By on February 28, 2014

2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Exterior

Though the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado took home North American Truck/Utility of the Year at last month’s Detroit Auto Show, the large pickup and its brother, the GMC Sierra, have suffered from “the least successful large pickup launch over the last 15 years” according to Barclays Capital analyst Brian Johnson.

Automotive News reports the truck twins “faced a full-court press” from the Ford F-150 and Ram 1500, though winter weather also played a role in lower sales across the board. General Motors executives have come to the defense of their products, proclaiming average transaction prices of $4,000 to $5,000 more than the previous generation pickups and a combined market share hovering around 33 percent over the past few months, though the latter point held between 35 and 40 percent of the market in years past.

With dealers begging for stronger promotion and better incentives for the pickups, Chevrolet will host its Chevy Truck Month promotion. The month-long sale will offer supplier pricing (dealer invoice plus destination charges and a $150 fee) on light- and heavy-duty Silverados, and will be heavily pushed during the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament with television advertising beginning March 18.

In addition, Chevrolet, Buick and GMC will all hold Open House events throughout the month of March. The month-long sale will offer supplier pricing on nearly every 2014 vehicle sold under each brand, with the exception of the SS and Corvette Stingray for Chevrolet.

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168 Comments on “Barclays: GM Suffering From Worst Large Pickup Launch In 15 Years...”


  • avatar
    Kenmore

    It’s those effin’ square wheel wells, people!

    Damn…

    • 0 avatar
      alsorl

      The square wheel wells are not the problem. That’s probably the only thought out design of the body. The rest is just a square block. Go take one for a test drive. It gives no feeling of you wanting to buy it. Brand new sitting on the lot it almost looks like a used truck. In fact my wife saw a brand new 2014 Silverado 4door. At first glance she said. “What a nice looking old pickup”. Then I told her it was a loaded new Chevy that was probably close to $50,000 . She then said “That is £uc#ed up”.

      • 0 avatar
        OldandSlow

        I used to have an 84 K10 and the square wheel openings looked ok. My guess is that the wheel openings have grown a bit since then.

        • 0 avatar
          NMGOM

          Well, I agree. My 1996 Ram 1500 has square-ish wheel wells, and that vehicle looks OK. It can’t be just wheel wells.

          But, to stay on topic: the issue was not the appearance, or the design, or the quality, or the interior, or the features of this 2014 Chevy; the issue was the lack-luster publicity and weak nature of GM’s launch. And I observed that too: I was always waiting for the BIG fanfare and the pizzazz, — but this poor pickup just kinda got “phased in”, from my perception.

          Doesn’t bother me horribly: I’m a Dodge guy, and have been so in trucks since 1974. The new Ram is a smash, and its market share keeps inching up, probably mostly at the expense of Chevy/GM. I doubt that Ram will bother the F-150 folks a whole lot, — but who knows?

          —————–

      • 0 avatar
        Compaq Deskpro

        I’m not sure why everyone says this, it doesn’t look anything like the old truck. It looks like the 80′s Chevies with the stacked headlights. You’d think people would be a little more excited about something as bold as stacked headlights in the age of the sealed beam swoosh. It’s about as conservative as circular Chevelle headlights on the standard issue Malibu.

        • 0 avatar
          86er

          Everyone is saying the new one looks like the old one because the TTAC commentariat are a bunch of contrarian, outlier weirdos.

          Plenty of people are excited (enough) about it; it sells in great numbers, greater than many of the angry-insect headlight set.

          GM has never been about radical departures in their truck lines. The most experimenting they do nowadays is with headlights/taillights on the Tahoe.

          • 0 avatar
            LeeK

            “the TTAC commentariat are a bunch of contrarian, outlier weirdos”

            I just spit coffee all over my iPad. One of the funniest sentences I’ve ever read here. And more than a kernel of truth…

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            I sometimes envision Sam the Eagle of Muppet’s fame looking around this site and muttering: “Freaks and weirdos, freaks and weirdos.”

          • 0 avatar
            Erikstrawn

            Sorry, but it’s ugly, it looks like it was styled by committee from three good (but different) proposals, and the point of the article is that it’s NOT selling in great numbers.

          • 0 avatar
            86er

            Erik, your “ugly” is another man’s “handsome”. I’m sure you’re aware of the subjectivity of the matter.

            The current model Silverado/Sierra numbers are down, but they are still selling in great numbers. Other commenters have astutely pointed out, and previous TTAC columns have made convincing arguments that GM’s attempt to bump margins/transaction prices is running into significant headwinds, as it were.

            Sorry.

          • 0 avatar
            Shawnski

            I think TTAC readers would like to think they all saw it coming; it’s success or (early) failure. Ewww square wheels, or the interior is really nice no wonder it’s a hit. I should think not having enough reason to buy a new truck when it’s not that much better than the outgoing model they recently saved a bundle on is a perspective. No doubt it will catch on.

      • 0 avatar
        DC Bruce

        The exterior may be ho-hum, in comparison to the previous generation; but the interior is way better (although it does not surpass RAM). I’m not sure why people are slamming the engines: all 3 have DI and the two V-8s have partial cylinder shut off under light load. Their EPA ratings match or exceed those of the Ford Ecoboost — which apparently had some very significant problems of its own and exceed those of the Chrysler hemi, which also requires mid-grade gas.

        As a shopper for a tow vehicle for a travel trailer, it seems to me that the niche the Silverado fills is for someone who wants towing capacity that nearly moves into 3/4 ton territory without the rest that comes with the bigger truck. RAM doesn’t reach the 10,000 lb. plus target (unless you leave the bed empty and don’t carry passengers) and Ford reaches it, but only with the Ecoboost, which seems to use more fuel when working hard than larger displacement n/a engines.

        But, if you don’t need to tow 5 tons, the RAM, in particular, is more attractive alternative.

        • 0 avatar
          86er

          “I’m not sure why people are slamming the engines”…

          One of those signal-to-noise ratio things… people see that the displacements are the same as the old engines and assume they’re carryover, when that couldn’t be further from the truth.

          • 0 avatar
            Joebaldheadedgranny

            Spot on about the displacement issue, 86er. It never occurred to them to numerically differentiate the new engines. Sad, because, on balance, they are the very best gasoline engineering out there.

            It also seems to be a testament to the really excellent quality of the Big 3 light truck offerings. While the new GMs are significantly better, both Ford and Ram have equally interesting offerings.

        • 0 avatar

          Just to clarify, the Ford Ecoboost only needs 87 octane.

        • 0 avatar
          hendo337

          The F150 has the option of the 6.2L V8 with the same towing as the Ecoboost. 11,xxx lbs. The 5.0 can also tow 10,000lbs in 2wd reg cab 3.73 variants.

        • 0 avatar
          jim brewer

          Right. Its just a hotly competitive market. GM has been behind the curve since 2011 or so, so they needed something really good instead of half-measures.

    • 0 avatar
      azmtbkr81

      Yeah GM better square away those wheel wells fast…oh wait.

      A neighbor has one of these in a very nice shade of burgundy, sharp looking truck.

  • avatar
    alsorl

    Probably because you have to be a true car/truck enthusiast to tell the difference from the old truck to the new truck. And even if you can tell the difference, it still looks like the same damn old truck. The price also seems a bit steep for poor MPG and not so exciting engine technology.

