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General Motors Collaborates with Isuzu to Build New Mid-Duty Truck

Published on June 25, 2015 by in Blog, CATI
General Motors Headquarters

General Motors Headquarters

Last week, General Motors announced its comeback into the medium-duty truck business by expanding its partnership with Japanese truck maker Isuzu Motors. In the deal between the two manufacturing giants, Isuzu will produce new models for GM based on the Isuzu N-Series truck. Starting next year, the trucks will be distributed through GM’s Chevrolet dealerships in the US.

The collaboration is predicted to be a win/win for the brands, allowing GM to expand its vehicle portfolio while Isuzu strengthens its product lineup. If you’re a student who’s passionate about cars, you’re probably familiar with both manufacturers, and may even know some of the models they’ve produced together!

Read on to find out more about the partnership between the two companies and the new truck models set to hit the market in 2016.

GM and Isuzu’s Automotive Partnership Spans Decades

The new agreement to produce trucks is based on a strategic partnership between GM and Isuzu that dates back 40 years. If you’re considering training at an automotive school, you may have heard of the Buick Opel, Geo Spectrum, or the Pontiac Sunburst –all cars made by Isuzu that have been sold in North America under GM brands. Because of the partnership, GM also had a few models in Japanese dealerships.

The two brands had several collaborative projects over time, including a joint venture to produce diesel engines. At one point, GM owned nearly half of Isuzu Motors and gained control of the company. Over time, Isuzu bought back GM’s shares –the last of which were purchased in 2006. Even then, the companies stated that their relationship would continue.

Chevrolet’s New Fleet of Mid-Duty Trucks

When it comes to commercial trucks, GM is no newcomer to the industry. Under the Chevrolet brand alone, their fleet includes the full-size Silverado lineup, the Silverado 2500HD and 3500HD full-size chassis cab models, and the midsize Colorado.

If you’re considering enrolling in auto mechanic training, you may remember that although GM has a whole family of pickups and full-sized vans, the brand left the medium-duty truck business in 2009 when it hit a rough patch.

The new mid-duty trucks will be offered with regular-cab and crew-cab body styles. They will be the only low cab forward trucks in North America to offer a gas-powered powertrain. Depending on the model, however, Isuzu-built 3.0L and 5.2L turbo-diesel engines will be available as well. Other features include:

  • Easy driver entry and exit
  • Chassis lengths from 109 inches to 212 inches
  • Compatibility with a variety of body types, including refrigerated box, stake/flat bed and service bodies
  • Easy-access engine compartment with 45-degree-tilting cab

In a press release, Chevrolet announced that there will be more details on features and specs closer to the start of production. If you’re a student at an automotive training centre, you’ll have some time to polish-up on your Isuzu mid-duty truck engine knowledge before they hit showrooms in 2016!

 What is your favorite commercial vehicle from General Motors?

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