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John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 2-7-2019 Specialty Vehicle Engineering, Inc. (formerly SLP) has announced its newest vehicles, 1,000 hp versions of the Chevy Tahoe, Chevy Suburban, and the GMC Yukon SUVs. You may remember Specialty Vehicle Engineering, Inc. (formerly SLP) as the manufacturer who created the Firehawk back in the day. The company's latest creations are the all-new and incredibly fast, 2019 High Output, Stage 2 Tahoe, Suburban and Yukon powered by a custom 416 C.I.D. (6.8L) supercharged LT-1-based engine. The powerplant delivers 1000 horsepower and 875 lb.-ft of torque, and features a blueprinted LT-1 Aluminum block, Race-Quality computer-balanced rotating assembly including forged 4340 steel crankshaft and forged steel H-Beam rods, forged aluminum pistons, CNC ported high-flow LT4 cylinder heads, custom supercharger, and 8 Rib Belt Drive System. The vehicle comes with a 3 Year/36,000 Mile Engine and Supercharger Assembly Limited Warranty. A Heavy-Duty transmission upgrade is standard on the Stage 2 1000HP package and includes a 12 month/12,000 mile warranty. About Specialty Vehicle Engineering, Inc. For more than 25 years, Specialty Vehicle Engineering has been a Second Stage Vehicle Manufacturer and Tier One Supplier to GM and its dealers, having built over 65,000 cars, trucks, and SUV specialty vehicles; making it the #1 GM Specialty Vehicle Manufacturer in the USA. The company was chosen as the exclusive builder of the current generation Yenko Supercars.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 2-6-2019 General Motors today released its full Q4 earnings report. GM's CEO, Mary Barra, commented on the earnings, saying, "GM delivered another strong year of earnings in a highly volatile environment in 2018. We will continue to make bold decisions to lead the transformation of this industry and drive significant shareholder value.” The report came just two days after GM began its 4,000 person layoff of white-collar workers and weeks after announcing four plants would have no vehicle allocations after April 1st, 2019. If you are an investor, you can jump to the GM investor summary here. General Motors credited strong pricing, surging crossover sales, growth of GM Financial earnings, disciplined cost control and the successful launch of the new Sierra and Silverado pickups for the positive results.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 2-6-2019 Ram revealed a new 60-40 swing away split tailgate this week. Ram wasted no time in throwing out a zinger to the GMC folks, saying, "Unlike other multi-element tailgates, the Ram multifunction tailgate is trailer-friendly and does not require that the trailer and hitch be removed before opening." What Ram is apparently referring to is possible interference with the new GMC six-position MultiPro tailgate. Some owners have reported that the GMC tailgate can strike the trailer ball or the top of the trailer when it is dropped to its lowest position. “The Ram multifunction tailgate is intuitive to operate and owners will find it immediately useful,” said Reid Bigland, Head of Ram Brand – FCA. “Combined with Ram’s class-exclusive RamBox feature and new tailgate step, we’re taking Ram’s cargo management and storage to the next level.” Ram's new multifunction tailgate has four different configurations including: Open flat Open left door only Open right door only Open both doors. Each door swings open 88 degrees and access can be further enhanced via a retractable center-mounted step option.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 2-5-2019 Here are the 2020 Silverado HD specifications provided today: - - - - - *All towing capabilities measured using SAE J2807 metrics. - -
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 2-5-2019 Chevrolet rolled out the new 2020 Silverado HD lineup today at the Flint Manufacturing Plant where the new truck will be built. Chevy says that towing ability increased by a whopping 52% to 35,000 pounds. A heavier-duty frame compared to the current model, enables a higher gross combined vehicle weight rating (GCWR) of up to 43,500 pounds on properly equipped trucks. “We set out to make the best HD trucks on the market, bar none,” said Jaclyn McQuaid, chief engineer, Silverado HD. “We increased towing capabilities across the line, not just for dually buyers. We added class-leading towing technologies, such as 15 available camera views, to make trailering more convenient, whether pulling a large cargo trailer or fifth-wheel camper. And we made a host of changes to make tasks easier.” The new 2020 Silverado HD will be available in five different trim levels — Work Truck, Custom, LT, LTZ and High Country — available across 22 cab, bed, chassis and driveline configurations. Chevy is offering two new powertrains. The base engine is a new 6.6L V-8 gas with direct injection producing 401 hp and 464 lb-ft of torque coupled to a six-speed automatic