The automaker says the bi-fuel trucks are a way for business owners to safeguard themselves against volatile gas prices, and that the option could save anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000 over the course of three years depending on fuel fluctuations. However, any option on a work truck that only might break even in three or four years seems like a tough sell in our book, especially given the reduction in useable bed area. Hit the jump for the full press release as well as a quick video.
Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra bi-fuel pickups available for order April 19
DETROIT – Chevrolet and GMC extended cab heavy-duty pickup trucks with a bi-fuel option will sell for $11,000 above the suggested base-vehicle price. Fleet and retail customers can place orders for the 2013 Chevrolet Silverado HD and GMC Sierra 2500 HD beginning Thursday (April 19).
The pickups, which run on compressed natural gas (CNG) and gasoline, have a Vortec 6.0L V8 engine that seamlessly transitions between the two fuel systems. A single light-weight Type 3 tank in the bed maximizes available payload and bed space, offering more usable space than competitors.
The Silverado HD and Sierra 2500 HD offer customers fueling flexibility with a combined CNG and gasoline range of more than 650 miles - the longest range available in the bi-fuel truck market.
"The announcement of the bi-fuel Silverado and Sierra has been well-received among customers, which sends a clear message that businesses are looking for alternative fuel options to meet their needs," said Ed Peper, general manager, GM Fleet and Commercial Operations. "The addition of the full-size bi-fuel pickups to our product portfolio is part of our commitment to offer great products, innovative business solutions and an exceptional customer experience."
The pickups, which provide more options than any on the market, will be available in standard and long-box, two-or-four-wheel drive in the extended cab models, offering customization for specific needs.
"Businesses are looking for ways to control their costs while reducing vehicle emissions and becoming less dependent on fluctuating gas prices. The low cost of ownership makes these vehicles a realistic solution," said Joyce Mattman, director, GM Commercial Product and Specialty Vehicles. "CNG has maintained a significantly lower retail price than either gasoline or diesel. The current average price of CNG is equivalent to $1.89 per gallon of gasoline. Customers could save $5,000 to $10,000 over a three-year period, depending on their driving habits."
The bi-fuel trucks will be covered by GM's three-year, 36,000-mile new vehicle limited warranty and five-year, 100,000-mile limited powertrain warranty and vehicle emissions warranty, meeting all Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) emission certification requirements.
The entire manufacturer-backed gaseous fuel system in the vehicles meets GM's strict quality, durability, safety testing and is covered under the extensive warranty. The trucks are built in Fort Wayne, Ind., and then sent to the Tier One supplier for installation of the CNG bi-fuel delivery and storage system.
To find more information about advanced propulsion vehicles available, visit gmfleet.com, or for timely responses to fleet-related questions, join the GM Fleet and Commercial Customer Service LinkedIn group.