive. Meaning when you go and buy a new car what are you doing? Spending more money!

  • Guest

    Umm, have you seen the price of gas recently? In the end of Dec it was about $3.00, and now a month and a half later, it is rapidly closing in on $4.00. Meanwhile, diesel has varied between $3.80 and $4.09 over the same timeframe. Heard that supposedly it is because of the changeover to summer fuels (umm, its early Feb, and winter will last at least a few more months, it takes that long to switch over?)

    I would buy a new diesel vehicle if I were in the market for one, but my current ones are holding up well enough. I do own an ’05 Ex with a 6.0, and when empty not pulling anything, I got over 17mpg hand calculated. This in a 4+ ton vehicle. Not too shabby… I am Not a fan of Dodge, but in this case, I hope they have phenominal success with their new 1500 diesel. It would finally drag the rest of them into the mix, and get some serious competition between the big 4, which might even help hold down the costs a little? One can only hope.

  • Jeffrey

    What a bunch of rubbish !  
    Chevy, Ford, & Toyota all sell Diesel truck in other countries,  and they outsell gas unit 50 to 1 and there they say it offer lower cost to operate 

  • CA

    You think you might be able to tell us the city MPG’s?????  90% of driving is in the city. Is the city MPG that bad that it is not mentioned? Most of the auto
     now mentions the highway MPG’s and might  or not mention the city MPG’s.  It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what is going on with auto advertising.

  • CA

    You can bet they all have ‘plans’ for a diesel 1500 model. You have to plan for the future and the ‘what if the Dodge sells like hotcakes’. it’s a wait and see issue. i would put my money on Dodge diesels being a hot seller. Leaving Chey and Ford in the dust.

  • Vitali Kolos

    What a load of BS, all your MPG calculations go out the window once you hook up a trailer behind you, gas engine MPG could easily drop in half (depending on a load of course) while deasel MPG stays pretty much the same. I own a Toyota with 5.7 and I do a lot of pulling and hauling and I would buy a half ton or even smaller diesel pick up if they were available, I do not need a 3/4 or 1 ton truck for what I use them for.
    Go Dodge! I hope others will follow.

  • Joe

    Diesel fuel economy doesn’t “stay pretty much the same” when you hook a load to it.  Sure, it does better than a gasser, but it drops plenty.  I know, I tow an 8500 lb fifth wheel with a diesel!

  • Upsetllama

    What kind of Diesel? I see 17mpg minimum when towing large loads.

    6.0 PSD with some mods

  • TX

    I own 3/4 ton and would love to down size if possible. I think Chevy did this once before in the late 80’s or early 90’s. I think don’t quote me no this.

  • 100mpgus

    people have been asking for a diesel in a 1/2 ton for 20 years. Why should Chevy ford or anyone offer one? 

  • Petersfm47462

    I have had many Diesels, Rabbits, Vans. trucks and euro cars.  My Fiat tractor running side by side with a JD 4020 uses one fourth the fuel of the JD.  My van ran 400k before the transmission broke and the body was so rotten I didn’t fix.  The Rabbit got over 50 MPG (one year average).  My latest truck a Duramax 2004 Silver crew cab had the first bolt out of the motor last week 300K miles when I changed the water pump, with internet help.  I have never had a one that got less than 20 MPG except pulling a trailer.   I have a MB diesel that sat next to a house that burned and due to insurance problems never was started or moved until I bought it, put in a new battery and it started on the first compression stroke with 4.50 gallon fuel, I still need to do body and paint work on it.  If everyone bought diesels the auto companies would have to downsize from lack of sales.  I worked for Cummins for 15 years and never owned one,(Dodge) but they build one million mile engines.

  • Upsetllama

    Cummins outsources motors to China. No thank you.

  • Habitens

    Ill Stick with my 91 GMC 1500 6.2 Diesel with over 1 Million Miles Stock! Thats right

    GM Power

  • Matthew Hudson

    Ford is so full of it they are turning brown.

    The all-new RANGER
    The all-new Ford Ranger has been ruthlessly tested in some of the most hostile environments, under extreme temperatures, and across the harshest terrain on earth.

