8 Must-Sees From the 2018 Detroit Auto Show

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We spent quite a bit of time in Detroit this month, getting into town a few days ahead of the 2018 North American International Auto Show. There was plenty of big news to cover regarding pickup trucks with the debuts of the all-new 2019 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and 2019 Ram 1500, and the return to the U.S. of the 2019 Ford Ranger. But those weren't the only interesting things at the auto show, which runs through Sunday at the Cobo Center.

Here are a few hidden treasures we found during our tour.

1. Opposed-Piston Engine

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Opposed-piston engines have been around for decades, but now energy company Aramco is making a strong push to get them back into a mainstream vehicle by partnering with Achates Power, manufacturer of that type of engine. Opposed-piston engines use two crankshafts with three cylinders and opposing piston motions that use compression ignition. Theoretically, you could have two tanks, one with gasoline and one with diesel, and run both fuels independently to the same motor. Aramco is showing a light-duty truck sporting this engine in Detroit.

2. 2018 Chevrolet Colorado Redline Edition

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We picked up a 2018 Chevrolet Colorado Redline Edition to get us around Detroit. We liked the special edition and the fact that the heater worked quickly because it was frigid in Motor City. The Colorado was powered by the 3.6-liter gas engine and delivered just more than 17 mpg in city driving in four-wheel drive and around 21 mpg during a 185-mile highway trip in two-wheel drive.

3. 2018 NACTOY Winners

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The first press conference of the show is always the North American Car and Truck of the Year award announcements. NACTOY now gives out three awards. For 2018, the Honda Accord took the car award, the Volvo XC60 was the utility winner and the Lincoln Navigator took home the truck award. The only pickup truck to make as a finalist in the truck category was the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2.

4. Aftermarket Displays

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Gaining traction at auto shows is the proliferation of displays from aftermarket suppliers. We ran across seat supplier Recaro, where we saw some new, lightweight, reinforced adjustable seats that would be perfect for a new or used full-size pickup or SUV. Companies like Recaro seem to be cashing in on the popularity of full-size pickups and the fact that many of the mid-level trims have uncomfortable seats.

5. 2019 Ford Ranger Powertrain Display

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The introduction of the all-new 2019 Ford Ranger was met with a great deal of enthusiasm at the auto show, but few people made the walk to the second floor of the Ford booth to get a closer look at the new mid-size 2.3-liter inline-four-cylinder twin-scroll single-turbo engine cutaway and 10-speed transmission.

6. Diesel Engine for Ford F-150

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Ford's second-floor display also provided our first glimpse of the baby Power Stroke that can be had in the full-size 2018 Ford F-150. The new single turbo-diesel 3.0-liter V-6 will offer 250 horsepower and 440 pounds-feet of torque, providing a towing capacity of more than 11,000 pounds. We're told there will be no selectable exhaust brake function, but it will have a dedicated diesel exhaust fluid gauge.

7. Classic IH Pickup

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Given how much time we were spending in the media room downloading photos and writing stories, it was nice of The Hagerty Group to sprinkle some classic cars around the small hall. This gorgeous 1962 International Travelette crew cab sat in the dining area of the media hall; it had a 5.0-liter V-8, dual bench seats, cost about $2,900 new and weighed about 4,200 pounds.

8. Bed Wars Continue

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GM's Chevrolet display included this side-by-side exhibit comparing the results of some punishment testing to a pickup bed made from aluminum (similar to the Ford F-150) and another made from high-strength steel (like in the 2019 Silverado 1500). And running in the lower corner of the display was a series of bed-focused commercials.

Cars.com photos by Mark Williams

 

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Comments

The bed picture and commercials were one of the funniest fails I have seen recently. For one it matters nothing if your bed is aluminum or steel, what matters is, I f I am going to use it it WILL be protected. The steel has large dents, and since this is a chevy it will rust. Protect the bed!!!

-CT

I like the aluminum vs high strength steel display. GM educating people on the benefits of steel in a pick-up. Great display.

