“The Ram truck has generated a lot of excitement in 2014 and has won numerous awards…”
Pickup trucks continue to push new sales records every year and with more and more advancements in technologies and lightweight materials, we are witnessing a dramatic change to the automotive industry.
The 2015 Ford F-150 is a reinvention of North America’s most popular pickup. It is 317 kilograms (700lbs) lighter, due to its aluminum body. It can tow up to 500 more kilograms (1,100lbs) and carry up to 240 more kilograms (530lbs) of cargo. The other benefit of losing all this weight is the fuel economy numbers, projected to be five to 20 percent better gas mileage. Four engine choices, 2.7 litre EcoBoost V6 delivering 385 horsepower and 375 lb-ft of torque, a 3.5 litre EcoBoost V6 twin turbo that produces 365 horsepower and an incredible 420 lb-ft of torque, a 5.0-litre V8 with 385 horsepower with 387 lb-ft of torque and a 3.5-litre with 283 horsepower and 255 lb-ft of torque. Some new technologies incorporated in this truck include; a 360-degree camera that offers the driver a bird’s eye view to help manouevre the vehicle out of tight spots, LED headlamps, LED taillamps, integrated loading ramps, and a trailer hitch assist rearview camera that helps line up their truck and trailer without the use of a spotter.
Starting at $17,999
The 2015 Ram 1500 Diesel features a 3.0-litre EcoDiesel V6 with an eight-speed TorqueFlite transmission, delivering an impressive 7.1 L/100 km highway fuel economy, powers. The Ram also includes active grille shutters to improve airflow for improved aerodynamics. There is also an airbag option available that can lower the ride height to create less drag. The Ram truck has generated a lot of excitement in 2014 and has won numerous awards. In Canada, Ram has maintained a strong following and with a diesel engine offering, the light truck market just became more interesting.
Starting at $19,995
The 2015 GMC Canyon has breathed new life into the midsize pickup market. This vehicle is equipped with a 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine that produces 200 horsepower and is mated with a six speed manual transmission, with a six-speed automatic available as an option. You can also order a more powerful 3.6 Litre V6 with 302 horsepower engine, but it is only available with the automatic transmission. Available 4G LTE with Wi-Fi connection through OnStar turns your pick up into a mobile hotspot. Brand new body style will attract a lot of attention, especially on the west coast where midsize trucks were so popular.
Starting at $22,395
The 2015 Chevy Silverado HD marches in with an all new exterior styling designed around improving airflow, which helps the 6.6-litre Duramax turbo diesel or the 6.0-litre Vortex V8 maintain full power during heavy towing and higher temperatures. Auto grade braking and diesel exhaust braking help keep towing in check on those steep hills. Starting on a hill is no problem thanks to the hill start assist that holds the brakes until you press the accelerator. The trailer sway control automatically senses if a trailer is swaying and brings it back in line by applying both the truck’s and trailer’s brakes. The rear bumper has steps integrated into each corner making it easier to access the pickup’s box.
Starting at $39,995
The 2015 Toyota Tundra is equipped with a 5.7-litre i-force V8 engine producing 381 hp and 401 lb-ft of torque can tow up to 4,760 kg (10,500 lb). The Tundra went through a complete makeover last year with dramatic changes to the body. The grille is much larger and gives the truck a more aggressive look. The 1794 Edition is a Western themed truck that features 20” chrome clad alloy wheels, chrome surround grille with 2 bar silver inserts, a chrome and silver bumper, 1794 Edition badging, power moonroof and a heavy duty towing package. The Tundra tailgate opens very easily with the hydraulic assist and can close with as little as two fingers.
Starting at $27,225
“Is it practical? – Maybe not, but it sure would look cool to take it fishing and show off to your buddies…”
With the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show wrapping up last week in Las Vegas, I thought I would share with you an interesting vehicle that was on display and caught my eye – the 2014 Toyota Tundra Ultimate fishing vehicle.
Bassmaster Elite Series pro angler, Britt Myers wanted a Toyota Tundra equipped with everything you would want to go fishing and I think he got his wish. It is painted in a matte gray finish from front to back with yellow and black tribal graphics. Front bumper is made by Fab Fours and comes with PIAA fog and driving lights. There is a Warn 15000lb winch tucked inside this massive bumper. Rolling big power provided the custom grille.
