William Maley

GMC News: Denali Makes Big Money For GMC

36 posts in this topic

William Maley    406

Nearly 20 years ago, GMC decided to create a luxury version of its Yukon SUV called the Denali by putting on some chrome wheels and leather upholstery. Today, Denali is available on most of GMC's lineup and makes up 25 percent of total sales. It also makes GMC a lot of money.

Motor Authority reports that the Denali trim gives GMC highest transaction price of any non-luxury brand in the industry. To put it another way, if GMC was its own automaker, it would be ranked 150th in the Fortune 500 list. How is this possible? You only need to look at GMC's top vehicles. Close to three out of four Yukons sold are Denali with price tags beginning at $65,000 and climbing. 50 percent of Sierra HDs are Denalis with average transaction prices ranging from $60,000 to $75,000.

Source: Motor Authority


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hyperv6    774

This has been a big deal for GM and GMC. They add some cheap chrome and some stitching and get a bigger price for it. The Denali has created an image that many must have with customers.

This must have is something that is not easy to create at will and when you do it is a gold rush. I only hope Cadillac can only find a combo that works just as well.

To me I would be just fine with a SLT2. I priced a Canyon Denali and while a nice truck it is not worth the extra cost to me. The only real hardware was the heated steering wheel and 20" wheels. The rest is chrome. 

While the Denali is not for me more power to GMC to sell them.

I would like the Denali to add more hardware content and get an even higher price. That would really make them different from Chevy.

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smk4565    351

I agree with Hyper, it isn't for me but more power to them to sell a Tahoe with wheel and trim upgrades for $70k.   You charge what people are willing to pay.  Of course it is huge money maker.  It is like Porsche charging $750 for painted air vents or $1,500 to have a 911 logo painted on the door.  People pay for that crap and it is pure profit.

And agreed again with Hyper on there being some powertrain upgrade, like maybe a turbo or hybrid system on the Terrain and Acadia Denali trims that other wise are mechanical twins to the Chevy.

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dfelt    1,868

Denali packages of features is good, but I hate all the chrome. I want a monochromatic model with all those features. Sadly you cannot order up a Denali, minus the chrome. :palm:

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surreal1272    770
41 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

I agree with Hyper, it isn't for me but more power to them to sell a Tahoe with wheel and trim upgrades for $70k.   You charge what people are willing to pay.  Of course it is huge money maker.  It is like Porsche charging $750 for painted air vents or $1,500 to have a 911 logo painted on the door.  People pay for that crap and it is pure profit.

And agreed again with Hyper on there being some powertrain upgrade, like maybe a turbo or hybrid system on the Terrain and Acadia Denali trims that other wise are mechanical twins to the Chevy.

It is more than just trim. It also comes with the 6.2L found in the Escalade. It is a similiar formula used by all Luxo makes including your Benz.

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ccap41    1,235
46 minutes ago, dfelt said:

Denali packages of features is good, but I hate all the chrome. I want a monochromatic model with all those features. Sadly you cannot order up a Denali, minus the chrome. :palm:

Bingo, Bango, Bongo. Denali + painted trim = :heart:

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hyperv6    774
12 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

It is more than just trim. It also comes with the 6.2L found in the Escalade. It is a similiar formula used by all Luxo makes including your Benz.

Not in most versions of the Denali line.

There are a couple perks here and there but not many. The magnetic suspension on the truck is one but the Canyon, Terrain, Acadia and others they will sock you for nearly $3.5K more and give you nothing but cheap plastic trim.

In the case of the Canyon I would rather keep the money and get the SLT2 for much less and skip the heated steering wheel.

I wish they would use a solid formula of a few extra HP in all version and standard AWD in all models. really give you something for the money.

But then again if people keep buying them like this who can blame them for not adding the extra real hardware. It is less work and more profits.

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ccap41    1,235
14 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

It is more than just trim. It also comes with the 6.2L found in the Escalade. It is a similiar formula used by all Luxo makes including your Benz.

Can't that 6.2 also be bought in Silverados though?  So it really isn't an upgrade as much as just giving them the top engine to justify the price. Not a bad thing, but it really isn't an "upgrade" if it can be had in lesser models.

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hyperv6    774
50 minutes ago, dfelt said:

Denali packages of features is good, but I hate all the chrome. I want a monochromatic model with all those features. Sadly you cannot order up a Denali, minus the chrome. :palm:

Not a big fan of all the chrome either.

I am going to look at the ZR2 just because it is more truck for the money and no chrome than the Canyon Denali. The Denali is about $10K more and for what?

Just now, ccap41 said:

Can't that 6.2 also be bought in Silverados though?  So it really isn't an upgrade as much as just giving them the top engine to justify the price. Not a bad thing, but it really isn't an "upgrade" if it can be had in lesser models.

At one time the only way to get it in a half was in the Denali it also came standard AWD. They kind of lost that formula as it moved on.

I bought our Terrain a month before they showed the Denali version. I was not upset for what they offered vs. what more they charged. Heck the V6 is not even standard.

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smk4565    351
41 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

It is more than just trim. It also comes with the 6.2L found in the Escalade. It is a similiar formula used by all Luxo makes including your Benz.

On the Yukon Denali there is a powertrain upgrade, but there is not on the Terrain or Acadia, which is why I suggested those two.  Acadia Denali has the same engine as a base Traverse.  On Maybach there is no powertrain upgrade from the S550 and S600, but they lengthened the body of the car and raised the roof height and upgraded the inside, and the base car had a V12, not a lot of room to upgrade, plus it is a chauffuer driven car anyway.

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ccap41    1,235
8 minutes ago, hyperv6 said:

At one time the only way to get it in a half was in the Denali it also came standard AWD. They kind of lost that formula as it moved on.

That make sense. They have done so well with the brand that people will buy it just for the "prestige" at this point. Good for them, but the people buying those aren't the most financial savvy because they really don't sound like much of a step from the SLT.