    The vehicle’s also been put to the test by some of the world’s most unforgiving judges, who voted the all-new Ranger: International Pick-Up Award 2013. These leading motoring journalists were unanimous in their decision, giving Ranger more points than the combined total for both the second and third-placed vehicles.

    No doubt the judges were impressed by the extra power, delivered by a new line-up of advanced Duratorq diesel engines, which can help you transport a payload of up to 1,340 kg and tow up to 3,500 kg. At the same time, the engines provide improved fuel economy while meeting Euro Stage V emissions standards.

    The all-new Ranger is the first pick-up ever to achieve a prestigious Euro NCAP 5-star safety rating too. Find out more about the Ranger’s safety levels, driving experience, performance and efficiency, utility and costs and design.

    Book a test drive and judge the award-winning Ranger for yourself. Ford already sells a diesel engine in it’s half ton trucks, but it is not allowed in the USA

  • Matthew Hudson

    More powerful, more economical diesel enginesThe new Ranger now offers a range of new Duratorq Stage V diesel engines that combine extra power and torque with outstanding fuel economy and MPG. For example, the150PS/110kW 2.2-litre 4 cylinder engine delivers up to 375 Nm of torque and a frugal fuel economy figure of 35.3mpg (combined cycle). While the 200PS 3.2 litre TDCi (diesel) offers up to 470Nm of torque. The higher-powered engines use a Variable Geometry Turbocharger (VGT), which controls the amount of power and torque produced. It improves starting and gives you remarkable torque at low speeds, even without touching the accelerator – minimising fuel consumption and emissions.

  • Slyguy61520

    Last I knew of how diesel was Refined it should be cheaper to make/sell which would put things back into reality of owning one.

  • Markcarl4921

    Diesel is more expensive now due to the extra refining to achieve the ultra low sulfur content. When diesel was cheaper than gasoline it did not have the ultra low sulfur content. Plus with this ultra low sulfur content it has reduced the fuel economy and reduced the lubricity properties of the fuel. So with older diesel engines we are seeing more wear related issues like we did when we eliminated lead from gasoline in the early 70s. Plus the reduction of sulfur is not really making a big impact on acid rain like the environmentalist were saying it was going to do. And with the decrease in fuel economy it increased other pollutants. To say nothing of increasing costs to operate your vehicle. Burn more fuel create more pollution.

  • Hucorey

    Diesel is cheaper to produce. Much cheaper. Its is demand driving the price up. The US ships many ocean freighters full of fuel to china and India and US refineries can’t keep up.

  • Markcarl4921

     So where are you getting your information Hucorey?

  • Upsetllama

    Where are you getting yours? No source at all.

  • Danny Miller

     Really? Then why did the price of diesel go up immediately when the sulfur was first added? Did the demand go up overnight? History proves you wrong.

  • Toots313

    Discovery Channel & A&E both did Independent documentries about the cost of fuel and how it is refined. If you google it or bing it you can find all the info. Diesel Prices went  because of low supplies and because they can, Can you say Greedy Greedy Companies?

  • Robert

    It coincided with our exports to Asia of diesel. We export tankers daily out of Tacoma, Washington and other west coast ports. Keeps the supply down, prices up. Exporting diesel should be illegal… creates a higher price and puts a strain on our economy. The exported stuff doesn’t have the reduced sulpher, even cheaper to make. Everyone is paying for this ‘business move’ by the oil companies….it is why there is a fuel surcharge on all freight these days, resulting in price increases for everything at the grocery store.

  • Heffe

    Because only a handful of refineries in the U.S. can make ULS diesel…that leaves a large portion of the refined diesel not meeting ULS specs going overseas. So demand didn’t go up for diesel, but the supply chain for “allowed” diesel went way down after the ULS mandate.

  • Toots313

    Diesel IS Still the Cheapest Fuel to make. They just screen it through an extra filter. Diesel is the first thing they make when they start the refineing process. The industry called it garbage gas for decades and most fuel companies are laughing all the way to the bank. It still cost twice as much to refine gas than it does diesel even with low sulfur.

  • Jwitkowski1

    Would have sold my 3500 dodge to buy a brand new dodge if it was a Cummins motor. Instead it’s a fiat or something of the like….

