If you want to know the differences between receiver, gooseneck and fifth-wheel hitches, this series of videos by Ram Trucks is a handy guide. It shows how to hook up a trailer using each sort of hitch and shares some facts about the capabilities of each hitch.
Last year, Ram Trucks made a big splash during the Super Bowl with its commercial, “Farmer,” embedded above. (You can see a longer version with more of Paul Harvey’s speech here). It exploded across social media and got the company a great deal of attention, especially in the agriculture industry.
Chevrolet already released its Super Bowl commercial for the Silverado HD, called “Romance.” It takes the format of its super-serious, minimalist “Strong” campaign and has a bit of fun on the topic of where beef really comes from.
Chevrolet is running this spot as well as another unrevealed 1-minute spot during the big game.
Ford has something hybrid-centered for the Super Bowl. There have been occasional rumors of a hybrid pickup from them, but nothing ever seems to materialize. We’ll see. Ford’s spot is expected to air just before kickoff.
Also, this Toyota commercial popped up just this past week. Could it be hinting at something to come?
We’ll update this post with any more Super Bowl commercials that appear. Let us know what you think of these ads in the comments section.
Monday morning update:
Well, the big game is passed. I missed a good bit of it because my TV signal went to pot sometime in the second quarter and didn’t recover until there were a few minutes left in the fourth. That’s just life for you.
First up is Chevrolet’s second big game commercial. It’s a bit of a slow burn that seems like a soft, romantic piece. Then, in the last few seconds it reveals exactly what is happening. Anyone who’s ever had a loved one fight cancer can relate to this:
Ram Trucks didn’t have anything to top its big hit from last year, but it did upload this little video yesterday.
The automotive media is abuzz thanks to the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. While there are some pretty cars being revealed at the show, a big component of the excitement comes from two new pickups that were unveiled in the past 24 hours: the 2015 Ford F-150 and the 2015 GMC Canyon.
Here are what several news outlets are saying about these new vehicles:
The return of the GMC Canyon
General Motors pulled the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon after the 2012 model year due to disappointing sales. The returning Colorado appeared late last year, and now the GMC Canyon is back too.
Before the unveiling, GMC did a fair amount of teasing on social media, including these shots:
“Both the Colorado and Canyon are nice little trucks. They feel tiny if you move into one straight out of a Silverado or Suburban, but would more than fulfill the pickup needs of many consumers.”
It’s been interesting to watch the differing strategies of the different truck makers. General Motors is going with the “three-truck strategy,” by making it so customers have trucks of three different sizes available from each brand. Who doesn’t enjoy choice?
I do wonder if there’s enough market available for selling these smaller trucks. This Wall Street Journal article pointed out the midsize pickups accounted for only 1.7 percent of all U.S. auto sales last year.
USA Today points out that this new truck’s electronic package includes a Teen Driver mode that lets parents set speed limits and gives a “report card” of broken laws and misbehavior.
The 13th-generation Ford F-150
As everyone is reporting, this truck made big news with its weight savings brought about through the use of aluminum in the body panels instead of rolled steel.
The rumor mill on this issue has been running for months, with countless stories quoting anonymous sources leaking bits and pieces about the new body material.
Most recently, Automotive News published this piece pointing out that the US Postal Service’s delivery vehicles have had aluminum bodies since 1987, and have been working out pretty well (Don’t miss the clever GIF video) Also, just before the reveal, MotorTrend magazine had a little fun by claiming to have an image of the new truck before anyone else:
“See, steel has a melting temperature between 2600°F and 2800°F, while aluminum melts at a much cooler 1220°F. Many types of lava flows can reach temperatures of over 1750°F, no problem for steel, while causing aluminum frames to turn into glimmering custard.”
MotorTrend says SuperCrew F-150s will have the most weight savings, at about 700 pounds each, because they had the most steel to replace. Regular cab pickups will shed 500 pounds or so.
“Ford is using 5000- and 6000-series sheet — the numbers indicate the particular alloys — supplied by Alcoa and Novelis. These alloys are popular with automakers because they are easy to form, rugged and, in the case of 6000, provide the smooth ‘class A’ surfaces required for visible panels like fenders.”
