General Motors has announced that, starting this spring, the 2016 Chevrolet Silverado and 2016 GMC Sierra will be offered with new eAssist technology to help them achieve 13% greater fuel economy.
eAssist is a mild-hybrid propulsion system that, unlike full-on hybrid powertrains, doesn’t add too much weight or give engineers unnecessary headaches. It includes a single electric motor paired with a 0.45-kWh lithium-ion battery pack—not enough to move a pickup truck on its own, but enough to help it along and make it more efficient.
The system only adds an extra 100 pounds to the total vehicle weight while improving city fuel economy by 2 miles per gallon and providing an extra 13 horsepower and 44 lb-ft of torque.
For now, it’ll only be available in California on 500 Silverado and 200 Sierra trucks equipped with the 5.3-liter V8 engine, eight-speed automatic transmission, and rear-wheel-drive. If they do well, we can expect the Silverado and Sierra eAssist at Dahl Chevrolet Buick GMC in 2017.