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Ford Likes Turbocharging In Trucks, GM Dodges It: Which Is Better? Page 2

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GM currently sells less than 15 percent of Silverado models with the outgoing V-6 engine, and only five percent with the top 6.2-liter V-8; with 5.3-liter V-8 models comprising the rest. But it expects that the new V-6 will account for 15 to 20 percent of sales, possibly more.

“In brief, there are two ways to provide the power and torque needed for towing and hauling, while also improving fuel efficiency,” said GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson. “One is to start with a smaller engine and boost the output when needed with turbocharging or supercharging; the other is to start with larger engines, then reduce the number of cylinders in operation to improve efficiency when less power is required.”

“We think the second approach is better suited to the way many owners use their trucks,“ summed Wilkinson.

GM argues that bigger is still better for trucks

To push their point, GM is pointing to ‘duty cycle’—or the way that a truck is used—as the reason why their new EcoTec3 engines might be better for more shoppers.

At the introduction of GM’s 2014 pickups last month, the company argued that its trucks are better on fuel than Ford’s when towing and hauling (EPA ratings are run without a load).

“With these engines, we can control detonation without having to aggressively retard the spark...or overly richen the fuel mixture,” said executive chief engineer Jeff Luke, going on to note the “complex hardware” in the Ford engines.

But Ford is offering both a 5.0-liter V-8 and a 3.7-liter V-6 in addition to the EcoBoost engine, so shoppers who drive under load every day have other options.

“Clearly duty cycle is a big decider of what’s the right engine choice for you; not only what specific powertrain but also what kind of truck you want to order, or moving up to a Super Duty,” said Raj Nair, Ford Group VP for Global Product Development. “So it’s a discussion we have with our customers, with our personal-duty customers we have in the showroom and our fleet customers who we talk to in Dearborn and other places.”


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Comments (8)
  1. Ford's strategy of giving customers choices is clearly better. Like GM, Ford offers a naturally aspirated V6 and 2 V8s. (5.0 and a 6.2) The difference is that Ford also offers customers another alternative, the well liked EcoBoost V6, which put Ford miles ahead of GM. It's also worth noting that Ford's 3 normally aspirated engines still supercedes GM's interms of hp, torque and fuel economy.
     
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  2. Ford covers all the bases, including home plate. GM only covers 2, big engine, smaller engine.
     
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  3. Turbos are great provided the owner knows how to take care of them at shut-down so they don't coke up and die prematurely. That involves installing a device to insure the turbo is cooled off and has slowed down pre-shut off. Currently, Ford does not install that device as OEM on its' turbo-diesel or gas engines. Several aftermarket devices are available to protect turbo bearings from the premature shut down blues but most turbo-gas engine owners will not become aware of this problem until failure occurs. The Ford Turbo-diesel guys install them in a high percentage of their trucks. The thought of a "start-stop" cycle in Ford's future "Eco-Boost" engines makes me want to run out and buy stock in Garrett Turbo Company owned by Honeywell..
     
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  4. Hopefully like the older Nissan 350Z turbos they will start using the turbo timers, but what you bring up is a crucial overlooked point.
     
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  5. yep, especially if they do go to start/stop. imagine being stuck at say, an accident or road crew. the truck shuts off immediately after some spirited freeway driving. turbo is good and red hot, and you suddenly shut it off. over. and over. imagine how good it will coke in layers. it also pains me to think of this compounded by the fact people who change their own oil will continue running their trusted castrol gtx or base level conventional oils. castrol is awesome, but in turbos you'll want synthetic. people dont know these things. they dont need to be told WHAT to use, they need to also know WHY and what happens if you DONT. i work at O'Reillys and I went to school building engines. EDUCATE someone, they will make informed decisions.
     
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  6. Great to see the Big-3 are finally starting to get real about fuel savings. The cost to fill up a full-size pickup or SUV is brutal today, even with gas below $4/gallon.

    Now… if we could reduce the BULK and SIZE of those ridiculously big trucks or at least convince Ford to build the new world Ranger here...
     
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  7. good point. its ironic that for 50 years trucks were smaller, had about 100hp flatheads at best, and still got work done. If my Subaru Baja had a tow hitch I could haul damn near anything. I hauled a 4k lb blazer 20 miles with my Tacoma 2.4L 2wd and it didnt even strain. Payload sucked but not every truck on the market needs to look like a Nissan Titan or F150. The S10 sucked but its gone, Colorado I guess is a choice, no more Rangers which as of late were good trucks. Dakotas are around still but are the only midsize to take a v8 still. They could be refined to get 28mpg with such lighter weight if Dodge actually tried.
     
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  8. dont get me wrong I can always use my dads silverado if I need to haul idk...gravel for instance. But I dont think everyone needs a Tahoe, and I dont think everyone needs an F150 or z71. My Baja has way more hp and torque than my tacoma did, its AWD too so if it is hooked on it will pull like a sled dog mud rain or snow. and it off roads better to boot.
     
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