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GM claims Silverado beats F-250 in frame-twist test [Video]

by Justin King

GM continues to ramp up anti-aluminum campaign ahead of new F-150 arrival.

General Motors has released a promotional video showing its Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD beating the Ford F-250 in a frame-twist test.

Both pickups were driven up staggered ramps that left one of the rear wheels hanging in the air, torquing the cargo beds and misaligning the tailgate position relative to the cab. The test was performed by third-party research firm AMCI Testing, but commissioned by GM.

The Silverado is claimed to have demonstrated just 0.26 inches of displacement, measured between the cab and the cargo bed, while the F-250 distorted by nearly a full inch.

"The twist was so great on the Ford that when under stress, the tailgate could not able to be lowered, while the Silverado's available EZ-Lift and Lower Tailgate operated normally," GM said in a statement.

The company argues that its Silverado benefits from high-strength roll-formed steel, compared to lower-grade stamped steel "and aluminum" used by competitors. Although the test was limited to heavy-duty pickups, GM has maintained a defensive marketing campaign to promote its steel-clad pickups as inherently stronger and more durable than Ford's new aluminum-bodied F-150.

Ford has worked to assuage such fears, promoting aluminum as just as tough when properly engineered. The company outfitted earlier-generation F-150 pickups with aluminum beds for several years of undercover field testing -- unbeknownst to the mining company that received the experimental trucks -- to tweak the design for improved durability early in the development process.

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