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At the Chicago Auto Show today, GM officials said to expect the automaker's three-row crossovers to receive similar engineering improvements as the just-introduced Chevrolet Traverse. That means slight gains in power and gas mileage for the Saturn Outlook, Buick Enclave and GMC Acadia.

The improvements come thanks to GM's direct-injection V-6, a potent engine we've driven in the new Cadillac CTS. In the Traverse, the engine makes an estimated 286 hp, slightly more than in the other crossovers. Vehicle line executive Anna Kretz said she expects it to migrate to the Outlook, Enclave and Acadia, though she didn't specify a timetable. We imagine it will happen for the 2009 or 2010 model year.

Gas mileage should also improve, though GM has yet to release exact figures.

"Any time you do a direction injection [engine], you're going to improve your efficiency," Kretz said, adding that she expects the mileage gain to be "certainly one that is noticeable."

With front-wheel drive, the Outlook, Enclave and Acadia get 16/24 mpg city/highway. In the CTS, gas mileage is slightly lower for the direct-injection V-6 versus its port-injected equivalent, but that engine makes 304 hp. If the Traverse's variant can raise highway mileage to 25 or 26 mpg while providing a bump in passing power, it should be a win-win for all.

Source: http://blogs.cars.com/kickingtires/2008/02/gm-blog-2.html
 

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This would be good news, but in real world driving, I doubt it will be noticeable, both in power and in fuel economy. The promise of more torque in lower RPM's is the only thing that may be noticeable, which is why diesels are so favored by those in the know.

The fact is most people don't floor it every time they accelerate, and fuel economy depends a lot more on driver style and vehicle weight.

But again, its good to see improvement.

TM
 

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I agree with you Tin Man. I would think 30 hp along with improved torque would be noticable. My old Riviera has 465 ft lbs of torque and you can feel it. Believe me! Bsox wouldn't be complaining about constant downshifts if he had that much power. I'm ready to be convinced of the benefits of diesel.
 

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My first real ride was a 1968 Buick Riviera. I know what you mean.

It was a sweet ride. Plenty of power.

TM
 

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:banghead:
I sure wish I knew for sure that Buick will have the Direct Injection for 2009. I am ready to buy now but since I pull a trailer with a ATV over the Rocky Mountains 2 or 3 times a year I feel I need the extra power and mileage. I will not wait for the 2010 model and if I knew for sure they will not upgrade the Enclave to Direct Injection I would buy a CX-9 now.
 

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Deadeye Dick said:
:banghead:
I sure wish I knew for sure that Buick will have the Direct Injection for 2009. I am ready to buy now but since I pull a trailer with a ATV over the Rocky Mountains 2 or 3 times a year I feel I need the extra power and mileage. I will not wait for the 2010 model and if I knew for sure they will not upgrade the Enclave to Direct Injection I would buy a CX-9 now.
The DI 3.6 VVT is for sure on the 2009's-it already shows in the Vehicle Locator for 2009 model Enclaves.
 

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Direct from http://www.gminsidenews.com/index.ph..._Product_Guide

For the 2009 Model Year:

Saturn Outlook: Two-mode hybrid version of the Outlook will come in 2009 model-year.

Buick Enclave: A Super model could show up in late 2008 as a 2009 model sporting a new 4.6L Ultra V8 with over 320 HP. This Super model could also have the leather-covered dash and multimedia system from the Enclave concept vehicle.

Chevrolet Traverse: As expected, Chevrolet will get a Lambda crossover; to be named Traverse. The direct-injected 3.6L HF V6 will power the new CUV (as it will all Lambda vehicles) and an optional Ultra V8 is anticipated, however a two-mode hybrid Traverse is also under consideration. Production will begin in August 2008 at the Spring Hill, Tennessee plant.

GMC Acadia: A Denali version of the Acadia will arrive several months after the vehicle's launch. It will be powered by a 4.6L Ultra V8, making around 330 HP. It is expected to be a 2009 model.
 

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robmack,

The Vehicle Locator is the tool dealers use to check inventory at other stores; you can see any other dealers' inventory, except for demo's or sold units. It's always the first place they post changes for the next years' models, so we can use it for a kind of "sneak preview" of what's to come. Of course, it's always "subject to change at any time', but it's usually pretty accurate. BTW-don't bother to have your dealer try to locate one for you; most dealers won't trade Enclaves.

As far as the "Inside News" post, that's old news. The "Super V8" is the one they pulled the plug on in January after the CAFE regulations were signed into law. There WILL be a 4.5 liter Duramax diesel V8 for the light trucks that is destined for the Lambda's, probably in the 2010 model year.
 

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To add to that, I also read the there are no plans in the immediate Lambda future for the two-mode hybrid system. With gas approaching $4.00 a gallon, they might want to re-think that. I'd pay the $5,000 premium to get an average of 30+ miles/gallon in an Enclave.
 

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jr7243 said:
To add to that, I also read the there are no plans in the immediate Lambda future for the two-mode hybrid system. With gas approaching $4.00 a gallon, they might want to re-think that. I'd pay the $5,000 premium to get an average of 30+ miles/gallon in an Enclave.
Amen. But I'm not sure I'll be able to wait long enough. As excited as I am about the Enclave, gas prices will have an effect on decisions made. If I thought a new diesel technology or hybrid were on the horizon, I'd try to wait longer. The 16 year old car may not allow that.

BB
 

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Still, at a $5000 premium for a hybrid, if it got you as much as 6 extra mpg (that's plenty for such a heavy vehicle) it would still take ~150k miles to break even at $4/gal, and ~200k miles at $3/gal. That's the life of the vehicle, and probably more than that for most people who don't like to drive their car into the ground until they replace it. Plus extra maintainence costs slowing down that time to breaking even on your investment. Now if the government steps up and provides an incentive (which they're phasing down/out for other hybrids) then it starts getting palettable.
 

