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Is Chevy's Ad Shot At Ford Too Aggressive?

Is Chevy's Ad Shot At Ford Too Aggressive?

General Motors Company (NYSE: GM) has been running comparison ads between its Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck and Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F)'s F-150. Ford has responded by stating GM's latest ads are no more than a "cheap shot," according to a Forbes report.

GM's various TV, pre-movie cinema ads and online videos purportedly show the
strength and durability deficit between the steel bed of its Silverado and the unconventional new military-grade aluminum bed of the Ford F-150," according to Dale Buss, Forbes contributor.

Related Link: Piper Jaffray Likes Ford's Big Balance Sheet, Starts At Overweight

The report said Chevrolet slammed Ford once more this past Sunday, "with another four pages of graphic insult wrapped around the week's largest edition of their home town's largest newspaper, the Detroit Free Press."

Ford's Response

"It's a cheap shot," one Ford executive commented. "But we're the industry leader, so naturally they're going to come after us."

"GM is stuck with what they have for another few years, without a new truck version coming, so they have to do what they can," another Ford exec stated.

Forbes said Ford came out with an official statement regarding the Silverado ads, highlighting F-150 buyers' supposed complaints toward the durability of the aluminum bed. As summarized by Buss, "[B]uyers simply aren't complaining about the durability of the aluminum bed."

Maybe No Overwhelming Complaints, But Numbers Aren't There

But, Ford has a key chink in its armor — its sales numbers. Sales of all Ford F-Series trucks through May were up by more than 7 percent versus last year, and up 9 percent in May. Meanwhile, sales of Silverado were up by only 1 percent for the period, though GM said that in May it experienced "the lowest incentive spend and the best-managed inventories in the segment."

Shares of Ford closed Friday's regular trading session at $13.09, while GM ended at $29.06.


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