The 2021 Silverado Medium Duty will gain a new transmission shift control calibration called “FuelSense 2.0,” GM Authority has learned. The new calibration is designed to improve fuel economy through advanced shifting technology.
For now, the 2021 Silverado Medium Duty offers nearly two dozen six-speed Allison transmissions, with the transmission offered hinging on configurations like GVWR and truck type/application. The standard transmission calibration is Fuel Sense Performance, which was offered for the 2020 model year. Now, the optional FuelSense 2.0 transmission shift control calibration arrives for the latest 2021 model year.
FuelSense 2.0 is essentially software enhancements that provide an infinitely variable combination of transmission shift points, as opposed to fixed points on a shift table. The new system leverages an advanced algorithm to monitor environmental and vehicle conditions, while continuously balancing fuel economy with performance, all with the end goal being improved fuel economy.
The FuelSense 2.0 system has various features, and it’s somewhat unclear which will be implemented in the 2021 Silverado Medium Duty. One of the FuelSense 2.0 features that the Chevy truck will definitively implement is Neutral at Stop, which reduces or eliminates engine load when the vehicle is stopped. The Neutral at Stop feature comes with various settings, with the standard setting engaging a partial neutral condition, and the Premium setting engaging full neutral. There’s also Coast Mode, which is only available with the Premium setting and provides early activation at low speeds when the vehicle is braking to a stop.
Beyond the transmission calibration, FuelSense 2.0 also includes Acceleration Rate Management, which can limit engine torque to improve fuel consumption and increase fuel economy.
It’s currently unclear at this time which FuelSense 2.0 features will be implemented in the 2021 Silverado Medium Duty, beyond Neutral at Stop. We’ll follow up with more as we have it.
The 2021 Silverado Medium Duty range will offer the regular Fuel Sense Performance calibration or the FuelSense 2.0 calibration across all trims.
It’s also unclear the extent to which FuelSense 2.0 will improve fuel economy on the 2021 Silverado Medium Duty. That said, Allison claims gains up to six percent in fleet testing.
As a reminder, the Silverado Medium Duty trucks are jointly developed by GM and Navistar. The range consists of Silverado 4500HD, 5500HD and 6500HD, across multiple configurations, wheelbases and GVWRs in order to underpin a wide variety of vehicle applications, including emergency services, cargo hauling, and more.