Heck, I just saw the base engine in the Denali 1500 is still the 5.3. WTF? I mean I guess they're giving the customer more options..but that seems shetty. You have to opt for the "Denali Ultra Package" that is $7,450(currently marked down to $6700) to get the 6.2. Which, obviously gets you a shet ton of other stuff but that seems ridiculous.

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ccap41    1,235
7 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

On the Yukon Denali there is a powertrain upgrade, but there is not on the Terrain or Acadia, which is why I suggested those two.  Acadia Denali has the same engine as a base Traverse.  On Maybach there is no powertrain upgrade from the S550 and S600, but they lengthened the body of the car and raised the roof height and upgraded the inside, and the base car had a V12, not a lot of room to upgrade, plus it is a chauffuer driven car anyway.

Blah Blah Blah Mercedes is God blah blah blah.

Same powertrain as the peasant S550? Weak-ass-sauce. I know if I'm spending 170k on a car it better not have the same engine as the 96k car. Heck, If I'm spending 170k on my Maybach I sure as hell don't want an S600 to pull up next to me and make me look stupid. S550 Maybach? WTF is that peasant crap all about? Why would Mercedes ever put such a name matched to the weak-ass, peasant, poor people version of the S Class? Mercedes needs to get their heads out of their asses and build some quality vehicles that make sense.

"Hi, I own a 449hp Maybach!"

"Your sh!t is weak. My 523hp/612tq will make you look stoooopid."

18 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

 On Maybach

That's a $70,000 premium to not even get a different engine or power bump. Pathetic.

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surreal1272    770
1 hour ago, hyperv6 said:

Not in most versions of the Denali line.

There are a couple perks here and there but not many. The magnetic suspension on the truck is one but the Canyon, Terrain, Acadia and others they will sock you for nearly $3.5K more and give you nothing but cheap plastic trim.

In the case of the Canyon I would rather keep the money and get the SLT2 for much less and skip the heated steering wheel.

I wish they would use a solid formula of a few extra HP in all version and standard AWD in all models. really give you something for the money.

But then again if people keep buying them like this who can blame them for not adding the extra real hardware. It is less work and more profits.

I am referring to the Yukon only since he made the Tahoe reference. Guess I need to be more specific even though the reply was directly to SMK who made the Tahoe reference in the first place. 

 

Why the pick ups are different is beyond silly to me. 

 

 

IMG_4538.PNG

IMG_4537.PNG

Edited by surreal1272

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hyperv6    774
38 minutes ago, ccap41 said:

That make sense. They have done so well with the brand that people will buy it just for the "prestige" at this point. Good for them, but the people buying those aren't the most financial savvy because they really don't sound like much of a step from the SLT.

Heck, I just saw the base engine in the Denali 1500 is still the 5.3. WTF? I mean I guess they're giving the customer more options..but that seems shetty. You have to opt for the "Denali Ultra Package" that is $7,450(currently marked down to $6700) to get the 6.2. Which, obviously gets you a shet ton of other stuff but that seems ridiculous.

People who by for prestige are not financially  savey when it comes to vehicles as they are buying image savey is no part of image.

Now if the have no care for image they just buy average Chevy.

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surreal1272    770
1 hour ago, ccap41 said:

Blah Blah Blah Mercedes is God blah blah blah.

Same powertrain as the peasant S550? Weak-ass-sauce. I know if I'm spending 170k on a car it better not have the same engine as the 96k car. Heck, If I'm spending 170k on my Maybach I sure as hell don't want an S600 to pull up next to me and make me look stupid. S550 Maybach? WTF is that peasant crap all about? Why would Mercedes ever put such a name matched to the weak-ass, peasant, poor people version of the S Class? Mercedes needs to get their heads out of their asses and build some quality vehicles that make sense.

"Hi, I own a 449hp Maybach!"

"Your sh!t is weak. My 523hp/612tq will make you look stoooopid."

That's a $70,000 premium to not even get a different engine or power bump. Pathetic.

And that is why Maybach has been a huge fail in this country. Everyone with that kind of cash saw for what they were, a stretched out S Class. 

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hyperv6    774
26 minutes ago, surreal1272 said:

I am referring to the Yukon only since he made the Tahoe reference. Guess I need to be more specific even though the reply was directly to SMK who made the Tahoe reference in the first place. 

 

Why the pick ups are different is beyond silly to me. 

 

 

IMG_4538.PNG

IMG_4537.PNG

I took no issue with what you said. We are good!

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surreal1272    770
28 minutes ago, hyperv6 said:

I took no issue with what you said. We are good!

No worries. I realized that I didn't clarify my remark which is why I followed up with a screenshot of the Denali in question. It's all good. 

 

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I swear to God I had the first post in this thread.. it even shows up in my profile.. but for some reason it's not present.. anyway..

I tried to get this across to Smk awhile ago. Gotta wonder why the new Avista brand is coming.... Wait... No U don't. Seriously. Imagine Cadillac getting highest ATPs in its segment... GMC/Denali.. Buick/Avista.. these are the things that will prove to be the reasons why GM is now becoming a Profit maker on the cusp of VW/AUDI/Porsche. GM.. could make even more of of GMC.. that's the other brand that idiots back in 2009 said should go along with Buick.. They could offer, along with Denali.. a "Hummer" Trim. But have 3 specific models that look mysteriously like the H3, H3T and Hx concept.. all based off the Canyon/Colorado

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smk4565    351
3 hours ago, ccap41 said:

Blah Blah Blah Mercedes is God blah blah blah.

Same powertrain as the peasant S550? Weak-ass-sauce. I know if I'm spending 170k on a car it better not have the same engine as the 96k car. Heck, If I'm spending 170k on my Maybach I sure as hell don't want an S600 to pull up next to me and make me look stupid. S550 Maybach? WTF is that peasant crap all about? Why would Mercedes ever put such a name matched to the weak-ass, peasant, poor people version of the S Class? Mercedes needs to get their heads out of their asses and build some quality vehicles that make sense.

"Hi, I own a 449hp Maybach!"

"Your sh!t is weak. My 523hp/612tq will make you look stoooopid."

That's a $70,000 premium to not even get a different engine or power bump. Pathetic.

