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General Motors Company (GM - Analyst Report) announced that its newly launched Chevy Silverado pickup truck is more fuel efficient compared to other pickup trucks. The new Chevy Silverado is set to deliver 23 miles per gallon (mpg) on the highway and is equipped with a 355-horsepower 5.3-liter V8 engine.

The consumer’s preference for power, payload and towing capacity has shifted to fuel efficiency. The new Silverado with greater mileage will significantly lower fuel cost. In addition, the truck is equipped with new safety features including lane departure warning, forward collision alert and other features. With updated steering, suspensions and brakes; the new pickups are more aerodynamic and aggressive in look.

The automaker offers the 2014 Silverado at the same price as the outgoing model, while the 2014 Sierra will cost $500 more than the last version. 2014 Silverado with regular cab body style is priced at $24,585, the double cab will be available for $28,610 and the higher-end crew cab style will cost $32,710. 2014 Sierra will be priced $25,085, $29,110 and $33,210 for the regular, double and higher-end crew cab style, respectively.

General Motors expects that as the economic recovery continues, demand for trucks will improve rapidly due to higher replacement need of older trucks. The automaker also anticipates that sell of high-end versions of the new pickup trucks will be better due to American preference for advanced safety features, which is not there in the outgoing models.

These new pickups from General Motors will create challenges for the other automakers including Ford Motor Co. (F - Analyst Report), Toyota Motor Corp. (TM - Analyst Report) and Chrysler. The 2013 F-150 of Ford features 3.5-liter, six-cylinder, turbocharged engine and two-wheel drive provides 18 mpg. Ford also plans to improve the fuel efficiency of the F-150 by using lighter materials. The Chrysler Ram with 3.6-liter V-6 engine delivers about 25 mpg on the highway.

General Motors posted an increase in profits to $0.8 billion or 48 cents per share in the fourth quarter of 2012 compared with $0.7 billion or 39 cents in the same quarter of 2011. The earnings per share missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by a penny.

Revenues moved up 3.4% to $39.3 billion in the quarter, higher than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $38.6 billion. Unit sales escalated 4.2% to 2.3 million vehicles. The improvement was driven by an increase in worldwide sales volume to 2.3 million units.

General Motors expects to boost its top-line in 2013 with the help of new vehicle launches. At the same time, the company believes cost control measures will boost its bottom-line growth. It currently retains a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Gentherm Incorporated (THRM) with a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) is performing well in the industry where General Motors operates.
 

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