It will rarely draw stares or have other drivers following you to ask questions.
The 2500HD CNG is all-new from Chevrolet this year and marks the beginning of a potentially game-changing new trend in heavy-duty pickup truck efficiency.
As nice as a diesel engine’s extra 25-percent fuel efficiency is, what about a powertrain package that doubles overall range and can be flipped between gasoline and compressed natural gas at the touch of a button?
If there are no CNG filler stations on your route, simply run the truck on gasoline and enjoy is 360horsepower and 380-pound-feet of torque. When a CNG fillup is possible, get a full tankful in less than five minutes to enjoy an extra 300-miles of range, and only a modest drop in power to 301-horsepower and 333-pound-feet of torque when running on Natty G.
The 2015 Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD Bi-Fuel trucks are
cheaper only slightly pricier than the big diesel engine upgrade, come from the factory with rigorous safety testing completed, and a full warranty. The same cannot be said of aftermarket CNG conversions. The one issue is the option price. At $9,500, this is $2,000 more than the DuraMax diesel. Even so, there are major advantages in clean and cheap natural gas – which generally costs about a third the price of gasoline on a gallon-equivalent basis. It emits about half the tailpipe pollutants, for those that care about such things.
Last hurdle: Where are these CNG filler stations?
They are anywhere with heavy industry, near ports, and at electric company sites. Our nearest one in Charleston is about 20 minutes away. So it is not yet available everywhere— but the trucks also have 4G LTE and a navigation system pre-loaded with them as Points of Interest, or can be searched for right from the voice-controlled Chevrolet MyLink.
While the whole auto world chases the horizon seeking hydrogen or Tesla’s giga-battery dreams, for many hard-working Chevy trucks — the future is already here.
Just do not expect much fanfare. No parades will be thrown, nor eco awards given.
Just a 13,000-plus pound tow rating, and far fewer stops to fill up either tank.
2015 Silverado HD CNG
2015 CHEVROLET SILVERADO 2500HD / 3500HD
|Body style / driveline:||2-3 passenger regular cab or 5-6 passenger double cab, 5-6-passenger crew cab; 3/4-ton or 1-ton; 2- and 4-wheel-drive heavy-duty pickups|
|Construction:||body on frame|
|Manufacturing location:||Fort Wayne, Ind., and Flint, Mich.|
|Vortec 6.0L V-8 (L96 – gasoline only)||Vortec 6.0L V-8 (LC8 – gas or CNG)||Duramax 6.6L Turbo-Diesel V-8 (LML)|
|Type:||6.0L V-8||6.0L V-8||6.6L V-8|
|Valvetrain:||overhead valve w/ variable valve timing||overhead valve w/ variable valve timing||overhead valve, four valves per cylinder|
|Fuel delivery:||sequential fuel injection||sequential fuel injection||direct injection diesel with high-pressure common rail|
|Horsepower (hp / kW @ rpm):||360 / 268 @ 5400||360 / 268 @ 5400 (gas)301 / 225 @ 5000 (CNG)||397 / 296 @ 3000|
|Torque (lb-ft / Nm @ rpm) :||380 / 515 @ 4200||380 / 515 @ 4200 (gas)333 / 452 @ 4200 (CNG)||765 / 1037 @ 1600|
|Recommended fuel:||regular unleaded||regular unleaded or CNG||diesel or B20|
|Hydra-Matic 6L90||Allison 1000|
|Type:||six-speed automatic (with Vortec 6.0L)||six-speed automatic (with Duramax 6.6L)|
|Final drive ratio:||4.10 or 3.73||3.73|
Chassis / Suspension
|Front:||long- and short-arm independent front torsion bar suspension|
