GM also sheds parts from its pickups to boost payload ratingsThu, 31 Jul 2014
The row between Ford and Ram over who boasts the best-in-class tow rating for heavy duty pickups has revealed a number of things. Chief among them is a report that Ford removes items like the spare tire, jack, radio and center console from its vehicles in a bid to lower its base curb weight and therefore keep the truck's gross vehicle weight rating down.
For those that need a refresher, GVWR is the vehicle's curb weight plus its maximum payload. A lower GVWR allows Ford to station its F-450 among the so-called Class III pickups, despite the fact that internally, it has the makings of a more brutish Class IV truck.
Ford explains away these deletions, saying a customer could order their vehicle in such a manner. It has also come to light that Ford is not the only automaker to engage in such practices.
General Motors started deleting the rear bumper and swapping in alloy wheels for heavier steel wheels for its 2014 pickups (both light-duty and heavy duty models). This is despite originally claiming that it did no such thing, a statement GM spokesman Tom Wilkinson told Automotive News was a mistake.
Wilkinson, like Ford, justifies the practice, explaining to AN, "You can delete the rear bumper, which some business customers do so they can install a custom bumper or other equipment on the back of the truck."
What are your thoughts on this? Is the process for figuring out tow ratings and GVWR too easy to manipulate? We want to hear from you. Head into Comments, and let us know what you think.
By Brandon Turkus
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