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word on the street | 2019 Wards 10 Best Engines Award & 2019 Daytona 500 Silverado

The Latest News, Rumors And Changes In The Truck World

Dale Earnhardt Jr. to Pace 2019 Daytona 500 in All-New Chevy Silverado

Dale Earnhardt Jr. will find himself in a very familiar place at the 2019 Daytona 500: the front of the pack.

Earnhardt Jr., a two-time Daytona 500 winner, will drive the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado pace truck to lead the field to green for the 61st running of The Great American Race. This is the first time the Daytona 500 will be paced by a pickup truck.

“I’ve had a lot of fun and a lot of success at Daytona over the years, and now I can’t wait to get out on that track in a Silverado,” said Earnhardt Jr. “Away from the track I’ve driven Chevy trucks all my life, and I’m excited to have this unique experience of pacing the Daytona 500 with the Silverado.”

In addition to winning The Great American Race in 2004 and 2014, Earnhardt Jr. was a two-time winner of the July race at Daytona, overall scoring four wins, 13 top-five finishes and 19 top-10s in 36 NASCAR Cup Series career starts at Daytona International Speedway. Earnhardt Jr. was voted the sport’s Most Popular Driver for 15 consecutive years.

“Dale Earnhardt Jr. was the perfect choice to pace the race because of his enthusiasm for the sport, his long history with Chevrolet and his love of trucks,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. vice president of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “It’ll be exciting to have Dale lead the field to green in the strongest, most advanced Silverado ever.”

The Silverado pace truck is powered by a production 6.2L V-8 engine paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. It delivers 420 hp and 460 ft-lbs of torque.

Elon Musk Hints at Tesla Pickup in Company’s Future

Electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla’s CEO, Elon Musk, recently tweeted a response to an electric pickup truck hopeful that the company may have something in the works, albeit in the not-so-near future.

In response to @lgebman’s question to Musk of, “When can I order my pickup truck,” the Tesla CEO responded, “I’m dying to make a pickup truck so bad… We might have a prototype to unveil next year.” Will it happen? Well, we have no doubt that it will eventually, as Musk’s interest does not seem to be a fleeting thought. In June of 2018, he asked his Twitter followers, “What would you love to see in a Tesla pickup truck? I have a few things in mind, but what do you think are small, but important nuances & what would be seriously next level?”

Would you buy one? We’re excited at the prospect, but we’ll wait to see what the proposed specs are if and when we get more information.

Silverado’s 6.2L V-8 Named to Wards 10 Best Engines List

The 2019 Chevrolet Silverado has won a 2019 Wards 10 Best Engines Award. The award-winning 6.2L V-8 employs industry-leading Dynamic Fuel Management or DFM to save fuel without sacrificing performance.

“General Motors’ thundering 420-horsepower V-8 in the Silverado exemplifies how engineers continue to find ways to improve efficiency without giving up something in return,” says Senior Content Director Drew Winter. “DFM determines 80 times per second exactly how many cylinders require fuel to meet power demands. And, incredibly, it uses as few as two cylinders to propel the full-size pickup down the highway. The truly amazing part is the cylinder deactivation is imperceptible, so seamless that the only thing the driver notices is fewer stops at the pump.”

For the competition, WardsAuto editors evaluate every all-new or significantly improved engine or electric propulsion system available in production vehicles in the U.S. Vehicles must have a starting MSRP less than $64,000. The editors score eligible vehicles on horsepower, torque, technology, observed fuel economy, relative competitiveness and noise characteristics.

The 6.2L V-8 and the available 5.3L V-8 are the first V-8s available with Dynamic Fuel Management. Compared to Active Fuel Management, which alternates between eight- and four-cylinder modes, DFM features 17 cylinder patterns. That greater authority mixes cylinder patterns constantly to optimize efficiency and power delivery at all speeds.

“Chevrolet first introduced its Active Fuel Management cylinder deactivation system in 2005, and Dynamic Fuel Management is a natural progression of the technology,” said Jordan Lee, Small Block chief engineer. “Dynamic Fuel Management enables only the cylinders needed to deliver the power you want, seamlessly delivering the best balance of power and fuel economy.”

The 6.2L with DFM — the largest and most powerful gas V-8 in the segment — is manufactured at GM’s Tonawanda engine plant in New York. It is SAE-certified at 420 horsepower (313 kW) and 460 lb-ft of torque (623 Nm) and paired with a Hydra-Matic 10-speed automatic transmission.

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