New GM Web Video Attacks Aluminum Parts Used In Ford F-150
In an effort to take control of the highly profitable pickup segment of the US auto-industry, GM recently released a video of NFL broadcaster Howie Long interviewing Chevrolet Chief Engineer Eric Stanczak about the higher costs required to repair the 2015 Ford F-150, as opposed to the 2015 Chevy Silverado.
General Motors hired AMCI Testing, which is an independent firm, to conduct tests on both the trucks. They took eight vehicles in total, four Silverados and four F-150s, then administered identical tests on each truck that replicated what it be like if a large truck ran into one of these vehicles at a construction site. The Silverados were then taken to authorized Chevy dealers and the F-150s were taken to Ford dealers certified in aluminum repair. AMCI documented that it took an average of $1,755 and 34 more days to repair the F-150 than the Silverado.
“Aluminum material costs are higher than steel,” Stanczak said in the video, “plus, it requires a body shop to invest in new tools and training to handle it”
“So if I’m a guy that uses my truck for work, every day I don’t have that truck, that costs me money,” Long responded. “In addition, you got higher repair bills. I’d be interested to know what happens to insurance costs. I got to tell you — all that certainly makes me think twice about an aluminum-bodied truck. Seems like you’d be taking a risk.”
To be clear, both trucks have steel frames, but the F-150’s body panels and bed are made with aluminum, while the Silverado’s are made with steel. The difference in materials does give the F-150 better fuel economy, but GM thought it could reach consumers by making this video focusing on the higher repair costs associated with aluminum parts.
General Motors reportedly is looking into turning this truck wars video into a regular TV advertisement. Here is the full web video:
Photos courtesy of General Motors