June's Fastest- and Slowest-Selling Pickups

Colorado M II

Pickup trucks continue to act as the prime motor in the overall auto industry sales, with 10 of the fastest-selling pickups moving off lots in 30 days or less. The major players continue to be the hot-selling Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon, but we can't ignore how well both of Toyota's pickups are doing. Additionally, as Ford continues to produce new F-150s, both regular- and crew-cab models are selling quickly.

Finally, it's worth noting that the only heavy-duty truck on the fastest-selling list is the GMC Sierra 2500 Denali crew cab, which continues to be one of the most popular fully loaded trim packages in the industry. Likewise, the Chevy Silverado 1500 crew cab is the only half-ton pickup on our slowest-selling list, sitting on lots almost three times as long as the No. 10 hot seller.

As we've noted before, this is a snapshot of how well different pickups are doing in the marketplace based on how long a particular configuration remains on a dealer lot (on average) when we look at a cross-section of U.S. dealer sales data. The vehicles we've include on the fastest-selling list must meet a minimum sales threshold in order to eliminate small-volume or special-package configurations. We do not have a sales threshold for our slowest-selling list.

Fastest-Selling Pickups

  1. 2015 Chevrolet Colorado crew cab, 14 days on sale
  2. 2015 Chevrolet Colorado extended cab, 20 days
  3. 2015 Ford F-150 regular cab, 23
  4. 2015 GMC Canyon crew cab, 23
  5. 2015 Toyota Tacoma extended cab, 23
  6. 2015 Toyota Tacoma crew cab, 23
  7. 2015 GMC Sierra 2500 HD Denali crew cab, 27
  8. 2015 Toyota Tundra CrewMax, 27
  9. 2015 Ford F-150 crew cab, 30
  10. 2015 Toyota Tundra crew cab, 30

Slowest-Selling Pickups

  1. 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD extended cab, 121 days on sale
  2. 2015 GMC Sierra 2500 HD extended cab, 103 days
  3. 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD regular cab, 96
  4. 2015 GMC Sierra 3500 HD regular cab, 94
  5. 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 crew cab, 92
  6. 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 HD regular cab, 87
  7. 2015 Ram 3500 HD crew cab, 86
  8. 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD crew cab, 86
  9. 2015 Ford F-350 crew cab, 84
  10. 2015 Ford F-250 regular cab, 81

Cars.com photo by Evan Sears

 

Comments

You are right about the future Scott, but the car makers live in a world where the clock resets every 90 days. For them a year is an eon, five years is like infinity.

Maybe the EPA and CAFE will be a factor, but if oil returns to 1997 wholesale price levels, all bets are off. Americans still love big pickups and SUVs. Party like it's 1999!!!

That's the current reality. The big 3 would be out of business if Americans stopped buying F150s and Rams.

That's the current reality. The big 3 would be out of business if Americans stopped buying F150s and Rams.


Posted by: papa jim | Jul 7, 2015 8:00:22 PM

No they wouldn't.... They would adapt or the gov't would keep them afloat like they did with GM and Chrysler a few years back. If GM goes down a good majority of the country is going to be hit. If GM goes down there is a good chance Ford would be close as well. Which would be a double whammy to a lot of economies of the US.

People are going to buy trucks. Even in the worst of the worst years for auto manufactures (2009) the f series still sold almost 500,000 trucks in the US and Canada. They will still buy GM trucks as well during those times.

@papa jim & scott--You are both correct to a point. For now Americans will keep buying pickups but things can change and Americans can fall in love with a different type of vehicle. I don't think pickups are going away but with the additional Government regulations in regards to fuel and safety standards they could become a lot more expensive and many who don't really need them might go to a little less expensive family type of vehicle. Buyers have been attracted to trucks because in the past they were relatively inexpensive and were not subject to as many Government regulations. With so many buying trucks they are now more of a target for the regulators.

I don't think the Government will let GM, Ford, or Fiat-Chrysler go out of business but they could make any further financial support contingent on merging with each other or with a foreign manufacturer. There are too many jobs in the auto industry and most of the manufacturers use the same suppliers which is one major reason Ford supported GM and Chrysler receiving Government loans. Ford doesn't want to have their suppliers hurt.

Scott you are correct about Ford they are subject to repaying the loans. Ford was given the loans to retool their plants to make more fuel efficient vehicles like the Focus and Fiesta which they have done.

I do agree with papa jim that Ford probably would like to do a do over of the F-150 but it is too late and Ford has too much invested in the F-150. Ford will do some aggressive price promotions and increase fleet sales and in the long run will come out ok, but I think Ford was more optimistic about the initial success of their new F-150. GM and Ram will be forced to lighten their trucks and will have to spend more as well. There is no easy or cheap way around the new regulations.

It is much harder for any manufacturer to make long range plans for a product and a five year product development cycle is much too long in today's market. Toyota seems to have gotten by with few changes but even they are getting increased competition. A manufacturer cannot rely on the past for very long.

