2009 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 LTZEnlarge Photo
J.D. Power sales reports show that the Chevrolet Silverado light-duty pickup was the champion for light-duty truck sales in December of last year. The truck actually gained 1.2 percent in sales over its December '07 numbers to weigh in with 26,672 units sold for the month. With its new 2009 F-150, Ford gained a significant 4.8 percent in sales for December '08 compared to that number one year prior. Total light-duty F-150 sales tallied 24,948 units.
In the heavy-duty realm, the bowtie-vs.-blue oval battle for sales dominance is flipped. The new Ford Super Duty trounced Chevy with sales of 15,052 units in December '08; Chevy managed just 6,668 units for the Silverado HD. Even combined with GMC's sales of the nearly identical Sierra HD (2,856), the General Motors heavy-duties performed far below Ford's Super Duty.
2009 Ford F-150Enlarge Photo
Ailing Chrysler faired the worst in pickup sales for December '08, despite a bold redesign of its 2009 Dodge Ram pickup featuring an industry-first coil-sprung rear suspension that has wowed jouranlists with its first-rate blend of ride, handling, and towing capabilities. Chrysler moved only 10,303 light-duty Rams in December '08, and only 6,315 of its Ram HD pickups.
Whether it was the F-150's Truck of Texas win, Ford's best-and-brightest outlook in the Big Three financial fiasco, or negative public perception of Chrysler LLC's tenuous situation, Ram sales disappointments are yet another disheartening blow for Chrysler.
2009 Dodge RamEnlarge Photo
Ford stands to gain even more when its new EcoBoost and Coyote engines raise power and efficiency for 2010 and 2011 F-150 pickups. These engines promise to be the most technologically advanced domestic pickup engines available, offering superior driving dynamics and rewarding drivers with less consumption. Other than GM's baby Duramax diesel (still planned for 2010 or 2011) and Chrysler's off-again, on-again small Cummins V-8 diesel, Ford's domestic competitors currently have nothing in the pipeline to compete with Ford's promising powertrain tech. It seems GM and Chrysler will persist with 2-valve-per-cylinder V-8s while Ford will soon boast multivalve, turbocharged, and direct-injected engines beneath its pickups' hoods.