GM's Famed 'Tripower' Is Back… As a Thrifty Four-cylinder
You won’t find three two-barrel carbs atop this Tripower mill. In fact, depending on the engine’s load, you might not even find three cylinders in operation.
General Motors plans to bring back a performance-focused name for its new 2.7-liter turbocharged four, Automotive News reports, giving the automaker a ballsy moniker for the engine it doesn’t want to admit is a four-cylinder.
When GM unveiled the new base engine for non-work trimmed 2019 Chevrolet Silverados and GMC Sierras, care was taken to avoid calling the engine a four-cylinder. Media materials referred to the engine as the “2.7L Turbo” — a placeholder that sounds powerful and refined. Having not driven it yet, the engine could easily be the latter, but its on-paper specs certainly live up to the former: 310 horsepower and 348 lb-ft of torque.
Without an EPA fuel economy rating, we don’t know yet if this engine beats its domestic challengers in the “most fuel-efficient gas full-size pickup” race, but it certainly seems designed to do just that. No other automaker offers a four-banger in a full-sizer. Not only that, but under what we assume are very light loads, the mill drops two cylinders from the equation.
A brawny name steeped in muscle car-era history (namely, late ’50s and ’60s Pontiacs) could help avoid the now outdated stigma surrounding engines of this type.
The Tripower name reveal came Tuesday. Mike Anderson, GM’s executive director of global transmission and electrification hardware engineering, took media types on a wordy spin around the new engine at the CAR Management Briefing Seminars in Traverse City, Michigan. Unlike the original Tripower, which was all about dumping copious amounts of fuel into hungry cylinders, the name this time around implies a trifecta of technologies aimed at increasing fuel economy. It’s 2018, after all.
Those technologies are: the aforementioned cylinder deactivation, active thermal management (to ensure optimum temperatures for efficiency), and intake valve lift control (which tailors the lift profile for maximum thriftiness under varying loads). The latter featured debuted on GM’s 2.5-liter Ecotec motor.
four-cylinder Tripower engine awaits its judgement-by-public when the 2019 Silverado and Sierra arrive this fall.
[Images: General Motors]
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