If it makes you feel better, the 2018 S550 will have 476 hp.  

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smk4565    351
1 hour ago, Cmicasa the Great said:

I swear to God I had the first post in this thread.. it even shows up in my profile.. but for some reason it's not present.. anyway..

I tried to get this across to Smk awhile ago. Gotta wonder why the new Avista brand is coming.... Wait... No U don't. Seriously. Imagine Cadillac getting highest ATPs in its segment... GMC/Denali.. Buick/Avista.. these are the things that will prove to be the reasons why GM is now becoming a Profit maker on the cusp of VW/AUDI/Porsche. GM.. could make even more of of GMC.. that's the other brand that idiots back in 2009 said should go along with Buick.. They could offer, along with Denali.. a "Hummer" Trim. But have 3 specific models that look mysteriously like the H3, H3T and Hx concept.. all based off the Canyon/Colorado

A Buick luxury trim doesn't make too much sense because that is what Cadillac is. Just like Chevy doesn't have a luxury Traverse because Buick builds one.   If Buick can charge $10,000 extra for an Avista trim Lacrosse more power to them.  They should do and take the money and run.  But look at the Reserve and Balck label Lincolns, they aren't really doing anything.

i think Cadillac would love to have higher trim cars and be able to option cars the way Porsche does, but I don't think they know how to get there.  $100,000 XT5's is a big reach but you can run a Porsche Macan to that price and their customers are happy to pay it.  Probably why Mercedes is so hell bent on going after Porsche.

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hyperv6    774

I think the bigger picture here is that this shows GM has tapped into an Emotional aspect of the customer. 

We have gone for many years where so many models have been sold on Quality, MPG, Utility and Price. With the Denali it is like the old days where if you want the best then you pay more for the best and the customer gets satisfaction in owning the top models that appear a little better. 

Now for us here we know all the RPO codes and options and we know that for what you pay more for here you really are getting shafted in many of these models. But most buyers are buying on emotion and satisfaction of how the vehicle reflects on them. This is a seriously hard thing to do as BMW and others have done it for year. No one needs a BMW and few ever drive one in anger but to have one give that self reflection that makes them feel better about their vehicle and how it reflects on them. 

This is what the main line of Cadillac needs to accomplish again. It used to be just owning a Cadillac meant you were a real mover and shaker in town. It meant success and you had it made.

As time went buy they went more mass market and that led to you just had a good paying job and were not the company owner. The owners then started to look for products that their employees could not own to have what not everyone could have, 

I would love to see GM get Cadillac not just in V form gain this edge again. In their case it is not just a special version of a model but a special model and not something everyone can own or have. Make it so it defines the owner emotionally and image wise to where it is a statement of being conceptional. You can still let the CUV models carry the volume as they appear to be accepted in larger numbers but the cars need to be special. 

But really study the Denali and the average buyer of it and you will see the key to profits with any model. 

This is like selling coffee. You can sell a cup like MC Donald's for less than a buck and sell a lot of it. Or you can take that same coffee add a little spice and whip cream and then foam it up and get $5 bucks for it. The Coffee is not really any better and your additions are just more dressing of the same old product. but yet people like it and are willing to pay much more with so little investment. 

The Denali is just pure genius.

Now  with that said it will work at Buick too. Now as for Chevy it is limited as Chevy just is not seen as being exlusive or special. Same with Toyota or even Honda. They are value volume brands and while you can offer a better model like a LTZ  anything higher is going to be limited. Ford has found that out with the Platinum line as sales have not been great and it was intended to replace Lincoln.

I expect Cadillac to start to offer some really special things once the new product arrive. I expect more custom offerings too. I see JDN returning more to the Cadillac of old like in the 30's where they tailored their product to those willing to pay more.  

The SUV and CUV will see some but they will remain more main stream as they can get away with it like the volume. 

It is like Porsche. A 911 owner does not want to see one in every parking lot. But a Cayenne owner could care less if there are ten of these in the country clubs parking lot. If anything he will feel like he belongs to the group.

I hope this makes sense.

While I know we all like to see special engineering and even things like coupes and wagons added to the mix. They just do not return the profits like a little chrome and trim does. Even engine changes account for high EPA testing that is hard to make back and even in some cases fuel system changes that need crash tested.  

52 minutes ago, smk4565 said:

A Buick luxury trim doesn't make too much sense because that is what Cadillac is. Just like Chevy doesn't have a luxury Traverse because Buick builds one.   If Buick can charge $10,000 extra for an Avista trim Lacrosse more power to them.  They should do and take the money and run.  But look at the Reserve and Balck label Lincolns, they aren't really doing anything.

i think Cadillac would love to have higher trim cars and be able to option cars the way Porsche does, but I don't think they know how to get there.  $100,000 XT5's is a big reach but you can run a Porsche Macan to that price and their customers are happy to pay it.  Probably why Mercedes is so hell bent on going after Porsche.

The Denali does not make sense either but it makes dollars. 

Do not try to rationalize emotions and image building of a customer. You never will make sense of it but you can make money from it. 

Avista will make a lot of money as it will be just like the Denali. For about $500 per unit additional content  they can sell it for $4,000 more. 

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3 hours ago, smk4565 said:

A Buick luxury trim doesn't make too much sense because that is what Cadillac is. Just like Chevy doesn't have a luxury Traverse because Buick builds one.   If Buick can charge $10,000 extra for an Avista trim Lacrosse more power to them.  They should do and take the money and run.  But look at the Reserve and Balck label Lincolns, they aren't really doing anything.

i think Cadillac would love to have higher trim cars and be able to option cars the way Porsche does, but I don't think they know how to get there.  $100,000 XT5's is a big reach but you can run a Porsche Macan to that price and their customers are happy to pay it.  Probably why Mercedes is so hell bent on going after Porsche.

Cadillac is a different story.. but the Chevy Brand does have higher trims already. The HIGH COUNTRY is an example on one particular vehicle. Buick having Avista has NOTHING to do with Cadillac. These brands should operate on their own.. and like the article states.. GMC could be a company on its own in the Fortune 150.. Why can't Buick selling over 1.1 Million units up to Sept 2016???Meaning it probably hit 1.3, 1.4 full year numbers, so why not capitalize on it?

