Popularity of Pickup Trucks Grow - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Popularity of Pickup Trucks Grow

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Americans appear to love pickups, with truck sales up throughout the country for Detroit's auto-makers.  The growth comes despite some companies selling fewer cars overall.  Fiat Chrysler Automobiles dropped 13 percent in October, and GM sales fell 2.2 percent.  Ford sales increased 6.2 percent.  All three companies sold more pickups than they did a year ago.

"It's a great all-around vehicle," Tim Milligan, GM of Capital Ford said. "It can tow your toys, it can take your stuff, and from a family standpoint, it's got a lot of safety value."

Ford's F-Series lead the way in October, with a 16 percent increase and up to 75,974 pickup sales.  Joe Wink is in the market for a new truck, and he is leaning towards buying a brand new Ford F-150.

"I'm looking for something that has a little more towing capacity, got a little longer bed, and I'm looking for gas mileage," Wink said.

Ram sold 44,201 trucks last month, up one point from a year ago.  GM had a good increase in sales for its Chevrolet Silverado, up 6.8 percent to 53,157 sold.  GMC Sierra jumped 25.5 percent, selling 18,895 trucks.  Garrett Green is the General Manager of Reno Buick GMC.  He says sales are even better in the Truckee Meadows.

"We're up 34 percent over the entire year on truck sales," Green said. "I think it's due to the aggressive play on the incentives with the manufacturers and also our local economy. Construction has picked up, and we see that."

Popularity is growing but so are prices.

"They keep adding technology and improving the vehicle, year-over-year," Green said.

Green says incentives are helping to keep the prices affordable for customers.  Along with newer bells and whistles, Milligan says costs of manufacturing and more government regulations are causing the higher prices.  The average price for a Ford F-Series is $47,300.  That is $4,000 higher than it was in 2016.  The sales numbers show that the price is not scaring away Ford customers.

"You have such a following on that vehicle," Milligan said. "There's a lot of brand loyalty to it. It's purpose-built; it's commercial grade; it's designed to handle a lot of heavy stresses that people put it under, and it doesn't let you down."

Milligan says the most popular Fords are the four-door Crew Cabs, offering traditional pickup uses with more comfort and passenger space of an SUV.  High sales are expected to continue through the end of the year, with more sales and rebates along with winter weather on the way.

"Look at the weather we had here last year," Wink said. "So, I'm just looking to get in on the rebates and get that four-wheel drive while I've got the chance."

While Ford's truck sales were up year-over-year, it also saw 80,000 sales in September.

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