Chevrolet (and GM as a whole) has a well-documented history of poking fun at its rival Ford, especially when it comes to pickup trucks. However, it seems that the brand (and automaker) may be caught with its foot in its mouth.
New patent filings, reported by AutoGuide, show that General Motors has patented a tailgate step similar to what Ford introduced in 2009 as the StepGate system. At the time of its introduction, Chevrolet produced an ad mocking the “man step”, but it looks like the brand is ready to introduce the feature itself.
The first patent, titled “Multi-Panel Hinged Endgate Assembly With Edge Support For Step Panel”, shows a hinge-operated step folding down from the tailgate to allow easier access into the bed of the truck, while the second patent filing shows a “Step Assist Handle,” allowing owners to help hoist themselves into the bed itself. Though Ford’s solution utilizes a step that slides out of the tailgate, GM’s patent and Ford’s current solution are certainly very similar.
We’d expect the feature to debut on the next-generation of GM pickup trucks on the T1 platform, alongside an explanation as to why The General felt it was necessary to add the feature, rather than make fun of it years later.
In the meantime, check out how Ford’s StepGate system works in the video below.