transmission. That’s adds up to an 11 percent increase in horsepower and a 22 percent increase in peak torque, respectively, resulting in 18 percent more towing capability. The up-powered engine is the Duramax 6.6L Turbo-Diesel V-8 engine making 445 hp and 910 lb-ft of torque mated to an all-new Allison® 10-speed automatic transmission. Chevy says that every component between the transmission and the wheels has been upgraded to enable an available 52-percent increase in max towing capability — now up to 35,500 pounds on Regular Cab, two-wheel drive, DRW, diesel models. Chevy Lists the Following As 2020 Silverado HD highlights: -New, more powerful 6.6L V-8 gas engine with direct injection for greater performance and stronger trailering capability with 22 percent more torque and up to 18 percent more towing compared to previous 6.0L gas engine. -All-new Allison 10-speed automatic transmission is matched with the available Duramax 6.6L V-8 Turbo-Diesel engine for a 52 percent increase in max towing to 35,500 pounds on properly equipped models. -Autotrac active two-speed transfer case on 4x4 models electronically controls “4 Auto” mode, allowing the truck to seamlessly shift between two-wheel drive and four-wheel drive based on road conditions. -Advanced Trailering System technologies and new transparent trailer view: The in-vehicle trailering system features an available total of 15 available camera views (requires an installed accessory camera), such as HD Surround Vision and other unique -views including a transparent trailer feature to help provide added confidence when towing. Also features increased integration with the myChevrolet mobile app. -HD-exclusive sculpted exterior design features the most differentiation from the Silverado 1500 ever — the roof is the only shared sheetmetal. -Heavy-duty details designed to make work easier and more intuitive, including features such as an easy-access engine block heater outlet, easy-to-fill diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) tank with opening inside the fuel door, a more integrated snow plow prep -package and new, advanced trailering mirrors with available spot lamps and more. -BedStep feature and larger CornerSteps makes it easier to load or reach items in the cargo box, which is designed to hold a pair of size-12 boots and up to 500 pounds. -Larger cab enables more spacious interiors with Crew Cab models adding about 3 inches in overall length. Drivelines Chevy outlined many new driveline changes that add to the Silverado HD's towing ability. The upgraded driveline includes new, larger, more robust front and rear axles, a standard 11.5-inch ring gear on 2500HD models, and 12-inch ring gear on 3500HD diesel models. Also, 30-percent larger-diameter prop shafts provide greater strength with the high torque output of the new 6.6L gas engine and the Duramax Turbo-Diesel. Helping cool the Duramax engine is a massive 28-inch diameter fan with variable fan speed – 2.5-inches larger than the current fan. Engines A new 6.6L V-8 gas engine now has gasoline direct injection. Chevy uses a cast-iron Small Block for long-term durability with aluminum heads. The higher compression ratio of 10.8:1 and longer stroke produce a greater power output of 401 hp with strong performance at low rpm where it’s needed when pulling away with a loaded cargo box or trailer. Torque increases to 464 lb-ft. The 6.6L gas engine also gets dual alternators to support the electrical needs for trailering, snowplowing and other jobs. Chevy's proven Duramax 6.6L Turbo-Diesel V-8 with 910 lb-ft of torque is th top engine option. Towing capability is increased up to 52 percent with driveline improvements. A diesel after-run feature specifically for use following a demanding towing situation is an additional new technology for the Duramax engine. The after-run allows the engine to keep running for up to 15 minutes to allow it to cool down using the fan and circulating coolant. If the driver puts the truck in park when an after-run situation is needed, an alert will appear on the driver information cluster directing them to keep the engine running for cool down. Should the customer ignore the message and exit the vehicle, the truck will restart on its own via remote start mode for cool-down. At that point the customer can walk away and the truck will turn itself off when the engine reaches an acceptable temperature. Transmission The new Allison 10-speed automatic transmission is better at transferring all of the Duramax’s torque to the pavement, allowing more torque to be put to the ground in lower gears, enhancing the overall driving dynamics and trailering with smoother gear changes and shorter steps between them. It also supports smart engine braking, which can help reduce brake wear. The Duramax/Allison combination’s standard axle ratio is lowered to 3.42:1, which reduces engine speed, therefore enhancing refinement. “The 6.6L Duramax diesel and Allison® transmission is a legendary combination