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smk4565    351

Perhaps in China, the Avista line will have more play and drive some profit there.  But GM has Cadillac for a reason.  If you want more than a Buick, GMC, Corvette or whatever, you go to Cadillac.  GM in the past 10 years has been trying to push Corvette, Buick and GMC up market, Cadillac hasn't made a move.  The thought of a $100,000 XT5 would be laughable, it is more than an Escalade, but there are competitors selling small and mid-size crossovers at that price point.   If Cadillac doesn't get up there, and sits in the $35-70k range, I don't really see the point of pushing Buick and GMC up market on top of them.

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balthazar    2,004

In 2007 the Escalade started at $57K. Now it's $74K - $110K.

In 2006 the CTS started at $30K. Now it's $46K-$110K.

Cadillac has made major moves while you were sleeping.
 

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smk4565    351
9 hours ago, balthazar said:

In 2007 the Escalade started at $57K. Now it's $74K - $110K.

In 2006 the CTS started at $30K. Now it's $46K-$110K.

Cadillac has made major moves while you were sleeping.
 

Escalade has moved up, but CTS moved up only because it replaced the STS.  Plus you have inflation.

In 2006 an SRX was $36,270, STS $41,020, DTS $41,195  Adjusted for inflation the SRX is $44,495, STS would be $50,322, and DTS would be $50,537.  The XT5, CTS, and XTS are cheaper now compared to the SRX, STS, and DTS then.  They are still basically selling cars in the same market space as they were 10 years ago.  

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      Crossover and trucks account for 80 percent of sales for best monthly mix ever July incentive spending as a percentage of ATP below industry average, driving ATPs up nearly $1,000 Commercial sales up 40 percent for best July since 2007 Lowest daily rental sales mix of any full-line automaker DETROIT — General Motors (NYSE: GM) today reported July U.S. retail sales of 202,220 vehicles, down about 14 percent from strong sales in July 2016. In July, GM’s crossovers and trucks account for 80 percent of sales for the company’s best monthly mix ever.
      While the U.S. market continues to moderate, sales of GM’s newest crossovers were strong in July:
      Chevrolet Equinox - up 4 percent for its best July ever. Chevrolet Bolt EV – 1,832 Bolts were sold in July for the best month ever. August will be the first month the Bolt EV is available on a national basis. GMC Acadia - up 30 percent for its best July ever. Buick Envision - up 89 percent for its best July ever. Cadillac XT5 - up 6 percent for its best July ever. GM’s July incentive spending as a percentage of average transaction prices (ATP) was 11.5 percent, more than 1 full percentage point below the industry average, and 0.5 percentage points below GM’s 2016 calendar year average. Some of GM’s competitors, without strong truck and crossover businesses, are offering significantly higher incentives across their entire portfolios, according to J.D. Power PIN estimates.
      In addition, GM’s ATPs were about $36,000, up nearly $1,000 from July 2016.
      “We have strategically decided to reduce car production rather than increase incentive spending or dump vehicles into daily rental fleets, like some of our competitors,” said Kurt McNeil, U.S. vice president of Sales Operations.  “We are working hard to protect the residual values of our new products and growing quality retail and commercial sales, and July’s ATPs reflect that discipline.”
      GM’s U.S. commercial vehicles sales were up 40 percent from last July, the best July since 2007, led by strong large van sales (up 89 percent), small utilities (up 61 percent) and large pickup sales (up 21 percent).  Year to date, GM commercial sales are up 11 percent. U.S. daily rental sales were down more than 11,200 vehicles or 81 percent in July, as planned. In July, GM’s daily rental sales accounted for only 1 percent of GM’s total sales.  GM continues to have the lowest U.S. rental mix of any full-line automaker at about 7 percent of total sales year to date.    
      GM’s July total sales were 226,107 vehicles, down about 15 percent from strong levels last year.
      “Changing customer tastes have driven us to refocus our business on higher margin, faster growing segments, like the crossover segments. We are launching the most all-new crossovers in our history to take full advantage of the changes occurring in the U.S. marketplace,” added McNeil. “Our newest crossovers are performing very well in the marketplace and we’ll build on that momentum with the all-new Chevrolet Traverse, GMC Terrain, Buick Enclave and the introduction of the Regal TourX through the second half of 2017.”
      By the end of 2017, GM will offer customers the U.S. industry’s newest and broadest lineup of crossovers.
      “U.S. auto sales continue to moderate from last year’s record pace, but key U.S. economic fundamentals remain supportive of strong vehicle sales,” said Mustafa Mohatarem, GM chief economist. “Under the current economic conditions, we anticipate the second half of 2017 will be much stronger than the first half.”
      July Brand Retail Highlights (vs. July 2016 unless noted)       
      Chevrolet
      Colorado was up 22 percent. Both Camaro and Cruze were up slightly. Crossovers best year to date: Equinox, Traverse and Trax. Volt has best year to date. Volt and Bolt EV July sales combined for more than 3,300 deliveries. Silverado LD double cab was up 4 percent. Buick
