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Auto blogThu, 03 Jan 2013 17:45:00 EST
General Motors says its next-generation Chevrolet Tahoe, Suburban, GMC Yukon and Cadillac Escalade models will offer shoppers improved interior differentiation. Car and Driver recently caught up with Chris Hilts, GM's creative manager of interior design, who said that the cabins will all feature unique instrument panels, consoles, center stacks and switchgear moving forward. Apparently GM is now aware that consumers may be bothered by the fact that today's $85,000 Escalade has effectively the same cabin as a $45,000 Tahoe. Hilts says SUV buyers want more refinement than their pickup purchasing counterparts - and those same buyers also want their SUVs to have more exterior differentiation between the company's Silverado and Sierra pickup lines. Shocking.
That all sounds good to us, but we've heard this song and dance before. GM made big waves about how different the new-for-2013 Silverado and Sierra would look from each other, but judging by what we've seen so far, GM's stylists are painting in shades rather than with the full spectrum. For more on the what to expect out of GM's new SUVs, click on the C/D link below.
A couple weeks ago, we watched a Chevrolet Silverado get dominated by a Dodge Ram Heavy Duty in a fullsize pickup tug-of-war, but in that truck's defense, Chevy's Vortec gas engine was no match for the torquey Cummins turbo diesel. For our next round of vehicular tug-of-war, a Duramax-powered Silverado HD takes on Volkswagen Touareg V10 TDI.
Now, on paper, putting the Duramax V8's 365 horsepower and 660 pound-feet of torque up against the V10's 310 hp and 553 lb-ft looks like an easy win for the Bowtie, but unfortunately, this battle has a similar result as the Dodge versus Chevy video, with the Silverado smoking its tires trying to move forward as it gets pulled backwards. Put another way: YouTube 2, Chevy Silverado 0.
It just goes to show, though, that big tires, bolt-on fender flares and goofy smoke stacks don't improve your towing abilities. Besides, what did the Silverado driver expect when the Touareg V10 TDI has towed a Boeing 747 in the past?
General Motors has announced a recall of 118,800 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon pickup trucks due to the possibility of secondary hood latches not being installed at the time of manufacture. The affected vehicles are from the 2010, 2011 and 2012 model years, all of which were built between November 9, 2009 and August 28, 2012.
According to the official National Highway Traffic Safety Administration report, these trucks fail to "comply with the requirements of Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 113, 'Hood Latch System.' The hood may be missing the secondary hood latch." In other words, owners of these trucks could find their vehicles' hoods opening unexpectedly while driving.
The official recall campaign is expected to begin on January 17, 2013. Dealers will inspect the affected pickups and if a secondary hood latch is not present, one will be installed free of charge. Scroll down to read the official NHTSA report.
We record Autoblog Podcast #313 tonight, and you can drop us your questions and comments regarding the rest of the week's news via our Q&A module below. Subscribe to the Autoblog Podcast in iTunes if you haven't already done so, and if you want to take it all in live, tune in to our UStream (audio only) channel at 10:00 PM Eastern tonight.
Discussion Topics for Autoblog Podcast Episode #313
2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra introduced
They say "idle hands are the devil's playground," but said playgrounds grow to Disney-sized proportions when a pair of jacked-up trucks, two egos, a chain and an empty mall parking lot are involved. Proof of this is the video below, which shows a Cummins-powered Dodge Ram circa 2006 to 2008 chained tail-to-tail with what looks to be a gasoline-powered Chevrolet Silverado from the late 1990s or early 2000s.
We don't necessarily have to tell you who wins this battle, but we'll let you see for yourself the lengths the "winning" driver goes to prove his point. There's plenty of foul language in the video below, so beware that this might be Not Safe For Work, and not that we should have to tell you, but please, do not try this at home.
Who would have ever thought there'd be a day where people are able to skip television commercials only to go to websites to watch them later? Such is the joy of a DVR and YouTube. AdWeek tabulated the 20 most-watched ads on YouTube, and found that nine were car-related including eight coming from automakers.
Volkswagen continued its Star Wars theme with two ads in the top 20, including the highest-ranking car commercial The Bark Side spot at number three with almost 18 million views, which doesn't even have a single car in it. Some of our favorites are from Chrysler with Clint Eastwood in It's Halftime in America and House Arrest with Charlie Sheen for the Fiat 500 Abarth. Chevrolet, Honda, Audi and Toyota were the other automakers in the top 20, but we'd be remiss if we didn't at least mention one of the coolest ads on the list, the Hot Wheels corkscrew jump.