Automotive News shared a nice bit of detail about that new smaller EcoBoost engine, which uses special materials and designs that are beyond my ability to explain, so I’ll just quote the story:
“The two-piece block has compact graphite iron on the upper section, while the lower half is made from die-cast aluminum.
“‘We used iron only where we need the strength, which is in the main bulkhead,’ said Bob Fascetti Ford’s vice president of powertrain engineering. ‘This whole thing, including the [bearing] caps are cast together,’ he said.”
Some stuff doesn’t care how rough you are when you drop it in the bed.
Other gear can be more sensitive, and that’s when you want your truck to have a softer side.
The ACCESS™ Truck Bed Mat doesn’t just look nice. It helps you move gear in several ways.
First, a truck’s bed does an OK job of carrying stuff, but it’s not so nice for people who need to move around in the bed while loading, securing and unloading gear. Get down on your knees in your truck bed sometime and you’ll see what I mean — the metal just isn’t very nice to your joints.
A Truck Bed Mat, however, is very easy on the knees and makes it much easier to move around in the bed. It helps cushion your body when you’re in the bed, and it also cushions whatever cargo you carry.
Some gear wants to slide around in a stock truck bed. This can mean your cargo winds up skidding to the front of the box — often damaging the bed’s paint and giving rust a chance to take root.
This carpet, however, helps keep cargo in place by providing more grip for your gear. And even if your stuff still manages to slide around, the bed below is protected from damage by the thick mat.
Many bed liners are permanent, but the ACCESS™ Truck Bed Mat can be removed and reinstalled as needed. For normal hauling, just let it be. If you’ve got something particularly dirty to haul, like a load of gravel, you simply unsnap the carpet and take care of your dirty work. When you’re done with the messy jobs, just spray out the bed and snap the carpet back into place.
But don’t think you need to worry about this carpet getting dirty — it’s not like you have to take it to the dry cleaners any time it gets smudged. The mat is easily cleaned with a pressure washer or garden hose. It’s made to be durable and washable.
This mat is also made in an environmentally responsible manner. The ACCESS™ Truck Bed Mat is a marine-grade carpet made from recycled water and soda bottles. Each mat sold means a pile of bottles get kept out of a landfill.
The Truck Bed Mat is produced with a precise fit for many different truck bed sizes. Installing the mat for the first time is a straightforward process using drill-in or adhesive snaps — both options are included with each mat. The mat can be installed in a bare truck bed or on top of drop-in or spray-in bed liners, too.
When I installed my own Truck Bed Mat, I used the drill-in snaps. Here is a step-by-step video that shows that installation process:
Some truck owners may not be too thrilled about putting holes through their new truck bed. That’s why ACCESS offers adhesive snaps as well. This video shows how to install an ACCESS™ Truck Bed Mat with the adhesive snaps:
Whether using the drill-in snaps or adhesive snaps, take your time while measuring the mat’s location and deciding where to put the snaps. It’s hard to fix a hole drilled through the wrong spot in your bed, and the adhesive snaps are made to stick in place for the long haul.
I love having an ACCESS™ Truck Bed Mat in my pickup. It keeps my gear from sliding around and makes it easy for me to work in the bed when I need to. It’s also so soft I let my daughter crawl around in the back when we’re stopped on a long drive and she needs a break from her car seat.
Hey, it’s never too early to pass along the joy of pickup trucks.
Anyway, if you think an ACCESS™ Truck Bed Mat is right for you, get yours here.
Many truck owners find themselves torn between installing a tonneau cover or a rack for ladders and other long pieces of cargo. But the ADARAC™ Truck Bed Rack System can let them have both.
This adjustable and sturdy rack system is made model specific for the best fit on most Ford, GM, Chevy and Dodge pickup trucks. The ADARAC™ rack sits neatly behind the cab with no obstruction of view, and is capable of carrying a 500 lb. load with ease.
Across the U.S., bowhunters are gearing up for the season. Each state regulates their opening day but some states in the Midwest, like North Dakota, have already had their season opener. Read on to learn more about the unique and exciting challenges bowhunting offers.