Regarding its upcoming bi-fuel (CNG and gasoline) HD pickup, GM said at the National Work Truck Show in Indianapolis it is "the only manufacturer to offer a single-source option for its gaseous fuel vehicles." The next day, Ram countered that it will be "the only manufacturer in North America to offer a factory-built compressed natural gas-powered pickup truck." The key phrase in Ram's statement is "factory-built," because GM's are sent to top supplier IMPCO for bi-fuel delivery and storage. Ford already uses a similar upfitter approach with its Westport WiNG system.
The GM and Ram, like the Super Duty, are designed to start and do initial warmup on gasoline, then run on CNG, switching back to gasoline automatically if CNG runs out. Engines have been upgraded with different valve and seat materials, fuel rails, ECUs, and plumbing. Both store the CNG in the forward area of the bed, although the GM fills at the CNG enclosure and Ram is adjacent to the fuel fill. The Ram's bed-level enclosure should be more compatible with gooseneck/fifth-wheel hitches, tonneaus, or racks.
GM's 2500 Extended Cab 6.0-liter, standard or long box, RWD or 4WD, touts a combined range of 650 miles using a 17-gasoline-gallon-equivalent CNG tank and 36 gallons of gasoline (GM claims the same mileage as the gasoline truck despite added hardware estimated at 450-500 pounds.) Few other details were offered, including price, but a three-tank CNG option on a GM 2500 cargo van adds $13,325 ($1265 less than the four-tank model) and adds $11,000 to the price of a Silverado HD.
The Ram, a 4x4 Crew Cab Hemi, uses an 8-gallon gasoline tank. Ram's two 4.6-cubic-foot tanks hold the gasoline-gallon equivalent of 18.2 gallons, and Ram estimates the CNG range at 255 miles, with the gasoline backup extending that to 367; that equates to 14 mpg with a full gasoline tank, optimistic in our experience. Ram 2500 CNG's max tow is 7650 pounds and payload is 1580, suggesting the CNG system adds about 700 pounds.
The Ram is priced from $47,500, $12,000 more than a standard Crew 4WD ST longbed. Since the GMs don't come standard with the biggest cab or 4WD, they should cost $2000-$5000 less. Ford's Westport conversion is offered on F-250 and 350, any cab, either box, in 2WD or 4WD, for about $10,000, and lists a 600-mile range.