Bushwacker fender flares help cover the 37” tall Nitto mud grappler tires mounted on 22” Moto metal black rims. The folks at Pro Comp suspension provided the 6” suspension lift. It features a MX 2.75c series coil over front shocks and MX6 adjustable rear shocks.
In case you are wondering, how you would get in this thing, Bestop has built a running board step that raises and lowers automatically when you open and close the doors. A smaller step folds down manually just in front of the rear tires. This helps you reach the custom-made roof rack cargo basket.
The cargo basket has Rigid 50” LED lights recessed in the front, back and sides, giving plenty of light to see all around. The canopy is built by Leer and has painted fiberglass panels replacing the windows. The rear is truly unique. The canopy gate and vehicle tailgate are connected and attached to a rolling platform that slides out to carry a beverage fridge, tool compartment, fishing tackle, and more! It looks like a showroom out of a fishing store.
The cabin features all black factory leather seats with a custom made center console. Instead of cup holders, a panel of switches takes its place where the driver can easily access the various powered equipment. The dash features a graphic montage of fish skeletons to get you in the mood. The door panels are equipped with twin speakers and a fish finder monitor. I guess you would have to dip the front tire in the river to make it work.
The factory 5.7-litre engine has been upgraded to feature a Toyota racing development supercharger and a cold air intake. A custom exhaust system by MBRP finishes off the engine compartment.
Fuel economy? – If you have to ask, you can’t afford it.
Is it practical? – Maybe not, but it sure would look cool to take it fishing and show off to your buddies.
Sticker price: $125,000, to a Redneck… Priceless.
What are my favourite trucks? – It’s a question readers ask me all the time in the supermarket and on the street.
Though not in order of preference, here are my ten choices.
2014 GMC/Chevy Silverado/Sierra
The half-ton pickup has gone through some monumental changes this year. What an improvement with a very comfortable and refined interior on all trim levels, and three engine choices, the Eco Tec 4.3-litre V6, 5.3-litre V8, and a 6.2-litre V8.
2015 Chevrolet Colorado
Very similar in design to its big brother the Silverado, this midsize truck fills a void in Canada. Still expected to work as hard as a full-size truck, the Colorado can tow more than 3,039 kilograms (6700 lbs) a 2.5L I-4 engine is standard with an optional 3.6L V6 with a six speed automatic transmission.
2015 GMC 3500HD
Denali is a beast. This truck is built to pull and with 10,251 KG (22,600 lbs) of trailer towing capacity it does just that. The 6.6L V8 turbo engine delivers 397 hp and 765 lb ft of torque and is paired with a 1000 series Allison transmission. With interior upgrades such as 12-way power adjustable bucket seats, heated leather wrapped steering wheel and a Bose sound system you can operate it in comfort.
2014 Ford F150 Ecoboost
With more than 100,000 Eco Boost engines being produced monthly, you can bet a majority of these engines are finding their way into the 2014 F150 pickup. It holds the record in Canada for highest pickup sales, and at 12.9/9.0 L/100 km (city/highway) it keeps the money in your wallet a little longer.
The 2014 Ford Raptor is still one of my favorite off-road vehicles. It has electronic locking rear differential, shift on the fly 4 wheel drive, advance trac with roll stability control, and trailer sway control. Front and rear mounted cameras to add a second pair of eyes to the terrain around you and a 6.2-litre V8 engine to help you get up and over that hill.
2015 Ford F150
All new design features and a completely aluminum body and high strength steel in its frame make this truck up to 317 KG (700 lbs) lighter. It has 11 new class-exclusive features, including 360-degree camera view, integrated loading ramps stowed in the pickup bed, 400-watt power outlets inside the cab, LED headlights and side-view mirror spotlights, and remote tailgate release.
2014 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel
This is a much-anticipated truck from Ram With a 3.0-litre V6 Diesel engine with a torqueflite eight-speed transmission. Not only will the Ram EcoDiesel give you 420-pound feet of torque and plenty of towing capabilities, it will also reduce co2 emissions and run on B20 Biodiesel. It’s a game changer.
2014 Ram 3500
The largest and most capable pickup Ram has to offer. Alterations to the frame including eight separate cross members, hydro formed frame rails and high strength steel add up to a truck that is capable of towing of towing up to 13,607kg (30,000lb). A 6.7l Cummins turbo diesel engine delivers 385 hp and 850 lb ft of torque.
