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Old 01-16-2008, 07:49 PM   #1
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Bye-Bye to GMs V-8s

http://www.caranddriver.com/carnews/...-gms-v-8s.html

The title is a bit misleading, because even Bob says that there will still be V8's around, and it's primarily an article about GM's cancellation of the Northstar replacement family...but I posted it because there are some interesting points involved.

(It also touches on the Ute)

Quote:
GM kills V-8 family and, like Ford, embraces powertrain downsizing.
BY ALISA PRIDDLE,
January 2008

The ubiquitous V-8 engine under the hood of full-size SUVs and big cars could go the way of the eight-track tape deck in a modern world where fuel-efficiency and emissions standards are redefining the cars and trucks of tomorrow.


New regulations that will require U.S. vehicle fleets to achieve 35 mpg are responsible for General Motors’ decision to kill plans for a new double overhead cam V-8 engine for luxury cars to replace the aging Northstar V-8, Bob Lutz, GM vice chairman, says in an interview at the 2008 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

“The replacement of the Northstar, that cancellation was the direct result of the 35-mpg fuel legislation.” GM chairman Rick Wagoner says when the new V-8 family program began, “there was more optimism than we have today,” that V-8 engines could survive in today’s regulatory climate. The engine was to go into production next year, prior to phasing out the Northstar V-8 that is found in many Cadillacs, that is scheduled to be phased out in 2010.

Don’t expect new V-8 families in the future, Lutz says. Rather, look for V-6s tuned to provide low-end torque to power large vehicles.

Ford has been publicizing its EcoBoost powertrain strategy to provide V-8 power with a family of turbocharged V-6 engines with direct injection, starting with a 3.5-liter V-6 in the Lincoln MKS, followed by the Ford Flex, and eventually rolling out to 500,000 vehicles in the next five years.

Ford F-150 Gets V-6 for 2010
The new 2009 Ford F-150 full-size pickup is launching with an all-V-8 lineup for 2009, but a V-6 with EcoBoost will join the lineup for the 2010 model year, says Mark Fields, Ford president of The Americas.

Lutz says he agrees with the EcoBoost (direct-injection, turbocharged) approach, one which Volkswagen has been using for years, as has GM in Europe. The variable valve-timing and turbocharging for the Pontiac Solstice, Saturn Sky, and Chevy HHR SS employ similar technology, he says.

And the concept is perfectly valid for big vehicles, in his opinion. “You can tune the turbo differently for low-end torque where you need acceleration in a heavy car and the turbo fades out once the vehicle is in motion and sustaining. With sustaining, a little four-cylinder engine in a big car is perfectly sufficient.”

Wagoner wonders if the average customer cares how many cylinders are under the hood if the performance is satisfactory, suggesting without a badge, many consumers would not know how many cylinders are under the hood.

Less is More Under the Hood
“So we’re going to see a lot of engine downsizing,” Lutz tells Car and Driver. “What has been V-8 will become V-6, and what was V-6 will become fours. That is a relatively inexpensive ($1500–$2000) solution.” Even with the investment, “it will not get you from 25 mpg to 35 mpg. It will get you part way there.”

Many existing V-8s will remain, Lutz says, “but I don’t see anybody investing a ton of money into families of all-new V-8s.”

“I would predict pickup trucks in the future, and full-size SUVs, will have a lot of diesel engines and unquestionably the mix will shift to V-6 engines in full-size sport utilities,” he says. “You can make a small V-6 behave just like a V-8. All it takes is money.”

Another Round of Ethanol
If the industry were to make a full-scale adoption of ethanol (GM used the Detroit show to announce a partnership with Coskata Incorporated of Warrenville, Illinois, which claims it has a process to produce low-cost ethanol from a variety of waste materials as opposed to just grain), the vehicle mix could be exactly as it is today, Lutz says, complete with large cars and trucks.