I find the bed display amusing. Who treats thier trucks so abusivly? I am sure there are some, but would think that percentage small, very small in light of the costs of vehicles.To be sure the are some fleet guys who hate their job, boss/business owner who have a I don't give a flip how I treat company assets. Most, most trucks I see whether new or seemingly ancient have either a bed mat or drop in liner. I personally don't throw heavy tool boxes over the side or precariously perch them on the narrow bed rail and hope for them to stay put. I guess when the bed is your best selling point you have to over accentuate it. Again very amusing.

Nothing new here, waste of space writing this article.

Actually, the bed comparo is for those who know nothing about trucks and just following the blind, the blind leading the blind.

There is nothing to see here, just desperation....ala gmcrapola.

Why is the Colorado even on this list?

Are you getting paid to help slagging sales?

Why is the Colorado even on this list?

Are you getting paid to help slagging sales?


Posted by: oxi | Jan 23, 2018 9:51:14 AM

It's the redline edition, something about it redlining at 10k RPM. LOL!

So why didn't Chevrolet's bed display use a real Ford bed? It's not like they're not available. Oh, maybe it's better for them to use an aluminum bed "similar to a Ford bed" but not as strong nor thick so it dents. Otherwise they have no display. Geez, Chevrolet. I guess if you can't stand on your own accomplishments you once again have to resort to trying to attack the leader. How about you build something decent and stand on your own two feet?

Ford never had much of an impact at this year's Detroit Auto show. You won't see the Ranger for over a year from now. Pathetic attempt to try and stay relevant. The Silverado stole the show with all new design and engine line-up with RAM coming in at a close second. Great times ahead for both GM and RAM.

@ dale

That appears to be a real F150 bed, all the stampings are correct. Even if the display were not real (imo it is) the results shown are the same as their real world testing using an actual F150 bed. In that test they used the current Silverado. The 19 Silverado bed uses an even higher grade of steel. I'm aware the average guy will not use their truck to that degree but it does make for an effective example of aluminum vs steel when used in a high impact area like a truck bed.

Achates will rewrite the engineering maps.

Cheaper
More power
CLEANER
less moving parts

a true gamechanger

with CGI from Sintercast

https://sintercast.com/$-1/file/dokument/2017/2018/NAIAS-2018-English.pdf

https://sintercast.com/market/exhibitions

Ide like to see and hear more about the opposed piston engine system. The pros and cons of it.

Ide like to know whats actually different/special about "red line" package. Hopefully its more than color changes/accents.

Hoping the baby powerstroke holds up.

By Chevy's standard their own bed is far inferior to Honda and Toyota's composit beds.

Guessing that's the 10spd Ford/GM auto tranny at the end.

I want to know the power output for Gm's engine lineup! Disappointed about not hearing it at the show

TNT, I agree, where is all that info on the powertrain?

-CT

"Ford never had much of an impact at this year's Detroit Auto show. You won't see the Ranger for over a year from now. Pathetic attempt to try and stay relevant."

-GMSRGREAT

Hilarious! That's like saying the Beatles had no influence on the '65 American Music Awards.

EVERYTHING that GM and RAM does is a direct result of how Ford has influenced them. To ignore this fact is an act of folly on your part.

I see a huge value in a strong truck bed. A truck is supposed to be used for hard work, around here in the oilfields and mining we carry lots of heavy tools and equipment daily, thousands of trucks around the sites. The Ford beds are the worst if all , they are mangled and beat after 6 months, the GM , Ram and older steel Fords last much longer. I realize there are a lot of pretty boys out there that would never think of using their truck as a tool it was designed for, we call them girls and soccer moms.

Heater blows hot fast:
BMW's have had that for years. Mine is a 1989 M3 and it will blow hot in less than a minute. Must be rocket science.

EVERYTHING that GM and RAM does is a direct result of how Ford has influenced them. To ignore this fact is an act of folly on your part.


Posted by: redbloodedxy | Jan 23, 2018 1:51:48 PM

You mean things like 3.0 Diesel, exhaust brake on Diesel, Turbo on Diesel and the list goes on. Stay thirsty my friend.