    I test drive a LT 4 door Silverado. It has cloth seats and very few options and it stickered at $38,000 + and its made in Mexico. I walked away shaking my head and then walked back to talk to the salesman on his thought on the truck. The salesman told me I was not the only customer with the same thoughts about the truck. He said ” the only hope we have it has some good rebates coming down the line”.

    • 0 avatar
      Onus

      You would never confuse all the f150 generations between each other or ram. I admit I’m a ford guy and i can even tell you power train differences by year, etc.

      I have seen a few of these on the road and if i don’t pay close enough attention i can easily mistake it for the last generation and have. The rear bumpers are about the most useful feature at identifying them.

    • 0 avatar

      I;m a truck guy and I have to really look to see it’s not the old generation to me all the other silverado changes over the last 20 years have been much more distinctive.

  • avatar
    OldandSlow

    It looks like we’re headed back to the “Dark Side” once again with employee pricing. Cookies for everyone.

    “Keep America Rolling,” folks.

  • avatar
    VCplayer

    At least they’re not calling it a red tag sale.

    The whole “stay conservative” theory behind the new trucks is really taking a hit with first Ram and soon Ford pushing the envelope of design and engineering to a whole new level. Chevy/GMC enthusiasts will keep buying of course, but if I’m a new truck buyer I don’t have much reason to look at GM.

    • 0 avatar
      LALoser

      I remember watching adverts by Lexus ca.’11. They had a GM car completely covered in red tags and were banging on about how great Lexus is…but…at the end of the advert the announcer said to come in for “special pricing and lease rates at your local Lexus dealer”…huh?

  • avatar
    LALoser

    Just the latest in the “out-big, out-chrome” the other guy design. Hope it changes soon. I remember buying my new ’88 Cheyenne work truck, many guys thought they had downsized the full size, and liked that idea. Soon building codes will have to increase the parking space dimensions and delete compact spaces.

    • 0 avatar
      86er

      It’s 1959, all over again!

    • 0 avatar
      Halftruth

      Agree with LaLoser. The over-the-top-is-better design think suuuuucks.
      The 88s were just big enough and were elegantly designed with normal bumpers and grille proportions. They were the best looking truck of their day. Less is more (to me anyway). A friend recently bought an 09 Dodge RAM crew cab and this thing is a behemoth. It’s beautiful but why do you need all that truck to commute? God Bless free choice but it is way too much for me.

      Now imagine that same Chevy 88 with today’s engine technology and weight reduction. It would be quite the winning combination and would
      look great as well.

      • 0 avatar
        Onus

        I’ll chime in. I miss the smaller full size trucks of old myself.

        I hate parking next to a new f150 with my f250 (1990) and realize how much larger the new f150 is compared to my truck.

        • 0 avatar
          86er

          Your old 3/4 ton is bigger, where it counts…

        • 0 avatar
          Lorenzo

          At least make them lower, for ease of loading, and so the driver can see out the back. With the top of the tail gate six feet off the ground, you can’t see anything behind you until you hit it and get out to survey the damage.

          I saw a guy in a new F150 back out of a parking space, into a Camry that had already backed out on the opposite row of the lot. The truck driver said he never saw the Camry.

      • 0 avatar
        frozenman

        This is why I prefer 2006 GMC/Chevy or 06 Tundra if I where to buy a pickup for occasional use, the new ones are just ridiculous IMHO.

      • 0 avatar
        fincar1

        I have a regular-cab short-box 2003 Silverado. Although it is already a bit on the high side compared to the older pickups I’ve owned, hardly a day goes by that I don’t see an S-10 or Tundra pickup that’s longer, taller, and has bigger tires – let alone the giganto full-size rigs.

  • avatar
    mike1939

    So similar to the last model in looks the relative lack of sales performance should come as no surprise. To my eyes very boring and not preferable to wither Dodge or Ford offerings. If the new F-150 is a game changer (efficiency gains outweigh insurance costs) the GM light trucks are going to be in a world of hurt until they are refreshed, in 2017 at the earliest I would guess.

  • avatar
    86er

    I’m not sure what to infer from the source article. Were they implying that the 1999 model launch was equally bad?

  • avatar
    racer-esq.

    People can try to find flaws with the design, and that might be part of the issue. But the big issue is price.

    GM tried to take pricing to the next level. Partly just to see if it could and partly to make room for the mid-sizers. And failed.

    Interesting if the price-premium on full size pickups starts to fall apart just as they start making the bodies out of more costly aluminum.

    • 0 avatar
      Loser

      I agree 100%, it’s the price. The truck looks fine to me and I like the interior.

      • 0 avatar
        LALoser

        I wonder how Ford will market the aluminum upgrade? It isn’t something shiny or makes noise. Americans are used to seeing/feeling an improvement or upgrade.

        • 0 avatar
          hendo337

          I have a feeling that the 500-700lbs of weight loss will make for tremendous improvements in acceleration, braking, handling and the holiest of holies fuel economy. I can’t wait to check out the 2015 F150…I may swap my 2013 Super Duty 6.2L for one if the improvements are profound enough and the cargo/towing capacities are close enough.

    • 0 avatar
      Grunt

      When the new truck was initially launched they were trumpeting the fact that they “kept the price the same as last year’s models” yet they didn’t say they cut the dealer’s margin yet again as they have done for the past several years. Then within the course of about 3 months they jacked the price $2000 across the board and raised the price of the V-8 from $895 to $1095 over the V-6. As a sales manager at a Chevy store in a truck market you can imagine how well that shit went over. The rebates themselves are a complete clusterfuck with so many different loyalty/conquest/farm bureau/usaa/president’s day (or whtever the sale du jour is). Try explaining that to a customer. I am sorry you haven’t been a farm bureau member for more than 60 days so you don’t qualify for that. Oh no trade in? Sorry you don’t qualify for the extra $1500 in that total rebate because you aren’t trading anything in. Just give us a straight up cash on the hood for everyone deal and don’t be a tightass about it. We can sell this truck.

      • 0 avatar
        nrd515

        The games car companies, and car dealers play, and their sometimes very odd behavior just amazes me. I took my Challenger in for an oil change and an estimate on fixing some damage when I slid into a neighbor’s parked car due to my street being a solid sheet of wet ice last week. There is a recall on basically all auto trans 5.7 Challengers, Chargers, and 300′s to replace the timing chain which will fail, due to a badly designed tensioner. So I said to the service guy, “Well, I guess I should get the ball rolling on the timing chain thing..”. He says, “What thing is that?”. I say, “The recall to replace the timing chain in all automatic 5.7′s from 2009 to 2011?”, he looks like I’m speaking Klingon, and says, “I don’t know anything about that!”. Oh. Ok, maybe he doesn’t. But then a guy comes in with a 2010 Charger, walks up to the same guy, and says, “I’m here to drop off my car for the timing chain change!”. Without a 1/0 of a second delay, he says, “Oh yeah, let me get your loaner up here, Mr. XXXXX, and we’ll get you out of here. I’n still standing there, waiting to sign the form for the oil change! So I said, “I want to get the timing chain change that you don’t know anything about too!”. Apparently he had forgotten what he said to me, and he says, “Just one moment Mr. YYYYY, I will get you going as soon as I get his loaner up! I had to admit, I was totally confused at that point. He didn’t miss a beat, he starts typing stuff into the computer, and says, “We’ll call you when the parts come in!”. WTF??

