Friday, July 27, 2007

More Light-Duty Diesels Coming

July 27, 2007
So-called half-ton pickups will be getting fuel-thrifty diesel engines soon. Diesel engines, which are popular with trailerists, typically boost fuel economy by about 30 percent. According to a study by the Martec Group, a typical diesel engine option costs the consumer about $6,660 more than a comparable gas motor. However, after 4.5 years of ownership, a diesel is worth about $4,700 more than a gas-engined pickup. During those years of ownership, the diesel owners surveyed saved about $4,200 on fuel.

Ford is going to offer a 4.4-liter V-8 turbodiesel in the F-150 pickup, and perhaps the Expedition. This engine is based on the 3.6L turbocharged V-8 used in Range Rovers sold in Europe.

Dodge is adding a Cummins 4.2-liter V-6 turbodiesel to the Ram 1500 pickup truck. It may put out about 190 hp and 570 lb-ft of torque and is expected by 2010.

GM recently announced plans for a 4.5L V-8 Duramax turbodiesel in Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra 1500-series pickups, and the Hummer H2 by 2010.

Nissan may add either a V-6 or V-8 Navistar-sourced turbodiesel to the Titan in 2010.

Rival Toyota may introduce a turbodiesel Tundra, using an Isuzu-built engine, also in 2010.

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