@Jeff S - The Colorado/Canyon and F-150 (or Silverado/Sierra) aren't even on the same planet, when it comes to profitability. It mostly comes down to volume and transaction figures. $30K vs $40K, and 100,000+ Colorado/Canyons annually vs 600,000+ fullsize?


More importantly, the more Colorado/Canyons GM sells, the more GM loses somewhere else. It's a lose/lose situation for the next several years, unless it's a "conquest" sale, known to be around just 10% of Colorado/Canyon sales. Not true for fullsize pickup sales where it's all win, "conquest" or not.

And again, the C/C twins are still waiting for a midsize SUV to run down the same assembly line, sharing the overhead, plus common parts, drivetrain, R&D, etc, etc. Clearly not going to happen.

@Lou_BC - It's a guestimate at best. No one knows at what point a vehicle will become profitable during its generation's lifespan. It may not be profitable at all. And there's absolutely no way to break down the total "profit and loss" on a just-released, all-new vehicle. Too many variables. How many will be sold? At which trim level/options? Transaction price? Fleet sales vs retail? Warranty claims? Recalls, etc, etc.


It's not like buying Widgets from a factory or middleman, where the total costs are *fixed*, and profits/losses fairly well known from the start.

Clearly not all vehicles are profitable. Except somebody, somewhere (or team) definitely guessed they would be profitable. Losses happen all the time. Or the OEM "profits" from those losers/stinkers, by adding to the "brand". Like the Chevy Volt. Maybe the Corvette. Definitely the Ford GT.

But a majority of an OEM's vehicles have to be profitable. Hopefully, all.

An OEM can *call* an all-new vehicle "profitable", right out the 'gate', (minus straight parts/labour/overhead,) even though they've yet to pay down the 1.8 billion or whatever, it took to design, develop and bring the thing to market. Except the money came from somewhere and obviously has to be paid back.

Did they have the 1.8 billion and laying around gathering dust, or was it mortgaged? Or simply pulled from general income from other lines as it's consumed? It doesn't really matter, does it? I has to be paid back, pay down ASAP.

Almost all cars need to produce a genuine profit, (free and clear, taxable) after the dust settles, and all costs accounted for. Otherwise the OEM is fooling themselves, as GM, Chrysler and others, have been known to do in the past.

OEMs stagger the deep investment, development and release of all-new vehicles for a reason. While one vehicle is years away from producing an *actual* profit, the other, longer running vehicles are paying the bills.

I don't know about fuel price's in other metro area's but diesel has been cheaper than gas all Spring and Summer.
Diesel in the St Lois area is $2.49 and gas $2.79. (as of 07/06/15)
As the commercial truck industry continues the move toward natural gas (CNG and LNG) I think diesel just may stay at or below gas.

@PapaJim - yes my explanation was an oversimplification BUT it does show that you can make money even before something is "paid off".

Please show me one manufacturer that discounted a vehicle less than 6 months after it's release? F150 is selling just fine without heavy discounts and making higher profits per vehicle. Fast forward and imagine what is going to happen when they do get the full product line up and running then slip in end of model year incentives. It isn't a sprint my friends, it is a long term run.

"Lou_BC - Yes you can "create" profit before things are paid off, except it comes at a prices. Something we like to call "interest".

No matter how you slice it, all costs have to be paid back, sooner or later.

The Camry is likely supporting and funding an all-new Toyota Venza, until it's shows a real profit. Every vehicle must contribute and show an eventual profit, or it gets cancelled/killed off, with the exception of Loss Leaders that are kept around for various reasons.

If the new F-150 is showing a "profit" currently, even though it's the most profitable car in the world, that would be truly amazing. Or creative accounting.

@Denver Mike--I never said that the Colorado/Canyon had the same break even point as an F-150, you are the one that made this comparison. Colorado/Canyon has a lower break even point and the F-150 has a higher break even point. It takes less units of Colorado/Canyon to recover costs than an F-150. Less was spent on the development and retooling on the twins than the F-150. Both the twins and the F-150 might take a similar period to recoup costs but the twins might have 100k units a year versus 500k units for the F-150. GM would have calculated a lower break even point because they estimated that a lower volume. GM did not release the Colorado/Canyon with the anticipation of reaching the same volume as a F-150 or a Silverado.

It is unrealistic to expect every vehicle produced and sold by a company like Ford, GM, or Chrysler to sell at the same volume. A Ford Fusion will not sell at the 600k volume like an F-150. A manufacturer makes many different products to satisfy different segments of a market. Denver Mike you like to twist around with your arguments. The Colorado/Canyon can still be profitable at 100k units a year whereas an F-150 would not but then the F-150 outsells most of its competition so 500k units a year is an reasonable volume to make a profit. Every product made by a manufacturer such as Ford will not have the same amount spent on development and tooling and not every product will be expected to have the same volume to reach profitability. You are the one Denver Mike who insist on comparing midsize trucks to full size and using the mini truck argument to say that there is no market for a smaller truck. Two different sizes of trucks which appeal to different customers. A person who is interested in buying a Ford Fusion will probably not be looking at a Ford Taurus. Different sizes.

