GM announced last Friday that its Moraine, Ohio, engine plant — a joint venture between Isuzu and GM — has produced 1.5 million 6.6-liter Duramax turbo-diesels.
The joint venture was established in 1998, and the plant started making engines in 2001, with most of the diesel power plants installed in the Chevrolet Silverado HD and GMC Sierra HD.
The engine makes 397 horsepower at 3,000 rpm and 765 pounds-feet of torque at 1,600 rpm. It is also available in a down-rated configuration in the full-size Chevy Express and GMC Savanna vans.
The Duramax 6.6-liter V-8 is a four-valve, high-pressure common-rail direct-injection diesel, currently equipped with a particulate filter to meet current emissions requirements. The Duramax engine was a big reason why the 2012 GMC Sierra 3500 won PickupTrucks.com's Heavy-Duty Hurt Locker comparison test.
“Our Duramax diesel is one of the best in the industry,” DMAX Chief Financial Officer Betty Wessel, said. “Duramax has become a great success story and is a world-class engine with superior quality, industry-leading horsepower and competitive fuel economy.”
On May 9, 2007, the plant had produced 1 million Duramax diesels. Around that time, there were many reports that GM was getting ready to release a 4.5-liter "baby Duramax," but later reports noted the project was killed. Whether the small-diesel project is ready for a resurrection with the coming of the all-new GM half-ton platforms remains to be seen.
The Ohio plant continues to produce more than 100,000 big DMAX engines per year in the 584,000-square-foot facility with more than 500 employees. For the full press release, click here.
Other engine success stories include Ford's EcoBoost engines, which will reach well over 500,000 sales from its introduction just a few short years ago. The strategy of making a direct-injection twin-turbo V-6 gas engine that produces horsepower and torque numbers like a much bigger V-8 has been a winner for the Ford F-150, selling more than 200,000 half-tons with the motor underhood since February 2011. And now Ford is making even more EcoBoost engines available for its full lineup of cars and crossovers. And as more people experience the downsized engines, we're guessing the motors will get even more popular.
Ford projects that 90 percent of its vehicle lineup across North America will be offered with one of the four EcoBoost versions (1.0-liter I-3, 1.6-liter I-4, 2.0-liter I-4 and 3.5-liter V-6). For more info, read the press release here.