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John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 10-11-2018 Following our report yesterday on the new GM 2.7-Liter turbocharged gasoline engine, Mike Ofiara from Chevrolet Communications confirmed to GM-Trucks.com that GM will recommend Regular Unleaded fuel for the engine. This will have a major impact on the fuel economy of the vehicle. Many automakers launch new boosted engines with high compression as replacements for larger normally aspirated engines, only to then require premium fuel. Premium fuel has an average cost 16% higher than regular unleaded fuel according to today's average prices. While this may not seem like a big deal at first, do the math on a typical truck with a base engine and you will find the 10-year fuel cost can be around $23,000. 16% of that is around $3,700. With the new gasoline engine rated for the least expensive fuel in America, the cost comparison to operating a comparable diesel may tip in favor of the new gasoline engine from GM. The EPA has yet to publish the final official fuel economy numbers for the Silverado 1500 with the new 2.7-Liter engine. Once they are available, we will post them.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 10-9-2018 General Motors released the preliminary specifications for the Silverado 1500 with the 2.7-liter gasoline turbocharged engine. The torque and horsepower were already known to us. 310 horsepower and 348 lb-ft of torque. That torque is delivered from 1,500 RPM all the way to 4,000 RPM. What GM added today was the fuel efficiency and 0-60 MPH time numbers and they are impressive. Chevrolet says that the new 2WD Silverado will accelerate from 0-60 MPH in 6.8 seconds. By contrast, Motor Trend recorded a 9.7-second 0-60 MPH time for the Colorado ZR2 Duramax diesel. Truck Trend's testing revealed a 9.55-second run. The much larger Silverado is much quicker than the Colorado Duramax. But who cares? Diesel isn't about quick sprints. Diesel is about fuel economy. Here the numbers are a little less easy to match up directly. One number that does match up perfectly is the City cycle fuel efficiency. GM says the new Silverado will earn a 20 MPG city rating. That matches the Colorado Diesel's rating (of 20 MPG). The Silverado 2.7L will be rated at 23 MPG Highway. The Colorado Duramax is rated at 30 MPG Highway. The question we don't know the answer to yet is which fuel, regular, or premium will be required. It matters because if the engine can use regular unleaded fuel, it will have a Combined fuel economy rating higher than the Colorado with the 2.8L diesel due to the higher fuel cost for diesel. AAA pegs the average cost for diesel fuel right now, ahead of the winter season when prices rise for diesel, at 11.4% higher than regular unleaded fuel. Premium unleaded is currently the highest-priced liquid-fuel at about 16% higher than regular unleaded. So if GM required premium fuel, the new 2.7-liter turbo's fuel economy will not be that impressive. GM is rating the Silverado 1500 with the 2.7-liter engine at 7,200 pounds. The Silverado 2.7L will reach peak torque more quickly than the Colorado Duramax diesel. However, for a short duration in the RPM band, the Duramax has a 21 lb-ft advantage in torque. We've reached out to GM and asked what fuel will be required. Of course, we are comparing a full-size truck here to a midsized truck. Imagine the comparison of a Colorado equipped with the 2.7-liter gasoline engine tuned for regular fuel vs. a 2.8-liter Duramax. GM could potentially have a midsized gasoline truck with lower fuel costs, quicker speeds, and equivalent towing capability to its diesel. The Torque and HP curves for both engines are shown below.