GM's Chevy Silverado tops Consumer Reports' truck list

Tue Sep 17, 2013 6:04am EDT
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By Ben Klayman

DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Co's (GM.N: Quote) Chevrolet Silverado was the top-scoring full-size pickup truck in a road test, edging Chrysler's Ram 1500, which was the preferred vehicle to drive on a daily basis, according to Consumer Reports.

Who has bragging rights in tests such as those released by the influential consumer magazine is critical because the big trucks generate profits of more than $12,000 per vehicle in a growing segment that has always been dominated by the U.S. automakers. Consumer Reports is one of the most heavily consulted sources of information by car shoppers.

Sales of large pickups in the U.S. market were up 24 percent to almost 1.3 million vehicles so far this year and make up about 12 percent of overall demand. The top-selling vehicle in the United States is Ford Motor Co's (F.N: Quote) F-150 full-size pickup.

The 2014 Silverado 1500 with a 5.3-liter V8 engine scored 81 out of 100 points, or "excellent," while the 2013 Ram 1500 with a 5.7-liter V8 engine scored 78, according to the test results released on Tuesday.

The 2014 Silverado is GM's most important vehicle launch since the U.S. automaker's 2009 bankruptcy. The vehicle's design had not been overhauled since 2006. The 2013 Ram was a less extensive redesign.

"The reality is that you can't go wrong with either one," Jake Fisher, director of automotive testing for Consumer Reports, said in a statement. "Both are capable trucks that get decent gas mileage and are as quiet inside as a good luxury car."

The GM and Chrysler trucks scored higher than two versions of Ford's (F.N: Quote) F-150, which each scored 70 points. Rounding out the testing were Toyota Motor Corp's (7203.T: Quote) Tundra (69 points) and Nissan Motor Co's (7201.T: Quote) Titan (66 points).

Consumer Reports said the Silverado beat out the Ram 1500 because of its larger cargo bed, greater payload capacity and ability to tow heavier loads.   Continued...

Chevrolet Silverado pick up trucks are seen in Gaithersburg, Maryland May 1, 2013. REUTERS/Gary Cameron