Monday, February 16, 2015

Ford Mustang GT350R adds a lot more than just a new letter [w/videos] | Covert Ford Chevrolet Hutto

Okay Chevrolet, the ball is in your court. Ford served up one hell of a rebuttal to the track-focused Camaro Z/28, introducing the limited-production Mustang GT350R, complete with over 500 horsepower, over 400 pound-feet of torque and freaking carbon-fiber wheels. Carbon-fiber wheels. Seriously.

It's because of those 19-inch hoops, along with some other changes, that Ford was able to slice 130 pounds from the already lightweight GT350 Track Pack. The wheels are responsible for a 13-pound reduction in unsprung weight per corner, while the removal of such superfluous things like the air conditioning, stereo, rear seats, trunk carpet, backup camera and tire inflator accounts for the rest of the weight reduction.

Along with the lower weight, Ford has thoroughly reworked the GT350's aerodynamics, adding a simply monstrous rear wing and diffuser, along with vented wheel wells, a new hood vent that both extracts heat and reduces lift. Beside the aero aids, Ford has shod the carbon-fiber wheels in ultra-grippy Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires, just to guarantee the shiny side remains up.

Ford retained the standard GT350's 5.2-liter, flat-pane V8, Torsen limited-slip differential (complete with a 3.73 rear axle ratio), although as power figures haven't been published for the standard car, there's no way to know whether the GT350R received a power bump.

What we do know, though, is that the GT350R will not be limited to the track. While that's certainly its natural habitat, owners will be able to register and drive this monster on public roads.

Friday, February 6, 2015

2015 Silverado Offers Custom Sport Package | Covert Ford Chevrolet Hutto

With the new 2015 Silverado Custom Sport special edition, Chevrolet pays homage to one of its most iconic pickups, adding a sophisticated monochromatic look to double- and crew-cab Silverados.
The Custom Sport package features body-colored front and rear bumpers and a body-colored grille surround with a chrome-accented black grille. Other accents include 20-inch chrome wheels, chrome door handles and mirror caps, and chrome body-side moldings. The package also includes projector beam headlamps, tow hooks and heated power-adjusted mirrors.
“The Custom Sport special edition was inspired by Chevy Custom Sport Trucks of the late 1960s,” said Sandor Piszar, Chevrolet Trucks marketing director. “Those CST models added a touch of elegance to a great all-around truck, just like the Custom Sport package for the new Silverado.”
The redesigned 1967 Chevrolet pickup entered the market at a time when trucks were starting to move off the jobsites and into the driveways of cities and suburbs. The 1967 Custom Sport Truck, with its bright trim, plush carpet and bucket seats, helped launch a wave of personal use pickups that continues today.
For the 2015 Silverado, the Custom Sport package will be available as LT and LTZ models, including Z71s. LT models will be available in black or white, while LTZs will come in black or White Diamond Tricoat.
Package prices will vary from $1,950 to $2,950, depending on the model. Dealers can place orders starting this month.  
Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world's largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries and selling more than 4.8 million cars and trucks a year. Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that feature engaging performance, design that makes the heart beat, passive & active safety features and easy-to-use technology, all at a value. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at

Monday, January 19, 2015

Congrats to the Chevy Colorado, 2015 Motor Trend Truck of the Year | Covert Ford Chevrolet Hutto

The download on downsizing and creating a great midsize pickup.

It’s rare for any vehicle to get unanimous approval from Motor Trend editors. But the Chevrolet Colorado did just that winning the 2015 Motor Trend Truck of the Year in a landslide.

For me, it wasn’t the nicely loaded Colorado Crew Cab Z71 that convinced me to vote for the Colorado. That’s a great pickup, riding high on those bouncy Goodyear Wrangler All-Terrain tires with a promise of off-road hoopties. It was the least assuming truck out of the 10 vehicles we drove, tested, loaded and unloaded for nearly a week in Arizona. A very basic, extended cab Chevy work truck with a price tag of $23,300.
2015_chevrolet_colorado_colorado (3)
First, that’s something you rarely hear anymore: A pickup costing less than an addition to your house. This little truck is downright affordable. But it never felt cheap. Many editors noted the interior comfort, the quiet ride and how it seemed the right size for the right price at the right time.

In the Motor Trend story, I note the Texasification of pickups. It’s been an ongoing issue as fullsize pickups continue to grow larger– often out performing heavy-duty pickups from two decades ago. They are truly testaments to engineering capability. (Full disclosure, at one point, we drove the Colorado next to a ‘90s Chevy S-10 and were blown away at how big the Colorado looked.)