  • avatar
    baja333

    It’s all about the price. These trucks as well as other new products GM has put out have significantly went up in price. Another example besides the trucks is the Cadillac CTS. While the trucks and CTS for example are fantastic vehicle’s, when customer’s come in and shop the new vehicle’s they are shocked at the increase in price and walk right back out. I work at a GM dealer and can attest to this first hand.

    I can say some of the insiders within GM know this but they are not in a position to do anything about it. I was recently at a meeting with a truck engineer on the new Colorado/Canyon vehicle and he was talking about how he always drives a HD truck but was shocked at the price of the new HD’s coming out.

    I think they have been reading their clippings in the paper too much. They need to provide a better vehicle, (which I think they are doing) while at the same time giving the customer a better price. I think they can do it.

  • avatar
    Volt 230

    If the Ford aluminum thing works out well, this may put the final nail in the coffin for these GM trucks.

  • avatar
    PRNDLOL

    The new GM trucks appear as if they were “Styled by Samsonite”.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    Generally speaking, completely lacking innovation, questionable design language (bland at the minimum) and WAY over-priced. Throw in Ram really getting their act together to bring on some more competition, and Ford utterly ou tmarketing GM.

    Yup – generally a recipe to land with a big fat thud.

    Well – at least the gloom and doom of the 2013 inventory didn’t come true – people snapped those up. Now inventory on the 2014′s…that’s a different story.

    2018 can’t come fast enough. The question now becomes, is GM as dependent on fullsize truck sales for global profits as Ford. If that’s a case, this moves from thud to crisis.

    • 0 avatar
      Erikstrawn

      GM’s global strategy doesn’t rely on America, but rather expansion into China and other markets. This will be a hiccup, but they’ll move on.

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        While Chinese unit volume may be increasing, it would be interesting to know where the majority of GM’s profits come from. The last I knew, GM’s product line in China didn’t involve what looked like high-profit vehicles.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    If GM’s marketing is bad for its trucks, the same can be said for the new Impala – to me, they’re grossly over-priced, since I see so few of them, and the TV ads really don’t tell you much about the car.

    In general, it seems GM is pricing itself out of the market. Same with Ford and Ram.

    Tundra! Front and center, perhaps?

    I like GM’s trucks and would buy a Chevy in a heartbeat if I actually NEEDED one. Standard cab, short bed, bright red, please. Add a sliding back window, too…

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      The ads are OK but few and far between. I saw one during the Olympics.

      The Impala is a car being sold to a small market, realistically it is competing with the 300, Taurus, and Avalon to name some of the major competitors. I think the downfall is the “narrowness” of the design. Regardless of the interior measurements the Epsilon platform needs a “widening” along with the lengthening it has already received to be a large car contender.

      I do like the character lines along the body side.

    • 0 avatar
      Firestorm 500

      This is 2014, not 1984.

      • 0 avatar
        Toad

        To some people it’s always 1984.

        Now get off my lawn!

        • 0 avatar
          PrincipalDan

          Why cause I think large sedans should be wide? Why else do they exist? If you are trying to persuade someone to step up from a Camry or a Malibu or a Fusion you have to give them a superior product. Since midsize sedans are starting to get greater and greater legroom at least give people premium width in a full size car.

          • 0 avatar
            KixStart

            Increasing the width increases the drag proportionately. Increasing the length does not have the same dramatic effect. If they widen it, fuel economy takes a hit.

    • 0 avatar
      Volt 230

      I recall when Chevy was the poor man’s Caddy, lots of room and power and not much money, how times have changed!

    • 0 avatar
      fincar1

      I wonder why people want the sliding back window on pickups. My 76 Cheyenne and 03 Silverado with solid rear windows are essentially as quiet or quieter inside than the Accords I’ve had, but people’s trucks I’ve ridden in that have the slider are really noisy in the cab at highway speeds.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        If that works for you, great!

        All my pickup trucks had a back window that could be opened, some of the old ones were opened for me by oversized cargo that broke them, and were never replaced afterwards.

        But since my brand new 1988 Silverado came with one from the factory, every truck I bought since then had one also.

        And they have come in very handy, like when I have very long pipes, tubing or slats that need to be brought home from Home Depot or Lowe’s. I just open up the back window and feed the stuff through the cab to the front window since I don’t have a cargo rack for the bed of my truck.

        But most of the time I keep the slider open about an inch so the vent and AC can blow through. It works for me.

  • avatar
    MrGreenMan

    I like the look on these new trucks, but that’s not a good thing for GM: I am not a big truck buyer. I think it looks like the late 80s/early 90s – which I thought was about the peak of appearance and utility for the Silverado. I’d of course want this at about 80% the size and scale, which is why it’s a real shame the Colorado doesn’t look like a mini-me version of the Silverado.

    Then again, I’m not a big truck buyer, and I’m not likely to be, so they’ve committed a cardinal sin if they’ve lost their repeat business in trying to entice new truck buyers.

  • avatar
    Tinn-Can

    Looks like a 16 year old kid just tacked on some e-bay headlights and pepboys chrome accents to a last gen truck… Plus the whole costs a lot more thing… Hopefully the door handles don’t fall off like the 09 silverado we have… and mirror switches, and door locks…

  • avatar
    Dan

    If conservative styling and looking like the old truck are the problem then why doesn’t Ford have it? Why didn’t the 07-13 GMT900 have it?

    The truck isn’t a world beater but it’s at least as close, arguably closer to the competition than GM’s trucks have been in the past. The sales problem begins and ends with uncompetitive pricing.

    Pricing that was made worse by GM believing their own green marketing hype and building too many with V6 motors that nobody really wanted.

  • avatar
    Firestorm 500

    V-6s are fine for minivans and mid-sized sedans. But for a truck that you’re using as a truck? V-8 all the way for me.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      I read a thread last night of a guy that blew 3 ecoboosts in 8,000 miles, he got rid of it after the 4th engine was put in, fords attitude “trucks with EB not made to tow” and their handling and timeliness was downright disgusting.

      And to top it off each engine replacement totaled $18,000.. Only $3k being labor. Being in Canada there is no lemon law for him.

      The people on that forum would immediately attack new owners complaining of bad fuel economy “it’s a truck what did you expect” well 14 mpg avg is worse than every modern V8. These people sound like they regret their decision but are scared of resale.

      • 0 avatar

        I read on a forum last night that bigfoot was seen in the southern Appalachians last week….

        The story doesn’t make sense from any perspective. First, Ecoboost is Fords best towing motor for the F150 and it is marketed as such. Second, lemon law or not, there is this thing called warranty, at his mileage he would still have been covered (Canada too). Thrid, and I was too lazy to do the conversion, but a 3.5 Ecoboost is on Ford Racing parts as a crate engine for under $10k. 14 mpg is lower than my customers are getting, but it is a turbo motor and like all motors, best economy comes after the first few thousand miles.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          My MKT is averaging 21.7 right now. I’ve also never gotten lower than 16 MPG with the 3.5EB in an F150, even towing.

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          Wouldn’t the 6.2 be fords best?

          I’ll post link when I get home

          Also his case was covered under warranty, 3 new engines worth.

