GM Reconsidering 4.5-Liter Duramax Diesel for Light-Duty Trucks

In late 2008, when the U.S. economy went into freefall and GM stood on the edge of the precipice, any projects that weren’t core to the automaker’s survival were either canned or put on the back burner. One of the latter, was a light-duty version of the GM Duramax diesel, designed for the light duty 1/2 ton Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups. Now that truck sales are on the rebound, the idea of a light duty diesel engine is gaining traction once again. According to Mark Cieslak, Chief Engineer for GM’s full-size truck program, making the engine an option in HD trucks as well as the 1500 personal use models would give it a stronger business case. “The 4.5-liter V8 diesel is fully developed and ready, so if we wanted to, we could launch it in a hearbeat,” he said.

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Chevy Updates Silverado HD Towing and Payload Numbers, Besting Ford Super Duty

The battle rages on. With Chevy‘s new Duramax 6.6-liter beating out Ford in the horsepower and torque competition, the new Silverado HD came up just short of its big rival in terms of payload and towing capability. Now Chevy has changed that, releasing new numbers that just edge out Ford’s Super Duty.

The 6.6-liter Duramax was rated to tow up to 20,000 lbs and had a payload rating of 6,335 lbs at launch. Ford’s F-Series Super Duty, however, managed towing of 21,600 lbs and a payload rating of 6,520 lbs. Revised numbers now give Chevy the edge with a 21,700 lbs tow rating and 6,635 lb payload capability.

“Our focus has consistently been on delivering customers the most capable heavy-duty trucks in the market,” says Rick Spina, GM Full-size Truck global vehicle line executive. “The first set of capability tests confirmed that the team had exceeded the payload and towing targets by a significant margin. Ongoing testing demonstrated a clear opportunity to increase the true capabilities of these trucks. Even pulling a combined weight of nearly 15 tons seems easy behind the wheel of a 2011 Silverado HD 3500 with the proven Duramax Diesel.”

In terms of power, the new 6.6-liter Duramax V8 is rated at 397-hp at 3000 rpm  and 765 ft-lbs of torque at 1600 rpm. This tops the F-Series Super Duty that’s rated at 390-hp at 2800 rpm and 735 ft-lbs of torque at 1600 rpm.

Official release after the jump:

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