What is the GMC Canyon’s New Duramax Diesel?

General Motors made us wait a year for its Duramax four-cylinder diesel, but this fall it will join the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel as only the second compression-ignition engine offered to U.S. pickup buyers outside the heavy-duty segment.

GMC Canyon Duramax Diesel

For 2016, the GMC Canyon gains this third engine choice beyond their 200-hp 2.5-liter inline-four and 305-hp 3.6-liter V-6. As we’ve previously detailed, the Thai-built 2.8-liter turbo-diesel inline-four makes 181 horsepower at 3400 rpm and 369 lb-ft of torque at 2000 rpm. It will be available only on crew-cab trucks (and limited to SLE and SLT on the Canyon) but can be spec’d with either two- or four-wheel drive. The Z82 trailering package (hitch receiver, seven-pin connector, and a diesel-only trailer-brake controller) comes standard along with a locking 3.42:1 rear differential (versus the gasoline four’s 4.10:1) and driver-switchable exhaust brake.

Canyon Duramax Diesel Power

Packed into the premium are powertrain features like cooled exhaust-gas recirculation, a balance shaft for smoother operation, and ceramic glow plugs. The Duramax also can run up to 20-percent biodiesel. New for all Canyons is a centrifugal pendulum vibration damper, a set of springs and dampers attached to the six-speed automatic’s torque converter that cancels out shaking from the engine.

Everything else about the 2016 Colorado and Canyon, diesel or gasoline, is the same for 2016 save for a few new tech features. Apple CarPlay, the interface that mirrors the iPhone’s functionality on the MyLink infotainment system, is now available (Android Auto is on its way next year). Apple Siri Eyes Free, which integrates the iPhone’s voice controls with the vehicle, is now available along with text-message support. Plus, LT and Z71 models get a new multicolor LCD on the instrument panel.

Be on the lookout for the Canyon on the lot at McKenzie Motors in Milton, FL. We’ll see you soon!