          • 0 avatar

            Ecoboost 3.5 and 6.2 get the same max ratings (11,300 properly equipped), however, only Ecoboost offers this in 4×4, the 6.2 drops to 11,200. Source is the Ford eSourcebook 2014

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            So where is the advantage given on the ecoboost? It’s not like the 6.2 as an engine isn’t capable. I could take the i6 out of a trailblazer, put it in a dually, with an appropriate transmission, rear end and 5.xx gearing and tow 12k.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            @Hummer – Foolish behavior is all. If the 1st blown EB didn’t tell the guy what he needed to know… Some people just need drama.

            Commonsense above all. An occasional heavy tow would be fine for the Eco Boost, but constant hammering with up to 17,000 lbs combined will certainly destroy it, regardless of what marketing may imply. It’s got big ballz for little a little 3.5, but use the right tool for the job. If not, you’re asking for problems.

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            He blew the second motor on the trip leaving the dealer, how can that be his fault?

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            @Hummer – Whatever the case, he bought the wrong truck. And how do you blow and engine anyway? 2 or 3 times? He’s gotta be doing something stup!d. Too much weight? Too much WOT? Hard engine braking? All of the above? With that much HP/Tq, it’s easy to forget it’s just a little engine with little pieces in the bottom end, while doing the work of a medium duty, commercial truck. Something’s gotta give.

          • 0 avatar

            Ecoboost cost about $2500 less than the 6.2, better fuel mileage, and I’ll bet better insurance. While it doesn’t have a huge advantage on weight abilities, it is a great motor for towing and does have the highest 4×4 capacity. I haven’t had any customers with engine issues yet myself.

      • 0 avatar
        raph

        Sounds like their is more going on here than the person posting about their 3 blown ecoboosts is letting on.

        Three blown engines seems excessive and if they are “not made to tow” why didn’t the owner switch to a truck that would be more accommodating to thier driving style?

        • 0 avatar
          jim brewer

          Ford will give you an extended powertrain warranty for any of their F-150s for 7 yrs and 125K for about a thousand bucks. So I’m thinking the E-boost is pretty durable.

  • avatar
    Mandalorian

    One thing Chevy is missing is a lack of trim levels and luxurious touches.

    Take Ford, every other truck I see is a Platinum, Lariat or King Ranch model. The higher price over something like an XLT can be justified for luxurious touches.

    Chevy, not so much. The LTZ really isn’t all that special in name, style or features.

    • 0 avatar
      86er

      The Silverado has a High Country trim level now that’s over the LTZ.

      The Sierra still has the long-standing Denali trim.

      As Americans have an overwhelming preference for the Silverado, GM is finally addressing Ford’s (and somewhat Dodge’s) big lead in luxury trim levels. There is a fairly long lag in market adoption of new trim levels, as the Denali has been around for a while and finally starting selling like gangbusters in the last 4 or 5 years.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      I think what GM trucks are missing are more innovative approaches to under the hood power plants. GM could have done it. GM chose not to.

      Ford has the EB. Tundra has the magnificent all-aluminum 32-valve DOHC 5.7. Ram has the grunty and girthy 5.7 with cylinder management. GM has……? Nothing new. Nothing innovative. Same old pushrod tech with computer managed cylinder activation that doesn’t function well at low speeds.

      Imagine a Silverado or Sierra with a magnificent Tundra 5.7 under hood, managed by a state of the art engine management system like RAM’s. To be really innovative GM could put Honeywell’s Turbo on it to cover all bases.

      GM’s samo-samo approach in big trucks is evolutionary, not revolutionary. Ford, Tundra and RAM are all innovative in their own right. GM’s fundamentally unchanged.

      I owned an ’88 Silverado ExtCab LB 350 and I believe it was actually better than the 2014 model is in several ways. Maybe not as refined but more power, easier to work on, cheaper to maintain, with a lot less to go wrong.

      GM won’t attract new buyers like Ford, Tundra and RAM did; just the same loyal fan-club members predisposed to buy GM, no matter what. No wonder the F150 is the best selling vehicle in America.

  • avatar
    SixDucks

    They are good trucks, best drivetrains, chassis, and suspension in the business.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    Gotta love a truck story. The battle lines get drawn very quickly and the trenches are dug deep.

    There are multiple rasons why the 2014 GMC trucks are not selling well.
    1. Design on these trucks started around 2008. GMC was looking at aluminum body panels like Ford at that time.
    Does anyone remember what happened to GMC at that time?
    It is very difficult to design a new truck when one is bankrupt and begging for cash.
    2. This truck is a stop gap measure for the truck they actually wanted to release i.e. the 2018 should of been the 2014 truck.
    2. GMC has upped prices. Times are still hard and subprime/lengthy loans along with price drives sales.
    3. Pursuant to point 1, the Silverado looks like it should of been a follow up to the 1987 Chevy not the GMT900. That isn’t necissarily a bad thing but for me, the looks wore thin real quick. The Sierra looks better and is a logical evolution of the GMT900 Sierra.
    4. Sierra Professional Grade or Silverado Work Grade. The Silverado is a downrated truck with a lower level of trim as compared to the Sierra (let alone Ford or Ram). Chevy is the big seller in the USA and that is a mistake. There are Chevy guys who’d rather switch to Ford than drive a GMC.
    5. Engines – using the same engine displacements may be good for reassuring the “faithful” that the all new engines aren’t really all new but that has backfired. Buyers think it is just another warmed over SBC.
    6. Government Motors – self explanitory.
    7. Ford and Ram are taking risks in a traditionally conservative marketplace. Ford sells more V6 engines in the F150 than V8′s. I NEVER would of thought that was possible. Ram has a diesel. Most thought that would be highly unlikely too.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      Again I’ve been extremely outspoken for my dislike of the new trucks, but you have to give credit where credit is due.
      The new 6.2 is rated 1 mpg less than the ecoboost, with more power, and none of the fuel economy drops like a rock in turbo mess.

    • 0 avatar
      Toad

      Lou, that’s a well thought out analysis. The Chevy/GMC design is so conservative it is almost reactionary. Maybe GM is going after the “if it was good enough for my daddy it’s good enough for me” market.

  • avatar
    jpolicke

    It’s simple. We all know what RAM is subliminally suggesting with their, ahem, “Big Horn” and “Long Horn” model names. It’s time GM threw subtlety to the wind and came out with the “OMG Biggest Pecker You Ever Saw” trim.

    • 0 avatar
      86er

      Hey look at that, it took 52! comments before we made it to the point where ostensibly heterosexual men are taking a lurid interest in the phallic endowments of other ostensibly heterosexual men.

      The maturation process is slow, but inevitable.

      It’s like the Godwin’s Law of truck talk.

      (I know you were being facetious, just wanted to vent my spleen).

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I would add in addition to subliminal naming techniques it seems the OEMs also resort to who can build an Iowa class half ton truck and still keep it street legal. I’ll put up with all of the naming innuendo if I could get a newer V6 truck not much larger than my W-body not named Ranger.

      • 0 avatar
        jpolicke

        Hey, I didn’t name the things, and I’m more than ostensibly heterosexual. I just thought the names were hilarious.

        • 0 avatar
          86er

          My vitriol wasn’t directed at you per se, just wanting to nip that hackneyed, trite cliche in the bud.

          Your comment on its own merits was funny, especially because it contained the word “peck3r” and that’s always funny.

          If truth be told, I got things started when I told “Onus” that his F250 was “bigger where it counts”, which could be construed as a double entendre.