But the world is not just one giant construction site or open country where someone needs to wrap chains around a rock and pull it somewhere. There are city streets to traverse, suburban neighborhoods to cruise down, Home Depot parking lots to squeeze into and fullsize pickups can be challenging in tight spaces. Fitting one in your garage can be a hassle if not a physical impossibility. Every time I got out of a fullsize truck and jumped into the Colorado, it was much easier to drive. In fact, it is downright fun with sharp steering feel, nice acceleration and a nimbleness that big rigs inherently don’t possess.

Of course, Truck of the Year testing is not a direct head-to-head comparison. The Colorado did not beat the Ford F-150 or the GMC HD 2500 in a showdown. In fact, if you’re looking to buy a fullsize pickup, the choices are nearly limitless with fantastic pickups from Ram, Ford and GM. But the Colorado did outperform everyone against the testing regiment Motor Trend has in place.

The week of testing includes both instrumented testing and real world driving. There is a day spent on a closed course and another day driving 21-mile loops through the Hualapai Mountains in Arizona. We log hundreds of miles on all of the vehicles during testing. We analyze the numbers and add to it our impressions of all of the trucks. And after we’re done putting every truck through its paces, we have “Real MPG” connect its machines to every vehicle to analyze tailpipe emissions every second during an 88-mile drive loop in Los Angeles to determine a vehicle’s fuel economy. (All of those numbers are available at No one else is that thorough. No one.

Ultimately, this year, the Colorado was the most impressive to judges – all fulltime editors at Motor Trend – against a rigid set of criteria including: Design Advancement; Engineering Excellence; Efficiency; Safety; Value; and Performance of Intended Use.

Really, the Colorado is a big test for Chevrolet and consumers.

The midsize pickup segment has been shrinking for decades. American pickup makers, Ford, GM and Ram have all said in the past that little trucks never made sense because their price point is too low, they steal business from the more profitable fullsize trucks and why would a person buy a midsize truck when they could get a fullsize truck for the same price.

My answer has always been: Because some people want a smaller truck. And make no mistake, the Colorado is the best midsize pickup in its class. (It should be because the Nissan Frontier and Toyota Tacoma are old.)

Furthermore, the Colorado doesn’t pretend to be a midsize Silverado. It doesn’t tow as much, carry as much or weigh as much. It’s not supposed to. True pickup guys may grumble, but this pickup wasn’t made for them.

Designers took a lot of care to make sure they weren’t creating a baby Silverado. Instead, they designed an aggressive looking pickup and gave it all of those cool Silverado features such as the bumper step, cargo management system and plush interior.
A smaller pickup means it will have a lot more versatility than its bigger counterparts. This is truly a lifestyle vehicle that could handle daily commutes without emptying the tank; weekend camping trips and the occasional run to the hardware store. You may not want to build a new house with this truck, but you can certainly fix the one you live in with it.

Sure, a bigger rig can do many of those things, but downsizing one’s life can certainly include the vehicle you choose to keep in your driveway. Particularly this one, as it takes up a little less space, uses a little less gas and leaves a few more dollars in your wallet than its bigger counterparts.

So congratulations to the Chevrolet Colorado for winning Motor Trend’s Truck of the Year honors for 2015. To the engineers, designers, factory workers and executives who brought new life to a midsize pickup, it’s a well-deserved award for your tireless dedication and work.

Every judge agrees, and that doesn’t happen often.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Smart Cars: How Automated Tech Can Seamlessly Improve Your Drive | Covert Ford Chevrolet Hutto

The technology of tomorrow can be found in the Chevrolets of today.

Smart accessories – i.e., smart watches, networked thermostats, home automation – are growing increasingly popular with consumers, and it’s easy to see why. Devices like these not only provide unparalleled levels of control, but also adapt to users’ preferences, behaviors and schedules. Although it might be hard to think of a car in the same light, the automobile may very well be the ultimate smart accessory. In fact, there’s plenty of technology within the Chevrolet lineup that proactively works to make your drive a little easier.

-Automatic Headlamps: Ever forget to switch your headlamps on during the early hours of dusk? You’re less likely to do so in a Chevy. From the Spark to the Silverado HD, the majority of new Chevrolets feature automatic headlamp controls as standard equipment, allowing a photovoltaic cell in the dashboard to sense the level of ambient light outside, and automatically switch on exterior lights.

-Memory Keys: Tired of adjusting your seat position mirrors every time you get behind the wheel? You might have noticed many Chevrolet models offer the ability to program these settings into memory, but you might not have noticed how seamless the system truly is. After programming these memory settings into one of two memory banks, simply grab a correspondingly-numbered keyless remote fob, and click the unlock button. Voila – the car adjusts to your settings, meaning you’re ready to roll as soon as you grab the door handle. You can find this feature in everything from the Volt to the Traverse.

