Top 10 Pickup Truck News Stories of 2010

Top 10 Pickup Truck News Stories of 2010

With the books closed on 2010, here's a look back at the top 10 pickup truck news stories from last year.

No. 10: Toyota Implements New SAE Towing Standards Early

Contradicting a trend that's gained momentum in the past decade, Toyota reduced the maximum trailer-towing rating of the Tundra half-ton for 2011, in one case up to 1,100 pounds, after testing and certifying its trucks against a draft industry trailer-towing standard known as “Performance Requirements for Determining Tow Vehicle Gross Combination Weight Ratings and Trailer Weight Ratings,” or simply Society of Automotive Engineers standard J2807.

Other truck manufacturers are expected to follow by the 2013 model year.


No. 9: Hardcore Off-Road Pickup Trucks Jump into the Spotlight

After Ford and Ram Trucks reignited interest in the off-road segment in 2009, with the all-new Ford F-150 SVT Raptor SuperCab and a reskinned Ram 2500 Power Wagon, the hits kept coming in 2010.

In April, we broke the news about and then drove the Ram Runner, a Moparized version of the Ram 1500 built for tackling the desert at high speed. It featured a custom suspension and bodywork co-developed with Baja racer Kent Kroeker. Pre-runner enthusiasts will be able to purchase as a kit from local Mopar dealers this March.

In September, Ford confirmed it would build a family-friendly SuperCrew version of the Raptor with four full-size doors and a starting price of $44,315. It’s powered by Ford’s new 6.2-liter V-8 engine (which debuted in the 2010 Raptor) that's rated at 411 horsepower and 434 pounds-feet of torque.

In December, GMC revealed the diesel-powered Sierra All-Terrain HD Concept that found a niche in-between the Power Wagon and Raptor with a few new innovations that included front and rear jounce shocks and full underbody shielding. There’s no official word yet that GMC will build the All-Terrain HD but if it does, look for GM to partner with a second-stage manufacturer to turn this concept into reality.

Finally, a guest appearance by a Jeep pickup concept at a Chrysler dealer meeting and word from our sources strongly pointed to the possibility that Jeep might once again offer a factory rock crawler with a cargo box for American four-wheeling enthusiasts in the next few years. Rabid enthusiasm from readers and ourselves for the awesome Jeep Nukizer 715 that we drove in Moab only added fuel to the burning demand for a new pickup with a seven-slot grille.


No. 8: Hummer Hits the End of the Road

Despite efforts to save Hummer, General Motors announced in April that it was shuttering its dedicated off-road division after plans to sell the brand to China’s Sichuan Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Co. fell through.

The decision to kill Hummer also ended plans for a regular cab version of the Hummer H3T that could have boosted sales of the most capable midsize ground pounder in the segment.


No. 7: First Fuel Economy Standards Announced for Heavy-Duty Pickup Trucks

In October, the Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency announced the first-ever fuel economy and emissions standards for heavy-duty pickup trucks (and other large commercial vehicles). Between 2014 and 2018, the new HD pickup truck regulations could save 2.2 billion gallons of petroleum by improving efficiency 15 percent in diesel-powered trucks and 10 percent in gassers.

While it’s unclear what technologies will used to hit the new mileage targets, it’s virtually certain that prices for these already expensive rigs will rise to meet the regs.


No. 6: Heavy-Duty Diesel Engines and Emissions Rules Get Stronger

New EPA clean diesel standards that became law on January 1, 2010 forced GM and Ford to update their heavy-duty diesel powertrains to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions but also provided an opportunity to raise power levels and fuel economy.

GM introduced a reengineered version of its ten-year old 6.6-liter Duramax V-8 and Ford unveiled an all-new in-house-designed-and-built 6.7-liter Power Stroke V-8. Both competitors played a ferocious game of chicken, trading back and forth for the title of strongest diesel engine. Ford finally claimed best-in-class ratings of 400 horsepower and 800 pounds-feet of torque although our testing in the Rocky Mountains showed that performance is more than numbers on paper.

Meanwhile, Ram was able to rightfully boast that the proven Cummins oil burner in its HD pickups was able to beat both GM and Ford in emissions maintenance costs because the six-cylinder engine doesn’t require periodic refills of diesel exhaust fluid to scrub NOx.


No. 5: Three New Engines for the 2011 Ford F-150

Ford didn’t rest after overhauling the powertrain lineup in the 2011 F-Series Super Duty. The company also introduced three brand new engines for the F-150. They included two powerplants shared with the Ford Mustang – a 3.7-liter V-6 and 5.0-liter V-8 – and the first application of a twin turbo gasoline direct injection V-6 engine in a pickup truck, with the 3.5-liter EcoBoost mill.

