The U.S. Department of State has awarded GM Defense LLC, a subsidiary of General Motors, a contract to develop and validate next generation Large Support Utility Commercial Vehicles (SUV) for future fleet production in support of the Department’s Diplomatic Security Service (DSS). As part of the total development contract valued at $36.4 million, GM Defense will create a purpose-built Heavy-Duty (HD) Suburban, building 10 vehicles over the next two years.

Truck Of The Week

Smokinya HD Wins Super Stock Championship

As predicted, the points chase was extremely tight in the Lucas Oil Pro Pulling League’s Super Stock Diesel 4wd Truck class in 2021. But as the dust settled at the final pull of the season (at the Greene County Fairgrounds in Waynesburg, Pennsylvania), it was Erik Stacey who came out on top. Stacey and his Smokinya HD Chevrolet edged out the hard-running Against The Grain Dodge piloted by Cody Hastings, as well as Justin Gearhart’s Cream Of The Crop Dodge (which won the NTPA title this year). In total, just six points separated Stacey’s First Place finish from Van Haisley’s Fourth Place effort.




Rocky Mountain Race Week

Version 2.0 of the 2021 Rocky Mountain Race Week kicked off on September 19 in Noble, Oklahoma, and several familiar faces in the diesel world made the call this time. Front and center was Rick Fletes and his bad-in-blue Duramax Chevelle, a known cross-country vehicle capable of running 8’s in the quarter-mile—and that catapulted to a 9.05 at 153 mph to start the festivities. Daniel Green (better known by some as Danny Diesel) entered his 5.90 Index class second-gen as well. In the weeks leading up to the event, which spans five days of racing on four different tracks, Daniel installed a receiver hitch, wired up the truck’s brake lights, and effectively transformed his two-wheel drive Dodge into a streetable ride capable of long-distance travel.



Hardway Sunshine Showdown: Canceled

Unfortunately for diesel drag racers and fans headed for Florida, Mother Nature won the sixth round of ODSS drag racing this year, with the powers that be canceling the Hardway Sunshine Showdown due to excessive rainfall. Instead, the ODSS schedule will resume (and conclude) at the Rudy’s Fall Truck Jam on October 8th and 9th in North Carolina. Rest assured, Florida is already on the books for a spring event, set to take place at Emerald Coast Dragway March 25-26, 2022.





GM Defense To Build 10 Heavy-Duty Suburbans For The U.S. Government

After GM Defense was awarded a $36.4 million development contract to build heavy-duty Suburbans for the United States government, our only question is will they run on diesel? While we don’t know the answer to that yet, we do know GM Defense plans to use its commercial vehicle architecture for full-size pickups and that the ‘Burbs will feature many off-the-shelf parts and components from the GM truck parts bin. In a press release from GM Defense, that means body, exterior, interior, brakes, and propulsion. But if GM does go diesel, which power plant will it be, the L5P 6.6L Duramax or the aluminum I-6 LM2 3.0L?



RPM Act Reintroduced In Congress

More than 1.5 million letters have been sent to lawmakers in Washington D.C. in an effort to see some movement on the RPM (the Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports) Act. As of September 15, Senators Richard Burr (a Republican from North Carolina) and Jon Tester (a Democrat from Montana) reintroduced the bill in the U.S. Senate. For anyone that doesn’t know, the RPM Act is a pro-motorsports, pro-business bill that was drafted following the U.S. EPA’s declaration that the 50-year-old Clean Air Act doesn’t allow street vehicles to be converted into purpose-built racecars—even if they’re trailered to the track. If passed, the RPM Act will ensure enthusiasts can continue to transform street vehicles into purpose-only competition racecars.





White House Pushes For More Biofuels In Aviation

In an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the aviation industry by 20-percent, the current administration is calling for the use of biofuels, also known as sustainable aviation fuels (SAF). SAF’s are fuels that lower lifecycle GHG’s by 50-percent as compared to conventional fuels, but current production capacity in the U.S. is maxed out at 1 billion gallons per year and the predicted amount of SAF’s required to meet air traffic demand by 2050 will be 35 billion gallons. Government funding and incentives (namely grants) will be utilized to ramp up U.S. SAF production, rather than biofuel mandates. The new biofuel policy applies to all non-military flights within (and departing from) the U.S.




Parts Rack

Don’t Melt Your Trailer!

Ready to double the flow of your ’20-’21 L5P Duramax’s exhaust system while also dropping post-tip EGT by 15-percent? Banks’ new 5-inch diameter Monster Exhaust is specifically designed for the latest Chevrolet and GMC HD trucks. The company’s DPF-back system is made from aluminized steel tubing, features a massive patented exhaust tip, and virtually eliminates backpressure (down 85-percent) after the DPF to keep unwanted heat off of the load you’re towing. The Monster Exhaust provides a 15-percent reduction in EGT two feet behind the tip and 192-percent greater flow than stock. Banks’ new Monster Exhaust system can be had with your choice of a chrome-plated stainless steel tip or a high-temp matte black version.



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