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2011 GM Heavy Duty Pickups

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On: Wed, Jun 16, 2010 at 12:57PM | By: Sherry Christiansen

2011 GM Heavy Duty Pickups

The latest generation of GMC Heavy Duty (HD) trucks is quite impressive! The Chevrolet and GMC 2500HDs are for those who are looking for a heavy capacity truck, without the need to move extremely large loads or contend with the ride dynamics secondary to a stiff suspension.

Critics remark that they are very impressed with the wide range of GM HD pickups for 2011; the trucks have hauling, towing and power ratings that surpass all other trucks in their class, getting closer than any other GM trucks in standing toe-to-toe with the F-Series Super Duty lineup.

The standard gas engine is a Vortec 6.0-liter V8 that is rated at 360 horsepower at 5,400 rpm and 380 lb-ft of torque at 4,400 rpm. The diesel-fueled alternative is a 6.6 liter V8-labeled Duramax which gets 365 hp at 3,200 rpm and a best-in-class 660 lb-ft at just 1,600 rpm.

The gas engine comes with a heavy duty six-speed automatic transmission, which includes a tow and haul mode. The Duramax is hitched exclusively to an Allison 1000 six-speed, which also has a tow/haul mode, but adds the electronic engine grade braking. Both combinations get a 3.73-ratio rear axle, with a 4.10 axle available for the gasoline-powered 2500HDs only. All models feature an auxiliary external transmission and engine oil cooler.

There are five unique cab layout and box length combinations available.The Regular Cab comes with a long box only; the Extended Cab adds a standard box option; and the conventionally-hinged four-door Crew Cab offers both. Maximum payload capacities are the same regardless of engine choice, at 3,892 lbs in the Regular Cab 2WD model. The four-wheel drive option decreases the capacity to 3,646 lbs.

The diesel engine is capable of towing 13,000 lbs on a conventional trailer, while the maximum fifth-wheel towing capacity is 15,800 lbs. The petrol-powered 2500HD has the capacity to tow 15,700 lbs, however, while the lowest mass a 6.0-liter will tow 9,600 lbs.

Equip either truck with a fifth-wheel hitch and the maximum towing capacity jumps to 15,800 lbs for the Duramax and 12,900 for the Vortec.

The GM HD pickups are B20 biodiesel compatible, enabling them to operate on a mixture of 20 percent biodiesel and 80 percent conventional diesel fuel. GM says thenew Duramax "is not only more powerful than last year's 365-hp model and cleaner-burning (with DEF injection), but 11 percent more fuel efficient and up to 50 percent quieter at the most common operating speed of 1500 to 1600 rpm. The claim of 680 miles range on a 36-gallon tank of diesel equates to 18.8 mpg."

The only thing critics found on the downside was the lack of exterior upgrades and modern technology that the Ford trucks have, such as the large LED screen information

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