  • avatar
    raresleeper

    Launch?

    What launch? The Silverado?

    When did this happen?

    Lol

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    @Lou BC–The Silverado looks fine overall, I think the biggest problem is the increase in pricing and Ford announcing the new 2015 aluminum body F-150. Another thing is sales of vehicles are slowing down. GM waited a long time to release the new Silverado/Sierra.

  • avatar
    dabossinne

    Development on these new GM trucks — and they are actually very nice trucks — started, what, 4 or 5 years ago? That would have been right about the timeframe GM became “Gubmint Motors.” No doubt they were not willing to risk anything but the most modest evolutionary change to their bread and butter line of trucks. So, they didn’t, and now they’re paying for it. Wonder what’ll happen when all new “Aluma-150″ comes out this fall…?

  • avatar
    mvlbr

    No surprise considering this thing was probably designed by the same team that used to design early squared Volvos.

  • avatar
    jaje

    I defected from full size pickups years ago for one reason. Terrible fuel economy, and too big to use other than in wide open spaces (love making those 2 – 10 point turns to park it in most lots). GM has done little to change this image compared to Ford (ecoboost and lighter materials) or Dodge (first light duty diesel sold in a 1/2 ton since the early 90′s). Unfortunately also the compact truck has simply become too expensive and has little innovation. So tossed out the idea of a pickup and settled on a mid size suv with a diesel engine – ’07 Jeep Grand Cherokee. It cost as much as a full boat crew cab pickup but I get significantly better mpg 20 city and 26 highway, it has the same exterior dimensions as a mid size sedan so it’s easy to drive and park, and tows my 6k lb enclosed trailer easily and gets excellent mpg to boot when doing so (get 17 mpg towing it rather than 8-9 mpg with the v8 pickups). In fact just put down money for the new ecodiesel and waiting for it to be built.

    • 0 avatar
      jpolicke

      You could get a JGC with a diesel back in ’07? In the US?

      • 0 avatar
        jaje

        Yes 2007 through 2008.5 in US and Canada they sold a Grand Cherokee with the 3.0 CRD from Mercedes Benz. They sold this engine in the Jeep as well as the Chrysler 300 in Europe as well. This is the same engine as in the Sprinter and ML350 of those years. They stopped selling it b/c of EPA Tier II Bin 5 emissions and the end of Daimler’s ownership in Chrysler. They also sold a Liberty CRD here as well for many years. This made the Jeeps some of the most fuel efficient SUVs on the road (as good or better than the CUVs like the Rav4 and even matching Escape Hybrid highway MPG) but with a real 4wd system.

  • avatar
    mfgreen40

    alsorl——” same old engines ” It is my understanding there is not one interchangable part between the old and new engine.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      GM hasn’t really done much to talk this point up. The displacements stayed the same so many people just assume: “Oh same old same old.”

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @mfgreen40 – “same old engines” – they are new but the optics are poor.
      The former head of Greenpeace once said that it dopesn’t matter whether or not something is true, what matters is people thinking it is true.
      People think that the new GMC’s are overpriced GMT900′s with a few new creases in the sheat metal.

  • avatar
    Pch101

    The price point at launch was too high.

    A temporary shortage of V8s compromised the launch — the six-cylinders are not as popular.

    The restyling wasn’t dramatic enough to communicate to the market that this is a new model. (Conservativism isn’t the problem per se; it’s the lack of freshness that creates the issue.)

    Perhaps most important of all, the Ram provides much tougher competition than it used to. This used to be a contest between Ford and the GM twins, but Chrysler is now fielding a highly competitive alternative that is taking share, most of which is coming from GM.

    • 0 avatar
      Carlson Fan

      As fullsize GM truck guy I agree with all your points. Especially the last one. Ram is giving both Ford & GM some real competition. For the first time in a long time they have a truck that is as good or better than what Ford or GM offers.

      • 0 avatar
        bomberpete

        Agreed.

        Even as Dodge has gotten better over the last 20 years, GM felt confident it could safely slide into 2nd with Chevy/GMC trucks.

        It’s becoming a different story with the meh reaction to their 2014 models (or at least the pricing), the better one for Dodge, and Ford’s current heavy discounting. Now GM is getting squeezed at both ends, and the mid-size trucks aren’t even out yet.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @Pch101 – not really. GMC upped the price a short time after the launch.
      The shortage of V8′s hurt them too.
      Not wise.
      Not well planned.

      Ford had gone on record saying that they were in a financially stable position and were going to play the discount game to keep product moving while they waited for the 2015 model to hit the lots.
      GMC should of paid attention to that rather obvious warning shot fired accross their bow.

      Many do not see GMC as a competitor to Ford. Ram wins that award. GMC may be #2 in sales in the USA but Ram is just as big an influence on the truck market as Ford is. GMC is turning into the Tundra as far as design influence goes.

    • 0 avatar
      geeber

      I definitely agree about the styling. The first few times I saw these trucks on the road I had to look twice to make sure it was the 2014 model as opposed to an earlier one.

      • 0 avatar
        Pch101

        I presume that GM entered this assuming that Ford was their competition. They were not prepared for Chrysler coming straight for them and scoring a blow.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @Pch101 – I suspect that GMC was too focused on Ford and made the mistake of believing that Fiat would make a mess out of Chrysler.
          Typical GMC. They want #1 in sales and didn’t heed the warning on the mirror – “Objects are closer than they appear”.

          Ram has been #2 in truck sales in Canada for a long time. Interestingly enough, the Sierra is #3 with the Silverado #4.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      GM talked about planning the rollout for many, many months on their S&P calls prior to launch (there would be a long shutdown, lots of ’12-13 inventory buildup that shouldn’t excite people because it’e necessary, we’re planing carefully for this). Not having the right engines to ensure rapid sales after all that buildup is fairly well inexcusable.

  • avatar
    charlie986532

    I would buy a retro 1970 Chevy truck with a small diesel engine without question. Best looking truck they ever made. I don’t like this one, Ford is actually beating GM in style and innovation. RAM 1500 is going in a great direction with the diesel, torque and fuel economy fits a truck.

  • avatar
    Potemkin

    Bought GM

  • avatar
    ponchoman49

    I love all the ignorance piled on this truck. Yet it remains as the 2nd best selling vehicle in America, does not share one exterior panel with the previous truck, has a totally new and much improved interior with greater refinement, 3 ground up brand new engines that only share liter size with there predecessors, have several clever features not found on most competitors like the the rear step bumper and the weighted rear door. Add in a better warranty than F-150, better mileage than all competitors, greater interior room on extended cab and 4 door models than before and a very generous std equipment level. It’s also funny how the F-150 has had the same basic look since 2004 and the Ram which has looked very similar since even before that with it’s obnoxious big rig look always seem to get a free pass along with the all new Tundra which re-uses doors, windows, fenders, power trains etc but not a word is said here. But keep on posting comical comments guys as it’s really amusing to read!

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      Well that’s nice and all, and ima let you finish, but your missing two very big points,
      1. they jacked up the price.
      2. It’s a freggin truck, why do I have to get an LCD display among other stupid mess.

      I do agree on the ford design though, its not easy to tell the difference between an 04 and 12.

    • 0 avatar
      84Cressida

      Seeing how you pile ignorance on the Camry and that’s the best selling car in America, well tough titty.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      @Ponchoman49 – I’m sure GM will more thoroughly test market their next generation trucks.

