Chicago Auto Show opens, and trucks steal the show

World Today

The 2019 Chicago Auto Show opens its doors to the public this weekend. More than a million people are expected to attend the show. This year automakers are revealing a number of new cars at the event – from sedans to sports cars, but increasingly, the industry emphasis is on pickup trucks.
CGTN’s Dan Williams reports.

Larger in size than Detroit, the Chicago Auto Show allows visitors the chance to test drive the very latest vehicles on the market.

And the main focus for the industry at this auto show…. is trucks.

Roman Mika is the executive producer with “The Fast Lane Truck. “Being the most profitable part of any business, it is also the most hyper competitive. And the truck market is cut throat. Consumers can get great deals on trucks because the companies are out their fighting tooth and nail for market share.”

So what’s new?

Chevrolet recently unveiled its new Silverado HD.

Ford announced a slew of updates for the Super Duty Range.

While Toyota’s market leading midsize truck, the Tacoma, has also been upgraded… as the company looks to stay ahead of its competitors. Jack Hollis is Toyota’s Group Vice President of North America. “If you are out in front, they are bound to come after you. That’s what you want to do, and it challenges your own team to keep doing better. But I think what it does is it brings more attention, more players come in, more marketing, more excitement.”

Overall, only Ford and General Motors sell more trucks in the U.S. than Ram. But they hope the new additions to their models will help close that gap yet further. “Now with all the technology that we put in our trucks, we are bringing more customers to the truck segment.” Says Jim Morrison, Head of Ram Brand North America.

The truck market in the U.S. has increasingly become big business. And experts predict that the sector offers further growth in the future. Not least when electrified models become available. “It seems to be a natural fit for electricity and trucks to come together. With cars, the problem with electricity is that batteries are heavy so you add a lot of weight and you lose a lot of capability. But in a truck, you have this big chassis that is perfectly made for something heavy already.” Says Mica.

Slick sports cars may have the ability to turn heads. But increasingly, it’s pickup trucks that the U.S. auto industry is focused on.