in the HD truck market with proven durability and capability that our customers expect,” said McQuaid. “For 2020, we made the combination even better and upgraded nearly every driveline component.” PTO An all-new, factory-integrated engine-driven Power Take Off (PTO) is available that eliminates the need for an aftermarket unit. Exclusively offered with the Allison® 10-speed transmission on select diesel models, it’s the first fully integrated PTO system of its kind in the HD truck segment, with the PTO’s drive gear operated via chain to direct engine power. And because it is engine-driven rather than turbine-driven, owners can use the PTO while the vehicle is idling. A button inside the cab enables the PTO, and a mode selector allows adjustment of load and torque output. HD Highlights Include: - Smother door skins to make attaching signage easier for owners -Relocated engine-block heater. Designers moved the engine-block heater outlet to a more convenient, external location on the driver’s side of the truck, integrated into the front bumper, eliminating the need for cords hanging out of the grille or to open the hood for plug-in. The block heater is standard with diesel models and available with the new 6.6L gas engine. -More-intuitive snow plow package8. The front end of the truck is designed for easy removal of the air dam and skid plate for easier and more intuitive mounting of the plow hardware. The design even eliminates the need to drill additional holes in the front bumper. And when the plow blade is removed, the Silverado HD returns to form by maintaining a smooth, integrated appearance without visible hardware. -Diesel DEF tank/filler enhancements. The Diesel Exhaust Fluid tank is relocated farther back on the Silverado HD’s frame and out of sight from the exterior, and the inlet is located next to the fuel filler for more convenient filling. An electronic gauge readout for the DEF fluid level is added to the Driver Infotainment Center of diesel-equipped models. -Redesigned trailering mirrors with improved perimeter lighting. New, larger and more functional door-mounted trailering mirrors are standard on all 2500HD and 3500HD models. The mirrors extend and retract using a four-bar-link system that makes for smoother operation, whether done with power or manually. The surface area of the mirrors is larger, for a greater field of view compared to the current model, and an available power extension feature makes it easier to adjust the view from the driving position. -New for 2020 is the forward-facing spot lamp on each mirror that shines light at about a 45-degree angle, providing illumination on the job site or camp site. There also are side-view cameras mounted within the mirror housings, and when equipped, mirror-mounted puddle lamps and two rearward-facing spot lamps are also available. - Aero Shutters on 2500 and 3500 SRW models improve efficiency. - Diesel models get a more prominant hood scoop - Beds are no longer shared with standard duty Silverados, but are custom to the HD Trim Details: Work Truck: Distinguished with a unique, black “CHEVROLET” flow-through grille bar. Seventeen-inch wheels are standard on 2500HD and 3500HD with dual rear wheels (DRW); 18-inch wheels are standard on 3500HD with single rear wheels (SRW). Custom: New to the Silverado HD lineup and exclusive on 2500HD, the Custom trim offers standard 20-inch wheels and body-color trim details for a more contemporary design expression. LT: Featuring chrome-trimmed vertical grille elements and a bright grille bar with the flow-through “CHEVROLET” name. 2500HD models feature 17-inch aluminum wheels, 3500HD SRW models feature 18-inch aluminum wheels and 3500HD DRW models feature 17-inch steel wheels. LTZ: Takes bright trim to the next level, including a bright grille surround with the flow-through “CHEVROLET” bar and chrome-accented grille inserts. It also features LED reflector headlamps, LED daytime running lamps and LED taillamps. 2500HD and 3500HD SRW models feature standard 18-inch aluminum wheels with 20-inch wheels available. 3500HD DRW has standard 17-inch steel wheels and 17-inch polished forged-aluminum wheels are available. High Country: The most dramatic and expressive trim in the lineup, with a distinctive fascia featuring a grille with the Chevy bowtie and two-tone metallic grille trim, and LED lighting. 2500HD and 3500HD SRW models feature 20-inch polished aluminum wheels and the 3500HD DRW features 17-inch polished forged-aluminum wheels. Chevy Also Created This Matrix Showing the Comparison To Other Trucks Please see our separate story for full specifications. Image Gallery:
