The day for a first drive of the 2017 Chevy Silverado HD with the new 6.6L Duramax V8 is finally here. What was involved to boost the engine’s output to a class-leading 445 hp and second-place 910 lb-ft of torque? Whar are the first driving impressions?
Did GM simply tune the engine management computer to get more power out of the 6.6L V8? No, GM did so much more. Although, the displacement remains at 6.6 liters, 90% of the engine is new. GM engineers went over every component of the engine to strengthen the structure and get more power, while also making it quieter and cleaner burning. There is a lot of science behind this. The new diesel has improved breathing, new fuel system, new turbocharger, updated exhaust system, and much more.
All the extensive upgrades add approximately 9.5 pounds to overall weight of the engine when compared to the 2016 version.
Chevrolet says that the overall efficiency of the 2017 L5P Duramax is “about the same” as with the 2016 engine. The fuel tank sizes remain the same for 2017, while the DEF tank grows to 7 gallons and remains in the same position (mounted under the front passenger).
The engine is indeed noticeably quieter from the driver’s seat under full throttle acceleration. The big Duramax is torque limited in first gear only. GM would not say exactly by how much. The acceleration is very strong with and without the trailer. Chevrolet provided us with 10,000 lbs trailers for our testing.
We had very limited time with the truck. It will go on sale in Q1 of 2017, but we will do a more thorough review, Ike Gauntlet towing in Colorado, and more in the coming months.
For those of you who love diving into every detail, here is a part of the 2017 Chevrolet L5P Duramax V8 presentation.
Here is our first drive review video of the 2017 Chevy Silverado HD from the Texas Motor Speedway with and without a 10,000 lbs trailer.