@Lou_BC--I think either Denver Mike doesn't understand the concept of amortizing costs and the concept of depreciation or else he is up to his usual twisting of logic. It is nearly impossible for any business to recover all their costs in the short term but it is more likely to recover costs over the long term but not guaranteed. True Ford lost on the Edsel but then they decided to discontinue the Edsel after about 2 years. I don't think the Colorado/Canyons can be compared with the Edsel and I believe they will be around much longer than the Edsel. Anytime a manufacturer introduces a new product or a totally redesigned product they are taking a risk but most manufacturers will calculate how much they are willing to spend on this product and how long and how many units it will take to fully recoup their costs and make a profit.

@Jeff S - While a lot of the Colorado/Canyon's development costs came from overseas, or Thai built Colorados, who says those costs have been paid for or recovered yet, overseas? It'll still take several years for the Colorado/Canyon to be profitable, if not their entire generation.

All BOF pickups are crazy expensive to build, even the somewhat simpler Colorado/Canyons. I say they don't compare from a capital generating standpoint. But you can use the fullsize GM cousins as a guide, as they have similar builds, development and whatnot.

The extra 500,000+ units the Silvrado/Sierra move every year actually mean a lot. Volume means absolutely everything in the segment.

If it takes the Silverado/Sierra two whole years for each new generation to be profitable, it'll take the Colorado/Canyon about 10 years, when you consider the Silverado/Sierra are the #2 most profitable cars in the world. The Colorado/Canyons are nowhere near as profitable and have no SUVs to help defuse costs.

The Silverado/Sierra have the Tahoe, Suburban and Escalade to help amortize costs.

Plus if the SIlverado/Sierra and GM fullsize SUVs cannibalize other GMs, that's a good thing. When the Colorado/Canyon cannibalize other GMs, and they do that a lot, that's not so good. Very bad actually. One study found 9 out of 10 Colorado/Canyons sold, took away another GM vehicle sale.

You're not looking at the total expenses/losses within the brand.

@JeffS and DMike

I think it's unclear at this point how many midsize pickups will be sold in the American market during the five years, but it's crystal clear that GM has taken a pretty big risk in the segment, and even a bigger risk naming the new midsize using the same names that the previous generation of trucks did.

It took balls, actually. Either that, or the suits in Detroit had market-research findings that were very conclusive about the future of the segment. Unless the rules of accounting have changed, GM's executives will not be able to rest until the Colorado/Canyon are able to sustain strong sales performance over at least the next three or four years.

If their market analysis of the midsize segment was based on the idea that retail pump gas prices were headed higher, they could be in real trouble, because the present trend with gas prices may not be on their side.

to put anymore resources into the Corvair.

papa jim - They will need 3-5 years of good sales for amortization. A story I read about Ford design is that currently companies run 3-4 year design cycles. That is amazing but modern computer modeling speeds up R&D. Even 3D printing has revolutionized R&D.

@Denver Mike--I am not going to get in a debate with a marketer employed by Ford but I would bet that GM has did a complete analysis of how many units of the Colorado/Canyon they need to sell per year to make a profit and that it was much less than 10 years. No manufacturer in today's competitive market is going to go above a 3 to 5 year payback, but since you claim to be a self employed operator of a fleet of trucks I find it hard to believe that you do not understand the basic concept of amortizing costs and depreciating long term expenses over the useful life of an asset. I do hope you are getting adequate compensation from Ford for your marketing efforts. As for potential customers of big suvs and big trucks being swayed away by midsize trucks made by their favorite manufacturer that is not going to happen and neither is the midsize truck customer who wants that product going to be so loyal to a manufacturer that they will buy whatever product a manufacturer offers despite the fact that it is not what they want. This was the philosophy of the Detroit Big 3 that they could offer a large V-8 powered full size car and make it poor in quality but not as badly as their smaller cars and people would buy them because people are suckers and will buy based on brand loyalty. Toyota, Datsun, Honda, and some of the other foreign manufacturers proved that assumption to be false. Bait and switch sales tactics do not work as well as they did in the past.

@papa jim--Buying any vehicle on just mpgs is not enough to sway most buyers but a vehicle that is not to large and easier to handle and park is a plus to many who do not want to drive a vehicle that handles like a semi or bus. Also why should you need a ladder to reach into a bed of a vehicle that is too high to comfortable reach into the bed unless maybe you are buying a truck to prove your manhood and not to use. I am not that young anymore and I do not want to have to get a ladder to reach into the bed of my truck. A consumer should have a choice to buy whatever size vehicle they want and can afford and should not have to make excuses to others in doing so. I can afford to buy and maintain a full size pickup but I have no need or want to do so and would buy a Chinese made truck if they were the only ones to make a midsize or smaller truck. Fortunately Toyota, Nissan, and now GM make midsize trucks that i would buy. If I really needed the capacities of a larger truck I would buy a 3/4 or 1 ton pickup and not an suv with a balcony.

As for what Lou has said it is accurate. Manufacturers run 3 to 4 year product life cycles and computer speeds up the R & D and gives all the manufacturers much more accurate projections of costs and sales data. Technology has been a game changer.

