It’s no secret that since 2019, off-road racing champion Chad Hall has been competing in the full-size stock production class with a prototype Silverado ZR2. Working with GM engineers, the team has been racing, testing, and validating the truck’s off-road performance in some of the most extreme and grueling conditions in the world. The harsh testing was done to develop components for production vehicles and performance parts.
“At Chevrolet, our motorsports philosophy is ‘sell what you race, and race what you sell.’ Competing in off-road racing puts our trucks and performance parts through extreme levels of abuse that most trucks will never encounter,” says Dom Lester, General Motors chief engineer for Performance Variants, Parts, and Motorsports Engineering. “The Silverado ZR2 is a perfect example of how that strategy delivers. We applied what we learned with Chad Hall’s experience in the prototype race truck to the production truck customers buy in the showroom.”
That said, Chevrolet has officially announced the 2024 Silverado 1500 ZR2 will be available at dealer lots with the new LZ0 3.0-liter turbo diesel engine. We previously talked about this engine several months ago, and you can get all the specs right here. The new straight-six turbo powerhouse delivers 495 lb-ft of torque, and this makes the ZR2 one of the only light-duty off-road trucks in its class to offer a diesel engine. The other is GMC’s counterpart, the Sierra 1500 AT4X.
Adding the new 3.0-liter turbo diesel engine to the 1500 lineup seems like a strange move with GM’s recent announcement to be all EVs by 2035. But that is a few years off so we will shut up and be happy about the new light-duty diesel offering. Regardless, if you were waiting for a 1500-series truck to be powered by a diesel engine, the wait is over.