GM Introduces Range of Medium-Duty Silverado Trucks

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At the Work Truck Show in Indianapolis on Wednesday, General Motors Co. (NYSE: GM) introduced the big brothers to the company’s Chevrolet Silverado light-duty pickups. The new trucks, dubbed the 4500HD, the 5500HD and the 6500HD, are the first-ever Silverado Class 4, Class 5 and Class 6 chassis cab vehicles.

GM expects eventually to gain 25% to 30% of the market for commercial trucks in these classes, comparable to its market share for commercial trucks prior to its 2009 bankruptcy. Those earlier trucks were sold under the GMC brand, but the company has no plans to sell new medium-duty trucks with that badge.

The company did not announce pricing for the trucks, but Automotive News estimates the basic cab and frame will sell for $40,000 to $60,000. Fitting a customer-specific bed or box to the truck could add several times the basic cost.

In its announcement, GM said it sold nearly 300,000 trucks to commercial and government buyers last year and gained 1.4 points of market share. GM’s U.S. vice-president fleet vehicles, Ed Peper, told Automotive News, “This will be the biggest thing we’ve ever done for commercial.” Peper also noted that GM will have to gain share at the expense of Ford and to a lesser extent from Ram.

Then there are adjacent sales. Peper continued, “For every one of these trucks we sell, we think we’re going to sell a van, we’re going to sell a pickup and one of something else.”

GM has teamed up with Navistar to develop and build the trucks in Springfield, Ohio, and production is expected to begin late this year. Order guides and pricing will be released in the spring and summer of this year.

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