@Jeff S - It's more of a complement that I'm a "marketer" employed by Ford, having dropped out of JC. So thanks! Btw, the Power Stroke was the biggest POS ever!! The new Power Stroke is much better, but the 1st edition has had ongoing turbo bearing failures and other issues. Ask me what they are..

But it's clear OEMs don't do all the math before green-lighting a concept, and or guess wrong when payback will happen. Often it never happens.

Even 4 years of no payback can kill a BOF truck. With a fwd, platform/drivetrain sharing car, it can go way beyond 4 years to payback.

No one has a magic crystal ball. Sales can suddenly drop off, for no apparent reason. All though it might be more than apparent to those outside the staff room or general population. It may be a mystery to GM why the original Colorado/Canyon failed. The rest of know darn well. Same with the Kodiak/Top Kick. Or SSR. Or HHR. Should I go on??

Ford has had its share of stinker too. As with most OEMs. Except most OEMs are smarter today. GM? It's tough to tell. It seems GM was banking on fuel prices going through the roof and fullsize pickups and SUVs going down in flames.

GM really doesn't mind "loss leaders" so much. More of those than any other OEM I've heard of. Have you??

Except one can only guess which trim levels will sell, what rebates they'll have to be piled on, or fleet percentage. Nor warranty claims and recalls.

And it's a double-edged sword when your loyal customers that normally buy your highly profitable cars off the showroom, choose a low margin/profit, mid-level, midsize pickup off the lot. It's been proven loyal customers will stick to their favourite brands, no matter what's offered or not offered.

The "Big 3" have made a lot of mistakes in the past, and GM was there in the forefront of those.
I've been in business for 20+ years and watched hundreds around me fail. Hell yeah I can depreciate, amortize and write-off with the best of them. Except I know much better than some, profits have to be for real, not just cooked up while playing with the numbers.

@Denver Mike--GM doesn't have that much to lose by using an existing product and modifying it for an existing market. The Colorado/Canyon is not a new product but one that is a global product. Now if you said that GM is completely designing a new Colorado/Canyon from the ground up then yes you would be correct. I doubt that any midsize truck that is made in the US will ever be designed specific to our market as will any full size, midsize, or compact car except for maybe specialty cars such as the Mustang. Global platforms lessen the development costs

@Denver Mike--GM doesn't have that much to lose by using an existing product and modifying it for an existing market. The Colorado/Canyon is not a new product but one that is a global product. Now if you said that GM is completely designing a new Colorado/Canyon from the ground up then yes you would be correct. I doubt that any midsize truck that is made in the US will ever be designed specific to our market as will any full size, midsize, or compact car except for maybe specialty cars such as the Mustang. Global platforms lessen the development costs

One of the few vehicles not designed for a global market are the full sized pickups which will probably eventually go to a global platform. With vehicle manufacturers getting larger and with constant consolidation and mergers manufacturers have to spread product development costs on many vehicles on a global basis. The days of being able to design from the ground up a product specific to a market like the US has for the most part has ended and will eventually end even for the full size trucks.

I would also like to add that sharing a global platform has its advantages. GM and Ford have improved the quality of many of their vehicles using existing platforms that have had many of the bugs ironed out. I rented a new Impala LTZ Limited when I was in San Francisco and Napa Valley and was impressed at how much better it was than the previous generations. GM uses an Opel based platform on the Impala and the Buick LaCross. Ford has done the same thing with the Fusion which has become a very large seller and is a very good car. I will seriously consider the Colorado/Canyon as my next truck. Both meet my needs and both are much more advanced over the competition. It appears that others like these twins as well. There is room for more than full size trucks in the US as there are for more than one size of crossover or car. If anything I am more likely to buy another GM product over a Ford because they offer what I want.

@JeffS Easy on the Folgers, man!

All I'm saying about the current environment is that GM and Ford were trying to adapt their trucks to a new paradigm in 2009 with $4 pump gas and instead gas leveled off, went down and keeps going down.

We may have $2 gas with us for awhile and that changes everything.

@papa jim--Gasoline prices will stabilize at between 2 and 3 dollars a gallon. Refinery capacity will keep gasoline from going too much lower. There has not been a new refinery built in the US since the mid-70's and the number of refineries has steadily declined. Higher gasoline prices was likely a factor in the release of the Colorado/Canyon but so were the increased sales of Tacoma and Frontier. As for Folgers I drink Starbucks French Roast. Last week my wife and I were in Napa Valley and visited some wineries so we drank California wine. Napa is beautiful with perfect weather. We took a ride on the Wine Train and visited an Italian Castle that took 15 years to build that is a copy of a mid-evil castle and is a winery as well.

@Jeff S - Overseas Colorado engineering certainly helps, except it's a smaller piece of the pie than you make it out to be.

Again, you're ignoring the losses to other GM vehicles, the midsize twins steel sales from. Including the obscenely profitable Silverado/Sierra and more GM SUVs and crossovers than I have room to list.

