GM plans to drastically improve fuel economy of its full-size pickup trucks to meet the US standards and stay competitive with its tough rival Ford Motor.
According to anonymous sources, GM will probably manage to reach its fuel-economy target in 2019, when the just-redesigned GMC Sierra and the Chevrolet Silverado will be overhauled again. This would be five years after Ford’s reducing at least 700 lbs (318 kg) from its F-150 pickup, part of the 2014 redesign.
Using more efficient engines will most surely improve fuel economy of the Ford and GM trucks, but the biggest gains will be achieved from reducing the weight. GM’s Sierra and Silverado have already lost between 250 to 400 lbs after the complete makeover underwent this summer, but the lightest Silverado still has 4,387 lbs (1,990 kg).
“We’re going to look at all the levers we can pull – materials, aerodynamics, powertrain – to continue to improve fuel efficiency, both on an interim basis and as we go to the next-generation trucks,” GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson said. He declined to discuss the automaker’s specific plans.
According to an anonymous source GM would introduce in 2014 a special aluminum-intensive Silverado version which might be up to 250 lbs lighter and 20% better fuel economy.