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General Motors is increasing capacity to produce crew cab versions of its next-generation pickups, according to product boss Mark Reuss.

The automaker, according to Reuss, has been “constrained” when it comes to output of larger, four-door pickups that have significantly increased in popularity in recent years.

“We’re solving things like that,” Reuss, GM’s executive vice president in charge of global product development, purchasing and supply chain, said Tuesday during the J.P. Morgan Tech Forum at CES 2018 in Las Vegas.

A GM spokesman declined to elaborate on Reuss’ comments, which come days before GM is scheduled to unveil the fourth-generation Silverado, on Saturday in Detroit.

Crew cabs have grown from more than 50 percent of GM’s large truck sales in 2013 to more than 60 percent today, a Chevrolet spokesman said.

U.S. sales of the Silverado rose 1.9 percent to 585,864 last year while the large pickup market grew 5.6 percent.

GM produces the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra light-duty crew cab models at a plant in Silao, Mexico, while regular cab and double cab versions are produced in Fort Wayne, Ind. Heavy-duty crew cab models are built in Flint, Mich.

The company reportedly spent nearly $3 billion to retool plants to build the next-gen pickups, which Reuss said will be “more profitable” than the current-generation trucks. He added that the company had a “laser focus” on customer needs when developing the next-gen trucks.

Chevrolet introduced the 2019 Silverado LT Trailboss, one of eight 2019 Silverado models planned, at the Texas Motor Speedway last month before hundreds of truck owners as part of celebrations to mark 100 years of truck output.

GM is adopting more lightweight materials and is expected to add a 10-speed automatic transmission and enhance aerodynamics to improve the fuel economy and overall competitiveness of the pickup.

GM to hike output of large crew cab trucks with redesigned 2019s” originally appeared in Automotive News on 1/9/2018

By Michael Wayland at Automotive News