The bottom line is the F-150 has the best combination of power, performance, capability and fuel economy amongst light-duty trucks and it's become a huge bogey for other manufacturers to hit if they want to stop the Ford F-Series juggernaut from picking up any more sales and market share.


No. 4: Truck Sales Turn Around

Pickup truck sales had continuously fallen since their peak in 2004 but 2010 was the year that trend finally turned around. Sales volumes reached 1.65 million units and truck share as a portion of all vehicle sales grew from approximately 10 percent in January to around 13 percent in December as the economy slowly recovered and buyers shrugged off higher fuel prices to replace aging trucks.

The Ford F-Series continued its reign as the best-selling truck in America for the 34th year in a row and the best-selling vehicle, car or truck, for the 29th year in a row.


No. 3: Toyota Recalls Its Trucks (Over and Over)

Toyota’s vehicle fleet and reputation suffered mightily from frequent recalls in 2010. Its trucks were no exception.

Late-model Tundra and Tacoma pickups became part of a massive maintenance campaign to repair sticky accelerator pedals, replace ill-fitting floormats and update throttle and brake software, all of which could contribute to possible instances of unintended acceleration. While that was happening, first-generation 2000-2003 Tundras in all fifty states became eligible to have rusting frames replaced.

That wasn’t the end. Last but not least, two Tundras were recalled for a problem with their front prop shafts.


No. 2: New Ford Ranger for Most of Earth Except the U.S. and Canada

Ford took the wraps off its all-new Ranger small truck, but if you want one in the U.S. or Canada — and we do — you're out of luck. The new Ranger, code named T6, will be built on a single, globally shared platform that's been designed in Australia and assembled in Thailand and South Africa.

Meanwhile, production of the U.S. Ranger is scheduled to end later this year. Its replacement? The 2011 Ford F-150 with its more fuel-efficient engine lineup.


No. 1: Mahindra’s Compact Diesel Pickup Truck Implodes Before Launch

It certainly wasn’t good looks that attracted our attention and built enthusiasm for Mahindra’s compact pickup. Instead, the ugly truckling promised a four-cylinder diesel engine – unique in the class – said to achieve at least 30 mpg and capable of hauling more than 2,500 pounds. Unfortunately, as the year progressed, the only thing that was uglier than Mahindra’s pickup was the bitter dispute that developed between the Indian manufacturer and its exclusive U.S. distributor, Global Vehicles USA.

It’s doubtful we’ll see this truck sold on these shores any time soon, if at all, but we'll remember Mahindra’s broken promises for a long time to come.


What's oxi going to say about number 3. Oxi?

Nothing thought out or rational. Of course he also not the exception.

Hopefully we will not have to hear anymore about Mahindra in 2011?

it really troubles me when people make comments about "sticky pedals" on tundra's. IT NEVER HAPPENED!!!!!!

they found a half dozen complaints of sticky pedals on 160-180k 05 avalons and recalled ALL pedals from that manufacturer to keep it from bein a problem in the future.

Furthermore the comment about people gettin mats stuck in their accelerator pedal.................. wow it dont take a rocket scientist to figure out that its YOUR FAULT if your mats get stuck in your pedals. how in the hell is that the manufacturers fault??

the only "software" updates are to add brake override technology and now makes toyota the ONLY full line manufacturer with this technology STANDARD for 2011.

and finally the "rust" for 00-03 trucks is because a manufacturer of spare tire carrier had crappy metal and it caused rust which toyota is taking care of. tell me ONE other manufacturer that has or would do that??

i would BET that the same manufacturer that built that piece for toyota probably made them for some of the other trucks out there too.......... but i dont see any recalls from them on the same issue but i'll bet if some people looked under their trucks they may just find the same problem under theirs as well.

the media is funny. they will twist the truth so far that its not even close to bein true. what a shame, because there are soooo many people out there dont know how to research to find the "truth" and will believe everything they see on tv

Oh Toyota !!

Why would anyone be foolish enough to purchase a Toyota product ? Failing engines ect....

My wife had a Toyota Tacoma (2007) and it was in the shop more than her previous Honda Ridgeline (tranny,timingbelt/waterpump all within 26,000k tipical honda issues)!!Toyota had a rear end/driveshaft change...and a cyl head replacement @13k !!

She finally got some sense and listened to me and now drives a real truck ! Built by an American manufacture !!And now 55k with 0 dealer /warranty repairs !! She now knows i know best...about vehicles at least !

@hemi lol,

Actually Toyota's problems with excellerator pedals happens with new low mile cars !! Toyota bought back cars that had this issue and even mechanics ect...had random excelleration with these vehicles,and they still cant find a fix !!! The most recent report is that there is an issue,and they dont know how to fix it/or what is causing it !!!

