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July 2012 RPM Off-Road Truck News

Posted in News on July 1, 2012
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That’s Interesting
Most stolen and recovered vehicles in 2011 based on LoJack’s Theft Recovery Report include the Ford F-250. In terms of the ’11 model year, the Ford F-350 made the cut. The state with the most lost and found was California.

An item from The New York Times politics blog revealed that Cadillac, Jaguar, Mercedes-Benz, and Lexus owners are among those who usually vote Republican; hybrid and Subaru peeps lean Democrat. When it came to “average” participation/turnout, voters powered a Ford, Chevy, Jeep, or Porsche. The most Republican brand is Hummer. Act surprised.

Research firm Scarborough did an automotive study and learned that seven percent of American households (the equivalent of 8 million) will buy a new vehicle in the next year.

We’re clearly data geeks, so here’s another: eBay Motors has been tracking parts purchases and has learned that among its top sellers are tires and wheels, LED lights, specialty items (think decals and emblems), and key fobs.

Yes, another: OnStar ranked the cities that in 2011 had the most Good Samaritan calls (car accident, flat tire, Amber Alert, and so on). By way of the 10 largest metropolitan areas in the U.S., Los Angeles ranked first, followed by Chicago and New York.

July 6-8 is notable for two reasons. One, it’s the 22nd Carlisle Chrysler Nationals at the Carlisle, Pennsylvania, Fairgrounds. Two, Catherine Bach will be there. Yes, she of “Dukes of Hazzard” and those shorts.

“I’m in a serious relationship with my car. One of his more bold positions is for me to be underneath him.”
—Nathaniel, “My Strange Addiction,” that creepy TV show on TLC

GM and Ram CNG Pickups
GM will now offer bifuel Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra 2500 extended cabs, including a CNG-capable Vortec 6.0L (so, it can switch between compressed natural gas and gasoline). It looks like the range could be 650 miles. Meanwhile, Ram will offer a CNG-ready 2500 model with the 5.7L Hemi, also prepped for both CNG and gasoline. Estimates on range are 255 miles on CNG-only, while the gasoline extends the range to 367 total miles. Ram has also added the Crew Cab and Quad Cab models to the Ram 1500 Tradesman family (it was only for the regular cab before).

Is It True?
The Wrangler Rubicon turns 10 in 2013. Might there be a special edition of that Jeep? You know, a more capable uber-capable model? Or simply logo’d seats and badging?

While we’re talking Jeep, is the next-gen Jeep Liberty going to be a UJ?

Will there be a plug-in hybrid Range Rover in the future?

Will the all-new Chevy Silverado debut with a significant loss in poundage, thereby giving sick fuel economy numbers for a pickup? And by significant, do we mean majorly major?

✓Here’s a Root Canal Factoid:
“A molar costs $1,082. Pain is free.”
— Ken Brubaker, Four Wheeler staffer

Win This Jeep
The Tierra Del Sol Desert Safari turned 50 this year (see our full coverage, “Golden Trails,” elsewhere in this issue) and in honor of the occasion, the Tierra del Sol Four Wheel Drive Club is building a one-of-a-kind Wrangler that’s been loaded up (down?) with parts from Mopar, as well as Katzkin and Goodyear. The raffle will take place at the San Diego Auto Show on December 30, with funds going toward the club’s passion of fighting to keep land and trails open. Learn more at

Diesel App
Looking for a nearby station that sells diesel? There’s an app for that. Want to do a route planner that will include stations with diesel? There’s an app for that. Want to be able to set notifications for a diesel station within a certain distance? App for that. Share location with friends? App. Said app is the Diesel Power Fuel Finder, found at the Apple App Store.

What’s Happening In The Industry
Rusty’s Off-Road Products has an all-new website ( that’s been made easier for shopping, buying, or drooling.

Chevy is adding what it’s calling an Ecologic sticker to the window of your new purchase; all ’13 vehicles will get it. It’ll inform on the environmental aspects of what you’re buying, such as how much of the vehicle will be recycled at its death, fuel-saving technologies, and info on the manufacturing and assembly.

Mopar has opened parts distribution centers in Argentina and Brazil. That makes 50 centers worldwide, in case you have a bet going.

The GMC Sierra HD has seen 20 consecutive months of sales increases.

Falken Tire has a new tire, the Wildpeak HT, which is aimed at ½- and ¾-ton Ford F-series, Chevy Silverados, and Ram pickups.

Jeep has partnered with Jalen Rose Leadership Academy to get students involved with automotive stuff. A mentoring program as well as field trips to the Jeep Design Studio and plants will be among the efforts.

Holley is holding the 52 Carbs sweepstakes; join the Holley mailing list ( and you’ll be entered to win. One will be given away every week for 52 weeks. See how clever the name of the sweepstakes is?

Lincoln is now 90 years old. Like its drivers?

Have a Volant cool-air intake system? Go to and tell your story (photos, video) and enter to win prizes.

Nitto is offering a Race Results app, available at the Apple App Store. You’ll get newsfeeds for major races, including SCORE and the Lucas Oil Off-Road Series.

Summit Racing Equipment ( will now do same-day shipment on orders placed as late as 10 p.m. EST. on parts in stock.

We’re So Gonna “Puppy” Our Tires
Imagine how cool and sensitive we’d look to the ladies if we took advantage of Bridgestone’s new Tire Printing Technology and went with a puppy theme. The Bridgestone deal goes on the sidewall of tires; the tire maker says this won’t add weight, thereby not affecting fuel economy, and hopes to make this process a reality soon. And with that, we’re off to the newsstand for a copy of Dog Fancy. Ladies?

✓Gee, That Press Release Sounds Naughty:
“Krispy Kreme Kicks Off Glaze the Nation Tour 2012”
(Oh, it’s about some Krispy Kreme Cruiser)

Your Government At Work
With the new fuel-economy standards pushing their way toward 34.1 mpg by 2016, the spare tire might become obsolete as one way automakers could reduce vehicle weight in order to meet the DOT and EPA mandate. Instead, you might just find sealant and an inflator kit where the extra rubber used to be, or possibly an audible “Wah, wah.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration wants to make rearview cameras standard equipment on all vehicles by 2014. You know, to enable people who already aren’t looking around when they back up to never again look around when they back up.

The SEMA Action Network ( has successfully brought about the third annual Collector Car Appreciation Day; the senate passed resolutions for the national event, to be held July 13. Check that website for a list of events happening in your neck of the woods.

Here’s What a Bentley SUV Could Look Like
The EXP 9 F is just a concept. With just a twin-turbo 6.0L W-12 engine worth 600hp and 590 lb-ft of torque. And probably just a six-figure price tag.

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