Known for its higher efficiency in passenger vehicles and added grunt in trucks, diesel once seemed like the fuel of the future. After the news broke surrounding Dieselgate, an effort by Volkswagen to hide their diesel vehicles’ higher than acceptable emissions from the EPA and other government agencies, diesel sales in the US dropped dramatically. Despite this decline, diesel remains popular in various truck segments to this day, with models like the Ford F-250 Super Duty and Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD selling well with their optional diesel engines. One such engine, the LML/LGH 6.6L Duramax V8 engines found in GMC and Chevrolet HD trucks and vans, is currently at the center of a class action lawsuit.
According to a report by the Detroit News, a group of eight plaintiffs claim that metal shavings from a faulty fuel pump could enter the fuel system causing catastrophic damage. The metal shavings were responsible for shortening the life of these engines dramatically, as well as high repair bills levied against the plaintiffs.
The fuel pump in question is a part provided by Bosch, the European parts supplier who also provided Volkswagen with the emissions system they needed to cheat on their emissions testing. Bosch was later ordered to pay $27.5 million in damages for their involvement in the VW scandal. The lawsuit states that General Motors sought assistance from Bosch to “increase the fuel efficiency and power of its diesel engines,”. The plaintiffs believe that the Bosch supplied part was unable to run on American quality diesel, which is vastly different than the fuel found in Europe. They claim that due to the thin nature of American diesel combined with the lower levels of lubricants found our fuel, air pockets were able to form inside the fuel pump, causing metal on metal contact. The following vehicles with either the LML or LGH engines are at risk of this issue, according to the lawsuit:
2011–2016 2500HD Silverado 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel trucks with LML engines
2011–2016 3500HD Silverado 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel trucks with LML engines
2011–2016 2500HD Sierra 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel trucks with LML engines
2011–2016 3500HD Sierra 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel trucks with LML engines
2010–2011 Chevrolet Express vans with Duramax LGH engines
2010–2011 GMC Savana vans with Duramax LGH engines
2010–2011 GMC Sierra trucks with RPO ZW9 (chassis cabs or trucks with pickup box deleted) with Duramax LGH engines
2011–2012 Chevrolet 2500HD Silverado 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel trucks with LGH engines
2011–2012 Chevrolet 3500HD Silverado 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel trucks with LGH engines
2011–2012 Chevrolet 2500HD Sierra 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel trucks with LGH engines
2011–2012 Chevrolet 3500HD Sierra 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel trucks with LGH engines.
Whether or not the 6.6 liter Duramax and its Bosch fuel pump are as much of a “ticking time bomb” as the lawsuit states, a Federal judge will be the to decide what consequences lay ahead for General Motors and Bosch.