  • Crewdog259

    if the ford, chevy and toyota are rated in the range of 19-21 then they are probably actually getting 17-19.  the dodge will probably be rated at 28ish I’m guessing(4×4 jeep is rated at that, 4×2 is 30mpg) but the dodge will likely get low 30’s.  It has to do with how the EPA rates diesel/gas engines.
    I might replace my 4door car (30mpg camry) with a dodge ram.  why not, all kinds of space and the same economy, love it.

  • Saltfever

    GM designed a completely new, clean-sheet-of-paper, small diesel for trucks a few years ago. Exhaust ports were on the inside of the V so the turbo could be effeciently positioned in the valley. I think the V angle was less than 90deg also. It was a extremely compact package with the thinking that future trucks would be smaller and the motor would fit a wide range of frames. After looking at future increased emmission standards GM shelved the idea of a new diesel. Ram may be the catylast that rekindles GM thinking.

  • Toots313

    Ford and Chevy just screwed themselves. I would love to have a Diesel F150. I may just have to try the Dodge Diesel when it comes out. My F350 DRW CC only gets 11 city/16 highway unless towing. I would love a smaller diesel if I could still pull my trailer (7800) and get 20mph highway

  • crankyanker

     If you look hard, you can find folks who have shoehorned Cummins 4BT motors into their F150’s.  That motor will make an easy 350ft/lb of torque.  matched to a 5 speed OD manual tranny and you ought to get 30 mpg.

  • Upsetllama

    30 mpg in a 4BT is a myth. It’s an awful engine. Just search “4BT problems” or the like and you will see hundreds of forum posts. Also Cummins outsources to China. 

  • the_mig

    I totally agree with Toots. Ford, Chevy, and Toyota just screwed themselves. I bought an F350. Did I buy it cause I needed something that big? No. I bought it because it’s a diesel and I would have bought any (well, almost any) 1/2 ton if they had a diesel. There is a (significant) section of the buyer market who want the benefits of a diesel long term that outweigh the “ownership costs”. And besides, when a truck is pushing $40k, where do they get off talking about “ownership costs”??

  • crankyanker

     AMEN … I found my 2000 F250 7.3 last summer and was so excited I about wet my pants.
    I paid close to $10K but it was well worth it, only 110K miles and runs like a top.  I get 20mpg with this truck on the highway.  Now THIS machine is a TRUCK.  Diesel is the way to go if you have to haul stuff and want to run up to 500K miles.  Imagine what a tuned 5 cylinder inline Cummins would do in a F150 !!

  • sprayman

    it is not a industry first to have a 1/2 ton with a diesel, gm did it with the 6.2 in the 80’s

  • crankyanker

     Even the old Ford Rangers in the early 80’s offered diesel engines and they got close to 35mpg.  I saw one on ebay recently that sold for $6,000

  • Greg Scoggins

    You’d really, really think Toyota would have learned with the debacle of the T-100, right?  But the San Antonio, Texas manufactured Toyota Tundra will never be on par with other domestic pickup lines until Toyota’s iron dictators in Japan pull their heads out and offer what is painfully missing from the Tundra lineup; a true 3/4 pickup with a diesel option.  Toyota propaganda pundits can tow all the space shuttles they want, but it won’t make up for the fact that Ford’s Powerstroke 6.7 diesel bests the torque of Toyota’s I-FORCE 5.7 gas-burner by 100%.  Sorry, space shuttle or not, there is no comparison.  But as in usual with Toyota, the skull is an impenetrable lead brick and company line is “face” even for its talking-head engineers here in the United States.

  • Skyking19

    1/2 ton diesel pickup makes sense!   Driving a F-350 diesel now and would love to downsize but still need the torque and towing power.   Come on Ford get on board!

  • crankyanker

     They have NO EXCUSE.  Do a google search on the new Ford Ranger.  It is almost as large as the F150 and offers TWO diesel engine options.  They are selling them everywhere except HERE in North America!!

  • Upsetllama

    It’s the governments fault. CAFE for one. 

    Ford just invested a ton of money building a new facility.

    “Ford Motor says it will spend more than $773 million on expanding its manufacturing facilities and create 2,350 new jobs in its home state of Michigan as part of a plan to invest $6.2 billion and add 12,000 new positions by 2015.”

