In launching its all-new line of full-size pickup trucks — the 2014 Chevy Silverado and 2014 GMC Sierra — General Motors is embarking on what may be the automaker’s most important product launch in years, if not decades. In general, trucks are known to be very profitable for GM, accounting for up to 60 percent of its total global profits, according to some analysts, who also predict that GM makes $12,000 on each truck sold. In other words, trucks mean money and are key to GM’s financial health now, and well into the future. Because of that, GM will likely pull out all the stops on the trucks’ market launch, resulting in an ad blitz of epic proportions that’s will soon arrive at a TV, computer, tablet, or smartphone near you.
New from toe to hitch, the new Silverado and Sierra build on the success of the outgoing GMT900-based models, which were very desirable and capable vehicles to begin with. The 2014 trucks, set to launch in the summer of 2013, are the first full redesign of the nameplates since 2006 and unofficially represent an investment in R&D, tooling, and logistics of $3-4 billion. The new trucks deliver a trio of all-new engines, improved capabilities and efficiency, new technology, and updated manufacturing facilities.
To ensure a problem-free launch, GM plans to roll out the trucks gradually. In that regard, it is taking the launch very seriously, even to the point of delaying the introduction of the next-generation SUVs (2015 Tahoe, 2015 Escalade, 2015 Yukon) until early 2014. The automaker is also taking unique steps to ensure a flawless launch, having brought back retirees tasked with ensuring quality at the supplier level. And while GM hasn’t (yet) announced advertising plans, a huge ad blitz is rumored to be part of the trucks’ market launch.
The ad campaigns’ theme is likely to touch upon the fact that the new Silverado and Sierra are “highly-engineered pieces of equipment”, words previously used by GM North America President Mark Reuss to describe the trucks. The vehicles already have a fuel economy and capability advantage over competing models from Ford, Ram/Dodge, and Toyota.
The GM Authority Take
Let’s hear your roar, GM.