Auto blogSun, 12 Jan 2014 18:45:00 EST
The 2014 Detroit Auto Show press days officially kick off tomorrow, but the night before all the madness commences, General Motors drove its new 2015 GMC Canyon pickup truck out for all to see. To refresh your memory, the Canyon is GMC's new midsize pickup - essentially a re-skinned version of the Chevrolet Colorado that debuted at the LA Auto Show in November.
Many of us at Autoblog prefer the look of the larger GMC Sierra to that of its Chevy Silverado kin, and we're having similar feelings about the new Canyon, especially after seeing it in person. It's sort of a pint-sized version of the Sierra, and it looks great. Clean lines are found throughout, and the Canyon's styling is decidedly premium.
At launch, the Canyon will be offered with the same engines as the Colorado - a 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder engine with 193 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque on the base end, and a larger 3.6-liter V6 with 302 hp and 270 lb-ft as an option. The Colorado's 2.8-liter diesel inline four-cylinder will be available after launch. Both two- and four-wheel drive configurations will be available, depending on the model.
Ford may not offer the Ranger in America anymore, nor Dodge (or Ram) its Dakota. But General Motors - not unlike Toyota with its Tacoma and Nissan with the Frontier - isn't about to give up on the midsize pickup market. Less than two months ago, it revealed the new Chevrolet Colorado, and now it's following up with its mechanical twin, the 2015 GMC Canyon.
Launched today ahead of its reveal at the Detroit Auto Show, the Canyon slots into the GMC lineup (and differentiates itself from its Chevrolet twin) with styling that closely apes the larger GMC Sierra 1500 and Sierra HD, only a size or two smaller. Oh, there are visual differences, like a subtly different grille treatment and lower fascia, but it still maintains its big brother's square-jawed good looks and rectilinear flared fenders.
Two aluminum-block engines with direct injection and variable valve timing are available: a 2.5-liter inline-four comes standard with 193 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, and a 3.6-liter V6 is available with 302 hp and 270 lb-ft. Buyers will also be able to choose between three bodystyle configurations, three trim levels and either two- or four-wheel drive. A six-speed automatic transmits the power to the road, but a six-speed manual is available on the base model with the 2.5 and 2WD, and there's an All Terrain package available on SLE models. A diesel is expected later.
General Motors announced late Friday that it will recall around 370,000 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra fullsize pickups from the 2014 model year over a possible fire risk. The recall covers select 4.3-liter V6 and 5.3-liter V8 models, which can evidently suffer engine compartment fires due to the overheating of exhaust components. GM notes that the fire issue may be preceded by a check engine light and an "engine power reduced" message on the driver information display.
Thus far, GM is aware of eight fires stemming from this problem (although only three of those incidents affected customer-owned vehicles), and all of the fires were reported in areas with "very cold weather." GM is urging owners to not leave their vehicles unintended while idling. No injuries have resulted from the fires in question.
The Detroit-based automaker has pledged to start mailing out recall letters on January 16. The fix, which involves software reprogramming, is estimated to be a 20-minute repair, and will be made free of charge.
General Motors has just scored a big win with its Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra pickup trucks, acing the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration New Car Assessment Program. The two full-size trucks had already netted a five-star Overall Vehicle Score in their crew-cab variants, but the new testing certifies them as five-star trucks in both regular and double-cab bodystyles, so GM's trucks offer top ratings across the board.
"Our incredibly capable trucks have been engineered to be some of the safest," Gay Kent, GM's general director of Vehicle Safety and Crashworthiness said. "We've designed the vehicle structure, strategically placed high-strength steel and developed the occupant restraint system to achieve high levels of safety performance."
The scores mark the Silverado and Sierra as the first pickups to net five-star scores since NHTSA beefed up their testing regime in 2011, a nice feather in GM's cap as it continues to slug out the pickup truck wars with crosstown rivals Ford and Ram.
General Motors is recalling 9,733 of its heavy-duty twins over concerns with their 6.6-liter diesel engines and dual fuel tanks. The recall covers some Chevrolet Silverado HD and GMC Sierra HD pickups from model years 2012 and 2013, although the exact dates that the recalled trucks were built isn't specified. There's also no mention of how many models come from Chevrolet and how many are from GMC.
The problem rests with the transfer pump responsible for moving fuel from the rear tank to the front tank - it could fail, resulting in an inaccurate fuel gauge. It hardly requires explaining, but a faulty fuel gauge could leave drivers in a situation where they run out of diesel.
