New Features for 2017’s Truck Models Haul in Shoppers

BY Courtney Huckabay
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"In the U.S., pickup trucks are perennial top sellers. And because they are wildly profitable, competition and cash flow fuel perpetual upgrades. Digging in to what’s new in 2017 pickup trucks, there are a lot of details, upgrades, and even redesigns. Consumer Reports staff has driven many and shares the highlights below."

"Chevrolet Colorado/​GMC Canyon: The 2017 models are offered with a new 308-​hp, 3.6‑liter V6 and eight-​speed automatic transmission," Mike Quincy wrote.

"Chevrolet Silverado/​GMC Sierra: All 2500 and 3500 heavy-​duty models are available with a new 6.6‑liter turbodiesel V8 engine that produces 445 hp and 910 lb.-ft. of torque."

The latest AudienceSCAN survey revealed 24.6% of Pickup Truck Shoppers are currently driving Chevys, so it might be time for an upgrade!

"Ford F‑150: The EcoBoost 3.5‑liter V6 is enhanced with 50 lb.-ft. more torque (now totaling 470 lb.-ft.) and 10 additional horsepower compared with the 2016 model. Also new, and exclusive to the EcoBoost 3.5, is a standard 10-​speed automatic."

"Ford F‑150 Raptor: The redesigned 2017 F‑150 Raptor model uses the same aluminum and high-​strength steel construction as the tamer F‑150, making it lighter than the last version. But this bold off-​roader boasts a pumped-​up version of the slick 3.5‑liter V6 twin-​turbocharged engine with 450 hp and 510 lb.-ft. of torque."

"Ford also says fuel economy jumps 23 percent in EPA-​estimated combined fuel economy at 16 mpg. (CR’s tested F‑150 with the 365-​hp, 3.5 V6 returned 16 mpg overall. Your Raptor mileage will most certainly be less.) A 10-​speed automatic is standard."

"But what really sets the Raptor apart is its industrial-​strength suspension and generous ground clearance. The 2017 model gets adjustable 3.0‑inch FOX Racing Shox designed to provide top off-​road performance when you want it and a supposedly smoother ride when you’re on regular pavement."

"The 2017 Raptor also gets a six-​mode “Terrain Management System,” allowing drivers to select from a simple day-​to-​day clutched all-​wheel-​drive system to maxed out “Baja Mode” for race-​like performance."

"Ford F‑250: Redesigned for 2017, the heavy-​duty Ford F‑250 shaves off about 350 lbs. by following a similar aluminum-​intensive diet as the F‑150. Power comes from a 385-​hp, 6.2‑liter V8 and a 440-​hp, 6.7‑liter turbodiesel V8 with a stunning 925 lb.-ft. of torque. Among its available technology is a suite of systems to make hooking up a trailer easier through cameras and advanced safety systems that can account for a large trailer, with blind-​spot monitoring and forward-​collision warning with trailer-​brake support."

Those features are sure to entice Ford-​loyal Pickup Truck Shoppers! According to AudienceSCAN data, 25.9% of Truck Shoppers are driving Fords right now.

"GMC Sierra 2500 All Terrain X: GM steps up its off-​road game with the All Terrain X version of its heavy-​duty 2500-​Series pickup. The big GMC joins the brand’s Canyon and Sierra 1500 as the third model to get the rough-​and-​dirty hardware makeover. GMC calls this new model a “customized appearance” package, suggesting that the All Terrain X isn’t quite a Baja runner in disguise."

"Opting for this version gets you 18-​inch black-​painted aluminum wheels; aggressive-​looking Goodyear Duratrac tires; exterior enhancements such as a body-​color grille, door handles, and moldings; black side steps; and a tough-​looking black bed-​mounted sport bar designed to hold factory LED off-​road driving lamps. Those looking for the tough bits can get the optional Z71 off-​road suspension package and underbody shield."

Try targeting Pickup Truck Shoppers with 2017's newest features in sponsored search results. The AudienceSCAN study showed they are 67% more likely than average shoppers to take action based on their search results ads.

"Honda Ridgeline: Honda’s redesigned pickup is built on the same platform as the Honda Pilot. This more conventional design retains the unit-​body construction, fully independent suspension, and the dual-​action tailgate that can swing sideways for easier bed access or fold down in traditional fashion."

"It also keeps the lockable “trunk” space below the bed floor. Power comes from a slick 3.5‑liter V6 engine mated to a six-​speed automatic transmission. Towing capacity is modest at 5,000 pounds, and the bed is shallow. Front- and all-​wheel-​drive versions are available. Factor in civilized road manners and a comfy cabin, and there is real appeal in this alternative to traditional trucks."

Cater to the "alternative" truck drivers in radio spots. AudienceSCAN research revealed 37.3% of Pickup Shoppers took action after hearing radio commercials in the past month.

"Nissan Titan: A light-​duty version sibling to the near-​heavy-​duty Titan XD, the Titan aims for the Chevrolet Silverado and Ford F‑150. Initially, the Titan will be offered as a four-​door crew cab. But like most trucks in this class, you soon will also be able to choose a regular- and extended-​cab version."

"You can get a Titan in either two- or four-​wheel drive and choose among five trim lines: S, SV, PRO-​4X, SL, and Platinum Reserve. Motivation comes from a 390-​hp, 5.6‑liter V8 engine, matched to a seven-​speed automatic transmission. A V6 joins the ranks later."

"Ram 1500/​2500: The entire Ram lineup gets minor cosmetic and equipment changes for 2017, with various trim treated to additional standard equipment. The 1500 Rebel gains a slew of features, including Uconnect 8.4, remote start, rearview camera, and rear park assist. Based on the Sport model, a special-​edition Night package bring a customized appearance with blacked-​out exterior details, including wheels and badging."

"Toyota Tacoma: Toyota follows the Tacoma redesign with the addition of a trail-​ready TRD Pro trim level.The 2017 Tacoma TRD Pro gets a revised suspension system with unique front springs that add a 1‑inch lift, along with beefier rear leaf springs. Standard wheels are 16-​inch black alloys with aggressive Goodyear Kevlar-​reinforced tires. Other TRD details include exterior styling tweaks, a cat-​black stainless steel exhaust system, and many “TRD Pro” badges scattered about the truck."

AudienceSCAN data is available as part of a subscription to AdMall for Agencies, or with the SalesFuel API. Media companies can access AudienceSCAN data through the AudienceSCAN Reports in AdMall.