Just this week, GM announced that it would build a new six-cylinder diesel for its Silverado 1500. The next day, Ram launched the new 1500 — with no mention of the V6 diesel option.
Recent events have clarified the situation. Ram’s chief said that the diesel would appear later in the 2019 model year, and GM, today, said they had chosen a factory for the diesel — meaning it’s considerably further off than one would have assumed.
Ram is widely expected to start production of its new pickups this month; for GM, it’s months in the future. The difference here is that GM is following the auto-industry tradition of unveiling long before product is ready (which does prevent leaks), while FCA has been moving its unveilings closer and closer to actual production.
Who will get a diesel to market first is still up for grabs; FCA and VM are presumably tinkering with their diesel to overcome emissions issues, while GM is still going to tool up a plant. The GM engines will be made in Flint, Michigan; the Ram/VM engines will continue to be made in Italy, though all Ram pickup assembly is being centralized into two plants off Van Dyke Avenue, north of Detroit, in Michigan.
The author of books on the Dodge Viper, Jeep pickups and wagons, and Chrysler minivans (as well as a kid’s book about early Jeeps), David Zatz has been writing about cars and trucks since the early 1990s; he also writes on organizational development and business at toolpack.com and covers Mac statistics software at macstats.org. His latest book, for kids, is Meet the Jeep.
David has been quoted by the New York Times, the Daily Telegraph, the Detroit News, and USA Today. You can reach him by using our contact form.