|Rear:||semi-elliptic two-stage multileaf spring (2500HD) or three-stage spring (3500HD)|
|Steering type:||integral power-assisted recirculating ball with 16.1 ratio|
Brakes, wheels and tires
|Brake type:||power-assisted, Hydroboost brake-apply system, four-wheel disc, four-wheel ABS|
|Rotor diameter x thickness (in / mm):||front (all models): 13.98 x 1.57 / 350 x 40rear (2500HD and 3500HD with SRW): 14.7 x 1.34 / 373 x 34rear (3500HD w/ DRW): 13.98 x 1.57 / 355 x 40|
|Wheel size:||17-inch (2500HD and 3500HD)18-inch (2500HD and 3500HD)20-inch (2500HD)|
|Tire size:||LT235/80R17 all season or all terrain (3500HD)LT245/75R17 all season (2500HD)LT265/70R17 all terrain (2500HD)LT265/70R18 all season or all terrain (2500HD and 3500HD)LT265/60R20 all terrain (2500HD)|
|Regular Cab 8’ Box – 2500HD & 3500HD||Double Cab 6’6” Box – 2500HD||Double Cab 8’ Box – 2500HD & 3500HD||Crew Cab 6’6” Box – 2500HD & 3500HD||Crew Cab 8’ Box – 2500HD & 3500HD|
|Wheelbase(in / mm):||133.6 / 3393||144.2 / 3662||158.1 / 4017||153.7 / 3904||167.7 / 4258|
|Overall length(in / mm):||224.4 / 5701||230 / 5843||248.9 / 6321||239.5 / 6085||258.4 / 6565|
|Overall width(in / mm):||80.1 / 2035(w/ SRW)96 / 2438(w/ DRW)||80.5 / 2045||80.5 / 2045(w/ SRW)96 / 2438(w/ DRW)||80.5 / 2045||80.5 / 2045(w/ SRW)96 / 2438(w/ DRW)|
|6’ 6” box||8’ box|
|Cargo volume (cu ft / L):||61 / 1728*||76.3 / 2162*|
|Length at floor (in / mm):||78.9 / 2003*||97.8 / 2483*|
|Width at floor (in / mm):||64.9 / 1642||64.6 / 1642|
|Inside height (in / mm):||21.1 / 536||21.1 / 536|
*without CNG fuel tank
|Headroom (in / mm):||42.8 / 1087||front: 42.8 / 1087rear: 38.7 / 982||front: 42.8 / 1087rear: 40.5 / 1029|
|Legroom (in / mm):||45.3 / 1150||front: 45.2 / 1150rear: 34.6 / 880||front: 45.3 / 1150rear: 40.9 / 1040|
|Shoulder room (in / mm):||66 / 1677||front: 64.8 / 1647rear: 64.3 / 1634||front: 64.8 / 1647rear: 64.3 / 1634|
|Hip room (in / mm):||60.7 / 1543||front: 60.7 / 1543rear: 60.2 / 1530||front: 60.7 / 1543rear: 60.2 / 1530|
Maximum capacities (models and configurations vary)
|Max GVWR (lb / kg):||6.0L: 10000 / 4536 (gas)*6.0L: 10000 / 4536 (CNG)*6.6L: 10000 / 4536||6.0L: 13500 / 6123 (gas)6.0L: 11000 / 4989 (CNG)6.6L: 13025 / 5908|
|Max payload (lb / kg):||6.0L: 4306 / 1953 (gas)*6.0L: 3651 / 1656 (CNG)*6.6L: 3501 / 1588||6.0L: 7374 / 3345 (gas)6.0L: 4018 / 1822 (CNG)6.6L: 5817 / 2639|
|Max conventional trailing (lb / kg):||6.0L: 13000 / 5897 (gas)6.0L: 13000 / 5897 (CNG)6.6L: 14500 / 6577||6.0L: 13900 / 6305 (gas)6.0L: 13000 / 5897 (CNG)6.6L: 19600 / 8890|
|Max 5th wheel / gooseneck trailering (lb / kg):||6.0L: 14800 / 6713 (gas)6.0L: N/A (CNG)6.6L: 17900 / 8119||6.0L: 14600 / 6622 (gas)6.0L: N/A (CNG)6.6L: 23200 / 10523|
*with UB7 Performance Package
2015 Silverado HDs Run Cleaner, Save Money on CNG
Available, cleaner-burning CNG-capable 6.0L engine expands to all 2500HD and 3500HD cab styles
Can enable fuel-cost savings of more than $2,000 annually
OEM-validated CNG system covered by GM’s factory powertrain limited warranty
CHICAGO – Chevrolet’s expanded availability of bi-fuel versions of the new 2015 Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD trucks give customers and fleet managers more choices for cleaner-burning compressed natural gas-powered models – and savings at the pump.
With CNG currently priced about 62 percent less per gallon than gasoline, a work truck driven 26,000 miles a year can save more than $2,000 annually based on 75-percent CNG usage and comparable efficiency to gasoline.
