Drive Type: 4x4
Clackamas, Oregon, United States
Ladies and gentlemen,
General Motors has officially captured the horsepower crown for mainstream pickup trucks with its 6.2-liter V8. The big mill, available in both the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra, comes to market with 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque, handily outdoing its two cross-town competitors, Ram (5.7-liter V8, 395 ponies and 407 lb-ft) and Ford (6.2-liter V8, 411 hp and 434 lb-ft).
The new GM 6.2 will take a bit of an investment, though. Those that want the extra thrust will need to go with either the LTZ or High Country trims from the Chevy, or the SLT and Denali trims from GMC, which are the two highest trim levels for the respective vehicles. Trim levels aside, if you're in the business of towing, GM has you covered. Optioned with the 6.2-liter V8 and the Max Trailering Package, owners will be able to pull 12,000 pounds, a hugely impressive figure.
We still aren't certain as to what sort of economy the new engine will get, but it'll probably be a bad bet for the fuel conscious. As for availability, expect to see the 6.2-liter trucks in showrooms later in the fall.
General Motors says its next-generation Chevrolet Tahoe, Suburban, GMC Yukon and Cadillac Escalade models will offer shoppers improved interior differentiation. Car and Driver recently caught up with Chris Hilts, GM's creative manager of interior design, who said that the cabins will all feature unique instrument panels, consoles, center stacks and switchgear moving forward. Apparently GM is now aware that consumers may be bothered by the fact that today's $85,000 Escalade has effectively the same cabin as a $45,000 Tahoe. Hilts says SUV buyers want more refinement than their pickup purchasing counterparts - and those same buyers also want their SUVs to have more exterior differentiation between the company's Silverado and Sierra pickup lines. Shocking.
That all sounds good to us, but we've heard this song and dance before. GM made big waves about how different the new-for-2013 Silverado and Sierra would look from each other, but judging by what we've seen so far, GM's stylists are painting in shades rather than with the full spectrum. For more on the what to expect out of GM's new SUVs, click on the C/D link below.
We've been on the fence with NASCAR for some time now. On one hand, it's some of the closest racing anywhere in motorsports, with actual passing and door-handle-to-door-handle action as a matter of course. But on the other, it's become template racing - a personality-driven sport more about the drivers than any sort of loyalty to a particular automaker. The Car Of Tomorrow format really rammed that message home, with a racecar's identity coming down to little more than headlamp stickers slapped on the nose. That's not necessarily a bad thing in and of itself, but we've wondered for some time what's in it for the automakers, who pay big money to stay in a series that has had little increasingly little do with street car sales, let alone innovation.
Apparently General Motors was beginning to wonder the same thing. In a new ESPN report, Rick Hendrick, team owner of Hendrick Motorsports, suggests that GM would have seriously considered leaving NASCAR if it wasn't for the move away from the COT to the new Gen 6 racer. According to Hendrick, GM North America boss Mark Reuss spearheaded the charge away from the 2007 COT and toward a racecar with clearer automaker ties - cars like the new Chevrolet SS racer shown above. Learn more about the fight for a closer-to-production look in the ESPN story at the link.
Now, if we could just get more rear-wheel drive V8 coupes into showrooms....