The 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and 2022 GMC Sierra GMC Sierra 1500 pickup trucks are expected to reveal extensive upgrades this year. Everything from notable interior upgrades, to the introduction of cutting-edge Super Cruise semi-autonomous driving technology, and even the introduction of more extreme off-road variants, such as the Silverado ZR2. Unfortunately, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows, as details emerged from a recent presentation from Chevrolet.
During Chevy’s presentation during the (virtual) 2021 Work Truck Show, it was let loose that General Motors will be dropping both the LV3 4.3L V6 engine, and L82 5.3L V8 engine, as well as the six-speed automatic transmission found in its most basic work truck trims for the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and 2022 GMC Sierra 1500. Pickup Truck + SUV Talk was first with the news, and the video is just below:
Both the LV3 V6 and L82 V8 engines feature GM’s active fuel management system, which made their debuts on the K2-generation Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra. Both were paired with the six-speed, which is also a carryover unit. These engines and transmission were found only on the current Silverado WT, Custom and Custom Trail Boss trim levels, in available body styles. The base GMC Sierra 1500 did, as well.
The 5.3L L82 V8 is not to be confused with the 5.3L L83 or newer L84 V8 found in mid- and upper-level Silverado and Sierra pickup trucks. Instead of Active Fuel Management, which variably deactivates cylinder spark and combustion from eight cylinders to four in certain driving scenarios and environments, the L83 and new L84 feature Dynamic Fuel Management, or DFM. This evolution on the previous-gen technology is able to variably deactivate spark and combustion all the way down to just one cylinder, again based on very specific driving scenarios and environments.
While the tech seemed to elude to massive fuel economy gains, GM’s T1-generation trucks didn’t really see any fuel economy improvements over the K2-generation. This is largely because of their inflated stature, which increased the drag coefficient of the front area compared to the last-generation, which means that more energy is required to push the trucks through the air. It would seem they did what they could.
While logical that GM would want to phase out a redundant 5.3L V8 engine for the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra, it’s disheartening that the 4.3L LV3 V6 will go out with nary a whimper. This pushrod small-block-based engine is the best “base” V6 engine of all the half-ton trucks on the market today, with an ample balance of 285 horsepower and a very stout 305 lb-ft of torque. Not bad for an all-motor engine. And considering its resemblance to the larger Gen V small block V8 family, the engine is probably pretty cost-effective to build, too.
Based on MC&T’s network of intelligence, the replacement base engine for the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 will be the 2.7L L3B turbocharged four cylinder engine, which is currently available in the base Silverado and Sierra, as well. This wound-up high-displacement inline-four delivers 310 horsepower, and 348 lb-ft of torque. An improvement over the 4.3L V6 to be sure, but a four-cylinder full-sized truck seems a bit… unappetizing.
Regardless, GM has big plans for this little engine. Beyond the 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and 2022 GMC Sierra 1500, the L3B turbo-four is expected to find itself under the hood of the next-generation Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon midsize pickup trucks, as MC&T first reported.
If you ask us, GM completely under-utilized the LV3. This 4.3L V6 would have been the perfect motor for the current-generation Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon. Instead, it gets a car engine with the LGZ V6, and a 2.8L diesel that can’t get out of its own way. And since the EPA has declared war on diesel tuning, that’s how it will stay.
While we’re at it, the 305 lb-ft from the 4.3L V6 would have been great in the Chevrolet Camaro, too.