It's both cheaper and more powerful than we were expecting.
Following a short delay, the diesel version of the 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is finally here. Available on LT, RST, LTZ and High Country models, it’s the first-ever inline-six turbo-diesel offered in Chevrolet’s full-size light-duty trucks.
As we already knew from leaked specs, General Motor’s new 3.0-liter Duramax turbodiesel inline-six produces 277 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque, which compares favorably to the Ford F-150’s 3.0-liter diesel V6 that produces 250 hp and 440 lb-ft and Ram’s EcoDiesel, which produces 240 hp and 420 lb-ft. The diesel unit is mated to a ten-speed automatic transmission featuring a "centrifugal pendulum absorber torque converter” that reduces vibrations and improves smoothness.
The engine delivers 95 percent of its peak torque at just 1,250 rpm, while Peak torque is sustained from 1,500 rpm through 3,000 rpm, providing a "powerfully smooth and satisfying driving experience”. The diesel-powered Silverado 1500 also utilizes exhaust braking, which uses the diesel engine’s compression to help slow the vehicle, requiring fewer brake applications by the driver when in Tow Haul mode.
To help the model cope in colder climates, Chevrolet has fitted ceramic glow plugs that reduce heat-up times and allow for a quicker cold start. As a result, the engine block heater is not needed until -22 degrees F. Fuel economy figures haven’t been released yet, but the engine features stop/start technology to help optimize efficiency in city driving. The driver-selectable system shuts off the engine at stoplights and other stop-and-go situations. The engine then automatically restarts when the driver takes their foot off the brake.
We were expecting the diesel-powered 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 to carry a hefty premium over its gasoline counterpart, but we’re happy to report this isn’t the case. The 3.0-liter Duramax turbodiesel variant will be priced identically to the optional 6.2-liter petrol V8. As a result, the engine costs $2,495 more than the 5.3-liter V8 and $3,890 more than the turbocharged 2.7-liter four-cylinder. The most affordable 2020 Silverado trim is the LT, which will set you back $42,285 with the new diesel engine.