Are diesel trucks a dying breed, now that the latest gasoline engines, gas/electric hybrids, and all-electric trucks are on the verge of breaking into the market place?
What prompted this discussion? It’s the introduction of latest big displacement gasoline V8 engines: the 7.3L gas V8 from Ford, and the 6.6L gas V8 from Chevrolet and GMC. These engines are meant for heavy duty trucks, but is this a general indication of where the pickup truck will moving to in the next 5-10 years?
Gas and Electric
Ford says that the all-new naturally aspirated 7.3L V8 will be capable of at horsepower and torque that have not been seen from gasoline truck engines before. They did not announce power specifications, but we estimated them to be close to 450 hp and 506 lb-ft of torque. Ford also stated their intent to produce an all-electric Ford F-150 in addition to the 2020 F-150 Hybrid that also announced.
Chevrolet and GMC unveiled their new 6.6L gas V8 direct-injected truck engine with a rating of 401 hp and 464 lb-ft of torque. This is a big improvement from the power level of the aged and soon-to-be-discontinued 6.0L Vortec V8. GMC executive stated that an all-electric truck is under consideration. This week’s rumor is that GM is planning to use Tesla battery-electric chassis for their upcoming electric truck.
Ram is still using their 6.4L HEMI gas V8 truck engine and mated it to a new ZF 8-speed automatic transmission. Ram is currently selling V6 and V8 eTorque mild-hybrid trucks, so FCA may have somethings brewing in terms of a plug-in hybrid or an all-electric truck.
The other side of this coin is that the latest turbo-diesel engines have also been redesigned. The 6.7L Cummins I6 is new and now offers 400 hp and 1,000 lb-ft in the high-output tune for the Ram 3500 HD trucks. Ford has updated the 6.7L Power Stroke V8 to what they call a 3rd-generation of the engine. GM has made cooling and turbo-control improvements to their 6.6L Duramax V8 diesel.
Obviously, turbo-diesel pickup trucks are not going away soon, but is their reign as the end-all heavy truck solution in decline?
Join Roman and Andre as they argue both sides of this argument in this Episode 4 of “No, You’re Wrong!”.