-Magnetic Ride: Have you ever wished your suspension could adjust to the conditions of the road surface? Chevrolet models equipped with Magnetic Ride Control can do just that. Sensors analyze the road every millisecond, and can adjust the firmness of the dampers in as little as five milliseconds.

-Adaptive Cruise: Cruise control is great for long journeys, but in dense traffic, drivers may find themselves needing to frequently adjust speed or brake. The 2015 Impala, Tahoe and Suburban can shoulder some of that burden thanks to an available adaptive cruise control system. A forward-looking radar can detect vehicles ahead and allow the vehicle to accelerate or brake in order to maintain a driver-selected “gap.” Although drivers still need to pay careful attention to road conditions and override the system when necessary, studies have indicated adaptive cruise control can safely reduce brake applications on the freeway by 25 times. 2014 Chevrolet Impala - Adaptive Cruise  Control

-Automatic Parking Assist: Do you repeatedly circle the block in order to avoid parallel parking? Unsure if you can back into a narrow perpendicular spot? The 2015 Chevrolet SS’ new AutoPark system takes the uncertainty out of both maneuvers. A series of ultrasonic sensors embedded in the front and rear bumper fascia begin looking for a suitable space after the driver presses a Parking Assist button. Once the system finds a suitable spot, the driver only needs to control brake, throttle and transmission while the car effortlessly steers itself.

-Tire Telepathy: The Corvette Stingray and Corvette Z06 keep close tabs on their tires. As tire temperature can alter grip and affect traction and handling, both Corvettes actively check the tire temps and adjust traction control, ABS and other settings to maximize performance.

The Corvette isn’t the only Chevy that watches over its tires – in fact, every new 2015 Chevrolet keeps watch over tire pressures, and notifies the driver in case air pressure drops to a dangerous level. On vehicles equipped with OnStar, owners can go a step further via the RemoteLink smartphone app and keep tabs on tire pressures at all times.

Monday, December 15, 2014

CNG-powered Chevy Sonic, Cruze headed your way | Covert Ford Chevrolet Hutto

The value proposition for a Crazy Diamond Performance CNG ride was a little bit better before gas prices took a dive in the past month. Still, the Michigan-based company, which converts some of Chevrolet's compact vehicles to run on compressed natural gas, received approval late last month from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for two of its conversion models. And CNG is still pretty cheap.

Crazy Diamond will start selling CNG versions of both the Chevrolet Cruze and Chevrolet Sonic. The startup will target fleet operators looking to cut both refueling costs and their carbon footprint. CNG can be found in much of the country in the low $2 range, while the average CO2 emissions are about 25 percent less than those of similar gas-powered vehicles. Average gas prices have tumbled by more than 30 cents a gallon in the last month, according to AAA, but they're still at close to $3.

The two models will be able to go almost 300 miles on a full tank of CNG. Crazy Diamond said this summer that it would start selling converted a CNG-powered Cruze that delivers 130 horsepower for as low as $26,000. The turbocharged version goes for about $28,000. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

New 2015 Chevy Colorado Designed for Active Lifestyles | Covert Ford Chevrolet Hutto