      Yes these new twins are great. No doubt about it. And GM went to great lengths to still be #2. GM could have done nothing but a refresh and still been #2. Using the same old doors, window, etc, would’ve been fine. There’s no doubt GM is now scrambling to redesign all-new twins for 2018. Wouldn’t you say that’s an extremely short generation for trucks?

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @ponchoman49 – the only ignorance piled on this truck or maybe the better word is arrogance would be from GMC.

        Ford and Ram have taken big risks in the conservative truck market and it is paying off. GMC went all Toyota and was way too conservative for their own good.

        They were restrained by bankruptcy and it shows.

  • avatar
    bomberpete

    This isn’t a good situation for GM and agree they were too timid here. Still, they do have a reputation for winning the “long game” when it comes to bread-and-butter products, even if it sacrifices some short-term profits. It’s not a question of “if” GM will launch incentives and revised, lower pricing, it’s “when.”

    Once that happens, it won’t be sunshine and roses for GM. They clearly misread the market. But to me, the rush to a “fail” judgement against GM’s most important segment seems rooted in the belief that Dodge and Ford are being flawless. I don’t buy that, and see some things happening:

    - That the customer experience with “stolen” Dodge buyers is less-than-great. Is anyone here willing to bet with certainty that there will be new RAM 1500 customers, both diesel and gasoline, who WON’T have product issues?

    - Same with Ford. Will the alum F-150 have “issues?” Like DeadWeight, I’d bet on it. Of course there will be plenty of “gotta have it” alum F-150 buyers who will pay top sticker to be first on their block. But after they’ve got theirs, what? The field becomes a little more level.

    - Ford pricing is equally too ambitious. What will be the reaction of most buyers when a modestly equipped Ecoboost F-150 4×4 comes in at $45K-plus? Especially in its first year, in this economy, and given Ford’s recent track record with new products? Ford may get the same karmic bitch-shock that GM is feeling now.

    - Toyota tries again with an original Lexus pricing strategy for Tundra and gets it right. A long shot, but they don’t quit.

    That being said, the best thing GM can do to salvage the situation is take a page from Honda with the 2012 Civic — jury-rig a more compelling design fix ASAP and make it happen! Can they do it? You tell me, B&B.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @bomberpete – Ford is sending out messages that they are trying to fix trouble spots. The story about Blackberry and Ford comes to mind.

      There may be value in taking the conservative route and regaining all of those Prodigal Son’s who left the GMC fold for Sodom and Gomorrah.

      With that being said, I doubt it since Ford sells more V6′s than V8′s and they are still gaining market share.Ford sells almost double the HD’s that GMC does and that is after the 6.0 and 6.4 diesel fiasco.

      4 years until 2018 tells me that GMC will not be able to capitalize on any mistakes made by Ford or Ram. The next gen 2018 GMC siblings are supposed to be aluminum bodied.

      If Ford f^cks up and has multiple problems with aluminum that will not help GM when they release their version of an aluminum truck.

      Ram has a tougher path since they have traditionally had a bad rap for reliability.

      • 0 avatar
        bomberpete

        @Lou_BC — Thanks for your comments.

        I’m hopeful about Ford. Really, I am. But this is one very ambitious launch and it has to go Just So. The stakes are quite high, especially in light of their recent problems. This one rides as much on Mark Fields as Big Al, so I hope that the U.S. team is really up to the task.

        Agree completely with you about Dodge. As for GM capitalizing on the problems of others, perhaps it’s ridiculous but not out of the realm of possible.

        From your comments, I’m guessing you don’t thing GM can/will get a competitive quick fix to market before 2018?

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          bomberpete,

          I think the novelty (I mean this in a good way) of an aluminum truck is likely to help Ford. It’s a quantum leap ahead in a market not known for frequent quantum leaps. I think people will be interested in the potential and open to buying in.

          • 0 avatar
            bomberpete

            I agree that Ford has got 2015 covered over its competitors with the F-150. In all likelihood, they’ll continue to spew out P/U profits well beyond that.

            But Ford is taking a great risk with this move too. If buyers reject the product because of glitches and problems, GM could present itself as Old Faithful and win back buyers.

            Or not. Suddenly my crystal ball is pretty hazy.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          @bomberpete – not much they can do in relation to the body. Everyone is talking diesel but that would not be a quick release.
          They could go the twin turbo V6 route since the Cadillac has one and it was rumoured in the past that GMC would put it in the pickup.
          Upgraded interiors, bling, and limited Edition packages can quickly and easily be cobbled together to keep the “oohhh ahh shinyyyyy” crowd happy.
          A Corvette engine could be placed under the hood and a “SS” package could be quickly put together. CHevy does not have a halo vehicle like the Ford Raptor or Ram Power Wagon.
          The Colorado/Canyon twins will be GMC’s shot at redemption. It looks like they have botched that release too since a diesel won’t be offered the first year they roll out.

          • 0 avatar
            jayzwhiterabbit

            Yes, the Canyon/Colorado could bring some success to the divisions, or GM could price them out of the marketplace once again. I went to look at them when they first came out a few years ago, and you could buy a full-size with similar options for equal or less money in many instances. It was madness.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      “Still, they do have a reputation for winning the “long game” when it comes to bread-and-butter products, even if it sacrifices some short-term profits.”

      Considering they went bankrupt, it’s hard to see how they could earn a reputation for winning the “long game.”

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        The Oldsmobile Cutlas Supreme will be retaking its sales crown from the Toyota Camry any time now.

        • 0 avatar
          bomberpete

          LOL! “The good stuff is just around the corner.”

          I get the joke, but do you really think GM is now dead-in-the-water in the pickup market?

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            I do not think GMC is dead in the water. Loyalty runs deep in the truck market but they could loose more market share. That is problematic because the odds of someone coming back if they are happy with Ford or Ram are slim to none.

      • 0 avatar
        bomberpete

        Kixstart – Two examples, however unglamorous, of GM’s “long game:”

        Even as their North American car business went into near-or-total-collapse, the trucks and fleet business propped up the losses. So even as Ford grabbed the top-selling crown every year since ’76, GM plugged away and sold to buyers who wouldn’t buy Ford, were loyal to GM, got the better deal there, or didn’t care about the newest/better/best/most stylish. GM always waited too long between pickup redesigns and each had teeming problems. Still, they eventually became the only thing the old GM had that printed money.

        The same was true of GM’s mid-sized car business, which they owned for over 20 years. There’s a reason the A-body Buick Century and Olds Ciera sold until 1997. Fleets and old people bought them, and they made a tidy profit on the long-paid-for tooling. That’s what kept them going even as they lost money of all those N-, W- and other cars their dealers struggled to sell at retail.

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          I’m not sure I understand you, these are examples of GM “winning” the long game?

          An assertion that trucks were profitable for GM is really observing that trucks were profitable for everybody and GM managed not to screw that up.

          GM’s midsize car business is on the rocks. The Malibu is, what? In sixth place?

          I mean, seriously, I’m not trying to be obnoxious here but I’m not seeing these as wins in the long game. If you’d like to elaborate, I will carefully read what you write.

          • 0 avatar
            bomberpete

            My bad — I can see I wasn’t clear enough in what I wrote.

