General Motors announced last week that they have added a new spring, shock and box combination for the GMC Sierra HD that makes it the best of the heavy duty American pickups – boasting a best-in-class 5th wheel towing capacity of 23,000lbs. The 2012 GMC Sierra HD equipped with the maximum towing configuration is also capable of towing 18,000lbs with a conventional bumper hitch while also being able to haul 7,215lbs – making the GMC the top dog in terms of the three major weight categories. For comparison, the current Ford Super Duty pickups with the max towing setup are capable of towing 22,600lbs on the 5th wheel mount and 17,500lbs at the bumper, while hauling 7,070lbs. The GMC HD has only a slight advantage, but that is an advantage nonetheless.
However, if the past year is any indication, leading the American heavy duty truck segment in anything may be short lived. And with Ford trailing GM by just a few hundred pounds in the three major categories, it may not take the trucks behind the Blue Oval much effort to climb back to the top.
Ford already has the most powerful engine in the HD war with their PowerStroke offering 400hp and 800lb-ft of torque; the Duramax Diesel in the GMC Sierra HD makes just 397hp and 765lb-ft of torque. So FoMoCo could look to revise the suspension and chassis of their Super Duty (similar to what GM did with the Sierra HD) to jump back to the top of the HD heap.
On the other hand, Ford has come a long way with their engine technology, so perhaps they will come out with a newly tuned PowerStroke with slightly more power to be able to out-haul and out-tow the competition. Not only would some extra power help the Ford Super Duty
to tow and haul more, but offering an even larger advantage in power would give the Blue Oval one more bragging right when attempting to attract buyers.
Auto Show season is quickly approaching, and with the Detroit automakers constantly working to steal the various shows, Ford may use either the 2011 LA Auto Show
or the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit
to roll out a revised Super Duty model that will best their cross-town competition. Ford already has the most powerful, most capable and most efficient light duty trucks on the American market, with the bestselling F150, but for the time being General Motors has the claim of the most powerful non-commercial truck on the market. However, with such a slim margin between Ford and GM in their towing and hauling capacities, Ford Motor Company isn’t likely to sit by quietly while their bitter rivals go around town bragging about being the most powerful trucks in the land.
Stay tuned…as the next few months could bring about new configurations that offer towing and hauling capacities like the industry has never seen before.
How should Ford respond to the latest competition? Voice your opinion here