A real business has to look at all expenses, coming from everywhere. They can twist the numbers if they want to fool themselves.

And the midsize twins have to go it alone, without SUVs based on the same platform to defuse the costs of said pickups existing. Midsize pickups really, really need those.

But I shouldn't have to remind you BOF pickups aren't like FWD cars. They're are crazy expensive to physically build. It takes multi million units sold per generation or production run, for normal pickups, including the F-150, Silverado, Ram, to reach the point of profitability. That's not likely to happen *before* the Colorado/Canyon needs a resign.

@Denver Mike--The frames of the Colorado/Canyon are very similar to the Silverado/Sierra so there is not that much difference. The Colorado/Canyon were not designed from the ground up as all new. It is not that hard for a manufacturer to stretch or shorten a frame to adapt to different uses. The frame on a Colorado/Canyon is not a lot different than the Tahoe or Suburban. The frame on my 99 S-10 as well is not a lot different the the 99 Silverado/Sierra. The Colorado/Canyon only come in an extended cab with one bed size and a crew cab with either a short or long bed. There is not a lot of variation in the twins and there parts are interchangeable with many of there components shared with other GM products. The V-6 is a car engine and is not specific to these twins. Even the exterior colors are limited with some of them being extra cost such as green. Colorado is limited to just a black interior with cloth or leather. Canyon offers a tan leather interior with limited availability on the top trim. All the twins come standard with electric windows and power driver's seat and back up cameras. Ford has much more variation of options, colors, interiors, and bed sizes than these twins. It is not that crazy expensive to make the Colorado/Canyon. If you don't believe me about the limited colors and options of the Colorado/Canyon as compared to the full size trucks or the Tacoma you need to go on GM's website or cars.com and build your own. You will see that there is not a lot of extras to add to these trucks and if you want certain things you have to go to a higher trim level. I wouldn't lose sleep over GM losing revenue on these trucks.

Jeff S - Truck shoppers may not like getting so few choices of Colorado/Canyons. Right now it's fine, especially with GM fans wanting the latest/newest offering, but it could prove problematic for GM. That's unless it steers Colorado/Canyon shoppers back to other GMs, especially the Silverado/Canyon.

But a lot goes into a frame, it not just "grab the Silverado frame" and cut here, there and weld back together. Each frame is researched, engineered, crash tested, etc, like any new car's chassis/platform. And each specific pickup gets it's own dedicated frame. The base truck has its own frame. Add the automatic? Another new specific frame engineered/tested. Add 4wd? Another new frame. Add automatic and 4wd? New frame. V6? Own frame. That's just for the extended cabs. Each crew cab 'bed' choice has it's own frame.

Absolutely no crew cabs share frames with extended cabs. How many frames all together? I lost count.

Without multi million pickups sold for each re-design/generation, a pickup is a cash loser. That's for fullsize pickups too.

The basic design of a frame is the same for all GM trucks. A hydro-foamed frame which is what GM uses is the same design and it can be made longer, shorter, or stronger. Even if you count the difference with a 4x4 the number of frames is not going to be as great on a Colorado/Canyon as a full sized truck with different cab configurations, different bed sizes, and differences between 1/2, 3/4, and 1 ton trucks. The Colorado/Canyons will not lose money for GM. As for choices if you want a midsize truck there are only the Tacoma and Frontier to choose from. GM can always add an extra model to these twins if the sales skyrocket, if not GM will still sell these.

You seem to think that full size is the only size that consumers will choose and that it is better to have one size and force anyone who wants a truck to buy full size. That was the attitude of the Detroit Big 3 until American Motors came out with a compact car called the Ramber American to compete against the VW Beetle, English Ford, Simca, and Renault Dauphin. It took Ford, GM, and Chrysler about 2 years to release their compact cars after the Rambler American. Ford at the same time the Rambler American released the Edsel and we all know what happened to the Edsel. It appears that GM has made the right decision and that they have done this conservatively not overproducing the Colorado/Canyon.

I doubt that Toyota is losing any money on the Tacoma as well and they would face the same challenges as you have mentioned. The days of any particular model selling a million units or more per year are over. To sell 100k units is good and to sell 500k units per year is something that is unobtainable for most except maybe the F series of trucks which include the entire series and not just the F-150. You would have to go back to the 60's to get close to a million units a year which would be the full size Chevrolet and Ford cars. GM has a fraction of the costs that Ford has in developing these twins and it did not require GM to shut down there plant for a long period of time for an extensive overhaul to produce an aluminum truck. Not nearly as big of an investment as Ford--not even close.

@Jeff S - Most OEMs hydroform their pickups frames. Old news. It doesn't make them interchangeable in the least. Just a newer way to press steel.

GM saves by not building a regular cab Colorado/Canyon, but it's also choices and less sales. If/when they kill the extended cab, they'll save even more... It makes no kind of sense.

I don't think fullsize should be the only size. I'm glad there's the midsize choice, and that was my 1st choice actually, when shopping for my last new truck. Except what they wanted for V6 crew cab 4X4s was nuts. Fullsize just works out better for me. Everyone can choose for themselves.