  • crankyanker

    I get 20 MPG with my 2000 F250 that has a 7.3L diesel engine.  It has enough power to pull a house off it’s foundation and indeed WILL run on waste veggie oil that I can get for free.  EcoBoost @ 21mpg?  No thanks.  Get with it Ford.  Why won’t you sell the new upgraded international Ranger (that DOES offer two diesel options) here in America?

  • Adam Green

    This is great news.  A 3.0 turbo-diesel, especially if they provide a smart transmission and high towing capacity will be a great vehicle.  This definitely puts Chev off my list and leaves it to either a V8 or this new diesel.  I think the diesel is a slam dunk.

  • Bookwalter

    o ford sells a diesel in its trucks around the world (and a lot of them)
    knowing these are a huge hit in most the world but then turns around and says
    they don’t make since here? America, the only country on earth that buys jumbo,
    over powered 4×4/AWD cars/trucks just so they can idle in rush hour traffic or
    sit at the mall. We don’t buy our vehicles because they make since, we buy because
    it’s cool or a status symbol. If truck sales represented logic than 1, they
    would drop 75% in popularity overnight. 2 all trucks would have a company name
    on the side of them because an industry use (farm/ranch/trucking & so on) is
    the only place that a truck makes economic since.


    Do we buy a whopper super-sized because it makes since?


    Give the people what they want. Or what good marketing tells us we want!

  • Bradley0128

     makes since what? That sentence makes no sense at all.

  • Bookwalter

    What part don’t you understand?

  • Checksix

    Thank you Dodge!  I’ll sit back a little while and wait to see if they have problems.  I bought a 2001 Volvo wagon that is supposed to be one of the worst 1st generation cars they made.  Fortunatly for me, it has been VERY reliable with no unscheduled maintenaince at 140K miles.  Just don’t want to take that chance again.


  • Abe Lincoln

    Too little too late.  And I bet you can’t find it with a manual transmission at any price.  Yawn……

  • Bradley0128

    I really dislike Dodge trucks.  Well, they are not bad, but I much prefer Ford.  I’m very disappointed at any of the companies bringing much of any diesels here.  They are all over the world…except here. C’mon Ford and GM (especially Ford), get on it!  Ford, I swear if you introduce a diesel Ranger or Bronco here, I’ll be on the wait list to get the first one.  I don’t want a Focus, though cool and good mpg. I want a 30+ mpg SUV/truck.  I’ll be keeping my Superduty for pulling my camper and doing real work.  My Powerstroke has 257,000 on it and never missed a beat.  It pulls 20,000 lbs up 6% grades at 50 mph without a sweat.  I love it.  JUST GIVE US WHAT SOOOO MANY WANT: SMALLER DIESEL TRUCKS AND CARS!

  • Junglegeorgi

    I’m not Dodge fan…. but smart thing what Dodge is doing, it will sale like hot cake… Because I got 3 diesel vehicles,02 Duramax, 05 VW Passat and 2010 VW Touareg… The Touareg had 3.0L TDI 225 hp. 406 torque lb. and can pull over 7000 lbs. Plus it gets 28 mpg. So Dodge should get 28+ mpg and its about time to see half-ton diesel truck out there.It will be great truck for plasure and for towing, becuase it will do better on fuel + torque. Like my Chavy Duramax truck got no use for it, only pulling heavy…Good job “Dodge”!!! 

            What would be nice to see out there is VW Amarok and Isuzu D-Max truck….      

  • Travis

    Yes way to go dodge as long as they keep the cost down to build and we don’t see that diesel option passed on to us at a $5,000 to $7,000 option with a $2500 for the 8 speed auto. Know for those of

  • Travis

    For those of you that that need a history lesson for half ton diesel take a look chevy because that is who innovated the half ton diesel . They have had a half ton diesel option from 1982 2000 with a 28 mpg hwy they stop production in 2000 to focus on the next generation of diesel engine the 6.6 Duramax . And the reason the haven’t put a diesel option back into the half tons was because of new emissions law and regulations . But I can guarantee that you will see a diesel option in the up coming 2014 Silverado half ton . Ford is going the other direction with the Eco boost witch I am not a fan of a twin turbo gas truck so all you ford eco boost owners look into getting some turbos when you start putting a load on them because they will be popping them with age never fails with a gas . oil burning is the way to go

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