By on March 22, 2019

While diesel may be deader than disco in the passenger car segment, it is rolling plenty of coal in the half-ton pickup truck class. Once the domain of heavy duty rigs, oil burners are now snaking their way under the hoods of consumer-grade trucks.

We’ve known for a spell the output of Ford’s half-ton PowerStroke, as we have with Ram’s on-again-off-again EcoDiesel. Now we learn GM’s rating and, compared to that pair of competitor mills, it can brag about being best in class.

According to a report from the good guys at TFL Truck, who confirmed the numbers with GM reps, the new 3.0-liter Duramax Inline-Six Turbo-Diesel will make 277 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque. The latter comes online at just 1,500 rpm, lending credence to the assertion that this engine will pull tree stumps at near idle speed. It’ll be backed by a 10-speed automatic transmission, by the way.

According to the GM fleet order guide, the diesel mill will be available in several different trims and not limited to just the high-zoot models. Bowtie fans will be able to spec this engine in LT, RST, LTZ, and High Country models. Those first two will require the inclusion of a Convenience Package, driving the price up a bit more than by just the diesel upcharge. On the GMC side of things, this engine will be available on everything except the base Sierra.

Image: Steph Willems/TTAC

If you’re paying attention, you’ll have no doubt deduced that Chevy Trail Boss trucks will not be available with the Duramax, but it is an option on the off-road focused GMC Sierra AT4 and its 2-inch factory lift kit. It remains to be seen if the diesel will be available in conjunction with other groups like the NHT Max Trailering package. Keep in mind that GMC offers the hand-of-god 6.2-liter in the AT4 as part of an Off-Road Performance Package.

For context, Ford’s Powerstroke is rated at 250 horsepower and 440 lb-ft of twist. Ram’s EcoDiesel, currently in the throes of drama and not yet available on 2019 models, heaves out 260 horses and 442 lb-ft of torque. In the never-ending Detroit truck battle, usurping the competition in power numbers is as natural as breathing oxygen, so expect one of the other two manufacturers – probably Ford with its 2020 F-150 later this year – to juice their numbers accordingly.

The new Duramax diesel now shows up on GM’s fleet guide, indicating orders will soon be taken for delivery later this year. Pricing for this straight-six option has not yet been released.

[Images: General Motors]

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29 Comments on “Power Specs Leaked for GM’s New Inline-Six Diesel...”


  • avatar
    gtem

    Sounds like a fetching powerplant. But the massive surcharge to get the motor over a gasoline one, combined with headaches over reliability due to the emissions components, all of this wrapped up in a stupefyingly-ugly truck, I’ll pass. I’ve got some weekend hauling lined up using my friend’s GMT400 K1500, extended cab stepside, now THAT is a handsome truck. What are the chances that in 2040 one of these new diesel chevies will have made it to 210k miles with absolutely minimal repairs, and trivial upkeep and repairs going forward?

    • 0 avatar
      Dan

      +1 gtem. I really want to like this just for being an inline six, and the power numbers are encouraging, but the right block layout doesn’t make any difference to the usual diesel dealbreakers of $4-5,000 up front for an emissions headache later. The 29,000 psi fuel system isn’t any less of an expensive liability on an inline either.

      And unlike the Ford or the Ram, taking this diesel precludes having the 6.2 gas V8.

      • 0 avatar
        Tele Vision

        Buying and replacing all six injectors, which is apparently a thing, won’t be fun. I don’t get it: I can replace coil packs on my gas engines individually but Diesel injectors need to be replaced en masse?

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          I have no idea how the new ones are, but for the old ones replacing all of them was practice because they were a PiTA to get to, so do them all at once so you don’t have to come back in 15k miles.

          Granted those injectors were a hell of a lot cheaper.

          I want diesel, I love diesel, my 6.5L HMCO is probably going to be the last diesel I buy in my life, no emissions diesel is peak diesel efficiency. Big block non direct injection gas V8 is the best thing the modern world can get.

          • 0 avatar
            MBella

            It’s still for the same reason. If you end up with one, I would suggest regular use of a Chevron or similar diesel fuel additive.

    • 0 avatar
      ffighter69

      How does 600,000 miles on a 2008 GMC Sierra 3500HD sound to you without a single engine repair/part replacement and with only replacing the front CV axles and a fork lever in the transfer case to date.

  • avatar
    redapple

    GTEM

    Once again. Good points.

  • avatar
    Rocket

    Easily the most interesting thing about GM’s new full-sizers. Too bad it’s not enough to outweigh the many disappointments. It could make for an interesting option in the new Tahoe, however. Assuming they finally offer an independent rear, that is.

    • 0 avatar
      EquipmentJunkie

      I agree. I would likely opt for one of the competition’s V-6 diesels due to the wrapper even though I prefer an inline-6. Seeing this new truck in the flesh made me even more disappointed.

    • 0 avatar
      Weltron

      What would be interesting is if they took that diesel and put it into a Suburban. I wish Suburbans would have a diesel option again. One vehicle it actually makes sense for.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      Independent rear is the Tahoe/Suburbans death sentence.

      • 0 avatar
        Carlson Fan

        ‘Independent rear is the Tahoe/Suburbans death sentence.”

        Wasn’t a death sentence for the Expedition, wouldn’t be for the Hoe/Burb either. Completely the opposite in fact. It would make the 3rd row a lot more roomier. I prefer the solid axel in my ’07 Hoe for towing and will put up with a compromised 3rd row to have it, but I suspect I’m in the minority.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          “but I suspect I’m in the minority.”