Of all the car videos, only the Fiat ad wasn't played during a Super Bowl. Check out all eight videos - in order - after the jump. Nike took the top spot with its My Time is Now ad that has been seen online more than 20 million times with Pepsi's Uncle Drew posted up in the runner-up; some of the other videos include four Old Spice commercials and an ad in which Snoop Dogg is pedaling Hot Pockets.
Today was a pretty big day for General Motors, debuting the all-new Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra light-duty pickup trucks ahead of their official showcase at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show. And now that the dust has settled at GM's big reveal event, we've had a chance to snap dozens of photos of the new pickup pair from every angle.
We already told you the important bits earlier today (click here in case you missed it), but let's recap. Under the hood are three new engines - a 4.3-liter V6, 5.3-liter V8 and 6.2-liter V8 (you know, a version of the small-block that'll also be found under the hood of the C7 Corvette), all mated to six-speed automatic transmissions. The 2014 model year marks the return of the Z71 off-road package with Rancho shocks, front tow hooks and beefier underbody protection. Inside, there's a host of new technology and a greater focus on better quality and refinement.
Some of the nitty-gritty specifics (like engine output numbers and fuel economy) have yet to be revealed, and since we haven't driven the finished products yet, it's hard to say how these trucks will fare against rivals like the Ram 1500 and Ford F-150. For now, we can only judge these two books by their covers, and while we do like the designs of the new trucks, we Autoblog staffers are torn on exactly which one looks best.
General Motors has finally dropped the curtain on the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and 2014 GMC Sierra. Both trucks have undergone substantial revisions with updated versions of the company's 4.3-liter V6, 5.3-liter V8 and 6.2-liter V8 engines. In a shot across the bows of both Ford and Chrysler, GM says it won't use a V6 engine adapted from passenger car applications. Instead, it developed the 4.3-liter engine based on its proven truck-duty architecture.
All three mills will boast direct injection fuel systems as well as a new cylinder head design. Combined with a revised piston, the new engines feature a smaller combustion chamber with a compression ratio of 11:1 or higher depending on the application. Cylinder deactivation and continuously variable valve timing are all part of the recipe, and each engine is paired with a six-speed automatic transmission with auto grade breaking. So far, no fuel economy or horsepower figures have been released, though GM says the new engines will best their predecessors in both areas.
Outside, the trucks feature a number of enhancements to reduce drag and wind noise, and GM claims both the Silverado and Sierra will offer buyers some of the quietest cabins in the class. Extended cab models now feature front-hinged rear doors to allow easier access to the back passenger area, and Crew Cab buyers can now select between a five-foot, eight-inch bed or a six-foot, six-inch bed. Buyers with a mind toward going off road will also rejoice in the return of the Z71 package, complete with Rancho shocks, front tow hooks and additional under-body protection.
UPDATE: The trucks have been revealed. Click here for all of the official details.
As promised, Chevrolet and GMC are offering a live webcast of the world premiere for the all-new 2014 Silverado 1500 and Sierra 1500. After being teased with spy shots and blurry images like the one above for ages, now is the time to see the trucks in the metal, for real (well, as 'real' as it gets on a webcast, at any rate).
Shift your eyes down just below to see the reveal as it happens, starting at 9:30 AM EST. We anticipate having loads of images full technical information to share after the webcast, too, so truck aficionados should stay tuned. We'll also be bringing you live images of both trucks too, when we see them on the show floor at next month's Detroit Auto Show.
There's not much to see here, but if you're one of those waiting for the reveal of the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado 1500, above is the teaser image that Chevrolet posted on its Facebook page. We've seen the truck in form-fitting camo before, and even less can be made out here beyond those seriously punchy Silverado-esque fenders and the knowledge that the projector-beam headlamps teased previously do indeed work. We'll have to wait until Thursday for a full perusal of the "bold exterior design" and "careful attention given to every detail" we've been promised.
Gathering intel and rumors, magnesium and aluminum contribute to the Silverado's weight loss plan, the purported "High Country" top-tier trim will contribute to luxury pickup truck competition and profit margins and the next-generation small-block V8 will contribute to improved fuel economy. On the engine note, there have been rumors of available V6 engines, and when Facebook user John Jones asked "Where's your answer to that EcoBoost Chevy?", the Bowtie replied "stay tuned on the 13th. We think you'll be pleased...".
Along with the "Raise the Bar" tag, Chevrolet says of the Silverado, "You asked, we delivered." You can watch the reveal live on Chevrolet's Facebook page at 9:30 am EST, this Thursday, December 13. The GMC Sierra 1500 will also be there, and we'll see both in person at the Detroit Auto Show in January.