Without the ethanol solution, the industry will see an array of expensive diesels, expensive hybrids, semi-expensive extended range electric vehicles, super-expensive fuel-cell vehicles, and some conventional gasoline engines whose fuel-economy numbers have to be compensated for by vehicles that get beyond the 35 mpg with expensive alternative powertrains, Lutz says.
“Without a shift in fuel, there is going to be a change in the complexion of vehicles offered by the auto industry in the future.”


Otherwise, Lutz says it would cost $6000 per car, on average, for GM to meet the 35 mpg requirements with the current vehicle-size spectrum. Even still, “we must make some choices,” he says, such as whether to make the next-generation Chevy Impala rear-drive with both a V-8 and V-6.

Make up your mind on Impala, please.

That was the original plan for the Impala, to better differentiate it from the front-drive Chevy Malibu. That decision has flip-flopped many times, and still is up in air, Lutz says, but the current thinking (note the date, it could change again), is that moving to rear-drive with a V-8 would be unwise. “We are trying to preserve the size of vehicles Americans want to buy,” he says.

Meanwhile, Lutz says a decision has been made on bringing a version of the Holden Commodore VE Ute to the U.S. as an El Camino, of sorts. While he would not spill the beans, other reports have said it is a go to round out the Pontiac G8 family that has a sedan, but may not include the wagon. Complicating the decision to import the Holden from Australia has been the high Australian dollar compared with the U.S. dollar. Lutz has said if it does come to the U.S., it will not be badged a Chevy.


Speaking of the Wagon, it isn't directly said here, but Bob also told another mag/media that there is virtually NO buisness case for the G8 wagon. Therefore, it shall not be imported.
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Old 01-16-2008, 08:12 PM   #2
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I saw the "don't expect a new family of V8's" and I got scared. I just can't see how, if they can manage to get up to 25-30 mpg average on V8s, which will be sold numbers approximating that of 40-45 mpg vehicles, plus a large number of cars getting between 33 and 40 mpg, should make things fairly balenced in my opinion.
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Old 01-16-2008, 10:57 PM   #3
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Speaking of the Wagon, it isn't directly said here, but Bob also told another mag/media that there is virtually NO buisness case for the G8 wagon. Therefore, it shall not be imported.

Uhhh duh... with the complete failure that was the magnum I would have thought that was writing on the wall...
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Old 01-16-2008, 11:32 PM   #4
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A FWD wagon would probably be a good idea though...
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Old 01-17-2008, 05:08 AM   #5
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So will this affect the Camaro in the long run? Or just the gasguzzling SUVs and such?
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Old 01-17-2008, 08:04 AM   #6
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Uhhh duh... with the complete failure that was the magnum I would have thought that was writing on the wall...
Failure?
During my 29 mile commute I see at least 20 of those things on the road every day. I would venture to say that I see more Magnums as I do Camaros on the road, and there are a lot around here. It would seem to me that they've sold pretty well.
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Old 01-17-2008, 09:03 AM   #7
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You know, I have a lot of giddyup in my I6 in my Cherokee, which is attributed to its low end torque. If the performance and the mileage are both there in the V6's, then I don't really care. However, I don't think the V8's will completely go away.
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Old 01-17-2008, 09:04 AM   #8
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Okay, let me do a new post after reading some more about this: does this mean no V8 for the Camaro? Or does it a mean V8 just for the first few years?

