DETROIT — Chevrolet and GMC dealers are taking orders now for the highly anticipated 2016 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon Duramax trucks with the all-new 2.8-liter turbodiesel engine, Chevrolet spokesman Tom Wilkinson told Edmunds on Tuesday.
The new diesel engine, which GM said is specifically designed for trucks, is built in Thailand and already used in global versions of the Chevrolet Colorado and Chevrolet Trailblazer. It delivers 181 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque, and is linked to a standard six-speed automatic transmission. It carries a maximum tow rating of 7,700 pounds with two-wheel drive and 7,600 pounds with four-wheel drive. A 2015 Colorado or Canyon with the gasoline V6 tops out at 7,000.
Additional standard equipment on diesel models includes an all-new integrated trailer brake controller and a smart diesel exhaust brake system that enhances vehicle control and reduces brake wear on steep grades. A new electronically controlled two-speed transfer case is also included on four-wheel-drive models.
Deliveries of the Colorado and Canyon diesel trucks will begin this fall.
GM said in a statement that the new Colorado diesel will be offered in LT and Z71 Crew Cab models with two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive and Canyon SLE and SLT Crew Cab models with two-wheel drive or four-wheel drive. It is priced $3,730 more than a comparably equipped V6 Colorado and Canyon, the company said.
Wilkinson said complete pricing on the 2016 Colorado and Canyon trucks will be released in late August.
"We're the only company with a diesel in the midsize truck segment," Wilkinson said in a phone conversation. "We think this is a nice fit for our midsize customer. They tend to be more fuel-economy conscious."
The diesel models are expected to account for about 10 percent of Colorado and Canyon sales.
GM did not release fuel-economy estimates on the new version of the Colorado and Canyon, but said estimated fuel economy is projected "to top the already segment-leading efficiency of the gas models."
The EPA has not posted fuel-economy numbers on the 2016 Colorado or Canyon with the diesel engine. The 2016 Colorado with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine, six-speed automatic transmission and two-wheel drive returns an EPA-estimated 22 mpg combined (20 city/27 highway). The V6 with the same drivetrain setup returns 21 mpg combined (18/26).
Gasoline and diesel prices are edging closer together, according to the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report. It pegged the average price on Tuesday of a gallon of unleaded gasoline at $2.69 versus $2.76 for diesel fuel.
Edmunds says: Midsize truck buyers get an exciting new option with the diesel-powered Colorado and Canyon.