      Best year to date retail sales since 2005, up 2 percent. July ATPs are highest since December 2015. SUV mix is highest ever at 85 percent. GMC
      ATPs are the highest ever, up 8 percent from last July. Sierra boasts the highest ATPs in the full-size pickup segment. Sierra HDs up 6 percent in July and year to date up 9 percent, the best in a decade Yukon up 4 percent. Yukon had its best July since 2007. Cadillac
      CT6 up 7 percent. Year to date, XT5 retail sales are up 10 percent vs. combined SRX and XT5 sales a year ago. July ATPs up more than $3,000 and lead the luxury market and more than $3,000 higher than its closest competitor. Guidance on U.S. Vehicle Inventory Levels
      We anticipate we will end 2017 at or below last year’s level, with fewer cars and more trucks, crossovers and utilities in the mix. Pickup, crossovers and utility sales, GM’s strength, are expected to be stronger in the second half of 2017 vs. the first half of the year. We continue to monitor the marketplace and will make additional production adjustments if needed.
    • By William Maley
      Strong Lineup of Crossovers and Utilities Drove GM's U.S. June Sales
      Crossover retail sales up 23 percent on strength of Equinox Buick U.S. retail sales up 6 percent Commercial sales up 36 percent, for best June since 2006 Lowest daily rental sales mix of any full-line automaker DETROIT — General Motors (NYSE: GM) today reported June U.S. retail sales of 202,908 vehicles, down about 3 percent from the same period last year. However, in the fastest growing U.S. retail market segment, GM’s crossover retail sales were up 23 percent, due largely to the strength of Chevrolet Equinox, which were up 36 percent.  Buick’s U.S. retail sales were up 6 percent. 
      GM’s U.S. Commercial sales were up 36 percent, for its best June since 2006.  Commercial and Government sales were 77 percent of GM’s fleet sales for the month.  U.S. daily rental sales were down nearly 11,000 vehicles or 54 percent in June, as planned.  
      GM’s June total sales were 243,155 vehicles, down about 5 percent from the same period last year.
      GM’s mid crossovers, compact crossovers and utilities were up a combined 22 percent on a U.S. retail sales basis compared to the same period last year. This strong performance was carried throughout the Chevrolet, Buick, GMC and Cadillac lineups:
      Chevrolet Suburban – up 9 percent Chevrolet Tahoe – up 15 percent Chevrolet Equinox - up 36 percent Chevrolet Traverse – up 71 percent Chevrolet Bolt EV – delivered 1,425 vehicles. Buick Enclave –up 10 percent Buick Encore – up 8 percent Buick Envision - up 101 percent GMC Acadia – up 25 percent Cadillac Escalade – up 14 percent Cadillac XT5 – up 29 percent General Motors is in the midst of launching the most all-new crossover offerings into the U.S. market in its history. 
      “Our crossover renaissance began last year with the introduction of the all-new GMC Acadia and Cadillac XT5, and continued this year with the Chevrolet Bolt EV and Equinox,” said Kurt McNeil, U.S. vice president of Sales Operations. “The all-new Equinox is off to a strong start and we will leverage that momentum as we introduce four additional crossovers in the second half of 2017.”
      By the end of 2017, GM will offer customers the U.S. industry’s newest and broadest lineup of crossovers.
      “U.S. total sales are moderating due to an industry-wide pull-back in daily rental sales, but key U.S. economic fundamentals clearly remain positive,” said Mustafa Mohatarem, GM chief economist. “Under the current economic conditions, we anticipate U.S. retail vehicle sales will remain strong for the foreseeable future.”
      June Business Highlights (vs. June 2016)
      According to J.D Power PIN estimates, GM’s incentive spending as a percentage of average transaction prices (ATP) was 12.0 percent in June, equal to our 2016 calendar year average, and lower than any domestic and many Asian competitors. ATPs were $35,657, up nearly $400 per vehicle. First Half Highlights (vs. First Half 2016)
      GM’s U.S. retail sales are on pace with last year’s performance. Q2 incentive spend was about 12 percent, down two full percentage points from Q1. Q2 ATPs are up about $800 over Q1, due to a higher truck/crossover mix and lower incentives. Crossover retail sales were up 23 percent, the highest first half in GM history. Buick’s U.S. retail sales were up 8 percent. Commercial sales were up 8 percent, in a segment that’s down 5 percent. Government sales were up 1 percent, in a segment that’s down 9 percent. Daily rental sales were down nearly 31,000 vehicles or 21 percent. Daily rental sales mix was in a range of about 8 percent, the lowest among full-line automakers in the U.S. industry. Combined XT5 and SRX sales are up 18 percent year to date, the highest first half for Cadillac crossovers. Best Cruze retail sales since 2014. Best Volt retail sales in history. Best Colorado retail sales since 2005. Best Traverse retail sales in history. Best Acadia retail sales in history. From an industry standpoint, GM expects the second half of 2017 will be stronger than the first half.  Pickup and utility sales, GM’s strength, are expected to be stronger in the second half of the year.
      June Brand Retail Highlights (vs. 2016)                              