Personally I don't care if it's a V& or V8 out of a power standpoint, I know I'm not going to be using all of it anyway. BUT. I. WANT. THE. SOUND. OF. A. V8. Make a strong V6 that sounds like a V8 and I might consider it. Otherwise no V8 in the Camaro might mean I'll get another car that does have a V8.
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Old 01-17-2008, 09:14 AM   #9
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Failure?
During my 29 mile commute I see at least 20 of those things on the road every day. I would venture to say that I see more Magnums as I do Camaros on the road, and there are a lot around here. It would seem to me that they've sold pretty well.
It was completely market based and outside that miniscule market it failed miserably, Chrysler only sold about 30,000 of them last year. Hence why it was canceled.
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Old 01-17-2008, 09:32 AM   #10
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This might not be a bad thing. It will prompt GM to make really powerful V6 motors to compete with really powerful V8 motors that have worse gas mileage. If GM can learn to make efficient V8s we can expect to see a 40-mpg V8 with 400 horses in a few years. I would expect GM to compensate for any sound loss by offering an aggressive GMPP catback as a V6 option.
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Old 01-17-2008, 10:19 AM   #11
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If GM kill the V8 For example. GM better make some high performece turbo v6 that make 400HP if they want me to buy a Camaro.
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Old 01-17-2008, 10:30 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Blur View Post
I would expect GM to compensate for any sound loss by offering an aggressive GMPP catback as a V6 option.
Excuse an ignorant and now slightly panicking fan of the V8 sound, but is it even possible to match it with a V6? The low rumble of a V8 for example, I don't see how that can be matched.

I just wish fbodfather would get in here and straigthen this out.
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Old 01-17-2008, 10:48 AM   #13
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Excuse an ignorant and now slightly panicking fan of the V8 sound, but is it een possibl to match it with a V6? The low rumble of a V( for example, I don't see how that can be matched.

I just wish fbodfather would get in here and straigthen this out.
Ehmer.... dont worry man.... even though stuff like this may happen in the future..... the Camaro will definitely get a V8 version, lol.....you just cant make or compete if you dont make a v8 Camaro!!!
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Old 01-17-2008, 10:52 AM   #14
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^Thaks for trying to reassure me but with all the shit going wrong for me right now, V8 dissaperaring from the Camaro would fit right in in that spiral of things going wrong. And we were told to forget all we'd been told about engines. I hope not, but perhaps this is why.
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Old 01-17-2008, 05:19 PM   #15
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Muscle cars without V8's is like pancakes with no syrup; can be done but it just isn't the same. I don't see ditching V8's as "giving customers what they want" per say, sure we all want fuel efficent cars, but it's just doesn't make sense to make muscle cars with no option of an 8 cylinder engine. If cellulosic ethanol takes off maybe then this will cease to be a concern and everthing will be alright. At the same time the Europeans have manged to squeeze every last ounce and then some out of four and six bangers while giving you big power and superior performance, but the European philosiphy for engineering powerful engines seems vastly different from the American appraoch.
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Old 01-17-2008, 08:41 PM   #16
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Guys calm down. All this is saying is that GM won't be making new V8 families. They'll have one corporate one, the LS series. Since fewer and fewer applications will get V8s, it doesn't make sense to engineer LSs, Northstars, etc. V8s aren't disappearing any time soon, but they will be rarer. Also I wouldn't expect to see as many updates (for example, you may not see a transition to the LS4, or whatever the next base V8 is, from the LS3 as quickly as they transitioned from the LS2 to the LS3), but I think there will still be V8 applications for years to come. No worries.

Oh, and with that said, if they could put a TC'd DI 3.6L V6 making mid to high 300s hp and torque as the top engine in the upcoming Alpha cars, I'd be very interested.
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Old 01-17-2008, 09:37 PM   #17
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Guys calm down. All this is saying is that GM won't be making new V8 families. They'll have one corporate one, the LS series. Since fewer and fewer applications will get V8s, it doesn't make sense to engineer LSs, Northstars, etc. V8s aren't disappearing any time soon, but they will be rarer. Also I wouldn't expect to see as many updates (for example, you may not see a transition to the LS4, or whatever the next base V8 is, from the LS3 as quickly as they transitioned from the LS2 to the LS3), but I think there will still be V8 applications for years to come. No worries.
Aha, now I remember the discussion.

At the same time these dense journalists completely misinterpreted Lutz. They're making it sound as if the V8 will become extinct within two generations, which simply isn't the case. News mixed with controversy sells magazines.
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