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-30-2019 Record cold temperatures have forced the shutdown of manufacturing plants, including those that produce the Chevrolet Camaro, Chevy Traverse, Sierra, and Silverado models. In all, 17 plants have been closed for multiple shifts. It isn't the cold itself that is the problem, but rather limitations on the supply of natural gas to the Consumers Energy utility that supplies power to these plants. The cold already was placing a high demand on the infrastructure, but a fire at a Detroit-area natural gas compressor facility made the situation worse. The Lansing State Journal has reported that plants in Lansing Delta Township Assembly, Lansing Grand River Assembly, Lansing Regional Stamping and Lansing Grand River Stamping as well as plants in Flint, Pontiac, Bay City, Saginaw, Warren and Orion Township have all missed shifts. The situation is also affecting Ford and FCA America plants.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-30-2019 GMC The Magazine is seeking GM-Trucks.com members who would be interested in offering images and commentary on their GMC Yukon experience. One of our members, SteveK364, works for the publication and is looking for a sentence or two and an image of you standing next to your GMC Yukon. Preferably, not a heavily modified one. The magazine has a recurring section showing owners and offering readers the owners' comments. If you would like to help Steve out, click here to be redirected within GM-Trucks.com to his original post.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-29-2019 Chevrolet has added the new 10-speed automatic transmission to its hottest Camaro, the ZL1 1LE. GM says that experienced racers can shave seconds off lap times on longer high-speed circuits with the new automatic by comparison to the 6-Speed manual. Although our staff has not tested this generation of the Camaro ZL1, we have tracked the prior generation with the manual. It was for sure the limiting factor in quicker times for this writer. By comparison, we drove the Lexus RC F with its race-tuned 8-speed auto and were amazed at how well modern track-tuned automatic transmissions can match the gears to the particular needs of the vehicle at any given point on the track. These modern automatics rev-match downshifts and wil keep the vehicle at the perfect point in the RPM range for maximum thrust in all scenarios. “This transmission is optimized for speed,” said Camaro Chief Engineer Mark Dickens. “With unique Track Mode calibrations and 10 gears, you are always in the perfect gear when rolling on or off the throttle. You may not be a professional race car driver, but now you can shift like one.” Steve Majoros, director of Chevrolet passenger car and crossover marketing, expanded on that, saying, “Adding an automatic transmission is another example of the Camaro portfolio delivering what customers want. This ultimate 1LE is another appealing option that is true to its racing heritage.” The new 10-speed becomes available on the Camaro ZL1 1LE in February. What say you GM-Trucks faithful? Would you opt for the automatic in a car you planned to track, or would you prefer the 6-speed stick?
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-29-2019 Air Lift, the family-owned automotive aftermarket suspension company based in Lansing, Michigan, has been named one of the nation's 101 "Best and Brightest Place To Work." Air Lift was one among the 2,400 companies across the United States nominated to win this ward presented by an independent research firm. “Being named one of the 101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For in the Nation for 2018 is a huge honor for us at Air Lift,” says Mary Cook, Director of Human Resources at Air Lift Company, who championed the effort to earn this award. “Winning this award as we kick off our 70th anniversary year really inspires us as a company to remain committed to our vision and guiding principles as we continue to grow. Air Lift is truly a great place to work and we can’t thank the wonderful members of the Air Lift family enough for everything they contribute to our success.” GM-Trucks.com has featured Air Lifts products for many years. Most recently, we spotlighted Air Lift's newest systems for the new generation Silverado. Air Lift was also honored at this past year's SEMA show. If you are a member who has used Air Lift's products, please post a comment below.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-28-2019 Chevy is going "full lego" in its new advertising campaigns and has just added a new animated video commercial to promote the Silverado. In the video, Emmet and Wyldstyle flee an alien invader in a Satin Steel Metallic Silverado 1500 High Country made of LEGOs. The Lego Silverado High Country will also appear in “The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part.” This will help to brainwash your children into being the next generation of GM truck lovers “From Emmet’s custom High Country to the real-life Trail Boss that inspired the full-size LEGO brick model, we have a Silverado for everyone — both LEGO mini-figures and everyday drivers,” said Paul Edwards, U.S. vice president of Chevrolet marketing. “The new ads are a fun addition to our Silverado campaign and will hopefully attract the next generation of truck buyers to Chevrolet.”
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-26-2019 A new story in the publication Detroit Bureau has EV advocates and those looking for a headling concluding that GM is planning to build an EV pickup. In response to an inquiry about EV pickups, Duncan Aldred, the vice president of the GMC brand, said, "Certainly, it’s something we’re considering." This and other small clues have some in the industry concluding, “They wouldn’t be saying this if they weren’t really confident about doing it, They are moving beyond hybrids…and want to be at the forefront of battery-electric technology.” This is in contrast to a statement by Mike Ableson, General Motors Vice President Global Strategy, who said this past November, "The core business is going to be the core business for a couple of decades to come. There will not be any AV/EV pickups.” What's our take? Based on the emerging culture of showing any EV prototype off as a "launch" years, or even decades before the vehicle is ready to be sold, we feel that once GM decides to build an EV pickup we will see a concept of it at a trade show. Then start your two to five-year countdown on when limited production will arrive.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-24-2019 General Motors is investing $22 million at its Spring Hill, Tennessee, manufacturing complex. Spring Hill is both a flexible vehicle assembly plant and also an engine plant. The investment will enable the engine plant to build 6.2L V-8 engines with GM’s advanced Dynamic Fuel Management technology. This new investment brings the total by GM to more than $2 billion in the Tennessee complex since 2010. “This investment will enable our Spring Hill team to continue building our award-winning engines enhanced with technology that will improve fuel efficiency and performance for our customers,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra during a visit to the plant to meet with employees and community leaders to celebrate the new Cadillac XT6. “This investment reflects our commitment to vehicles and technologies our customers desire today and in the future.” In other good news for the Spring Hill plant and its community, GM is adding 200 workers for the Cadillac vehicle assembly area as part of a previous investment.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-23-2019 If you have not started with our prior story today on the all-new 2020 Sierra HD it may make sense to do so. This post picks up from there and highlights just the AT4 trim line of the new Sierra HD. The all-new 2020 Sierra Heavy Duty AT4 expands on the GMC AT4's reach with a distinctive off-road identity for the new Sierra HD. Distinguished in its dark chrome exterior finishes and front and rear bumpers and a grille surround finished in body color, the AT4 has its own style. The grille design is also bolder than on the other HD trims, and is finished in black chrome and set off by the AT4's distinctive red vertical recovery hooks. The interior continues the AT4-specific darkened trim, including dark-tinted and textured aluminum finishes on the steering wheel, center stack and sill plates, as well as a unique Jet Black interior with Kalahari color accents in the seats and live stitching. AT4's leather seating has mini-perforated inserts and embroidered AT4 badging on the headrests, along with standard all-weather floor liners. The new Sierra AT4 Heavy Duty's unique suspension and supporting technologies enable its off-road capabilities. Features include: Off-road suspension, Rancho Shocks, skid plates, Eaton locking rear differential. Eighteen-inch wheels wrapped with Michelin all-terrain tires, with 20-inch wheels available. Traction Select System with specific Off-Road mode. Hill Descent Control and Hill Start Assist. Segment-exclusive 15-inch diagonal Head-Up Display with Off-Road Inclinometer. HD Surround Vision for low-speed views of vehicle surroundings.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-23-2019 We pulled out the new 2020 Sierra HD Denali images form the GM info dump and created this succinct gallery of images for our readers. The overview was lengthy, and we didn't want to have it span too many pages for those viewing on a small device. -
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-23-2019 GMC's all-new 2020Sierra Heavy Duty will feature more room and amazing towing capabilities. “The all-new 2020 Sierra HD is the most capable heavy-duty truck that we’ve ever offered,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global GMC. “For customers who demand a premium, innovative heavy-duty truck that supports their passions, the next-generation Sierra HD can pull like a pro.” There is a lot of new and notable capabilities in the 2020 Sierra HD, so we are breaking down the key elements into bullet points. Here are the 2020 Sierra HD general features. Trailering features come below: A segment-exclusive available 15-inch-diagonal head-up display that offers useful trailering information, including vehicle speed, navigation information and an inclinometer display for the road grade. An available segment-first Rear Camera Mirror. MultiPro, the world’s first six-function tailgate, allows easier loading, unloading and bed access and is available on all trim levels. A larger, commanding design that provides more room for cargo and occupants. Best-in-class Crew Cab front headroom and legroom for the driver and other front-row occupants. An all-new, segment-first, Allison 10-speed automatic transmission mated to the legendary 6.6L Duramax turbo diesel. 2020 Sierra HD Advantages Over Prior Model Include: A longer wheelbase, a taller, more dominant hood line and taller overall height. A larger grille and complementing functional hood scoop to feed an advanced cooling system for the Duramax turbo diesel. Class-leading heavy-duty cargo bed volume and corner tie-downs with a new, available 120-volt power outlet. One-inch-lower bed lift-in height compared to the 2019 Sierra Heavy Duty, providing easier loading and fifth-wheel and gooseneck trailer hitching. New, segment-exclusive cargo bed side steps on all box styles, located in front of the rear wheel openings, that complement integrated CornerSteps in the rear bumper to improve access to the cargo area. World’s first six-function MultiPro tailgate available on all trim levels and standard on SLT, AT4 and Denali. GMC’s Duramax turbo diesel and new 10-speed Allison automatic transmission pairing will offer superior towing confidence. GMC isn't providing exact specs today, but says that the 2020 Sierra HD will have capabilities well in excess of 30,000 pounds. This is the first HD segment 10-speed. The Duramax 6.6L turbo-diesel engine develops an SAE-certified 445 horsepower and 910 lb-ft of torque. 2020 Sierra HD Trailering Features: An enhanced ProGrade Trailering system featuring class-leading available 15 camera views, including a segment-first transparent trailer view to virtually see through a trailer in tow. An available smart trailer designed to integrate the iN∙Command control system from ASA Electronics provides the ability to monitor and control select functions of compatibly equipped trailers through the myGMC mobile app. Auto Electric Park Brake to automatically apply the parking brake to help maintain truck position when hitching. All-new Park Grade Hold Assist enhances hill hold by using braking effort at each wheel for an extended period of time. All-new larger, door-mounted trailering mirrors with a four-bar link providing power extend and retract for the driver and passenger sides. Integrated trailer brake controller that works with the trailer profile in the Trailering App to recall a specified trailer’s most recent gain setting. Tow/Haul mode that remains engaged on the next key-on cycle, for up to four hours; includes a reminder the feature is engaged. Hill Start Assist and Hill Descent Control. Trailer Sway Control. Auto Grade Braking and Diesel Exhaust Braking. Digital Variable Steering Assist that dynamically optimizes power steering according to driving scenarios, including trailering, and enables features like road pull compensation. Trailering Info Label placed on the driver’s door jamb that clearly calls out the truck’s specific trailering information, including curb weight, GVWR, GCWR, maximum payload, maximum tongue weight and rear GAWR. When Can You Get One? The 2020 Sierra HD will go on sale "later this year" in 2500HD and 3500HD dual rear wheel and single rear wheel configurations. Flint Assembly in Flint, Michigan, will be the manufacturing location for the 2020 Sierra Heavy Duty.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-22-2019 IHS Markit, a leading source of global automotive industry information, analysis, and insight, recognized GM’s success in retaining owners over repeat buying cycles at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this month. “Such strong loyalty only comes when everyone keeps the customer at the center of everything we do, whether they are making, marketing, selling or servicing our vehicles,” said Steve Hill, GM’s U.S. vice president of Sales, Service and Marketing, who accepted the award. GM also announced that it has more than one million Chevrolet, GMC, Buick and Cadillac drivers have signed up for My GM Rewards. The plan offers discounts to loyal GM customers for vehicle purchases or service. “My GM Rewards is our way of thanking loyal customers and making sure they have a great ownership experience, so they come back to Chevrolet, GMC, Buick and Cadillac dealers again and again,” said Hill. “The program has been a big hit since it was launched, and its growth has exceeded our expectations because the rewards are easy to earn and redeem on things that people really want and need.” Do we have any members who have benefitted from this program?
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-19-2019 When it is time to throw down on credentials your author often resorts to "My team and I built a solar-electric race car from scratch in 1990." That's peanuts compared to the GM team that can now say "Our team built a full-scale Chevy Silverado out of Legos." Yes, GM and its partners, the Oxford Community School’s FIRST LEGO League and Detroit’s Ralph Waldo Emerson Elementary’s A World in Motion Program, have produced a life-like Lego Silverado Trail Boss. The build combines the Detroit Auto Show, GM's new marketing campaign for the Silverado, and a bagillion tiny cubes. “Chevrolet is once again thrilled to be working with Warner Bros. to integrate the brand and one of our most iconic products – Silverado – into ‘The LEGO Movie 2: The Second Part,’” said Sandor Piszar, director of Chevrolet Truck marketing. “The themes of determination and teamwork in the new movie align perfectly with our Chevy brand values and we are sure that the all-new Silverado has the features, technologies and strength that would help Emmet, Lucy and their friends as they take on exciting new challenges.” A team of 18 worked for 2,000 hours to create the Silverado out of about 400,000 lego blocks. The Lego Silverado weighs 3,300 pounds and has working lights.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-16-2019 GM laid out a comprehensive advertising plan this past week to support the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra now that they are ready for volume delivery. One of the innovative ways that GM had promised to promote the trucks was via Amazon packaging adverts. As you know from our coverage here, GM is wisely partnering with Amazon whenever possible. The images here are from Facebook 2019+ Silverado/Sierra Owner's club member Daniel Glauser. Daniel ordered up some products from Amazon and was nice enough to share the first images we have seen of the new GM promotional partnership with Amazon. Every little bit helps. What's your take on GM using this promotional opportunity? Our thanks to Daniel for sharing his images.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-15-2019 Cadillac's display at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit underway this week will show off one of its most important new products in a decade, the all-new three-row XT6 crossover. Cadillac has been only luxury automakers in the U.S. market without a full-size luxury crossover, and the new XT6 will help to round out the brand's portfolio. “The first-ever Cadillac XT6 delivers a compelling blend of spaciousness, safety and convenience features for customers who thrive on doing it all,” said Steve Carlisle, Cadillac president. “It joins the all-new XT4, which has soared to the top spot in its segment, our global best-selling XT5 and the iconic Escalade to accelerate the brand’s global growth, with a spirit that is uniquely Cadillac.” (With noting, is that the XT4 is not outselling the Lexus NX compact crossover.) “Every seat is the best seat in the house,” said Carlisle. “From luxurious appointments, comfort and convenience to premium sound and technology features, every passenger gets an optimized experience.” Highlights of the features of the new XT6 include: -A comprehensive suite of standard and available driver assistance and safety technologies1, along with generous cargo capacity4. -The latest Cadillac user experience, with intuitive controls including a rotary controller with new jog functionality. -Premium Luxury and Sport models offer customers more customized looks with unique exterior and interior distinction. -A nimble, responsive driving experience, powered by a 3.6L V-6 engine and nine-speed automatic transmission, offering up to four selectable driving modes. -Supercruise driver assistance. -Night vision. -Rear-view camera mirror. -Rear pedestrian alert. -Apple Car play and Android Auto (Not available on BMW, Lexus) “The new Cadillac XT6 models provide two expressions of the signature Cadillac experience, allowing more personalized appearance and driving character,” said John Plonka, chief engineer. “Premium Luxury models provide an elevated level of refinement, while Sport models offer a performance-oriented feel.” The all-new Cadillac XT6 will be manufactured in Spring Hill, Tennessee, and available for ordering this spring.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-14-2019 Cadillac plans to make Cadillac a primarily electric brand. Before that happens, the brand will shift primarily to ICE crossovers, with maybe keep one performance sedan and the Escalade as its token ICE cars (ICE means internal combustion engine). The new Cadillac looks to our eyes a lot like the old XLR, Cadillac's re-branded Corvette from the not too distant past. Despite this one being a "crossover." Going forward, look for every manufacturer to re-tag its cars as crossovers, despite the number of wheels driven, number of doors, ground clearance, and lack of any sort of SUV equipment. Cars are dead, so every new model has to be a crossover by definition. Unless it's a truck. “Cadillac’s EV will hit the heart of the crossover market and meet the needs of customers around the world,” said Steve Carlisle, president of Cadillac. “It will represent the height of luxury and innovation while positioning Cadillac as the pinnacle of mobility.” We disagree. The heart of the crossover market has a selling price under $30K and is defined by the top-selling model in that huge segment, the Toyota RAV4. Cadillac may well hit the periphery of the crossover market, but it will be a long swim for any automaker to hit the "heart of the crossover market" with an affordable BEV. Decoding the marketing lingo we think GM means "We don't have anything yet, but when we do it will be a high-priced vehicle for China." Buick had better watch its back. What do you think of the looks? GM has not given us a name, range, performance profile, or price estimate yet. Which in the EV world is pretty much standard practice.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-11-2019 Hot on the heels of Amazon being able to deliver packages to your trunk, the company can now also open your garage door, place the packages inside, and then close the door. The trick is the myQ garage door and the Amazon Key App that works on your device - and Amazon's. You also have to be a Prime member of Amazon. The app will also let you know anytime the door is opened and allow you to open and close it from your device. Pretty neat. You will need a Chamberlain myQ smart hub , sold for about $80 on Amazon, or a new garage door opener from the company that has that technology already built in. With Amazon Alexa and Google assistants, many similar functions are already finding ways to make life easier. This seems like a logical next step. Hey, here is a quick brain teaser for our eco-conscious members. Can you identify the thingy hanging between the garage doors and name its brand?
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-9-2019 General Motors announced today that it is offering up some free OnStar for those owners who don't already subscribe. We reviewed the offer, which is packed with more fine print that a celebrity divorce agreement, to try to get the important parts straight for our members. One of the fine print sections actually references the Famer's Almanac. The deal breaks down to three free months as long as you are willing to give OnStar your credit card, full contact info and a cheek swab for DNA verification. You need to own a 2006 or newer GM vehicle equipped with OnStar and it has to work. In fairness to GM, if you want to opt out all you need to do is press the Blue button and tell the associate you're out. The services available depend a bit on the model, but should include Automatic Crash Response, Roadside Assistance, Emergency Services, Crisis Assist and access to a live advisor at the push of a button. “These services can help Chevy customers drive with confidence during some of the most dangerous times to be on the road,” said Paul Edwards, U.S. vice president of Chevrolet Marketing. “With OnStar, we’re bringing peace of mind to owners, knowing that an advisor is ready to help.” To begin your free service simply press the Blue button. You get one month with no hassles, and up to three if you go in for the full contact info dance. If interested, push the button before January 23rd. Why the enrolment for the program ends on a Wednesday was not explained.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-8-2019 Hot Wheels has launched its 2019 truck series and included in that new group of toys is the '19 Silverado Trail Boss. The newest addition is a blue Trailboss LT with the yellow side streaks. Hot Wheels had previously offered a red '19 Trailboss as part of its 2018 truck series. Attached is a toy unwrapping video. If you have little kids, particularly girls, these types of videos may be familiar to you. The '19 Silverado was designed for Hot Wheels by Dmitriy Shakhmatov. In red, the product code is FJV97 and in blue, the code is FYC57 (you may want to double check that before you order). These Silverados are built in Malaysia. For more details, check out the toy wiki site for this item. If we have any collectors in the group, please feel free to add more in the comments below.
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-7-2019 Are you tired of the dude with a clipboard and the "real people" looking surprised when the trucks they see turn out to be Chevys? If so, you will be pleased to hear that GM is taking a little break from the four-year-long "Real People, Not Actors" campaign. GM plans to bring them back, but for the coming season, Chevy is headed toward a different angle in its adverts that will show how the Silverado is the perfect truck for everyone in America. Which makes little sense since GM sells three other trucks that must be right for somebody (are we crazy?). The spot features a variety of Silverado owners closing tailgates. The new advert is called "Tailgates," and we have to say we like it. The nostalgia always tugs at our heartstrings and Chevy highlighting the more modern uses for trucks instead of it always being a horse saddle rest is welcome. For more details on GM's Chevrolet Silverado advertising plans, check out this deep dive by Ad Age. What is also a bit funny though is that GMC has a new ad campaign that basically says all one piece tailgates are old-fashioned. Do the Chevy and GMC add guys talk? GMC's new advertising campaign is called "Step Up Like A Pro." Maybe we have been drinking the GM Kool-Aid too long, but this one sounds like a winner to us. First off, "Step up" reminds us of GM's innovative corner step. Secondly, "Like a Pro" sounds a lot like the GMC theme for the past decade that generally gives the impression that GMC trucks are "Professional Grade." The campaign highlights GMC unique multi-function tailgate and features a song you know well. "Step Up Like A Pro is an empowering call to action that resonates with truck owners, encouraging them to reach higher in their lives and not accept the ordinary. ‘Anthem’ continues to define our GMC ‘We Are Professional Grade’ standards and signals landmark change to the industry,” said Rich Latek, director of GMC Marketing. GM is planning a lot of TV-football and social media buys to kick off the Silverado and Sierra campaigns. What do you think of the adverts?
John Goreham Contributing Writer, GM-Trucks.com 1-3-2019 Mark Reuss has been named the President of General Motors Corporation. We are big fans of Mr. Reuss here at GM-Trucks.com. Over the past number of years, we have had the distinct pleasure of spending time with him on and off the record and have shared a few meals and even a racetrack with him on one occasion. Among the automotive media, Mr. Reuss is respected not only for his many accomplishments in the corporate world, but also because he is approachable, likable, and a true "car guy." This new promotion elevates Mark Reuss from his prior positions at GM's Global Product Group and head of Cadillac. Among his new responsibilities will be leading the Quality organization at GM. Reuss took over Cadillac after its failed move to New York and following its sales declines during the tenure of former brand executive Johan de Nysschen. “Mark’s global operational experience, deep product knowledge and strong leadership will serve us well as we continue to strengthen our current business, take advantage of growth opportunities and further define the future of personal mobility,” said GM Chairman and CEO Mary Barra. “Mark has played a critical role in leading the development of the company’s award-winning vehicles while transitioning his team to prepare for growing electrification and autonomous technologies.” As our headline hints, Mark is not the first of the Reuss family to be the President of GM. His father held the job during the early 1990s after Stepmel and before Smith. During Lloyd Reuss' tenure, GM closed 21 plants and put 74,000 employees out of work. These were the "worst of times" prior to the 2007 bankruptcy. On the day his dad was fired from GM, Mark Reuss had a tux hanging in his car for the event honoring his dad's 35 years of service to GM scheduled for that evening. Hopefully, Mark Reuss's time as President will be looked back on by history as much more positive. “I am very proud to have spent my entire career at General Motors, and to now take on this new role is truly a great honor. With our current lineup of outstanding cars, trucks and crossovers around the world, I’m looking forward to keeping our momentum going at full speed.” GM issued a statement today that said that Reuss plans to "...double the resources allocated to electric and autonomous vehicle programs in the next two years."
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