            My point is what you say — that GM makes profits on trucks that are profitable everyone, simply by not screwing it up.

            They used to do the same thing with big and mid-sized cars. Eventually, they’d make a profit from them even if the launch was a mess. But that’s ancient history – we’ve moved on to current events. Trucks and niche vehicles are it for GM.

  • avatar
    dave-the-rave

    Better advertising by Ford as well. Those Dennis Leary voiced-over spots for the F150 exude leadership, machismo and serious copy points relating to MPG, torque and towing. (Dodge sells MPG as well). Meanwhile, GM uses these emotional ‘A man and his truck’ stories, without any specs that I can recall; it seems like they’re only going to reinforce the dyed-in-the-wool Chevy guys out there, not gain any conquests. Ford offers lots of reasons to buy a Ford, whether you already own one or not.

  • avatar
    bomberpete

    [inevitable bilious comments from Peter \"Autoextremist\" DeLorenzo]

    “Instead of listening to the True Believers — and trust me, because I know and you don’t, they really do still exist within GM — ‘Lieutenant Dan’ Akerson committed a despicable final act to his Reign of Error.

    “By cutting corners, ignoring more innovative designs and discounting the input of GM’s best product planners, Lt. Dan proved where his real priorities were all along. Instead, he took the faulty, number-driven drivel of what Bank of America and JP Morgan Chase and his Carlyle buddies thought represented the best cashout.

    “Akerson’s sychopantic minions were no help either. As usual, they fearfully drank the Boss’s Kool Aid while the worst possible thing happened. No sir, Lt. Dan met no resistance as he arrogantly bet ‘The Franchise’ — and make no mistake, that’s what the Silverado/Sierra are — on a lame redesign that buyers are greeting with a giant snooze.

    “Worse yet, it can’t bring confidence to anyone who really knows this industry that Mary ‘I’m Just Here to Take Notes’ Barra is left to sift through this steaming pile of Not Good, flutter her eyelashes and flail about uselessly.”

  • avatar
    KixStart

    GM stock price peaked in mid-December and has been moving lower relative to broader market indices since.

    I’d say that the smart money may be looking at truck sales and thinking bad news but… TM and F are not doing all that well, either.

  • avatar
    stingray65

    Some like the conservative styling, while others think more should have been done to make them look different than previous generations. What I don’t understand is why GM doesn’t use their two brands to give buyers both. Pick GMC to be conservative and use Chevy for something really new (or vice-versa). I always thought that rather than create a whole new brand and dealer network, GM should have made Hummers as GMCs to differentiate them from Chevy – they could do the same today or even do more such as use one brand to test aluminum construction and keep the other one on steel. Stupid to have two brands and differentiate them purely on grill and trim differences.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @stingray65 – if you went back far enough, GMC and Chevy were decidely different. The ’70′s – 90′s ushered in the era of grill/badge engineering at its finest.

      We are seeing a divergent path with GMC. The Silverado and Sierra have different bodies, grills, and bumpers. The interiors are superior in the Sierra across the line. Drivetrains are the same and that is basically the only common element.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    It seems GM only improved against it’s own pickups.

    This was even the case with the global Colorado. It wasn’t as good a product as its main rivals.

    I do think this comes down to the cash it had available. GM didn’t have adequate resources to invest into a better truck.

    I do think with the changes to CAFE, GM is also hedging it’s bets between an aluminium full size and what will be a cheaper midsize pickup.

    As for the cost of pickups, well GM might be charging a truer value of it’s product. What caused the Big 3 to stumble previously?

  • avatar
    Atum

    No discounting on the SS? If Chevy needs to discount anything, it’s those.

  • avatar

    can someone tell me which month isn’t truck month?

    “Work or Play, It’s Your Chevrolet”.

  • avatar

    It always surprises me how pricey these big trucks are. Nearly luxury car price for a framed farm vehicle that daily drives like crap. Barely ever see anyone carrying anything in the back esp. on newish ones, even down at the home depot.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @agenthex – trucks used to be exempt from the same safety and emission standards that cars were subject to. That helped keep prices down.
      Trucks are the biggest profit items for the Big 2 + FCA. Competitiveness forcing frequent upgrades along with tightening emissions/mpg/safety rules drive up price.

      Most 1/2 ton trucks are SUV’s with a sundeck. Crew cab trucks, especially from Ram can carry passengers or a load but not together without exceeding manufacturer specs. A fully loaded Ram Ecodiesel tested by one of the truck magazines had a 490 lb cargo/passenger capacity when the truck was weighed and compared to the door tag.

      • 0 avatar

        So you’re saying that regulatory leniency and margins created an opportunity for dependency and an ironic sort of inverted ruinous competition. That’s pretty interesting.

        • 0 avatar
          VCplayer

          I think the underrated appeal of a truck is just how roomy they are inside. Half-ton pickups have really become the successors of the full-size cars of previous decades. You can sprawl out, sink in to the seat, and feel peacefully isolated from the nonsense going on outside of your vehicle.

          Not my cup of tea to drive, but I’d rather spend a road trip in the backseat of a crew cab than almost any other vehicle.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    @agenthex – umm. Yes. Things sound so much better in lawyer speak.

    Shifts in regulations and protectionism pushed the Detroit auto industry towards large SUV’s. That started in the ’70s when cars were forced to meet tougher emissions and anything classified as a truck were subject to easier rules. That also applied to safety standards.

    The Big 3 chose to focus on profitable SUV’s. They basically let the Japanese have the car market. The advent of the Extended cab p/u opened the door wide open to pickups as family passenger vehicles.
    Tariffs helped limit competition from the Japanese.

    CAFE rules are footprint based so there is a built-in advantage for making full sized pickups. Regular cab small trucks are already being killed by Toyota since they tend to be the domain of low dollar customers and must meet more strict rules.The next gen Colorado/Canyon do not have a reg cab option. Some have said that full sized reg cab 1/2 tons are also at risk because short-box versions fall into the “small” truck emissions category.

    Current pickups have gotten “high tec” relative to the truck market. We now have active aerodynamics, self adjustable suspension, 8 speed transmissions and soon 9-10 speed transmissions. Engines have gotten more sophisticated and the leather interiors of most trucks rival that of luxury cars.

    It all costs money.

    Gone are the days of a vinyl bench seat, 3 on the tree and a ride rough enough to shake the fillings out of your teeth.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      @Lou – The Japanese chose to focus on smaller cars and basically surrendered the large SUV and truck market to the Detroit 3 OEMs. This has nothing to do with protectionism or tariffs or regulations or conspiracy. Everything is equal, all the way around. The Tundra, Titan, Frontier, Tacoma, and assorted, related SUV are just as “protected” as any D3 truck. Mitsubishi, Mazda, Isuzu and other small trucks, now gone, were also just as protected (and as exempt) as anything from the D3.

      The Japanese freely chose the high road and the D3 took the low road. The Japanese banked on high fuel prices and the D3 banked on low fuel prices. Just 2 different ways of approaching the American market. The Japanese (and now Kia/Hyundai) are great at what they do best. The D3 (or 2.5) are great at what they do best. What’s the big deal? But you gotta love how these foreigners from around the world can’t imagine the American full-size truck/SUV markets can possibly occur naturally without lots of conspiracy, tariffs, and other protectionist measures.