Furthermore,Toyota built crappy vehicles for along time now,and the only reason it was never brought up was because people are hell bent on saying everything negative about anything American !!

Toyota,millions of sludged engines from 1990-now.
Toyota/Lexus engine blows up when new,recall few months ago.
Sienna front doors pop open,bad welds.
Corolla side glass shatters randomly..recall 3 years ago.
Driveshafts trucks also tailgates crack in half,rusting frames..
Tundra engine camshafts blows up.
Transmission issues
Loss of brakes
Loss of steering on vehicles on/at highway speeds
Bad ball joints
Random excelleration...

Toyota,who could ask for anything more !!! They keep you busy in the service department !!!

I know the most common vehicle with low miles needing major repairs are Toyota products !!! I work on them every day !

Looks like the Toyota bashing has started in full force.

Do some research on recalls and problems involving domestic vehicles.

You guys post the same old, tired, worn out complaints. Over, and over, and over, and over again.


Why is it, it seems - the Dodge guys are the biggest Toyota bashers?

Does owning products at the bottom of the quality and reliability list means that you are compelled to attack those on the top of the list??

Mike Levine said it best, "The bottom line is the F-150 has the best combination of power, performance, capability and fuel economy amongst light-duty trucks and it's become a huge bogey for other manufacturers to hit if they want to stop the Ford F-Series juggernaut from picking up any more sales and market share."

ford best in light duty? that's why chevy sold more half tons then ford? maybe best for 2011 till chevy does some updateing in the motor department then they be back on top again and for gods sake put a soild front axle on youre hd's gm you could hold the title it's the only thing holding you back you out perfrom ford!!!

Mike, close this thread, I am tired of Toyota haters and the children on this forum!

Toyota's FABRICATED issues to help ailing GM that the federal government owns is widely known.

I am a 20 year Toyota owner and all I can say WHERE ARE ALL OF THESE PROBLEMS?

Jealousy of another auto make will not get you far in life.

Toyota is still strong, their share value is still more than the big 3 COMBINED and is still the premiere or should I say BENCHMARK when it comes to manufacturing an automobile.

How many times does the TPS system come up in your college of business studies? Toyota's sales are going to rebound this year and the SHEEP like some of you will go on to other HATRED things to talk about.

Glad I am not a SHEEP!

Toyota is still #1 in overall brand perception:

And if you add Toyota and Lexus together, damn nobody is near!

People are just taking the opportunity to attack Toyota to get even for some of the people that have attacked Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors for their decision to produce full-size pickup OFF-ROADING MACHINES (i.e. Ford F-150 S.V.T. Raptor, Ram Power Wagon, and G.M.C. Sierra All-Terrain HD).

"the media is funny. they will twist the truth so far that its not even close to bein true." Toyota salesman do the same thing not just the media!

Is this top 10 list in order of percieved importance or is it just a list?
I don't think Mahindra is the most important news story of 2010.


list ONE SINGLE TIME i've ever twisted the truth, or posted false information. just one??

the ONLY thing i've ever been guilty of on this site is pointing out falsifications that others have typed.

@ the goofy fool with the really long name... (no hemi lol!!! hemi rules!!)

you dont have to type so much, you could just type.......
"i dont like you because of your screen name." or maybe your just jealous because your 5.7 isnt up to the same task as the i-force 5.7. either way you embarrass yourself with endless and pointless bashing. if i wanted to i could filibuster 5 pages on here of all the recalls chrysler has had. please stop, my side is hurting from all the laughing at you i'm doing.

oh, and there have been ZERO proven cases of SUI. you know why? because it hasnt happened. maybe you should check into your own brand, i'm sure your drive by wire system is set up just like toyota's system is. why? because there ALL designed to do the same dang thing. its called a "hall effect sensor". your chances on ANY vehicle of ANY manufacturer having a problem with this is so small your probably 10 times as likely to be struck by lightning. IF you really think otherwise than you OBVIOUSLY have ZERO understanding of electronics. go turn your tv on now so you can soak up some more false information.

Here is a link on unintended accelleration.

The reported complaints (NOT ACTUAL PROVEN CASES) are interesting.
The incidence of Toyota complaints of SUI shot up dramatically after all of the media hype.
Young drivers and elderly drivers are more likely to allege SUI.

Toyota SUI complaints are similar to Volvo. That is around 12 cases per 100,000 units.

Ford - around 5.5 per 100,000

GMC - around 2 per 100,000

Chrysler - around 4 per 100,000

VW and Subaru around 8 per 100,000

Industry average - around 5.5 per 100,000

Every brand has documented cases of SUI.

These are complaints - not actual investigated cases.

Is it as bad as what the media or bashers say it is??

The data clearly shows that it isn't a big problem.

"list ONE SINGLE TIME i've ever twisted the truth, or posted false information. just one??"