      Chevrolet
      Corvette and Cruze were up 4 percent and 3 percent, respectively. Colorado was up 3 percent. Equinox had its best June ever. Crossover sales were up 42 percent. Silverado total sales are up 2 percent and retail sales are up 1 percent. Best Silverado month of the year for total sales. Buick
      Lacrosse was up 39 percent. Crossover sales were up 21 percent. GMC
      ATPs were up $1,067 to $44,539. Best Denali month ever – over 31 percent of retail sales. Cadillac
      CT6 was up 4 percent. ATPs were up $2,300 to $56,301. Guidance on U.S. Vehicle Inventory Levels
      We anticipate we will end 2017 with approximately the same day supply of vehicles as we did at the end of 2016 with fewer cars and more trucks and crossovers in the mix. Pickup and utility sales, GM’s strength, are expected to be stronger in the second half of the year. We will continue to monitor the marketplace and will make additional production adjustments if needed.
    • By William Maley
      It is quite amazing how in the past few years, the humble heavy-duty pickup has morphed into a prized luxury vehicle. You might think that I am crazy for writing this, but consider how in the few years, truck manufacturers have been tailoring their models to appeal to a new audience. From new trim levels that focus primarily on luxury to new features that one would expect to find in an expensive sedan such as massaging front seats and high-quality leather. That doesn’t mean these luxury pickups have forgotten their main priority; to shoulder the weight of the world in terms of hauling and towing.
      Recently, we spent a week in the GMC Sierra Denali 2500HD and Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn to get a reading on where luxury heavy-duty trucks currently stand.
      Exterior
      Neither one of these trucks has gone through any significant changes since we last reviewed them. The 2500HD comes with a new hood scoop if you option the Duramax V8 turbodiesel, while certain Ram models such as our tester come with a new grille insert featuring “RAM”.
      The two trucks could not be more different in terms of design elements. The Denali is more modern with a mesh grille, square headlights with LED strands, and a seemingly endless amount of chrome trim. We've found ourselves wondering if we could blind anyone while driving if the sun hit the Denali in just the right way. Meanwhile, the Laramie Longhorn feels right at home on a farm or ranch. The two-tone paint scheme of brown and beige really sets off the Ram 2500, along with the meaty 18-inch chrome wheels. The ‘RAM’ grille is a bit much, but at least it doesn’t come with large chrome lettering on the tailgate that can be reportedly seen from space. Our test truck came with Ram Box storage system. We like the additional storage and ability for the boxes to be locked, but it also means the bed is slightly narrower than a truck without it.
      Interior
      At one time, Sierra Denali was considered the pinnacle of luxury for pickup trucks. But now it pales in comparison to the likes the Ram and Ford. The Sierra Denali has the basics such as leather upholstery and stitching on the dash. But that’s about it as there isn’t the option of wood or aluminum trim. Instead, you get painted and faux-chrome like on other Sierra models. A lack of special touches hurt the Denali as well. It would be nice if there was some exclusive feature for the Denali such as a premium audio system or massaging seats. 
      On the upside, the dashboard is laid out in a logical fashion and controls are within easy reach. Both rows of seats provide excellent support for long trips and plenty of space for most passengers. The Sierra also earns points for having numerous USB ports. Getting in and out of the Sierra 2500HD is slightly easier than the Ram 2500 as the cab height is slightly lower.
      Ram does a better a job in terms of luxury appointments. The Laramie Longhorn features what Ram calls ‘Natura Plus’ leather that feels quite nice when you run your hand across it. Real wood is used on the steering wheel and center stack trim to set it apart from other trims. Rear seat passengers will like the availability of heated seats, something not available on the Denali. There are other touches such as different background for the gauge package and seat pockets that are designed to look like saddle bags. It might look ridiculous to some, but Ram deserves some credit for trying to stand out.
      Like the Sierra, Ram has a well-laid out dashboard with controls in the place you would expect. Seats aren’t as comfortable as the Sierra, but the 2500 does match it in terms of interior space. The Ram 2500 is somewhat harder to get in as feel like to you have to take a running leap, despite there being entry rails and grab handles. It is also quite the drop when getting out.
      Technology
      If there is an area that the Sierra leapfrogs the Ram, it is in technology. The Denali comes with an eight-inch screen featuring GMC’s Intellilink system as standard. This system has been improving since we first tried it a few years ago with improved performance and better stability. The only thing that needs to fixed is the slow response of the navigation system when first launched. Using the system is easy thanks to a simple interface and physical buttons underneath the screen. The addition of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto give Intellilink more of an edge over other systems.
      Ram’s UConnect system was for a time considered one of the best systems thanks to a large screen and interface that offers large touchscreen buttons. It still retains these plus points, but it looks quite dated to the system found in the Sierra. A lot of this comes down to the interface which hasn’t changed since UConnect was launched a few years ago. There is a new version of UConnect that FCA has implemented into various models such as the Pacifica and the 2017 Dodge Charger that brings an updated look along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Sadly, the Ram 2500 misses out on this and it is unclear whether it will get in this current-generation or in a redesign.
