GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

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Thread: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

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    GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Deep inside General Motors Vehicle Engineering Center in Warren is a storage room few people know about.

    In that room, a handful of engineers for two years hid the secret weapon GM would have in the current Truck Wars: The MultiPro tailgate on the 2019 GMC Sierra SLT and Denali pickups.

    "We had a 3D printed version of the tailgate that we kept covered with a lock on the door. We'd put it on a gurney and wheel it in the conference room to work on it, then wheel it back to the storage room," said Derek Patterson, GM's lead integration engineer on the MultiPro tailgate. "We did this all in secret. I kept a list of those who knew about it. No one ever showed anything over Skype."

    The tailgate was so guarded because it is revolutionary. Many auto experts say the MultiPro gives GM an edge in one of the U.S.'s most competitive and profitable vehicle segments. To prove it, just look at GM's aggressive advertising of the tailgate.

    The story behind this arguably ingenious invention started a decade ago when a GM manager asked a high-school-educated technician, Jim Gobart, to fix a problem.

    Article continued at link: https://www.freep.com/story/money/ca...li/3669381002/

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Very cool story. That group needs to be given as little oversight as allowable and as much money as they want.

    "If I could take the tailgate, which is about 2 feet tall, fold it in half horizontally, then fold the second part down, you could reach in further in the truck," Gobart remembers saying. "Then I thought, if I put another flap on the inside of that and it folds out horizontal, you now have a stair step. I thought that would be very nice for someone who works out of the back of that truck."
    Works out of the back of a truck and you limit it to the top two trims. Meh! Some stupid minds a GM still.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Quote Originally Posted by bballr4567 View Post
    Very cool story. That group needs to be given as little oversight as allowable and as much money as they want.



    Works out of the back of a truck and you limit it to the top two trims. Meh! Some stupid minds a GM still.
    Agreed, should be an option on every trim and make its way over to Silverado land as well.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    and now they're hiding them on the back of Sierras....nobody is going to find them there...BOOM!
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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Quote Originally Posted by bballr4567 View Post
    Very cool story. That group needs to be given as little oversight as allowable and as much money as they want.



    Works out of the back of a truck and you limit it to the top two trims. Meh! Some stupid minds a GM still.
    Quote Originally Posted by jzchev28 View Post
    Agreed, should be an option on every trim and make its way over to Silverado land as well.
    Quote Originally Posted by sdotjeezy View Post
    and now they're hiding them on the back of Sierras....nobody is going to find them there...BOOM!
    Wonder if anyone suggested they make it standard across the line, top to bottom? If so, he's probably in early retirement now.
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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Quote Originally Posted by jzchev28 View Post
    Agreed, should be an option on every trim and make its way over to Silverado land as well.
    I kind of like it on Sierra only. Yea, it cuts out some of the buyers who want it but it's more expensive to make and gives the Sierra some much needed differentiation.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    I just hope they stick with it and build upon it.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    I like the thing and think that it does give GMC an edge on Chevy but still it would be nice at some point to see it spread through the entire full size GM and Chevy truck line up as an option on lower ones but standard on top trims. I really like the current ads out on it where all the competitor tailgates just flop open...nothing.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Quote Originally Posted by bballr4567 View Post
    I kind of like it on Sierra only. Yea, it cuts out some of the buyers who want it but it's more expensive to make and gives the Sierra some much needed differentiation.
    IMHO this is part of what is WRONG with GM right now
    the SIERRA sells around 10% of the Silverado AND the WHOLE GM truck portfolio os sliding down in sales and the ONE thing the GM trucks do BETTER THAN ANY OTHER TRUCK OUT THERE is limited to a rare trim on the rare model in an attempt to FORCE buyers WAY OUT OF THERE BUDGET to the point the feature is pointless to MOST OF THE BUYERS

    Toyota will sell MORE Tundras then GM will sell multi pro tailgates

    this is the sort of OPTION that should be STANDARD on ALL GMC and part of a "trade-pro" package on the Silverado OR better LOW cost stand alone on LT + trims

    the Silverado/Sierra differentiation would be easily be done by PUTTING the SUV interior into the Sierra / MAKE MRC wider available

    add some "cowboy" feal to the "truckier" Silverado - make the trail boss like the Z71 of old as in ALMOST every CHEVY is a trail boss

    so the people that complain about the cheap interior look to the Sierra and the ONES that want a "more truck" interior look to the Silverado

    the Multi pro tailgate and full length step bars would remove a LOT of the ISSUE with how tall the NEW trucks are EX with a 2 inch lift

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    So this is the cutting edge technology GM is working on for years? Tailgates with a step up? More cup holders and plastic interiors should be next. Now I know why GM can't make a market leading profitable sedan or off road CUV.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Quote Originally Posted by joey View Post
    So this is the cutting edge technology GM is working on for years? Tailgates with a step up? More cup holders and plastic interiors should be next. Now I know why GM can't make a market leading profitable sedan or off road CUV.
    There is some truth to that. They have enough resources I think that they could handle it and Mary's current pipe dream.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Quote Originally Posted by joey View Post
    So this is the cutting edge technology GM is working on for years? Tailgates with a step up? More cup holders and plastic interiors should be next. Now I know why GM can't make a market leading profitable sedan or off road CUV.
    It's so cutting edge that nobody else thought of it first!

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Yeah it's a trick tailgate but I'm not sure how "revolutionary" it really is.

    There was a time when engineers hid engines and transmissions in secret. Advanced valve designs and cam profiles developing more power and being more efficient were absolutely worth developing in secret.

    A tailgate? It opens, it closes. You throw crap in the bed. That's kinda the whole story about a pickup truck. If you dent the tailgate you can hit the junkard and find a perfect replacement for $50.

    Not with this thousand piece Erector set. Probably costs at least a grand to replace if you dent it up.
    Last edited by fastbal1; 06-25-2019 at 06:06 AM.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Quote Originally Posted by jzchev28 View Post
    Agreed, should be an option on every trim and make its way over to Silverado land as well.
    They should do this ASAP - it certainly can't hurt sales.

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    Re: GM engineers hid secret tailgate in storage room for 2 years

    Quote Originally Posted by fastbal1 View Post
    Yeah it's a trick tailgate but I'm not sure how "revolutionary" it really is.
    Who else is offering it? No one yet

    A tailgate? It opens, it closes. You throw crap in the bed. That's kinda the whole story about a pickup truck.
    Until now, that's the beauty of innovation

    If you dent the tailgate you can hit the junkard and find a perfect replacement for $50.

    Not with this thousand piece Erector set. Probably costs at least a grand to replace if you dent it up.
    I'm not sure what decade you last purchased a tailgate in, perhaps never, but they aren't that cheap and haven't been for a long time unless of course they are badly dented or damaged, and ummm isn't that what you are trying to replace?

    On a side note, I'm not sure how you are planning on destroying this fancy new tailgate, with all the cameras and warnings you'd have to be trying to screw it up.

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