Earlier this year, as General Motors was slashing spending on programs in a desperate and ultimately unsuccessful attempt to stave off bankruptcy, one of the victims was the new new 4.5-liter Duramax diesel V8. The engine, which was intended to start production in early 2010 for use in GM's full-size light duty trucks, was shelved as gasoline prices dropped and sales were plummeting across the board. The program was never officially pronounced dead, merely on indefinite hold. At this point the engineering work on the engine is essentially complete and GM just has to pull the trigger on getting the tooling installed to build it.

GM Vice Chairman Tom Stephens told Ward's Auto World that the program could be revived at any time if the market conditions warrant it. In other words, if fuel prices rise, and diesel prices stay in line with gasoline, the light duty diesel could get back on track. What makes this interesting now is that the Two-Mode hybrid trucks have not met sales expectations and there are reports that Daimler and BMW are both preparing to abandon the project. GM could perhaps make the shift from hybrid to diesel in its trucks if it thinks it could help sales.

[Source: Ward's Auto World]