New pickups are GM’s biggest test since bankruptcy

PONTIAC, Mich, Thu Dec 13, 2012 — General Motors Co. is counting on muscled up, more refined versions of its lucrative Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra full-size pickup trucks to show investors and car buyers that the No. 1 U.S. automaker is back on track.

The 2014 model-year trucks are the most critical launch for the Detroit company since its bankruptcy and $50 billion U.S. taxpayer-funded bailout in 2009. The trucks are also a linchpin in GM’s ongoing battle with No. 2 U.S. carmaker Ford Motor Co., whose F-150 truck is the industry’s top-selling vehicle.

GM showed off the new full-size pickups in Pontiac, Michigan, on Thursday, and executives are touting the benefits of the vehicles, which will initially be offered in the most popular four-door, “crew cab” version in the second quarter of next year.

“There’s nothing more core to our business than our trucks,” GM North American President Mark Reuss said at the introduction at a movie studio north of Detroit.