Chevrolet demonstrated the versatility and capability of the all-new Colorado midsize pickup at the SEMA Show, pairing it with the Super Air Nautique 210 – one of the industry’s most iconic wakeboard boats, which can generate a wake strong enough for wakeboarding at lower speeds.
The concept Colorado crew cab, Nautique boat and its trailer share the same custom orange metallic flake paint scheme, while the truck and trailer wear matching 18-inch Chevrolet accessory wheels. With a dry weight of 4,200 pounds for the 21-foot boat and an estimated trailer weight of 1,000 pounds, the combination is well within the capability of Colorado’s segment-leading 7,000-pound maximum trailering rating.
“You can’t own a lifestyle product like the Super Air Nautique without the assurance of a strong, confidence-inspiring truck to haul it to your favorite lake,” said John Fitzpatrick, senior marketing manager, Chevrolet trucks. “The Colorado rewrites the book for midsize trucks, delivering unprecedented performance and capability for people who need the versatility of a truck in a smaller package than a full-size pickup.”
Completely redesigned, the Super Air Nautique 210 incorporates new technology and design features resulting in the look and performance customers expect from Nautique. The sleek and powerful Super Air Nautique 210 is powered by the ZR 450 by Pleasurecraft Marine Engine Group.
Colorado trailering capability is enabled by the segment’s most powerful and efficient engine: an available 3.6L V-6 rated at 305 horsepower and 269 lb.-ft. of torque – and 26 mpg on the highway (2WD models), according to EPA estimates. In fact, the V-6-equipped Colorado produces 14 percent more horsepower than Nissan Frontier’s V-6 (262 horsepower), while delivering 15 percent greater efficiency than its EPA-estimated 22 mpg. It also produces nearly 23 percent more power than Toyota Tacoma’s V-6 (236 horsepower) and nearly 20 percent greater highway efficiency (21 mpg).
A 2.5L engine is standard on the Colorado and it supports a 3,500-pound trailering rating, while delivering a segment-leading EPA-estimated 27 mpg on the highway (2WD models).
Along with genuine Chevy truck capability, the all-new Colorado delivers distinctive design cues and a quiet, comfortable interior that offers amenities that car and crossover drivers appreciate. It also features innovative technology such as Chevy MyLink with a built-in 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot, Lane Departure Warning and Forward Collision Alert.
Traditional truck features such as four-wheel drive and a highly flexible bed with Chevy’s GearOn™ cargo management system are available, enhancing capability. The GearOn™ system is designed to fit within the bed, for significant storage and hauling flexibility. It is upgradable, with modular cargo dividers and tiered storage to accommodate 4-by8 sheets of plywood above the wheelhouses. It also uses the box’s four permanent and 13 moveable tie-down provisions to allow for a variety of secure and convenient cargo stowage options.
The Colorado has a short turning radius of 41.3 feet (12.6 meters), enabling easier turning in tight areas such as city streets or when backing a trailer. Additional features include:
  • Four-wheel disc brakes with Duralife™ brake rotors that offer up to double the service life, which can save money on maintenance.
  • Available G80 automatic locking rear differential delivers a traction advantage when needed and quieter, more comfortable driving when it’s not
  • Standard CornerStep rear bumper design pioneered on the 2014 Silverado
  • Available EZ Lift-and-Lower tailgate that uses an internal torsion bar to make raising the tailgate easier with one hand, and a damper for more-controlled lowering
  • Standard two-tier loading that allows a platform to effectively split the bed into upper and lower sections, making it easier to haul, store and conceal items
  • Thirteen standard tie-down locations throughout the bed for use with available, movable cargo tie-down rings
  • Available factory-installed spray-in bed liner
  • Available safety package includes segment-first Forward Collision Alert and Lane Departure Warning, using camera-based technology to warn driver of potential crash threats.
Colorado prices start at $20,995, including $875 dealer freight, for a four-door extended cab model with the 2.5L engine. Chevrolet supports Colorado owners with two years or 24,000 miles (whichever comes first) of scheduled maintenance.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Corvette Stingray and Silverado win 2014 North American Car and Truck of the Year | Covert Ford Chevrolet Hutto

The North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, the all-new Chevrolet Corvette Stingray and Chevrolet Silverado have earned the titles of 2014 North American Car and Truck of the Year, respectively. This marks only the third time in the awards’ 21-year history that one automaker has swept both awards.

“It is a distinct honor for the entire Chevrolet team to have both Corvette and Silverado recognized with these prestigious awards,” said Alan Batey, General Motors senior vice president, Global Chevrolet. “Chevrolet is in the midst of the most aggressive product transformation in the brand’s more than 100-year history. Corvette and Silverado truly embody the passion, commitment and focus that is driving us to deliver the most expressive designs, innovative technologies and engaging performance in every vehicle that wears the bowtie.”

North American Car and Truck of the Year are awarded annually at the start of media week at the NAIAS. Forty-nine automotive journalists from the United States and Canada vote to recognize the most outstanding vehicles of the year based on factors including innovation, design, safety, handling, driver satisfaction and value for the dollar.

North American Car of the Year is just the latest of more than 20 awards and recommendations the 2014 Corvette Stingray has received since its introduction last fall, making it the industry’s most awarded car of the year. Stingray is the most powerful standard Corvette model ever with 455 horsepower and 460 lb.-ft. of torque from a 6.2L V8 engine. And it packs an even more impressive 460 horsepower and 465 lb.-ft. of torque with the available performance exhaust system, enabling models with the available Z51 Performance Package to sprint from 0 to 60 in 3.8 seconds. The Stingray engine features advanced technologies including Direct Injection, Variable Valve Timing and Active Fuel Management to balance performance with the greatest efficiency of any sports car on the market — an EPA-estimated 29 MPG highway when equipped with the 7-speed manual transmission.

The all-new 2014 Silverado completed the sweep, winning the award for North American Truck of the Year. Silverado was recognized for features such as its available 5.3L EcoTec3 V8 engine, which generates 355 horsepower for confident towing and hauling, yet seamlessly switches to four cylinders to save fuel during light-load driving. With an EPA-estimated 23 MPG highway, Silverado offers the best fuel economy of any V8 pickup. Silverado 1500 also recently received the highest possible 5-Star Overall Vehicle Score for Safety† as part of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s New Car Assessment Program.