Here's 4 and there's alot more. You are a terrible saleman and a Punk. The Turdra is not the best truck ever made and never will be. Your arguments with people only make you sound worse with every post. Calling people out and telling them how their truck sucks and the turdra is better makes you sound like a bit@h!!! There is enough information out there that will tell you toyota sucks and is no better than any other big company out there. So save your sales pitches and arguements for the lot! You should stick to your lowriders and leave the trucks to the ones that use them.

"your f series with 2 plastic brake caliper pistons in it." Posted by: hemi lol | Nov 7, 2010 9:06:23 AM

"its also funny you brought up spark plugs, you must have a 5.4 and blew the threads out of the block and had to put in a helicoil to fix it like so many other people" Posted by: hemi lol | Nov 8, 2010 10:40:25 PM

-" i know your truck better than you know it" Posted by: hemi lol | Nov 7, 2010 11:45:56 PM

"is MORE stable with a trapezoidal rear suspension" Posted by: hemi lol | Nov 7, 2010 1:02:20 AM

I'M DONE PUNK!!!!!!!

Sadly, we needed the Mahindra. Not that I would have rushed out and got one, but it would have been a reminder to the domestics that the rest of the world does fine with small diesel trucks for the average joe. Maybe, just maybe, it would pull them back from the trend of "bigger is better."

I want a diesel. To get one, I've got to get a 3/4 ton truck?


all of those comments were simply putting you in your place when you bashed the toyota. i dont bash anyone, just state the simple facts that you ignore, kinda like mr. obvious does.
i suppose for you its not so obvious though.

FACT. the f150 DOES have blended PLASTIC RESIN piston in it, go to your local parts counter and ask about it. heres a link from an F150 FORUM

FACT. my next defense from your bashing about the spark plug problem on the 5.4. HERE IS 196 PAGES OF COMPLAINTS at consumer affairs

Fact. the above 2 comments with links of mine prove that i apparantly DO know your truck better than you do

FACT. the rear suspension IS more stable with a trapazoidal linked rear end than a coventional parrallel leaf spring rear end. this is a SIMPLE mathematical CERTAINTY. if you dont believe me then try this; take 2 saw horses place them parrallel to each other and put a piece of plywood on top. see how much force you need to apply to move it side to side. then take the same 2 sawhorses and position them in more of a V shape or "toed out" creating a trapazoidal shape and try again. You'll prove TO YOURSELF i'm right, this is how the Tundra's rear suspension is set up. this was my defense to YOU claiming that the F150 is more stable than the tundra for towing, again you are wrong, and i just pointed it out.

The only punk here is you, and of course your inability to learn new things. instead you insist everyone that doesnt believe the way you do is wrong. Good Day sir.

PS, you still havent showed me how i blindly bashed anyone.... ;)

@hemiroid- "PS, you still havent showed me how i blindly bashed anyone.... ;)"

@ deity

you are a troll. it will last longer than your favorite product guaranteed. you OBVIOUSLY have zero idea of what your saying. simply put, you know NOTHING of how a tundra is built. You also probably dont know that the truck is MORE american than the one your driving. LOL its safer to tow with a Tundra than your truck for sure. But you have no idea why lol

Posted by: hemi lol | Nov 23, 2010 5:28:09 PM

Everytime someone says something negative about the Turdra you start attacking them and their comments. I have towed and hauled with my aunts 05 turdra and my friends 09 turdra and was not impressed all. I do not like anything about it but for some reason you can't handle the fact of someone not liking the turd and start pitching a fit and arguing with them. Just accept the fact that not everybody likes the turdra. Quit crying about what people say about it because thats what punks do! I will not respond to your punka$$ anymore. Peace out my westside homie and good luck with the turds!!!!!!


the ONLY time i retort is when someone is "blindly" bashing the tundra for no reason. that statement i made WAS out of anger but it wasnt blindly bashing a product, matter of fact i didnt mention ANY manufacturer. you are the one that bashes the Tundra (turdra) like you EVERY time you post.

I dont care at all if you dont like the truck, but YOU seem to have to put it down EVERYTIME there is a post about it, the only punk AGAIN is you. dont respond, you dont need to. your actions and posts above say it all.

actually, after about two years of looking at purchasing a diesel truck (off and on), i'm going to stick with a gasser.

i read a good piece about 2011 models that eluded to comparisons of size and power in the tacoma vs. the older 1/2 ton domestics. the last time i was really happy with a truck, it was a 79 used chevy 1500 i got from a power company auction. i broke down and looked at the 2010 and 2011 gassers and diesels this week, and realized i don't need 'em.

i'm going to save that decision until i'm pulling a tractor. gonna just buy a tacoma to play with until then. it reminds me most of my old truck (my first one :-)

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