Photos have surfaced showing GM storing unfinished Silverado HD and Sierra HD pickups in muddy fields and allegedly moving them with a bulldozer and a skid steer loader.
We all know global chip shortage has thrown a big wrench in the manufacture of cars. Car manufacturers, who use older control circuits that are older but more durable than the state-of-the-art chipsets we see in modern mobile phones, have had major problems getting enough electronics to sell the volume of vehicles that consumers have demanded.
To help keep production going and prepare for the day when chips become more available, GM has continued to manufacture cars and trucks and then hidden the most built vehicles in custody. Usually they are just waiting for a small controller, key fob or some other very small part – compared to the assembly of the entire vehicle. When these smaller modules or parts become available, GM engages the missing parts and drives the trucks out of storage and transports them to dealers.
And it might not be a big deal if those trucks were sitting in a paved parking lot. But apparently “storage” for partially built 2021 Silverado HD and 2021 Sierra HD trucks is a field. And not just any field. Apparently a muddy overgrown and uncut field.
Photos of hundreds of HD trucks parked outside Flint, Michigan appeared on Facebook a few weeks ago. Some commentators joked about field mice and what the storage on a dirt surface would do to the vehicles. Other people took up potential problems such as rust and damage that could potentially tarnish the appearance of what should be “brand new” and “untouched” vehicles.
A truck sitting in a field for a few weeks is not really the end of the world. It’s not like they’d spent most of a year there, is it? Not so fast.
GM-Trucks.com spoke to several dealers who are still waiting for HD deliveries in 2021 and found that some of these trucks have been standing for many months. A dealer reported that two special HD pickups they ordered were built in February and March 2021 and have been sitting in the field since they have been waiting for parts. As of today, it is about 8 months.
If you think it can not get worse than that, think again. New photos appeared yesterday showing the same field, now a muddy mess and trucks caked with mud after being pulled out of the field for transport.
The poster with the pictures, which has since deleted the pictures, claims that GM uses a mini loader with a fork mount and a bulldozer to get trucks out of the mud. Although no photos of the forklift or bulldozer were provided, GM-Trucks.com has confirmed from a GM dealer that they have been instructed to inspect all incoming HDs for damage to the forklift and have noted increased frame rust on trucks stored in the field.
While it is true that getting mud on a brand new truck is not the worst thing in the world and is unlikely to cause any significant damage, it does raise some questions from those who have always assumed that their new vehicles are “pristine” and free. from any wear before they are driven away from the plot.
It is also not a good thing that GM has trucks from previous year models, some with sticker prices north of 70,000 USD, which are in a muddy field to later be sold as “brand new”.
GM-Trucks.com has contacted General Motors and received the following comment on this article from Kyle Suba at Chevrolet:
“When dealing with the semiconductor crisis, we have parked some vehicles outside the facility. Once we have the necessary parts, the vehicles are thoroughly cleaned, moved back to the factory for completion and undergo strict safety and quality controls to ensure they are ready to be sent to dealers.
As always, our goal is to provide an outstanding product to our customers. ”