First rolling off the line in 1996, the Chevy Express and GMC Savana haven’t changed all that much in the decades the nameplates have been produced. That said, both models dropped the turbocharged 2.8L I4 LWN turbodiesel Duramax engine option for the 2023 model year. As such, we’d argue that GM’s new 3.0L I6 LZ0 turbodiesel engine would make a fine addition to the vans’ powertrain lineup.
For those readers who may not know, the Chevy Express and GMC Savana full-size vans offered the 2.8L I4 LWN turbodiesel Duramax engine option up until the end of the 2022 model year. Output from the LWN was rated at 181 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque, and, in addition, the diesel powerplant delivered the best fuel economy when compared to the two gasoline-fueled alternatives, namely the naturally aspirated 4.3L V6 LV1 (rated at 276 horsepower and 298 pound-feet of torque), and the naturally aspirated 6.6L V8 L8T (rated at 401 horsepower and 464 pound-feet of torque).
Now, however, the latest 2023 Chevy Express and 2023 GMC Savana don’t have any sort of diesel engine option to speak of, with the 4.3L V6 LV1 gasoline engine and 6.6L V8 L8T gasoline engine offered as the only two remaining powerplant options. What’s more, the 6.6L V8 L8T is no longer available to order for Chevy Express Cargo and GMC Savana Cargo configurations, although the V8 is still available in conjunction with Cutaway and Passenger van configurations.
That all said, we think GM’s latest 3.0L I6 LZ0 turbodiesel Duramax engine would make a fantastic addition to the full-size vans’ powertrain lineup. The LZ0 is buttery smooth in terms of power delivery, and has plenty of output as well, dishing out 305 horsepower and 495 pound-feet of torque when equipped by the current Chevy Silverado 1500 and GMC Sierra 1500. Add in the impressive fuel efficiency, and the higher costs of optioning in the diesel (the LZ0 would likely cost a few thousand dollars more than the 4.3L V6 LV1) would be easily outweighed by the benefits.
To note, we’re still expecting the Chevy Express and GMC Savana to be updated at some point in the future, either with a completely new generation, or with a major refresh.
So what do you think, dear reader? Should the Chevy Express and GMC Savana offer the 3.0L I6 LZ0 turbodiesel Duramax engine? Let us know your thoughts by posting in the comments section below, and remember to subscribe to GM Authority for more Chevy Express news, GMC Savana news, Chevy news, GMC news, GM business news, GM technology news, and around-the-clock GM news coverage.