This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
$1 buys you full access to ALL of TheStreet's Subscription Services! Learn More

Is 2013 the Year of the Pickup Truck?

Stocks in this article: FGM

DETROIT ( TheStreet) -- Demand for fuel-efficient compact cars continues to mount: The Chevrolet Volt is not only a technological marvel but also a hot political topic and every major automaker recently has rolled out a strong product in the wildly competitive mid-sized sedan segment.

But yet, as the Detroit Auto Show approaches, the auto industry is focused squarely on pickup trucks.

Pickup truck momentum has been mounting for weeks, fueled by the revival of the housing construction industry, which provides a key market for pickup sales. On Dec. 13, GM (GM) rolled out the long-awaited, remodeled 2014 Silverado, showing that it clearly got the timing right and now only needs to get the truck right.

On Jan. 3, automakers released December sales that showed strong pickup truck sales including a 16% gain for the remodeled Ram pickup, a candidate for truck of the year. On the Ford (F) sales call, Ford analyst Eric Merkle said full-size pickups had their best month of the year in December, accounting for 13% of industry sales. For the full year, pickup truck sales accounted for 11.5% of industry sales, relatively consistent with the previous two years.

For all of 2012, Ford's F-150 and the Silverado were the two best-sellingU.S. vehicles, with the F-150 first by an immense number, 227,004 vehicles, or 35% of its total sales. Even today, despite all their gains in the various car segments in recent year, the Detroit Three have not entirely shaken the assessment that they are pickup truck companies which also make cars.

Now the industry expects that Ford will unveil a concept for a remodeled F-150 at the Detroit Auto Show media preview next week, which would likely make a pickup truck concept introduction the principal event at the show.

Given the publicity around the Silverado announcement, "Ford, (with) the top selling truck in the country, was left out of that excitement," said Edmunds.com analyst Jessica Caldwell, on a conference call with reporters on Tuesday. "This is a way to get themselves back in it."

Ford "is stealing the spotlight from GM," said Jefferies analyst Peter Nesvold, on the same call. "The real advancement will probably be weight, it is rumored to be 750 miles lighter than the current model." Nesvold said he does not expect Ford will lure many Silverado buyers because truck buyers are loyal, but the rollout "creates a new product cycle story."

Ford has not commented on whether it will roll out a new F-150. On a conference call with analysts in November, Mark Fields, chief operating officer, was coy when asked that question.

"We take leadership very seriously," he said. "We also know that as a leader you have a target on your back. That's what drives our product planning going forward."

1 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 17,828.91 +11.01 0.06%
S&P 500 2,069.17 -0.24 -0.01%
NASDAQ 4,759.3290 +4.4370 0.09%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs