NINETY EIGHT REGENCY

GM investing more in truck fuel economy, other improvements

5 posts in this topic

GM investing more in truck fuel economy, other improvements

Rick Kranz

Automotive News -- January 14, 2010 - 4:21 pm ET

DETROIT -- General Motors Co. is beefing up spending on its next-generation light-duty, full-sized truck program to create more fuel-efficient, more attractive pickups.

The re-engineered and restyled light-duty Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups are expected to debut around the 2013 model year. The pickup program had been put on hold prior to GM's Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing. The trucks now will land in showrooms at about the same time as originally planned.

“Now we have more cash reserves to spend on product than we have had in decades,” said Scott Fosgard, a GM spokesman.

Fosgard declined to put a specific dollar figure on the added investment, saying only that it would be in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

“We are investing it in four brands, not eight,” he said. “We are investing it in 34 nameplates not 50. So we have enough money to do what we said we would do, and that is, we are going to build the world's best vehicles and we are going to play to win in every segment.”

Fuel economy boost

GM will use the additional funding to boost fuel economy. Specifically, it will reduce vehicle weight and make the pickups more aerodynamic, either through styling changes or features that reduce aerodynamic drag.

GM would not provide specifics, but one proposal that had been under consideration prior to the bankruptcy filing was electrically operated movable slots that would open or close the grille. A closed grille makes a vehicle more aerodynamic. The Cadillac Provoq crossover concept first featured movable grille louvers at the 2008 Detroit auto show.

Additionally, interior materials will be upgraded, and new undisclosed features will be added to the pickup line.

Unaffected by the plan are GM's next-generation heavy-duty pickups. The three-quarter ton 2011 Silverado 2500 and one-ton 3500 pickup will debut Feb. 10 at the Chicago Auto Show. The timetable for the debut of the Sierra heavy-duty pickups has not been announced.

Sales down

Last year, GM had combined light- and heavy-duty pickup sales of 470,906, a 33 percent decline from the previous year. Full-sized pickups accounted for 20.7 percent of GM's total vehicle volume in 2009, a drop of 32 percent from the previous year.

Last month, GM Vice Chairman Bob Lutz said that the redesigned Malibu had been rescheduled for sale sometime in 2011 -- the same year as originally planned. Several months earlier, in August, GM executives said the car would debut in 2012.

"Once we got out of the bankruptcy and started having money available, we were able to pull a lot of our programs forward," back to the original timetable, Lutz said at a December Chevrolet press event. He said "a bunch" of vehicles were being pulled forward but gave no details.

Read more: http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100114/OEM04/100119882/1135#ixzz0ccuWqqrm

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

“We are investing it in four brands, not eight,” he said. “We are investing it in 34 nameplates not 50. So we have enough money to do what we said we would do, and that is, we are going to build the world's best vehicles and we are going to play to win in every segment.”

Interesting..I wonder what model year that number 34 represents. I counted 29 for MY '10 for the 4 brands for NA. (but if I add in 5 models that have been announced/rumored for NA in the coming years I do get 34).

Edited by Cubical-aka-Moltar
0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They need to invest money into compact pickups, as well. Not everyone wants a fullsize truck. They have to find a way to take downward pricing pressure off the fullsizers to reduce overlap with the compacts. Another thing is to make a super-desirable compact truck so that people want it regardless of pricing pressure from the cutthroat fullsize competition forcing transaction prices down into compact territory.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

Guest
You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
Reply to this topic...

×   You have pasted content with formatting.   Remove formatting

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor




  • Who's Online (See full list)

    There are no registered users currently online

  • Who's Chatting

    There are no users currently in the chat room