As a Tesla Roadster floats somewhere by the moon, we found it interesting that General Motors is here on earth developing a truck that will eventually drive enough miles to go back and forth between our beloved lunar satellite 14 times. Or to put it another way, a full seven million miles, according to engineers.
The 2019 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is still around 7-8 months from launching this year, but has already logged 475,000 validation tests. Moreover, GM plans on building around 800 test fleet examples of the 2019 Silverado 1500. These vehicles will be given to employees in an effort to shake out any remaining bugs and ensure the quality of the truck through its launch phase.
“Everybody’s gonna get them, drive them. We’ve already started early fleets to wring the truck out,” said one engineer.
“Our goal now is to spend the next 6-8 months to wring this truck out so that it never spends time at the dealership – for anything,” said another.
By comparison, only 200-300 examples of Capture Test Fleet models were built of the outgoing Chevrolet Silverado 1500, based on the K2XX platform. The 2019 Silverado 1500 rests on the all-new T1 platform, as will the 2019 GMC Sierra 1500. The 2019 Silverado 1500 is expected to launch with six engines and transmissions, spanning across eight different models. It’s also confirmed to introduce a new 3.0L inline-six cylinder diesel engine that will be built in Michigan, as well as updated versions of the current 5.3L and 6.2L V8 engines with Dynamic Fuel Management technology. Also known as Dynamic Skip Fire, it was developed by Tula Technologies, which GM Ventures invested in back in 2012. The new Silverado is also rumored to introduce a radical opposed-piston engine – if Ford doesn’t do it first.
The 2019 Silverado 1500 launch will also contribute largely to GM’s inflated $8.5 billion capital spending range estimate for 2018, whereafter the automaker anticipates a decrease in capital spending. It’s unclear if this heightened level of quality testing is to be a new standard for General Motors going forward.