I'm not convinced the Tacoma is "profitable" simply because it exists. Toyota would never kill it, no matter what. I know it's built in Mexico now, the platform is 11 years old and simply refreshed for '16. Extending a platform indefinitely is one sign it's a "loss leader". Remember how long the US Ranger went without a new design? Keep in mind Toyota is the world's premier pickup builder. How would it look if Toyota had to retreat from the US pickup market??

Again, you only look at what you think it takes to put the truck in showrooms. Actually the Savana/Express assembly line is handicapped by the Colorado/Canyon. Orders for vans have to be pushed back to accommodate the C/C twins. That's a huge loss right there. Of course there's the tremendous loss of the twins cannibalizing about every GM on the lot.

There's a lot of things you won't acknowledge. Like the missing SUVs that don't share and amortize the C/C twins parts/platform/assembly line.

The Colorado and Canyon are a liability for GM, not an asset. GM guessed fuel prices would be on the rise and Americans would fully move away from fullsize, right into the arms of midsize pickups, and then midsize SUVs based on the C/C twins, instead of Tahoes, Suburbans, etc.

GM guessed wrong! That's why GM fullsize offering lack any kind of innovation. GM just *mailed in* their redesign. Now they're scrambling to catch up, with again an all-new Silverado/Sierra by late 2018.

Summing it up, GM is GM.

@Denver Mike--By looking at the sales of the Silverado/Sierra they don't need to play catch up. If anything GM was smart to let Ford go first on the all aluminum truck. As for 2018 those models are only 2 years away which would give the current generation of Silverado/Sierra a 4 year run which is not that long (2014-17). Ford has bet the company on one product which does not guarantee success. The sales of the Colorado/Canyon prove that they are not a liability. As for body on frame suvs they are not selling like they use to and they are profitable only in the higher trim models which is for the most part the only trim levels available. There are vehicles called crossovers which come in all different sizes which have displaced most SUVs and have also cut into the sedan and truck market as well.

Toyota has killed several unprofitable products and is going to kill the Venza after this year. Please furnish proof to your claim that Toyota is loosing money on the Tacoma. You claim to be an expert so it should be easy for you to back up your claim that Toyota is losing money on the Tacoma which has been basically unchanged in over 10 years. Ford itself did not lose money on the Ranger but it choose not to update it and concentrate on the F-150. It is hard to loose money on a product that has been unchanged for years and which all the development and tooling costs have long since been paid off. Ford did not loose money on the Crown Victoria or the Grand Marquis because they too had long since been paid off. In both the Ranger and the Crown Victoria/Grand Marquis they were getting old and Ford did not wish to spend money to update them but they did not lose money for Ford. There is a difference between a product not generating as much revenue and a product losing money--they are not always one in the same. Just because one product is more profitable than another does not mean that the less profitable product is losing money. Following your logic it would be better for Ford to discontinue making cars and just make the F series trucks and the Explorer since Ford sells more volume in both. GM should just sell full size trucks and body on frame suvs and not make anything else. Toyota should just make Camrys and Corollas. In today's world you cannot just offer a limited line of products unless you are like Mitsubishi who is barely holding on.

@Denver Mike--You have acknowledged that the 2015 Ford Explorers and Navigators are based on the prior generation of F-150 which means that Ford has not shared the costs to develop the new aluminum F-150 with their current suvs. As for costs the global Colorado shares its platform with the global Trailblazer and in turn both have shared their costs with the Colorado/Canyon. Some how you fail to acknowledge that globally developed vehicles share cost. The F-150 shares nothing with a global vehicle.

@Jeff S - A four year generation? I highly doubt GM was thinking "4 years to obsolete", when they designed the current generation of pickups. They "mailed it in", while focusing on other projects like the Cadillac ELR and Colorado/Canyon. Now they're scrambling.

There's no meaningful sales of any GM SUV overseas. Even sales of the global Colorado are weak.

The Expedition is still paying down the investment on the previous generation of F-150s. That F-150 was paid off early into its production and the chapter closed, but the original expense can still be paid down when divided among lots more current sales. Like royalties.

The next Expedition/Navigator will 2017, sharing the current F-150 platform. They don't always change simultaneously. The current generation of Expedition/Navigator came 2 years before the previous F-150. Meaning the all-new (current) SUVs were showrooms while the Jellybean F-150s were still in normal production.

The Ranger was profitable for being around and unchanged for so long, except for occasional updates. Sales suffered because of that though. Down to around 50K annual.

The Crown Vic and Ranger were down to mostly fleet sales and mostly strippers. Same with the out going Econoline vans. Ford might as well milk a dying segment or vehicle til the end, mostly unchanged. Basically what Toyota is doing with the Tacoma. Ford won't admit it was losing money on the Ranger, Crown Vic or Econoline vans, and Toyota isn't about to admit it loses money on the Tacoma. OEMs never admit that. Except their actions (or lack of) make it abundantly clear.