2014 Toyota Tundra
New body style this year, impressive hood and fender design. The western themed 1794 Edition commemorates the founding year of a Texas ranch where the Tundra plant is situated. This interior is covered with Saddle tan brown leather seats and rich maple wood grain panels throughout. It is powered by a 4.6-litre or a 5.7-litre engine.
Can it compete with the big boys? This is the year to see.
2014 Toyota Tacoma
The Tacoma has continued to increase popularity and is a very agile four-wheeler. The double cab gives plenty of room for all your buddies and the 4.0-litre V6 engine can get you to your favorite fishing hole and back. With the addition of some modern day technology such as Backup camera, heated seats, 6 airbags, and a power invertor, this truck has everything I am looking for in a pickup.
The Tundra is even as capable as many of the domestic brands but in some ways it still has a way to go (more…)
The ride was a perfect combination of on-road comfort and off-road toughness…
The 2014 Toyota Tundra has deep roots in the Wild, Wild West.
The 1794 Edition is a tribute to the ranch, founded in the year 1794, on which the Tundra plant is located in San Antonio, Texas. In 2002, Toyota began the search for a US facility to build the second generation Toyota Tundra. The 2,000-acre ranch site was acquired and ground breaking took place Oct 17, 2003. Just like the ranch it replaced, hard work and dedication prevailed bringing production numbers up to 200,000 units.
On September 18, 2013, the one-millionth truck, a Sunset Bronze Mica colored, 1794 Edition Tundra, rolled out.
This truck has a completely new body design with an aggressive grille that extends from the bumper to the raised hood. The fender flares are larger and more defined, and the tailgate has Tundra stamped into the sheet metal.
The top of the line Western-themed 1794 Edition comes with a unique chrome grille and chrome and silver bumper. It’s almost like a large belt buckle!
The inside screams Country music with its exclusive premium saddle tan brown leather seats with embossed and suede accents. Soft-touch materials are found on the center console, the front and rear door trim, and the instrument panel. Rich maple wood-grain covers the steering wheel, dash and shifter. Big improvement to the back seat of the Double Cab and Crew Max where a 60/40 split bench flips up with a one handed latch to allow more cargo space.
The Tundra is equipped with Toyota’s advanced display audio system with AM/FM Radio, CD, MP3/WMA capability, USB and auxiliary input, and voice recognition. It also includes standard Bluetooth and an integrated backup camera. A SR model has a 6.1-inch display, while the SR5, Limited and Platinum models feature a 7-inch display with integrated Sirius XM Satellite Radio.
Two engines available, depending on the model you choose. The 4.6 L i-force V8 that puts out 310 horsepower and 327 lb ft of torque and the 5.7 L i-force V8 with 32 valve dual overhead cam engine that generates 381 horsepower and 410 lb ft of torque. Both motors are connected to a 6 speed automatic transmission with sequential shift mode.
Fuel economy numbers are;
5.7 L: 14.2/10.5 L/100 km (city/highway)
4.6 L: 11.0/13.6 L/100 km (city/highway)
Driver and front passenger airbags, roll-sensing, head/side curtain and front mounted side airbags, and the first 1/2 ton pickup to include driver and front passenger knee airbags. Toyota’s star safety system includes electronic brake force distribution, smart stop technology, anti-lock brakes, vehicle stability control, and active traction control. The side mirrors have the blind spot monitor system that detects a vehicle in your blind spot.
The ride was a perfect combination of on-road comfort and off-road toughness. The truck has exceptional steering response and firm enough not to nose dive in the corners.
The seats are spacious and very comfortable; I compare it to a living room couch with seat belts. It has a very quiet cabin, which I found to be true with the previous model, with very little road noise.
I am happy they continued with the larger oversized buttons and knobs, which you can operate while wearing gloves. With the popularity of the Tundra growing, I can easily see the two-millionth truck roll out before the next design change.
Tundra Range Sticker Price:
Tundra 4×2 Double Cab SR 4.6L $30,750
Tundra 4×4 Regular Cab SR 5.7L $30,825
Tundra 4×4 Double Cab SR 4.6L $34,825
Tundra 4×4 Double Cab SR 5.7L $36,650
Tundra 4×4 Double Cab SR Long Bed 5.7L $36,865
Tundra 4×4 Double Cab Limited 5.7L $46,950
Tundra 4×4 Crew Max SR5 5.7L $39,990
Tundra 4×4 Crew Max Limited 5.7L $48,120
Tundra 4×4 Crew Max Platinum 5.7L $53,700
1794 Edition $54,000