Trucks Brands, Tough
Year, Who Will Survive?
I'm surprised by the phone
calls I'm getting from friends and business associates over the
government bailout of the auto industry. Truck buyers are very loyal to
their truck brands and many Dodge owners are telling me that their next
truck will be a Ford. All do to Ford not asking for tax payer money or
bailout. Dodge loyalist are hit the hardest, Chrysler was owned by
Germany company Daimler and now Fiat of Italy is about take over
Chrysler, leaving Dodge owners confused about whom to be loyal to.
I asked a Ford rep at the
Denver Auto Show if Ford had done surveys to calculate how much market
share is changing do to Ford not taking bailout money from the fed.
Didn't get an answer so it must be top secret. Auto companies measure
everything. A study released last week by AutoPacific showed that 72% of
respondents would be more likely to consider Ford vehicles because the
company didn't take money from Washington.
It looks to me that the two biggest holdups for the economy
to improve, is what will fuel prices do this year and what companies
will survive. Improved sales in used trucks and trailers point to a
Nissan Titan surprised us
with lack of sales and US penetration after a great start in the fall
2003. Now Nissan maybe build a full size truck again after Dodge has
dropped plans to build a Titan badged Dodge Ram. Toyota Tundra made a
dent in the US trucks sales in 2007 model year as a truck contender. Now
stagnate US truck sales have slowed plans for Toyota's full size future.
Cars.com did an index to rate vehicles made in the US with US parts.
Ford F150 placed 1st, Toyota Tundra 5th and Chevrolet Silverado 1500 8th
and Dodge Ram not making the top 10. What's next, it will be
interesting, used trucks sales should improve. Don't know how well new
$50,000 trucks will survive. Work trucks should lead the way, US truck
makers have an advantage. Stay tuned, a year of surprises is headed out