Diesels? 8-speed? Stay tuned
Reuss: Hints at changes
DETROIT -- A diesel engine for the light-duty Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra? How about an eight-speed transmission? Will General Motors bring back a hybrid for its pickups and SUVs?
Those questions were lobbed at GM North America President Mark Reuss at last week's unveiling of the redesigned pickups. Reuss didn't confirm any of the plans, but he hinted that all are on the table.
"We'll have very compelling powertrain choices that continue to evolve early in the life cycle of this truck," Reuss vowed.
Any such major change would mark a departure from GM's approach on the current generation pickups, launched in 2006. Since then, GM made few changes to the trucks, partly because of a cash-flow crisis that led to its 2009 bankruptcy.
GM execs admit the dearth of investment let the pickups get long in the tooth. Reuss said continual product improvement wasn't a priority in the old GM. That has changed.
"We will keep doing new technology in these trucks," he said.
Pressed on whether GM will add a diesel engine to its light-duty pickups, Reuss said simply: "More to come." On an eight-speed tranny: "Hang loose."
GM offers a diesel on its heavy-duty pickups. Sources have told Automotive News that GM is working with Ford to develop a 10-speed transmission for use in pickups and SUVs. Sources have said GM also has a homegrown eight-speed that could be used in its trucks within a year.
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