      Wives tales die hard…

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @DenverMike – there is plenty of scholarly articles pointing out the effects of tariffs on everything from SUV’s, mini-vans, and pickups.
        I’m not about to waste my time with a re-hash of this debate with you. Anyone with a neutral mind and a semblance of higher education can read them and comprehend them.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          @Lou_BC,

          >Tariffs helped limit competition from the Japanese<

          Just being scholarly with a higher education doesn't mean a writer knows all about everything and can't fall victim to popular belief. They probably also believe the world is less than 10,000 years old.

          Having commonsense doesn't always go hand in hand with a million dollar education. The 2 aren't mutually exclusive. 'Auto talk' is a foreign language to most at Ivy league institutions anyways.

          But it didn't take long, about the early '80s, for Japanese OEMs to build cars and trucks in America and thereby protected by those heinous US imposed tariffs, etc. US tariffs don't make distinctions about race, religion etc. The Japanese were free to build and sell what ever their hearts desired with zero penalties the D3 OEMs didn't also incur.

          So what exactly are you talking about when you say: "Tariffs helped limit competition from the Japanese."???

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          Yes, I can read “studies” from the Cato Institute that make the sort of claims that a libertarian activist group could be expected to make, irrespective of the actual facts.

          Here’s the reality: for years, the chicken tax could be avoided by shipping trucks in cab-chassis form and bolting the beds on after they had landed in the US. Everyone did this except for Subaru, which bolted seats into the bed of the BRAT because it was based on a car chassis, which prevented them from using that loophole.

          After that loophole was closed, the producers all shifted production to the US so that there was no tariff. Those automakers continued to sell trucks in the US.

          The impact of tariffs varies upon a variety of inputs. The US is a large enough market that suppliers will find cheaper workarounds.

          Despite all of this, the US still pays some of lowest car prices in the developed world. That corresponds to how competitive the market is — the more competition that there is, the more pressure that there is to push down prices in order to beat ones rivals.

          There was one genuine victim of the chicken tax: the pickup version of the VW bus. That was the intended target (and it was allowed under trade rules because it was a retaliatory measure for tariff increases that had been initiated by the Germans and that had targeted the US.)

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            @Pch101 and your genetic clone DiM,
            WFT? Are you guys for real.

            Pch101, you really do surprise me with some of your logic. Talk about limiting your minds due to an American Exceptionalist dream.

            Are you guys creationist?

  • avatar
    FJ60LandCruiser

    There’s nothing groundbreaking in terms of engine choices, exterior, or interior design.

    I have owned several GM products and there’s no “night and day” between the previous gen and the current models, they just look a bit different but there’s no significant improvement.

    The Work Truck grade vehicle I drove had the same plasticky interior my 2500 HD did, cheap plastics, and poor interior dash panel fit.

    I may still get one of the 2500′s as my needs change and I need to tow and haul more, but they’ll have to be out for a few months/years so that I can get a good fleet deal on one.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    @Big Al from Oz – admitting to how tariffs have shaped the auto industry and the marketplace would mean admitting to the vulnerability of the USA auto industry and admitting to the fallibility of one’s country.

    @DiM – common sense as defined by paradigm that you exist within.

  • avatar
    Lou_BC

    @Pch101 – I didn’t know that all of my sources were funded by the Koch brothers.
    American University Law Review isn’t CATO.

    Is the WTO also under CATO?

    How about the Office of the Foreign Secretary, Commission on Engineering and Technical Systems, National Research Council?

    Libertarianism must be tearing apart the very foundation that built the USA.

    • 0 avatar
      Pch101

      While I see that you’re intent on restating your same soundbites, the actual facts indicate that your soundbites are wrong.

      The chicken tax isn’t much of a tax because virtually nobody has to pay it. It shouldn’t be very difficult to grasp what that means, but ideologues apparently have problems with it.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @Pch101 – on the subject of ideologues…………

        I am open to looking at the massive library of information supporting your point of view.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          I’ve already explained to you how the tariffs were avoided. That’s simply a fact — there have been loopholes used to avoid the tariffs.

          Generally, tariffs are accompanied by higher prices. Yet the US has lower vehicle prices than other developed countries. When the price points don’t support the claims, then that would suggest that the claims are wrong.

          Then, we can look at the inventory. As it turns out, Americans have preferences for a particular type of truck that isn’t built outside of North America. It shoudn’t be hard to understand that we can’t import goods that don’t exist.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      @Lou_BC – It’s not possible for US tariffs to shape anything when they don’t even apply. Stop with all the wive’s tales and get this through your head. Kind of impossible for tariffs to shape a market even when they do apply.

      It’s not tariffs that shape the American market, and that’s always been the case. That’s the job of American consumers and that includes you. Tell us again about your fully loaded F-150 Lariat crew cab 4X4…

      So you continuously try to separate Japanese (based) OEMs from US D3 OEMs, historically, as if they fell victim to US tariffs. Japanese OEMs became totally exempt from US tariffs once they started building cars and trucks in America. That was early ’80s.

      But the Japanese OEMs continued (wisely) to build smaller vehicles which they also sell (most of them) back in Japan and around the world. That’s the way it works (for them), and US tariffs have had zero to do with what Japanese OEMs choose to build. Japanese OEMs are less likely to build big ‘American exclusive’ vehicles that only sell here. But they’re free to do so if they wish. And they do build a relatively small number of them. The Tundra, Titan and their related, shared platform SUVs, are American exclusives with limited sales success.

      The only “risk” to the US (D3 or 2.5) auto industry would be a tremendous surge in gas prices. Perhaps even that wouldn’t hurt sales of full-size trucks and SUVs much.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @DenverMike – as posted to Pch101, I’m looking forward to reading the volumes of information supporting your viewpoint.

        Anecdotal evidence only counts when you tell me your willie is small.

        That, I will take on your word.

        • 0 avatar
          DenverMike

          @Lou_BC – You’ve got nothing but talking points and wives tales. You can’t even back any of it up with any kind of logical argument. Or ANY argument.. You’ve got absolute zero.

          So how can I show data that refutes something that doesn’t even exist??? It’s like looking for documents that prove Big Foot isn’t real…

          But at the same time, you cannot deny US tariffs never apply to Japanese cars built in America. Which means most Japanese cars and trucks since the early ’80s. Except luxury and or expensive SUVs and sports cars. What’s “anecdotal” about this?

          You cannot even come close to proving tariffs shape the American auto industry, but if tariffs don’t even apply, what the heck are you trolling about???????????

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al from Oz

      @Lou_BC
      In a decreasing order are the factors that make up a vehicle market.

      1st. Economic factors. Essentially if you ain’t got the money you ain’t driving………….anything.

      2nd. Regulatory/protectionism. This influence a market by availability of vehicles that have a favourable bias in their sales ie, chicken tax.

      3rd. Environment/Infrastructure. You need infrastructure to support the vehicles you operate, ie Australia, Canada and US have an extensive road system that can support large vehicles. European/Asian road systems can’t. Go to a developing nation with few vehicles and a road system worse than Europe can still support a large vehicle. This is due to the small number of vehicles.

      The above three reason are the most important factors in creating a car/vehicle culture. Pickups became popular in the 50s and 60s because they generally attracted less tax.

      If it wasn’t for the chicken tax the US vehicle market would be different today.

      I suppose Pch101 and DiM don’t think CAFE has any influence of the US vehicle market either.


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