General Motors ownership of VM Motori could see them nabbing Ram’s 3.0L V6 diesel motor

General Motors seems to be taking a “wait and see” approach when it comes to putting diesels in their light-duty pickups. But, should they lose share to Ram and Nissan with their respective, upcoming diesels, the General is “in a position to respond quickly,” explained GM spokesperson Tom Wilkinson to AutoGuide.

The 3.0L V6 planned for Ram’s 1500 series pickups was developed initially for GM by VM Motori. The General still has access to this engine thanks to GM’s continued ownership of the Italian engine builder (VM Motori is also partially owned by Fiat). Also, the fact GM is able to respond to the market seems to suggest the diesel mill has already been fitted at least once between the frame rails of the new Silverado and Sierra.

Nissan’s diesel effort has a 5.0L V8 solution coming from Cummins planned for the next generation Titan. While it won’t be as powerful as Cummins’ heavy-duty diesels, it will surely out-perform the 3.0L V6 used by Ram in their light-duty application.

Rumours have also been swirling Toyota could bring a diesel to market in the Tundra, probably the same 5.0L V8 as Nissan.

Ford, arguably the leader in the light-duty truck market, has shown no signs of going toward diesel, instead banking on EcoBoost engines to give customers an alternative.

The 3.0L VM Motori mill likely won’t find its way into GM’s future medium-sized pickups, Colorado and Canyon. Instead, they will use one of two Duramax four-cylinder diesel mills – displacing 2.5L and 2.8L – already used in GM’s global Colorado.

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