GM will begin notifying customers of affected vehicles, who will be asked to report to their dealers for a free replacement transfer pump.
The Cadillac Escalade has been at or near the top of most-stolen and insurance-loss lists for more than seven years, until it dropped to number six earlier this year. In 2011 it was fitted with a host of new security features to address its easy-to-override features and that has brought the number of thefts down, but when eight of the ten most stolen rides are large SUVs from General Motors, no one will argue that something else needs to be done.
Thus, GM has fitted this same theft-deterring tech to the 2015 Suburban, Tahoe and Yukon. The Suburban and Tahoe will get the steering lock that the Escalade and Yukon already get, plus bolted-down third-row seats to deter thefts like this, stronger door lock cylinders and shields, and side-cut keys to inhibit picking.
Additional security measures in a Theft Protection Package can be purchased for $395, consisting of sensors on the greenhouse glass and interior, an incline/tilt sensor and added "key control systems" to make it more difficult for the men in black balaclavas to steal what you bought.
With the debut of the Chevrolet Colorado at November's Los Angeles Auto Show, perhaps it was only a matter of time before we saw the small truck's GMC counterpart. That time will be January, as we've received official confirmation that the GMC Canyon will be revived at next month's North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
The news came in the latest issue of the Detroit Auto Show's newsletter, NAIAS Connect. The article hasn't been posted online quite yet, but it details the Canyon as one of the world production debuts slated for the show.
While we've heard rumors that the Canyon would arrive in Detroit, this is our first concrete bit of evidence. As we've detailed before, we expect the Canyon to be stylistically quite different than the Colorado, though the underpinnings will be shared. The teaser image we have above is currently our only look at the new truck. We'll hopefully have more details in the next few weeks as the GMC Canyon draws closer to its official debut.
The middle child of General Motors' trio of truck-based SUVs, the GMC Yukon and long-wheelbase Yukon XL, received their auto show debut at today's 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show. Showing off a bigger, bolder look, particularly on its Denali trim, the Yukon sports prominent chrome grille instantly identifies GMC's new top-end SUV.
The Yukon is will come to market with a pair of engines. The base 5.3-liter V8 pumps out 355 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque, while the higher-end models benefit from the same direct-injected, 6.2-liter V8 as the Escalade. That engine makes 420 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque, with fuel economy seeing a likely boost thanks to an active fuel management system. Like the Tahoe, Suburban and Escalade, the Yukon takes advantage of a six-speed, column-mounted automatic transmission.
The cabin has seen significant upgrades in terms of materials and technology, with an eight-inch touchscreen display and IntelliLink standard in both Yukon and Yukon Denali. Fold-flat second and third-row seats come standard, while a power option is available, as well. Other techy features include active noise cancellation and standard Bose stereos.
Variety, as they say, is the spice of life. That's a lesson that is currently being taught to General Motors, because despite a strong showing from its 2014 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra, the General's pickup sales still can't best those of cross-town rival Ford.
With 59,163 trucks moved, GM fell just over 1,000 units short of toppling Ford, and one of the main reasons for that, according to GM's chief sales analyst, was due to a lack of variety in the engines and body styles available on dealer lots. "We are still over-weighted toward crew-cab V8 trucks. Our light-duty mix will moderate over time as our launch progresses," said Kurt McNeil.
Loading dealers with the popular combination of the 5.3-liter V8 and the four-door, Crew Cab body style was intentional during the truck's launch, but as supplies of leftover 2013 models, which are being sold at heavy incentives, are beginning to wane, both budget-conscious and high-dollar buyers are looking elsewhere instead of at the volume model pickups.
The backlash is beginning. Following General Motors' price hike of the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra last week, dealers across the country are expressing their ire over increasing prices in the face of rebates and discounts on trucks from Ford and Ram.
Speaking to Automotive News, Sam Pilato, the general manager at Dimmitt Chevrolet in Clearwater, FL, Silverados are "selling very poorly." W. Carrol Smith, the president of Monument Chevrolet in the heart of truck country, Texas, said, "[GM's] position is that the vehicle stands on its own and it doesn't need a bigger rebate. That's not what the market is telling us."
According to AN, that's the general attitude amongst Chevy and GMC dealers across the country, where the twin pickups are getting butchered in sales by competitors offering up to $9,000 off their sticker prices. Part of the problem for GM is that its trucks are arriving on the market near the end of the current F-150's lifecycle, a fact that Ford has taken advantage of.