Nationwide Truck Market Remains Popular and Competitive


Michigan truck manufactures have unveiled a new fleet of pickup trucks and the American public is quite excited for them. 

According to USA Today, American families and individual workers are purchasing pickup trucks at an extremely high rate and popular automakers are responding with improvements, innovations, and enhanced design packages. 

Michigan companies: Ford, Ram, and Chevy all unveiled new truck models at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. 

"Nobody knows if we've reached peak pickup truck yet," said Dave Sullivan, analyst for AutoPacific. "But we haven't hit that point yet." 

Across the United States, pickup truck sales grew 4.8% throughout 2017 to 2.69 million -- resisting the overall auto industry's 1.8 decline following a record year in 2016. Additionally, one in every seven vehicles sold last year was a big pickup truck, up from one in every nine in 2009 during the Great Recession. 

"Whether there are ups or downs in the economy, you can count on the core group of buyer who needs to have a pickup truck," added Sandor Piszar, director of Chevy truck marketing. 

American buyers aren't just looking for innovative new designs for their truck models, either, they want to ensure that they are getting high-quality and reliable vehicles. According to a recent survey, research found that an estimated 77% of vehicles were in need of maintenance or repairs. 

Ford, Fiat-Chrysler, and General Motors have been at the top of the truck market for a long time and nowadays that monopoly is even more evident. Last year, those Michigan organizations sold more than 2.2 million full-size trucks, controlling wholly 93% of that market segment. 

"They're giving the trucks more aggressive styling, which helps make them stand out," said Karl Brauer, executive publisher of Kelley Blue Book and Autotrader. "Also, they're giving them verifiable increases in performance." 

Ram is leading the charge among all three brands, announcing their plans for the all-new Ram 1500 hitting the market last year and recently adding to its existing lineup with the new Limited Tungsten Edition

The tough and durable tungsten carbide comes in over a dozen different grades, which can all be used for different applications -- and Ram has figured out how to use tungsten chrome for body-side molding, exterior badging, and its grille. 

Ram's new tungsten model will be perhaps the most luxurious truck on the entire auto market, but it won't be as affordable as the majority of pickups. The test model with all the add ons -- body-color door handles, steel bumper, side mirrors, sport performance hood, running boards, and Ram tailgate nameplate -- runs at approximately $63,870. 

Despite its luxurious appearance, this Ram is still a powerful full-size truck. The Limited Tungsten comes with a 5.7-liter Hemi V8 with 395 horsepower and 410 pound-feet of torque paired to an 8-speed automatic transmission. Additionally, it has a maximum towing capacity of 10,170 pounds with a max payload of 1,520 pounds. 

For full story, pick up a copy of the MONTH XX issue of The Allegan County News/The Union Enterprise/The Commercial Record or subscribe to the e-edition.

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