You know the world is a bit upside-down when master wordsmith Jack Baruth spins a web so tight in favor of the EPA and CARB that even the Best and Brightest can’t see through it.
Jack makes a valid point today: light-duty trucks, especially those of the diesel variety, are often driven by people who don’t need the capability that those trucks provide. It’s those diesel pickups that spew tons of particulates and NOx into the atmosphere, both of which are harmful to human health. Goodbye, he says to the light-duty diesel truck, before we turn into Europe. Turbo-fed gasoline engines offer just as much torque as their diesel-powered brethren, he exclaims. There’s no need to buy an $80,000 phallus extender. What do you think of this twin-turbo V6 Raptor?
However, Mr. Baruth stopped just short of saying recreational use of light-duty diesel trucks should be outright banned, instead offering up a solution that’s analogous to gun control.
After one week with a 2016 Ford F-150 XLT SuperCrew 2.7-liter EcoBoost, I’m convinced that this small turbocharged V6 engine is the pick of the current F-150 range.
Stunning acceleration, a positive working relationship with the F-150’s six-speed automatic, minor capability cutbacks, and a lower price tag combine to make the 2.7-liter completely worthy of full-size pickup truck duty, difficult though it may be for owners of 6.8-liter V10-powered Ford Super Dutys to believe.
But based on our week-long experiences with each F-150 EcoBoost engine, fuel economy hardly plays into the 2.7-litre’s favorable equation. (Read More…)
Competition improves the breed?
In order to tighten its grasp on the American midsize truck market, the Toyota Tacoma was thoroughly refreshed for model year 2016, a necessary development following the arrival – finally – of all-new competition at the end of 2014.
Evidently, Toyota did not need to debut an all-new pickup truck in order to fend off new General Motors challengers and keep its hold on a segment Toyota has led since 2005.
Want proof? Nearly half the non-full-size pickup trucks sold in the United States in the first two months of 2016 were Toyotas. (Read More…)
In November 2015, for the first time since March, Ford’s F-Series outsold the combined efforts of General Motors’ full-size truck twins in the United States.
November’s results won’t change the fact that 2015 will go down as the first year since 2009 that GM’s Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra will outsell their chief rival on a calendar year basis. Through the first eleven months of 2015, GM has sold 734,253 full-size pickup trucks, 39,110 more than the F-Series’ 695,143-unit total. (Read More…)
Not since 2009 has General Motors ended a calendar year with more total pickup truck sales than Ford. Moreover, not since 2009 have General Motors’ full-size pickup trucks, combined, outsold the Ford F-Series.
As GM’s current generation of pickup trucks overcame their slow start and GM added midsize pickup trucks to their fleet – and as Ford entered a transition phase between old F-150 and new aluminum-bodied F-150s – 2014’s results were close. Yet even in those circumstances, Ford Motor Company sold 1,000 more pickup trucks than General Motors in the United States last year.
2015 is very, very different. As Ford gradually ramped up F-150 availability for much of the year and as the clear-out of remaining last-gen models ended, total F-Series sales slid 2.4 percent through the first half of this year. Meanwhile, GM’s full-size twins are stealing market share, not just from the F-Series, but from the Ram P/U range, as well. (Read More…)
Last year, I crossed the United States from Coast to Coast — New York to LA — in a Ram 1500 Tradesman. You can follow last year’s coverage here. This year we embark on another crossing, this time from North to South, albeit starting a little further North than you might expect.
I’ll hop in a Ram 2500 Tradesman 4×4 in Seattle eventually, but for now, as the area I’ll travel through before Seattle has only an intermittent road network, it will be a mix of planes, rental cars and ferries. (Read More…)
What if an automobile manufacturer could develop a new product, bring it to market, never substantially update the product, and continue to sell that product at a similar pace year after year? That would be impressive. But Ford could not manage to execute that four-pronged action with the Ranger.
Yes, Ford originally developed a Ranger, brought the Ranger to the North American market, and didn’t bother to truly update the Ranger. The consistent sales pace aspect? Nope, didn’t happen.
U.S. Ranger sales declined in 11 consecutive years at the end of its tenure, from 2000 to 2010. The 28-percent year-over-year increase to 70,832 units in 2011 occurred as Ford cleared out the final Rangers at ridiculously low prices and buyers of small trucks who wanted a genuinely small truck picked up the Rangers that remained. (Read More…)
In each of the last 28 months, the Toyota Tacoma has been America’s fifth-best-selling pickup truck nameplate.
One might imagine, however, that its ability to succeed in its own sub-category of small/midsize trucks would have weakened over the last ten months. With the introduction of new midsize pickup trucks from General Motors, the best-selling manufacturer of pickup trucks in America, the number of Tacoma competitors increased from one, the Nissan Frontier, to three. (Read More…)
General Motors reported 86,051 U.S. pickup truck sales in July 2015, the highest figure for a seventh month of the year since 2006, GM says.
It does not appear as though the advent of new midsize GM trucks – Colorado and Canyon – have had any measurably negative impact on their full-size siblings. Combined, the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra outsold the class-leading Ford F-Series by 9,900 copies in July. They lead the F-Series by more than 29,000 units heading into August. (Read More…)
U.S. sales of pickup trucks increased 10% through the first six months of 2015, a gain of more than 107,000 units over the span of 2015’s first-half.
Ford’s F-Series continues to be the category’s top seller, but F-Series volume has decreased in each of the last five months. Second-quarter sales slid 6.5%. As Ford properly equips its dealers with truck inventory and as the automaker figures out precisely how to price the new range of F-150s, we can expect to see F-Series numbers stabilize.
In the meantime, GM’s full-size twins have taken full advantage of the F-Series’ slide. (Read More…)