Where is the hole in the toilet for picture 4?
is it heated?

@ redbloodedxy

So if everything that GM and Ram does is a direct result of how Ford influenced them that would clearly explain why Ford had to tuck their tail between their legs and get back in line with the Ranger. GM will have already had the Colorado on the market for several years before the one engine one bed wonder hits.

@ Taylor

That's so true!!! And funny all at same time!!

@ redbloodedxy

So if everything that GM and Ram does is a direct result of how Ford influenced them that would clearly explain why Ford had to tuck their tail between their legs and get back in line with the Ranger. GM will have already had the Colorado on the market for several years before the one engine one bed wonder hits.


Posted by: Taylor | Jan 23, 2018 3:51:21 PM

It's called Economic Business, Ford thought it wasn't a good investment to continue to sell Ranger and save the company money, 7 years later they now see a market for it, so they bring it back.

It's called simple Business Economic. Good Grief.

GM can have the mid size truck market, but in the end, we'll see who really sells the most.

Hold that thought!

@ Frank

Call it what you want but the point being was that GM took the lead among the big 3 and proved there was still a business case for a midsize truck. I think Ford has also been scared of their own Ranger and what it could do to F150 sales. IMO Ford finaly realized that they couldn't beat GM with fullsize trucks alone.

@GMSRGREAT..., You are drunk on the GM kool-aid..., you missed soooo much of what NAIAS offered by your narrow-mindedness..., shhhhhhishhh..., wait..., what is that I hear?..., is that your Silverado rusting???..., you can only defend that Chevy for so long..., when the GM fire-sale gets ramped-up..., you won’t even be able to sell it..., does your’s shake?
Open up your mind...

wait..., what is that I hear?..., is

Posted by: The Lawn Ranger | Jan 23, 2018 9:34:15 PM

If you could hear my 6.2 at idle and full RPM, you would be green with envy.

@GMSRGREAT..., it’s nice to be included in you RSS feed..., however, you didn’t get the whole picture..., that’s ok..., you just keep that engine at full rpm..., does it shake???

does your’s shake?

Posted by: The Lawn Ranger | Jan 23, 2018 9:34:15 PM

Nope, it's the smoothest, quietest truck I have ever driven. That makes the sound of the engine under load all that more enjoyable. You really should test drive a 6.2 Silverado so you can get an appreciation for your level of ignorance.

@ Lawn Ranger

I had one that shoke!!! Sucked, but GM took care of me and my new drives as smooth as can be!! Very crazy, but older Tacomas did same thing and they still sold well!!!
Plus, go to all the Ford forums, many guys complaining about vibration issues...so it's not JUST GM like u fanboys think!!
I would just like to know "what is causing it"...bc Toyota didn't know, GM didnt, and now Ford doesnt.....
Could it be the Frame?? Make it so stiff?? Like hitting a bat against something solid..it vibrates through your hands and up into your body!! Interesting, yet very frustrating at same time.

It’s amazing that people actually defend using aluminum for the bed and say that nobody abuses their truck like that. It’s true that most people don’t drop toolboxes like that, but some people do and it’s supposed to simulate years of hard work, something that a lot of posters here are not familiar with. Take a wild guess what the bed will look like after a few years of taking heavy things in and out even if there are no punctures it will probably be bulging downward. Accidents happen, incidental damage is unavoidable and wear and tear is all part and parcel of using your truck for work.

And even though you might recommend that someone buys a bed liner to mitigate the problem it means nothing in the real world. Often fleet buyers order the most basic vehicles with no options checked, which are often times the hardest worked. Other times individuals buy trucks with no bedliner and just leave it that way and never change their minds despite watching the damage occur every day in front of their eyes. It’s stupid but that’s how some people just are, and being pious and snooty about how much weight is saved with a bad decision for a truck bed material is going to do nothing for people who use things for their intended purposes.

Has anyone here seen or heard of damaged beds on F150s? Other than this bugus prop, with F-Series murdering the two GM dopes I don’t see it being an issue.


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