“With CNG capability to be offered on all Silverado HD cab configurations, customers have a wider range of choices when it comes to selecting the alternatively fueled truck that matches their needs,” said Ed Peper, U.S. vice president, General Motors Fleet and Commercial. “And for companies and municipalities that maintain multiple trucks in their fleet, the fuel cost savings of CNG can really add up in a year.”
The CNG option is available on all Silverado 2500HD configurations and Silverado 3500HD models with single rear wheels. The 2500HD double cab and crew cab models are on sale now, with 2500HD regular cab and all 3500HD models going on sale in July.
With the additional driving range enabled by a separate CNG tank, Silverado HD bi-fuel models have a total range of up to 650 miles, meaning less time needed for fill-ups. When equipped with a 4.10 axle ratio, the maximum conventional trailering rating is 13,000 pounds on gas or CNG.
GM warrants and validates the fuel systems of the 2015 Silverado HD bi-fuel trucks. GM’s five-year/100,000-mile powertrain limited warranty covers CNG fuel systems. All major components associated with the CNG system also carry GM service part numbers, for availability throughout the largest dealer network in the United States. That’s not the case with some other manufacturers’ available bi-fuel trucks.
“Silverado bi-fuel pickups are available through any of Chevrolet’s more than 3,000 dealerships across America just like any other model,” said Peper. “It’s one of the industry’s most seamless integration of OEM-delivered CNG vehicles.”
The unique version of the 6.0L engine – identified by an LC8 engine code – features special hardened valves and valve seats that enable it to run on CNG or gasoline. It is rated at 360 horsepower (268 kW) and 380 lb-ft of torque (515 Nm) on gas, and 301 horsepower (225 kW) and 333 lb-ft of torque (452 Nm) on CNG.
A separate CNG fuel tank enables the driver to switch between fuels at the flip of a switch. When the CNG tank is depleted, the system automatically switches to gasoline. GM’s tier-one supplier installs the CNG fuel tank and complementing fuel system upgrades at a secondary location. Chevrolet dealers deliver the trucks as they would with any optional content.
CNG is cleaner burning than conventional gasoline or diesel. Today, most of the natural gas used in the U.S. comes from domestic or other North American sources. Depending on their usage habits, many customers can recoup the incremental investment in CNG vehicles within a few years, and the lower fuel cost enables a significant reduction in daily operating costs.
New Silverado HDs
The new 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD are engineered to be stronger and smarter than before, delivering the capability heavy-duty truck customers demand, with greater refinement for more comfort and confidence on the job and on the road.
Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD models come in Work Truck (WT), LT and LTZ trims, and are offered in regular cab, double cab and crew cab configurations. The regular cab comes only in WT and LT trims. The new double cab model replaces the previous extended cab and features forward-hinged rear doors, which allow easier access to the back seat, especially in tight parking spaces.
The trucks are available with all-new, stronger 6’6”and 8’ cargo boxes with standard CornerStep bumpers, EZ Lift-and-Lower tailgates, and other features to ease cargo handling. Available updates for 2015 include:
All new cabs and interiors with increased comfort and extensive storage space tailored to the way customers use full-size trucks.
Chevrolet MyLink, which provides powerful connectivity for work or family with simple, intuitive controls
Integrated cruise control and Auto Grade Braking to help make trailering easier
Standard StabiliTrak with Trailer Sway Control on all models, including 3500HD duallys.
Models equipped with CNG system add cargo tie-downs on the tank cover and a single fuel gauge that displays fuel levels for gasoline and CNG.
Safety features such as Forward Collision Alert, Lane Departure Warning with an Active Safety Seat, and Front and Rear Park Assist are available on the 2015 Silverado HD. Head-curtain and seat-mounted side airbags are standard on 2500 models and available on 3500 models.
Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world’s largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries and selling more than 4.9 million cars and trucks a year. Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that feature spirited performance, expressive design, and high quality. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at www.chevrolet.com.
Tom Burkart is the founder and managing editor of Car-Revs-Daily.com, an innovative and rapidly-expanding automotive news magazine.
He holds a Journalism JBA degree from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Tom currently resides in Charleston, South Carolina with his two amazing dogs, Drake and Tank.
Mr. Burkart is available for all questions and concerns by email Tom(at)car-revs-daily.com.