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Zman1??????????
 

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Jimbobwae said:
Still, at a $5000 premium for a hybrid, if it got you as much as 6 extra mpg (that's plenty for such a heavy vehicle) it would still take ~150k miles to break even at $4/gal, and ~200k miles at $3/gal. That's the life of the vehicle, and probably more than that for most people who don't like to drive their car into the ground until they replace it. Plus extra maintainence costs slowing down that time to breaking even on your investment. Now if the government steps up and provides an incentive (which they're phasing down/out for other hybrids) then it starts getting palettable.
Lets see, 6 mpg extra, eh? That would make resale a whole lot more, so part of the $5,000 would come back. Sort of like 4WD for trucks.

If the 18 mpg (overall) Enclave got 24 mpg with $3/gal fuel, and you drove it 150,000 miles, the savings would be:

(150,000 miles/18 mpg - 150,000 miles/24 mpg) x $3/gal = $6,250

If it was a diesel motor, it would be just breaking in at, say, 120,000 miles (mine is - I recently got 40 mpg with it going 62 mph!) you would get about $4000 extra for the car at resale and still have saved $6,250 in fuel (the extra cost of diesel fuel nowadays is a drawback but you would be getting 50% better fuel economy, not 30% perhaps).

If it was a hybrid, then all bets are off. Replacing the battery at 150,000 miles might cost $2,000. But repairs on a fancy car, American or foreign, often cost $2,000 at that age.

Now, make that fuel $5/gallon, and the savings becomes $8,750 over 150,000 miles. Imagine if the premium for the engine was $1,000 instead of $5,000 (more typical for a diesel car). Its a winning formula. GM, are you listening????

Just a thought.

TM
 

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I think what people don't do is look at the big picture when it comes to hybrids. Yes, they do cost more and more than likely, with a gas/hybrid engine at least, you may or may not break even over the amount of time you own the car. But what is important is 1)Less fuel you're using compared to a conventional engine, therefore sending less money to OPEC 2)Your carbon footprint on the earth will be reduced 3)with the new CAFE rules being phased in over the next few years leading up to 2020, cars are going to cost more and more - you don't think they're not going to pass the costs on to the consumer now do you? 4) Gas is now $4 in California and Hawaii - by 2020, it's possible that gas nationwide could be $7 or even $8 a gallon or who knows how high. We're all going to be paying more one way or another, and I'd rather my hard earned money go somewhere other than OPEC.
 

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Technically, most of our oil dollars go to Canada and Mexico, but the world market price for oil is supported heavily by the demand in the US. While China and India are increasing their use of oil by leaps and bounds, if the US could cut down on its use, the price might go down a bit. Hard to say what the future brings, but a higher price is a good bet, save for a world-wide recession like the one in the late 1990's that brought the price of gas/diesel down to as little as $.79/gallon in the US!

TM
 

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I know I'm getting a little off topic now, but FWIW, one of the big reasons that there is such a huge demand for oil worldwide right now is because of the U.S. outsourcing/offshoring jobs and buying everything from countries like China and India. We're supporting the people of countries like thatwhile taking away from our own. In turn, many people 10 years ago in China, India, etc who could not afford a car are not able to, and are adding to the demand of oil. So we're taking away jobs here, and driving up the cost of everything (oil, food, etc) at the same time. You think something's wrong with this picture???
 

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There is an article in one of the April car mags.(I think Car & Driver). The article talks about running out of diesel fuel. The ever increasing fuel consumption of diesel fuel in Europe (close to 50% of vehicles are diesel) & Asia is putting a strain on diesel production. Major work on refineries would have to take place as well as new refineries constructed to keep up with diesel demand. The last new refinery was built in the 70's. This would drastically increase the price of diesel so the $ savings would even be harder to achieve. We just went down to see our family in the U.S.A and filled the Enclave in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. Paid $3.12 for gas. Diesel at same station was $3.84. That is a very big spread.
 

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Yeah, there needs to be a little parity in the trade relationship with India and China that isn't there now, it seems.

Diesel needs to be 30% more than premium unleaded for me to break even on cost, so we aren't there yet. Winter time is when diesel competes with heating oil, since they are both very similar, so the price goes up. The price of gasoline will go up in the Spring/Summer/Fall due to the custom formulations needed to keep up with air quality standards, so the gap between diesel and gasoline will get considerably less soon.

The demand for diesel in Europe is exactly why we should want it too: much better fuel economy with less pollution (especially with the new NOx and particle filters), but the market hasn't had a chance to do this due to unfair regulations in the US and Canada that favor gasoline. Plus, biodiesel is in its infancy and has a potential for 5-10% of the market.

Currently, diesel seems the best option, but as new technology comes into the market, we shall see.

TM
 

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jr7243 said:
To add to that, I also read the there are no plans in the immediate Lambda future for the two-mode hybrid system. With gas approaching $4.00 a gallon, they might want to re-think that. I'd pay the $5,000 premium to get an average of 30+ miles/gallon in an Enclave.
As has been stated, there's no way they can get one of their current 2-mode Hybrid systems to fit in a Lambda. And engineering another from the ground up, with much tighter size restrictions, just is not going to be done--they can achieve a proper number in economy and power as is with a typical V6 for the time being.

Otherwise, as stated elsewhere, the Ultra V8 is gone, and the only possibility there may be another variation of an existing GM small block. But, not a big necessity right now.
 
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