Ford bet the company on the F-150, except it's not the 1st time. The F-150 or F-series, has carried Ford for the last 20+ years. Ford would've evaporated decades ago without the F-series.
But the same is true for GM and their fullsize pickups. Everything depends on them, except GM has a funny way of showing it.

It's true OEMs should just sell what's profitable and cancel everything with marginal profits and loss leaders. Except GM, Ford and Chrysler would be a skeleton of themselves. No, they want to be 'full-line' OEMs. Like if a department store only sold what's most profitable, no one would shop there. They would all be just snacks and women's bras/panties. Or irrelevant. Or Mitsubishi.

Now Toyota needs their trucks in the US to be "full-line". The truck for dad, Camry for mom, Corolla for sis, etc, etc. The car buying public likes to stick to one brand, one dealer, one salesperson. Sometimes they have to take a loss (or loss leader) to hit *Gold*.


@Denver Mike--The increased sales of the GM full size trucks prove that GM was correct in waiting to go to a new all aluminum truck. Full size GM trucks are up in sales and GM has additional sales with its midsize twins. As for Expedition and Navigator Ford has not said for sure that these will go to an aluminum body. Body on frame suvs are a dying segment of the market just like the full size rear wheel drive V-8 powered sedan. Chrysler, BMW, and Mercedes still make rear wheel drive sedans but BMW and Mercedes have expanded to crossovers because they realize that they cannot bet their entire future on pricey rear wheel drive sedans. Either the Expedition and Navigator will be updated or they will go the way of the Crown Victoria/Grand Marquis. Ford has gone so far as to offer the Eco Boost V-6 instead of the V-8 on the Expedition and Navigator. Eventually there could be no full size suv based on a full size pickup. Pickups will still be around but they will change and they will become lighter with less choice of V-8's.

Gasoline prices will not stay down forever and the EPA is not going away. There is a limit to how light or how small and efficient a drive train that a truck can have to gain the efficiencies mandated by the EPA. It is hard to make a vehicle with the aerodynamics of a brick more efficient. Aluminum bodies, small turbo charged engines, and multiple speed automatics will only get incremental gains and for the most part are more effective as marketing tools. Ford, GM, and Chrysler have their backs up against the wall and all will be forced to spend more funds on redesigning their trucks to get incremental gains in fuel efficiency. Yes GM has delayed a major redesign of their full size trucks but that is not necessarily a bad thing, but so has Ram. Both GM and Ram are watching Ford and will learn from Ford's mistakes. Eventually GM and Ram will have to completely redesign their trucks but it is not that easy to spend the funds when you have recently come of bankruptcy.

There is a limit to how expensive you can make a pickup before many find alternatives. Don't say that there are no alternatives to a pickup because there are always alternative products and the demand for anything is not limitless. The manufacturers will always have pickups but they could sell in fewer numbers at a much larger price.

Ford, GM, and Chrysler are all in the same boat when it comes to their dependence on one major product, the full size pickup. Toyota, Honda, Kia, and Hyundai are not not dependent on trucks for their very survival. Take away the F-150 and Ford would be standing in line for a Government loan along with GM and Chrysler.

@Jeff S - The fairly radical move to all-aluminum F-series wasn't totally necessary, but if not now, when? This will be the last redesign of the F-150 and Super Duty before the 2025 CAFE deadline. It actually simplifies building (and repairing) pickups when it's all one metal, vs every other panel aluminum.

There's nothing wrong with GM pickups and sales figure reflect that. But the F-150 is nipping at the Silverado's heals, which shouldn't really happen considering the Silverado is in *full production* and the F-150 barely getting there now. Normally the Silverado 1500 outsells the F-150 by a wide margin.

GM is doing a Silverado/Sierra complete redesign after 4 years? Does that sound efficient or cost effective to you?? Or did GM step on their d!¢k???

We've had fuel price hikes before and some how fullsize pickups and SUVs survived. When the dust settles we figure it out, and adjust for it. Then we come to the realization the high prices are what they should be, when adjusted for inflation. But who buys a new $50K SUV or pickups and can't afford fuel if it doubles in price?

It's abundantly clear the Colorado/Canyon are meant to be an alternative to the Silverado/Sierra if fuel prices head for the sky. Fine except for their fuel consumption is about the sames. Or worse. And these midsize twins have a smaller CAFE footprint to contend with.

The Expedition/Navigator share no body panels with the F-150, just the platform. Steel SUVs on the F-150 platform should be fine. Except Ford did a great job of keeping the F-150's all-aluminum build a secret almost until its release. Same with the all-aluminum Super Duty.

But it could take decades to lose fullsize SUVs for good. Especially since they're riding the coat tails of fullsize pickups.

In the end CAFE can't stop anything. Especially when the profit potential is so great. And the CAFE fines are measly. If fullsize pickups stopped improving mpg right now, by 2025 yes the fines would be in the multi millions a year, but a couple hundred dollars per pickup.

Yes GM, Ford and Chrysler are on shaky ground and totally dependent on fullsize pickups. They've been on shaky ground and totally dependent on fullsize pickups for the last 25+ years.

