Tag: Trucks

By on January 28, 2016

2016 NAIAS Ford Stand

Ford announced Thursday that it had earned a record pre-tax profit of $10.8 billion for 2015 — including $2 billion in the fourth quarter — bolstered by pickup sales in the U.S. and strong growth in China.

The record-setting year for the automaker wasn’t much of a surprise — second- and third-quarter results set records along the way — but Ford’s ability to finally turn a profit in Europe may be the most unexpected news. The automaker had lost money in Europe since 2011.

Latin America, notably Brazil, will continue to be a sore spot for Ford and other automakers. Ford said Thursday it expects to lose more money there in 2016 than the $832 million it lost there in 2015.

(Read More…)

By on December 29, 2015

2016 Chevrolet Colorado Diesel

After delaying its Chevrolet Colorado/GMC Canyon diesel trucks for a “final validation” issue, General Motors said Tuesday that the trucks would be on their way to dealers.

“The highly anticipated 2016 GMC Canyon diesel has begun shipping to dealers. We look forward to getting these trucks in the hands of our customers and appreciate their patience,” GMC spokeswoman Kelly Wysocki said in a statement.

Earlier this month we reported that people who ordered the truck — in some cases as far back as August — said GM was delaying delivery. A GM spokesman said the trucks were delayed due to a “final validation” issue. GM didn’t specify what the “final validation” issue was with the trucks, nor did they say why they were delayed. (Read More…)

By on December 22, 2015

2016 Nissan Titan XD

Nissan announced Tuesday that its 2016 Titan XD would start at $41,485 (including $1,195 destination) for the S Crew Cab 4×2 model. The top-of-the-line Platinum Reserve Crew Cab 4×4 will start at $61,715.

The pricing places the diesel-powered Titan XD firmly in the middle between the Big Three’s light-duty and heavy-duty trucks. For example, Ram’s 1500 Tradesman Crew Cab 4×2 with its 3-liter diesel engine costs $36,940, according to Ram. A heavy-duty 2500 Ram Limited 4×4 with a 6.7-liter diesel engine starts at $64,215.

The Nissan Titan XD is a heat-seeking missile aimed in between truckmakers’ light- and heavy-duty offerings, apparently. (Read More…)

By on December 15, 2015

5.6-liter Endurance® V8 Gasoline Engine to Power Nissan TITAN a

Nissan announced Tuesday that its new Titan and Titan XD pickups will be powered by an all-new 5.6-liter V-8 that makes 390 horsepower and 401 pound-feet of torque. The new V-8 replaces the aging mill that produced 317 hp and 385 pound-feet of torque.

According to Nissan, the new V-8 — dubbed Endurance — will be built at the automaker’s Decherd, Tennessee powertrain assembly that produces all powertrains for vehicles assembled in the U.S.

(Apparently, Nissan’s announcement broke the automaker’s press site. The site went down shortly after the announcement.) (Read More…)

By on December 1, 2015

Kentucky Truck Investment

Ford announced Tuesday that it would spend $1.3 billion to retool, update and build a new body shop for its Louisville, Kentucky plant, which produces its Super Duty truck and large SUVs.

The announced spending, which will create 2,000 jobs at the plant, is part of Ford’s new contract with the United Auto Workers — and part of the automaker’s last deal with the UAW, according to Automotive News.

The investment will create an all-new body shop for the aluminum-bodied truck scheduled to go on sale late next year. With an all-new shop, production of the outgoing truck can continue while the new shop gets online, which could help the automaker avoid another shortage when the redesigned truck hits dealers.

(Read More…)

By on November 10, 2015

151110_Fiat-Professional_DIM_01

Making its debut at the 2015 Dubai Motor Show, the Fiat Fullback will be playing its first season in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa next May.

The Fullback — a rebadged Mitsubishi L200 — takes its name from the position found in rugby, soccer, and American football. Its purpose: to help Fiat break into the medium-duty pickup segment in the aforementioned EMEA market, where 675,000 units from the likes of Ford, Toyota and Mitsubishi were sold in 2014.

(Read More…)

By on October 30, 2015

IMG_0096

In Part One we looked at Clessie Cummins’ development of the first practical and reliable diesel truck engines and his earliest attempts to race diesels in the Indy 500. Though he had succeeded in developing the technology, he still hadn’t achieved the ultimate proof of concept that market success brings. (Read More…)

By on October 30, 2015

(Note to readers: This was the piece on Clessie Cummins that should have appeared first. Unfortunately, Part 2 of the series ran first and will be rerun later this afternoon — Aaron.)

clessie-cumminsDiesel engines have been in the news lately, and not for good things. The admission by Volkswagen that it has been using a software device to cheat on government emissions testing of at least some of its diesels may taint compression ignition, oil-fired engines in the passenger car market. The trucking industry, however, will continue to use diesels. That’s mostly because of a guy named Clessie Lyle Cummins.

If you’re an automobile or truck enthusiast you likely know his last name, but just as likely know nothing about him.

His accomplishments date to building a working steam engine for his family’s Indiana farm as an 11 year old in 1899, casting the engine parts from molten iron poured into hand-carved molds. As a teenager, he started to take odd jobs including fixing machinery, which led to a job at the maker of Marmon automobiles — Nordyke and Marmon. He was also member of the pit crew of Ray Harroun’s Marmon Wasp that was the winner of the very first Indianapolis 500 race in 1911, and offered suggestions that made the car faster. Cummin’s loved the Indy 500 and his engines would eventually run there, with some measure of success. (Read More…)

By on October 7, 2015

All-new 2015 Jeep® Renegade Limited

Total Fiat Chrysler Automobiles volume is up six percent this year thanks to record sales at Jeep, FCA’s top-selling outlet. However, despite that wave of Jeep-directed affection in the U.S., sales at the company’s other brands have fallen two percent through the first nine months of 2015.

Even in September, an extraordinarily high-volume month for the U.S. auto industry, a month in which sales shot up 15 percent compared with the same period one year earlier, FCA’s non-Jeep marques posted only a modest one percent increase. Jeep’s 40 percent surge to more than 77,000 sales produced a 14 percent overall uptick for FCA’s U.S. operations, which includes Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, and Ram plus Fiat and Alfa Romeo. (Read More…)

By on September 24, 2015

17FordF450Platinum_3059_HR

Ford on Thursday rolled out its newest Super Duty truck — 350 pounds lighter than the outgoing model — complete with aluminum-alloy body, high-strength steel frame and new 6-speed transmission for its V-8 engine.

According to Ford, the truck’s frame is up to 24 times stiffer than the outgoing frame, and the company reportedly used high-strength, military-grade aluminum alloys — which are separate from civilian grade because they use more of it before 9 a.m. than we’ll use all day. Or something.

The Super Duty truck can be fitted with either a 6.7-liter V-8 turbocharged diesel, a 6.8-liter V-10 gasoline or 6.2-liter V-8 gasoline engine, with the latter being mated to a new TorqShift-G six-speed transmission.  (Read More…)

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