          The Tahoe/Suburban (not even including the GMC variant) has easily outsold the Expedition family for nearly a decade. Internet commenters and car reviewers harp on the IRS issue with the GM SUVs but actual buyers don’t seem to care.

          • 0 avatar
            Carlson Fan

            The Tahoe/Suburban (not even including the GMC variant) has easily outsold the Expedition family for nearly a decade. Internet commenters and car reviewers harp on the IRS issue with the GM SUVs but actual buyers don’t seem to care.

            Exactly. My point is an IRS in a GM SUV will not hurt sales one bit. The improved 3rd row due to the IRS would only help sales. I let a friend drive my Hoe for a couple of weeks while he and his wife shopped for a new FS SUV to haul his boat & family. Guess what, his wife didn’t like the 3rd row on the Hoe, they bought an Armada. Anecdotal but I suspect GM has lost other buyers over this same issue. Whether it’s enough to consider going to an IFS with the next gen, I don’t know.

            I guarantee you I could count on one hand the number of people who bought a GM FS SUV simply for the solid rear axle over something else because it had an IRS. It’s simply not a selling point.

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          Expedition sales were so bad after switching to IRS that they didn’t bother to update it for 15 years and 3 GM body style changes. The Tahoe and Burb are essentially dead if they lose the major selling point. If you want IRS they’re are plenty of sellers all with lackluster sales.

          New Expedition will do good for a while but it won’t match the Tahoe/Suburb, same will happen when the leagues of dumbarses finally convince GM to ditch the solid rear, which with GMs management, I suspect it will be within the next couple of months they destroy their best products with the minivan suspension.

          As Ajla said the league of internet commenters still living in their parents basements working part time at Sonic are the only ones degrading GM for the solid rear axle and OHV engines.

          • 0 avatar
            Spartan

            Internet comments who thinks switching from a SRA to IRS will kill the GM BOF SUVs said the same thing when GM killed the 1 ton Suburban/Yukon. It’s a bunch of internet fanboy comments from people who don’t buy them new. Guess what? GM doesn’t care what you think.

            As a 2016 Yukon XL Denali and former 2009 Cadillac Escalade owner who bought new, I welcome IRS. The Expedition with IRS can tow more than the GM BOF SUVs and doesn’t have that stupid high load floor penalty. The reason the Burb outsold the Expedition is because Ford didn’t update it for 15 years. It has very little to do with IRS.

            One of my complaints on the GMC customer surveys was the high load floor from the solid rear axle and the towing capacity. As luck would have it, many Suburban and Yukon customers have been complaining over the years about both!

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            “Expedition sales were so bad after switching to IRS”

            correlation does not imply causation.

            IRS had nothing to do with it. Sales of large SUVs across the board were declining at that time. Sales of the Tahoe, Yukon, and Suburban were falling almost in lock step with the Expedition until about 2007, then Expedition started falling faster as it stayed almost completely unchanged for the next 10 years.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            “As a 2016 Yukon XL Denali and former 2009 Cadillac Escalade owner who bought new, I welcome IRS.”

            “many Suburban and Yukon customers have been complaining over the years about both!”

            So why aren’t they buying the alternatives? You bought two very expensive brand new SUVs despite the load floor issue.

            Switching to IRS will certainly not “kill” the GM SUVs, but using a live axle is obviously not hurting the sales popularity of the vehicles either. GM’s gonna do what their gonna do, but I don’t think sales volume will be impacted either way.

          • 0 avatar
            Spartan

            ajla, because even with the SRA penalty, the GM BOF SUVs have been better than the Expedition for years.

            Test drive a fully optioned Tahoe/Yukon vs an Expedition. It’s not close. The GM SUVs drive better, have better interiors, better steering, better road feel. I don’t know about the updated Expedition, but the last generation model was trash.

        • 0 avatar
          MBella

          Independent rear suspension does many things well, but saving space is not one of those. A complete rear axle assembly on a IRS is very large. The solid axle will actually save space.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            no it won’t. a live axle requires the frame rails to “arch” over the axle to allow for the entire axle to go through the full suspension travel; also you need clearance for the big differential housing to bounce around. both of these necessitate raising the height of the vehicle floor in the rear. Also the driveshaft tunnel needs to be larger to accommodate vertical travel of the shaft.

            The Expedition’s IRS allows the differential housing to be rigidly attached to the frame or subcarrier, and since the half shafts pass through the frame rails the frame does not have to arch over the axles. Which allows for a lower floor height. Also since the driveshaft does not have to change angle much if at all (due to the fixed position of the differential) the tunnel doesn’t need to be as large.

  • avatar
    SC5door

    “Ram’s EcoDiesel, currently in the throes of drama and not yet available on 2019 models, heaves out 260 horses and 442 lb-ft of torque.” In the Wrangler–we do not know the power specs for the Ram 1500.

    2018 RAM EcoDiesel was 240 HP and 420 lb-ft of torque.

  • avatar
    chaparral

    Lightest truck + most powerful diesel = ?

  • avatar
    Trucky McTruckface

    Too bad that diesel isn’t accompanied by new sheetmetal and a better dashboard.

  • avatar
    Tele Vision

    My lowly 2010 5.4L Ford came with 320 HP and 390 ft/lbs. It attains these figures on the cheapest gas available and without a turbo and CDN$1000 injectors. One would have to commit to regularly using the inherent capabilities of that truck for it to be a ‘good deal’. The iron block might stand up to incessant towing but not much else will. That’s a moot point, though, as we know that these trucks are just commuters – just as my truck is.


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