@Denver Mike--GM made the right move to wait for the a completely new truck and especially going to aluminum. GM didn't need to spend the money to completely redesign their trucks. I would say the same thing for Ram as well. GM needed to rebuild themselves before spending the kind of money that Ford has. GM should make the 8 speed automatic standard on all their full size trucks which they are not for 2016. As for the full size suvs for the most part they will dwindle in popularity and eventually disappear as most rear wheel drive cars have. There are other suitable alternatives to vehicles like the Expedition and Navigator mainly crossovers. Even Ford has jumped on the crossover bandwagon with the Explorer and Edge and their Lincoln equivalents.

@Jeff S - No GM needs to make one truck (platform) and do it right, no expense spared. The new F-series (Super Duty coming next year) will be good for up to 20 years. The last F-150 went for 11 years and the current Super Duty for 17 years, mostly unchanged.

No way GM expected Ford to follow through with threats of all-aluminum, all trucks and other new tech. GM was caught flat-footed and pantz down.

So what does it cost for 2 or 3 completely new generations of GM pickups, in the time Ford does just one??

CUVs are good. Real trendy too, but an OEM wouldn't want to put too much stake in them either. Nothing's guaranteed here, but while there's strong demand for fullsize pickups, their biggest builders had better well supply them.

Part of the problem is big publicly traded companies must put keep all profits in *motion*, back into the company asap, constantly moving forward, expanding operations, etc. They must maximize returns at all times.

Collectively, they're stup!d. They basically live from paycheck to paycheck. It's just the way it's done.

You or I would *save* a big portion of large profits, for a *rainy day* or for when things go down temporarily. All it takes is the slightest hiccup in the economy or a shift in buying trends (or price of fuel), and a big company or conglomerate is *done*.

Kodak had to scramble when the digital age hit photography. They almost lost the company.

@Denver Mike--Both Ram and GM will be forced to spend large sums just to comply with the new fuel standards. I think for now GM and Ram made the best decision for there current situation. Ford did not have to go through bankruptcy or a government reorganization and had the funds to spend on a complete redesign of their trucks, Chrysler and GM did not. If I were running GM and Ram I would have held off on any major expenditures as well but I would not have spent the funds to develop an all new car for Alfa Romeo. I would have discontinued Alfa and Lancia and eventually put more investment in Fiat and in a total redesign of Grand Cherokee and Ram trucks For GM I would have discontinued any of their full size cars such as Impala and Lacross and concentrated on making the Malibu and Regal much better cars. I like the Impala and the LaCross but the market for full size cars is an ever dwindling market. Even Chrysler should shed the 300 and Charger. Even Ford is talking about discontinuing the Taurus in the US and Ford's new Taurus will probably be just for China.

CUVs are not a fad especially the Honda CRV which has been a top seller for almost 20 years. Since you keep mentioning the crazy expensive costs to manufacturer a body on frame truck you fail to acknowledge the lower costs to produce a cuv that is based on a front wheel drive platform of a car. Even Ford went from a body on frame construction to a front wheel drive uni-body platform for the Explorer which is based on the platform of the Taurus. Guess which vehicle is selling better, the Taurus or the Explorer? Explorer is basically a new Ford Freestyle and Taurus X but is much more successful. GM is doing extremely well with the Chevy Traverse, Buick Enclave, and GMC Acadia. Ford and Chrysler do not have anything to really compete with these GM cuvs except maybe Ford with the Explorer. The Ford Flex on the other hand is not that successful. Maybe Chrysler should change the Dakota to a front wheel drive platform similar to the Chrysler 200. CUVs are here to stay for a long time and are not trendy. CUVs are easier to get in and out of than a car and drive and ride more like a car. CUV's also offer more sizes than a truck in that you can buy them in subcompact, compact, midsize, and full size giving the consumer more choice. Pickups come in mostly full size with limited choice in midsize. SUV buyers range from empty nesters with good incomes to families needing a larger and more space efficient vehicles.

I meant CUV buyers range from empty nesters with good incomes to families needing a larger and more space efficient vehicles.

For GM I would have discontinued any of their full size cars such as Impala and Lacross and concentrated on making the Malibu and Regal much better cars. I like the Impala and the LaCross but the market for full size cars is an ever dwindling market.

@Jeff S As my dear dad used to say "think before you engage your mouth." Of course he was right, and his advice goes double for the silly statement you made above.

GM and the rest of the big 3 are hitting home runs with showroom sales of their biggest and heaviest passenger cars, SUVs and pickups. These models just by coincidence are some of their most profitable models too.

Hello?

@papa jim--The big cars have been steadily declining in sales. Don't get me wrong, I don't dislike cars like the Impala or LaCrosse but they are not selling as many. The Taurus has been declining for some time.

Shows me Americans are ready for midsize trucks again. Thank goodness. Everything else is toooo darned big.

Late to this discussion, but I've been away from the site. Mostly it has been covering giant trucks I'd never own. These sales, and the possible end of the Chicken Tax, give me hope that smaller and cheaper work-trucks will soon come to dealer lots.



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