Join Date: Mar 2001
GM Unveils All-New 2007 Chevrolet Avalanche, Makes Major Announcements About E85 And OnStar At Chicago Auto Show
CHICAGO – General Motors will introduce the all-new 2007 Chevrolet Avalanche, the latest rollout of its next-generation full-size truck family and the industry’s most flexible utility vehicle, at the Chicago Auto Show. GM also makes major announcements strengthening its flexible-fuel vehicle leadership and adding a new navigation feature to OnStar, which celebrates its 10 th anniversary at the show.
“GM continues to demonstrate bold and innovative leadership in products, technology and gasoline savings,” said Brent Dewar, GM North America vice president, marketing and advertising. “On all of these fronts and more, GM is truly on a roll.”
2007 Chevrolet Avalanche
The Chevy Avalanche was the first to combine the passenger-comfort attributes of an SUV with the cargo capability of a truck. The 2007 model is based on GM’s brand-new, full-size SUV platform, which features more power with improved, segment-leading fuel economy and flex-fuel capability on some models; a sharper, more precise driving feel; increased interior refinement and improved quietness; and world-class safety. From its SUV comfort and ingenious Midgate to its new family of flex-fuel-capable engines, Avalanche delivers a unique combination of cargo and passenger options.
“Avalanche is a vehicle without peers, selling more than 379,500 units since its spring 2001 launch through December 2005,” said Ed Peper, Chevrolet general manager.
Avalanche is offered in LS, LT and LTZ models, with 2WD and 4WD. A Z71 off-road package will be offered later in the model year. At the start of production, Avalanche will be equipped with an efficient 5.3L V-8 delivering 320 horsepower (238 kw)* and 335 lb.-ft. of torque (463 Nm)*, along with Active Fuel Management™ technology, which seamlessly switches between eight- and four-cylinder power to save fuel. Two versions of the Vortec 5.3L Gen IV V-8 – including an aluminum-block version that is standard in 4WD models – are compatible with E85. They can run on any combination of gasoline and/or E85 fuel. Coming later in the year is a powerful, new all-aluminum 6.0L V-8 with variable valve timing and Active Fuel Management. The engine is rated at an estimated 355 horsepower (264 kw).
Pioneered on the first-generation Avalanche, the Midgate opens to extend the cargo-carrying capability from the cargo bed’s 5.3-foot-long (1.6 m) length to 8.2 feet (2.5 m) – 2 inches (51 mm) longer than previous models. The rear seat must be folded to achieve maximum storage capability; with the rear seat up and the Midgate closed, Avalanche has room for up to six passengers. Avalanche also offers up to 8,000 pounds (3,629 kg) of towing capability, when properly equipped, enhancing its flexible, ready-for-anything capability.
New features on the ’07 model enhance Avalanche’s flexible attributes and reflect customer feedback:
Central-locking tailgate – locking and unlocking the tailgate is more secure, as the conventional keyed lock is removed from the tailgate. Locking and unlocking functions are handled by the interior lock switches or from the Remote Keyless Entry fob.
Remote vehicle starting – standard on some models and available on others, the remote vehicle starting system allows convenient start-up from a distance to pre-heat or pre-cool the vehicle’s interior.
Cargo cover retaining straps – new straps allow the cargo covers to be held securely in place when removed from the storage compartments.
Avalanche also has a new tailgate that is spring-loaded to reduce the effort needed to open or close it.
GM pumps up E85 activity
A partnership between GM, Shell Oil Products US and VeraSun Energy Corp. will bring 26 additional E85 refueling stations to the greater Chicago area. The collaboration is part of a broader, national GM campaign to boost the use and awareness of ethanol-based E85 fuel in the U.S.
To promote E85 fuel and vehicles during the Chicago Auto Show, several major Chicago buildings will be illuminated in yellow lights in reference to the corn that is used to make most of the ethanol in the U.S. E85 supply; and city “street teams” will randomly reach out to Chicagoans Feb. 10-12 and 17-19 with giveaways that promote GM’s new “Live Green Go Yellow” E85 marketing and advertising campaign. GM also will promote E85 with a major presence in the 2006 NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series and with 2005 NASCAR Nextel Cup champion Tony Stewart.
The E85 partnership and marketing campaign are designed to encourage greater E85 use and showcase GM’s E85 FlexFuel vehicle leadership to U.S. consumers. E85 FlexFuel vehicles can run on any combination of gasoline and/or E85, a fuel blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent gasoline. E85 can contribute to energy independence because it diversifies the source of transportation fuels beyond petroleum, and it provides positive environmental benefits in the form of reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
“GM is pursuing gasoline-savings solutions on many fronts on the way to our ultimate vision of hydrogen fuel cell-powered transportation,” said Elizabeth Lowery, GM vice president of environment and energy. “E85 ethanol burns cleaner than gasoline and is a renewable, domestic fuel that can enhance the nation’s economy and energy security.”
OnStar Turn-by-Turn Navigation
Many owners of new GM vehicles may remember 2006 as the last year they ever got lost while driving, thanks to Turn-by-Turn Navigation, the first factory-installed, fully integrated GPS navigation system from OnStar by GM.
OnStar Turn-by-Turn Navigation allows consumers to talk to a live advisor, who in turn sends complete step-by-step directions to customers’ vehicles through their OnStar system. Audio directions are then automatically piped through the vehicle’s stereo as they are needed, allowing drivers to keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road.
The service debuts in March on the 2006 Cadillac DTS and Buick Lucerne, and on the Cadillac STS in the second quarter as part of the standard OnStar package. It will be available in about 1 million GM cars and trucks in the 2007 model year, and will be expanded further within the portfolio in 2008. Turn-by-Turn is the highlight of OnStar’s latest generation of in-vehicle hardware, its seventh in just 10 years.
GM introduced the first OnStar-equipped vehicle at the Chicago Auto Show 10 years ago.
“The key to our progress and growth has been to focus on services that matter to customers, not just early adopters, and to make them easy to understand and use,” said Chet Huber, president of OnStar. “With OnStar Turn-by-Turn Navigation, we’re demystifying navigation technology to bring safe, simple GPS-based routing to the mass market at a fraction of the cost of other competitive alternatives.”