      Performance
      Both trucks came with their respective optional diesel engines. For the Sierra Denali 2500HD, it is an updated 6.6L Duramax turbodiesel V8 offering 445 horsepower and 910 pound-feet of torque. Ram sticks with 6.7L Cummins turbodiesel inline-six with 370 horsepower and 800 pound-feet of torque. Both engines come paired with six-speed automatic transmissions, but the Ram is available with a six-speed manual.
      On paper, the Sierra Denali 2500HD smokes the Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn and this plays out in the real world as well. The Duramax gets the Sierra 2500HD up to speed at a surprising rate. It feels more like a muscle car thanks to an abundance of low-end torque and being the lightest truck in the class - 6,532 lbs for a 4WD crew cab and 6’6” box vs. 7,625 lbs for the Ram 2500 when similarly equipped. A lot of these performance gains come from changes GM made to the Duramax V8 for 2017 with most of the engine’s internals being replaced and new cool air system with a hood vent. Aside from increased power, the changes also affect how quiet this engine is. Start the engine up and you’ll faintly hear the diesel clatter from inside. 
      The 6.7L Cummins cannot match the Duramax in outright performance. It takes about a second or two longer to hit the same speed as the Duramax. The large deficit in power and being slightly heavier than the Sierra 2500HD are the main reasons as to why. Not helping matters is the Cummins being quite louder than Duramax. At idle, it sounds like a semi-truck.
      Fuel Economy
      Neither truck is rated by the EPA as they're exempted from testing due to their heavy weight. In our week-long evaluation, both trucks returned an average of 15 mpg in mostly city driving.
      Towing
      Ram shines here as the maximum tow rating for our particular configuration (crew cab, 6’6” bed, and 4WD) comes in 17,200 lbs. GMC comes up short at 13,000 lbs in the same configuration. 
      Ride and Handling
      While the Sierra Denali 2500HD may trail the Ram in terms of towing, it runs away when it comes to the ride. Despite sticking with a set leaf-springs in the rear, the Sierra 2500HD does a better job smoothing out bumps than the Ram’s coil-spring setup when the beds are empty. Fill them up and it becomes a dead heat in terms of ride quality. Ram does claw some points back as body motions are controlled better when turning and the steering doesn’t wander as much when driven on the highway.
      Noise isolation goes to the GMC as there has been a fair amount of work done on adding more sound insulation to the truck, along with the improvements made to the engine.
      Value
      Both of these trucks are expensive propositions. The Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn comes in at $73,310 as equipped and the Sierra Denali 2500HD is slightly less at $70,540. The key reason for the high prices are the optional diesel engines - $8,700 for the Ram and $9,550 for the Sierra. Considering how much power you get, we give this to Sierra by a hair.
      Verdict
      If we consider these two trucks as luxury models, then we would rank the Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn ahead of the Sierra Denali. It makes passengers feel special with various touches such as the unique leather for the trim and heated rear seats. But both trucks pale in comparison to all-new Ford F-Series Super Duty that brings massaging seats and impressive material qualities in its top trim.
      But when it comes to heavy-duty truck things, the GMC Sierra Denali stands above. While the Ram 2500 may have the more impressive towing numbers, the Sierra fights back with the more powerful diesel engine, better NVH containment, and a more comfortable ride. Hence why it takes this comparison test by a very narrow margin.
      Disclaimer: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and General Motors Provided the trucks, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: GMC
      Model: Sierra 2500HD
      Trim: Denali
      Engine: 6.6L Duramax Turbodiesel V8
      Driveline: Allison Six-Speed Automatic, Four-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 445 @ 2,800
      Torque @ RPM: 910 @ 1,600
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - N/A
      Curb Weight: 6,532 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Flint, MI
      Base Price: $58,495
      As Tested Price: $70,540 (Includes $1,195.00 Destination Charge and $750.00 Duramax Plus Package Discount)
      Options:
      Duramax Plus Package - $9,550.00
      Power Sunroof - $995.00
      Dark Slate Metallic - $395.00
      5th Wheel/Gooseneck Trailer Hi Tch Prep Package - $370.00
      Off-Road Suspension Package - $180.00
      Roof Marker Lamps - $55.00
      Radiator Cover - $55.00
      Year: 2017
      Make: Ram
      Model: 2500
      Trim: Laramie Longhorn
      Engine: 6.7L Cummins Turbodiesel Inline-Six
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Four-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 370 @ 2,800 
      Torque @ RPM: 800 @ 1,600
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - N/A
      Curb Weight: 7,625 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Saltillo, Mexico
      Base Price: $57,575
      As Tested Price: $73,310 (Includes $1,395 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      6.7L Cummins Turbodiesel Inline-Six - $8,700.00
      RamBox Cargo Management System - $1,295.00
      Power Sunroof - $1,095.00
      Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover - $545.00
      Convenience Group - $395.00
      Wheel to Wheel Side Steps - $395.00
      Center High-Mount Stop Lamp w/Cargo View Camera - $345.00
      LT275/70R18E OWL On/Off-Road Tires - $245.00
      Off-Road Package - $200.00
      Keyless Enter n' Go - $195.00
      Power Chrome Trailer Tow Mirrors w/Power Fold Away - $195.00
      Rear Window Defroster - $195.00
      Clearance Lamps - $95.00

      View full article
    • By William Maley
      It is quite amazing how in the past few years, the humble heavy-duty pickup has morphed into a prized luxury vehicle. You might think that I am crazy for writing this, but consider how in the few years, truck manufacturers have been tailoring their models to appeal to a new audience. From new trim levels that focus primarily on luxury to new features that one would expect to find in an expensive sedan such as massaging front seats and high-quality leather. That doesn’t mean these luxury pickups have forgotten their main priority; to shoulder the weight of the world in terms of hauling and towing.
      Recently, we spent a week in the GMC Sierra Denali 2500HD and Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn to get a reading on where luxury heavy-duty trucks currently stand.
      Exterior
      Neither one of these trucks has gone through any significant changes since we last reviewed them. The 2500HD comes with a new hood scoop if you option the Duramax V8 turbodiesel, while certain Ram models such as our tester come with a new grille insert featuring “RAM”.
      The two trucks could not be more different in terms of design elements. The Denali is more modern with a mesh grille, square headlights with LED strands, and a seemingly endless amount of chrome trim. We've found ourselves wondering if we could blind anyone while driving if the sun hit the Denali in just the right way. Meanwhile, the Laramie Longhorn feels right at home on a farm or ranch. The two-tone paint scheme of brown and beige really sets off the Ram 2500, along with the meaty 18-inch chrome wheels. The ‘RAM’ grille is a bit much, but at least it doesn’t come with large chrome lettering on the tailgate that can be reportedly seen from space. Our test truck came with Ram Box storage system. We like the additional storage and ability for the boxes to be locked, but it also means the bed is slightly narrower than a truck without it.
      Interior
      At one time, Sierra Denali was considered the pinnacle of luxury for pickup trucks. But now it pales in comparison to the likes the Ram and Ford. The Sierra Denali has the basics such as leather upholstery and stitching on the dash. But that’s about it as there isn’t the option of wood or aluminum trim. Instead, you get painted and faux-chrome like on other Sierra models. A lack of special touches hurt the Denali as well. It would be nice if there was some exclusive feature for the Denali such as a premium audio system or massaging seats. 
      On the upside, the dashboard is laid out in a logical fashion and controls are within easy reach. Both rows of seats provide excellent support for long trips and plenty of space for most passengers. The Sierra also earns points for having numerous USB ports. Getting in and out of the Sierra 2500HD is slightly easier than the Ram 2500 as the cab height is slightly lower.
      Ram does a better a job in terms of luxury appointments. The Laramie Longhorn features what Ram calls ‘Natura Plus’ leather that feels quite nice when you run your hand across it. Real wood is used on the steering wheel and center stack trim to set it apart from other trims. Rear seat passengers will like the availability of heated seats, something not available on the Denali. There are other touches such as different background for the gauge package and seat pockets that are designed to look like saddle bags. It might look ridiculous to some, but Ram deserves some credit for trying to stand out.
      Like the Sierra, Ram has a well-laid out dashboard with controls in the place you would expect. Seats aren’t as comfortable as the Sierra, but the 2500 does match it in terms of interior space. The Ram 2500 is somewhat harder to get in as feel like to you have to take a running leap, despite there being entry rails and grab handles. It is also quite the drop when getting out.
      Technology
      If there is an area that the Sierra leapfrogs the Ram, it is in technology. The Denali comes with an eight-inch screen featuring GMC’s Intellilink system as standard. This system has been improving since we first tried it a few years ago with improved performance and better stability. The only thing that needs to fixed is the slow response of the navigation system when first launched. Using the system is easy thanks to a simple interface and physical buttons underneath the screen. The addition of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto give Intellilink more of an edge over other systems.
      Ram’s UConnect system was for a time considered one of the best systems thanks to a large screen and interface that offers large touchscreen buttons. It still retains these plus points, but it looks quite dated to the system found in the Sierra. A lot of this comes down to the interface which hasn’t changed since UConnect was launched a few years ago. There is a new version of UConnect that FCA has implemented into various models such as the Pacifica and the 2017 Dodge Charger that brings an updated look along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Sadly, the Ram 2500 misses out on this and it is unclear whether it will get in this current-generation or in a redesign.
      Performance
      Both trucks came with their respective optional diesel engines. For the Sierra Denali 2500HD, it is an updated 6.6L Duramax turbodiesel V8 offering 445 horsepower and 910 pound-feet of torque. Ram sticks with 6.7L Cummins turbodiesel inline-six with 370 horsepower and 800 pound-feet of torque. Both engines come paired with six-speed automatic transmissions, but the Ram is available with a six-speed manual.
      On paper, the Sierra Denali 2500HD smokes the Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn and this plays out in the real world as well. The Duramax gets the Sierra 2500HD up to speed at a surprising rate. It feels more like a muscle car thanks to an abundance of low-end torque and being the lightest truck in the class - 6,532 lbs for a 4WD crew cab and 6’6” box vs. 7,625 lbs for the Ram 2500 when similarly equipped. A lot of these performance gains come from changes GM made to the Duramax V8 for 2017 with most of the engine’s internals being replaced and new cool air system with a hood vent. Aside from increased power, the changes also affect how quiet this engine is. Start the engine up and you’ll faintly hear the diesel clatter from inside. 
      The 6.7L Cummins cannot match the Duramax in outright performance. It takes about a second or two longer to hit the same speed as the Duramax. The large deficit in power and being slightly heavier than the Sierra 2500HD are the main reasons as to why. Not helping matters is the Cummins being quite louder than Duramax. At idle, it sounds like a semi-truck.
      Fuel Economy
      Neither truck is rated by the EPA as they're exempted from testing due to their heavy weight. In our week-long evaluation, both trucks returned an average of 15 mpg in mostly city driving.
      Towing
      Ram shines here as the maximum tow rating for our particular configuration (crew cab, 6’6” bed, and 4WD) comes in 17,200 lbs. GMC comes up short at 13,000 lbs in the same configuration. 
      Ride and Handling
      While the Sierra Denali 2500HD may trail the Ram in terms of towing, it runs away when it comes to the ride. Despite sticking with a set leaf-springs in the rear, the Sierra 2500HD does a better job smoothing out bumps than the Ram’s coil-spring setup when the beds are empty. Fill them up and it becomes a dead heat in terms of ride quality. Ram does claw some points back as body motions are controlled better when turning and the steering doesn’t wander as much when driven on the highway.
      Noise isolation goes to the GMC as there has been a fair amount of work done on adding more sound insulation to the truck, along with the improvements made to the engine.
      Value
      Both of these trucks are expensive propositions. The Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn comes in at $73,310 as equipped and the Sierra Denali 2500HD is slightly less at $70,540. The key reason for the high prices are the optional diesel engines - $8,700 for the Ram and $9,550 for the Sierra. Considering how much power you get, we give this to Sierra by a hair.
      Verdict
      If we consider these two trucks as luxury models, then we would rank the Ram 2500 Laramie Longhorn ahead of the Sierra Denali. It makes passengers feel special with various touches such as the unique leather for the trim and heated rear seats. But both trucks pale in comparison to all-new Ford F-Series Super Duty that brings massaging seats and impressive material qualities in its top trim.
      But when it comes to heavy-duty truck things, the GMC Sierra Denali stands above. While the Ram 2500 may have the more impressive towing numbers, the Sierra fights back with the more powerful diesel engine, better NVH containment, and a more comfortable ride. Hence why it takes this comparison test by a very narrow margin.
      Disclaimer: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and General Motors Provided the trucks, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas
      Year: 2017
      Make: GMC
      Model: Sierra 2500HD
      Trim: Denali
      Engine: 6.6L Duramax Turbodiesel V8
      Driveline: Allison Six-Speed Automatic, Four-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 445 @ 2,800
      Torque @ RPM: 910 @ 1,600
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - N/A
      Curb Weight: 6,532 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Flint, MI
      Base Price: $58,495
      As Tested Price: $70,540 (Includes $1,195.00 Destination Charge and $750.00 Duramax Plus Package Discount)
      Options:
      Duramax Plus Package - $9,550.00
      Power Sunroof - $995.00
      Dark Slate Metallic - $395.00
      5th Wheel/Gooseneck Trailer Hi Tch Prep Package - $370.00
      Off-Road Suspension Package - $180.00
      Roof Marker Lamps - $55.00
      Radiator Cover - $55.00
      Year: 2017
      Make: Ram
      Model: 2500
      Trim: Laramie Longhorn
      Engine: 6.7L Cummins Turbodiesel Inline-Six
      Driveline: Six-Speed Automatic, Four-Wheel Drive
      Horsepower @ RPM: 370 @ 2,800 
      Torque @ RPM: 800 @ 1,600
      Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - N/A
      Curb Weight: 7,625 lbs
      Location of Manufacture: Saltillo, Mexico
      Base Price: $57,575
      As Tested Price: $73,310 (Includes $1,395 Destination Charge)
      Options:
      6.7L Cummins Turbodiesel Inline-Six - $8,700.00
      RamBox Cargo Management System - $1,295.00
      Power Sunroof - $1,095.00
      Tri-Fold Tonneau Cover - $545.00
      Convenience Group - $395.00
      Wheel to Wheel Side Steps - $395.00
      Center High-Mount Stop Lamp w/Cargo View Camera - $345.00
      LT275/70R18E OWL On/Off-Road Tires - $245.00
      Off-Road Package - $200.00
      Keyless Enter n' Go - $195.00
      Power Chrome Trailer Tow Mirrors w/Power Fold Away - $195.00
      Rear Window Defroster - $195.00
      Clearance Lamps - $95.00
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