Chevy Truck Centennial

Chevy Truck Centennial

Centennial milestones don’t come around often but when they do, GM and its marketing teams know the place to go to get historical product information, images, digitized sales literature and video segments to create a historical accounting of the evolution of important cars and trucks.

The place to go is always the GM Heritage Center.

And this is exactly where the Chevy truck team headed when they started doing research for the Chevy Truck Centennial communications plan. Teams of planners, writers and designers tapped into the vast resources and expertise at the GM Heritage Center and the GM Media Archive, both of which operate out of the GM Heritage Center

Staff researchers were used as resources by the brand team and its agency partners to develop a strategy and content plan for the Centennial campaign. They provided strategic assistance and direction to marketing and communications teams regarding historical communications materials from archive libraries and digital asset management systems.

GM Heritage Center

The GM Heritage Center serves as a showplace for the vehicles of the GM Heritage Collection, as a corporate conferencing and special events venue, and as the permanent home for the corporation’s collection of historic literature and artifacts which document GM’s rich history of innovation. Its Permanent Reference Collection is home for the company’s collection of historic literature. The Permanent Reference Collection documents the history of General Motors as a corporation and cultural entity. The collection holds more than 250,000 unique historical documents and resides on more than 15,000 linear feet of shelf space. It consists primarily, but not exclusively, of product catalogs, sales brochures, press material, build records, engineering information, service information, and still photography that relates to General Motors’ products and services.

GM Media Archive

As a partner to the GM Heritage Center, the General Motors Media Archive manages GM’s global repository of historical photography, motion picture film, video and digital media spanning from the 19th Century to the present. It was established in 1993 through the consolidation of more than 60 disparate collections from various corporate staffs and divisions. Today, over 900 collections have been integrated into the Media Archive. These collections include over eight million photographic images, 220,000 video masters, 25,000 motion picture films, and one and a half million digital media files. They document the development, manufacturing and promotion of General Motors products as well as its events, facilities and leadership. These collections have been reviewed for content over the last two decades and a significant portion of them are accessible to GMMA staff through a digital asset management system.

Chevy marketing teams worked with the GMMA research team to review and assess historical video content for the Chevy Truck Centennial. This involved reviewing years and years of video footage in the GMMA Digital Asset Management System.

Heritage Center researchers contributed to development of the Centennial Timeline which was based on information housed in the archives. Staff researchers served as resources in the review of years of sales literature, press releases and other assets.

GM Heritage Center resources were also used in the creation of Chevrolet’s Centennial Website and through various Centennial Press Materials.

While reviewing materials from the archives, the team stumbled upon a 1913 engineering drawing of the Chevrolet bow-tie emblem. Reviewing this historical reference document played a role in the creation of the 100th Centennial bow-tie and badge for the 2018 Centennial Silverado and Colorado.

Another resource used in the development of Centennial marketing materials was the GM Heritage Center Vehicle Collection. The GM Heritage Center Vehicle Collection is comprised of over 165 vehicles on display. During the weeks and months of onsite research on the 100th Centennial bowtie design, the research team visited the vehicle collection numerous times to examine historic Chevy Trucks. The 1926 Chevrolet Superior Series X was an inspiration for the 100th Centennial bow-tie and badge design.

Here’s a look at six important Chevy trucks from the Heritage Center Collection.

1926 Chevrolet Superior Series X

The Chevrolet Series X one-ton truck was powered by a 170.9 CID Inline 4, delivering 35 horsepower. Features included a disc clutch with floor mounted gearshift, semi-floating rear axle, external contracting rear brakes, wooden spoke wheels, and a 120-inch wheelbase. The hood, fenders, lights and running gear from 1926 passenger cars were used on these trucks. Read More . . .

1933 Chevrolet Eagle Series CB

The Deluxe Panel Delivery was powered by the famous Blue Flame Six, a 207 CID Inline 6, delivering 65 horsepower. This engine was mated to a three-speed transmission and included a floor-mounted gear shift, single-plate dry-disc clutch, semi-floating rear axles, mechanical four-wheel brakes and wire spoke wheels. 3,628 Panel Delivery models were sold during 1933. Base price was $560. Read More . . .

1956 Chevrolet 3100 Pickup

The 1956 3100 Series Stepside half-ton truck was a carryover of the hugely popular 1955 model. This one is powered by the optional 265 CID V8 delivering 162 horsepower. These trucks were popular with rural American farmers and trades workers who used the trucks for utilitarian purposes. Base price was $1,670. Read More . . .

1960 Chevrolet Brasil Pickup

This pickup was manufactured in Brazil and took part in the 2005 “Old Way Expedition”, which was a 10,000 mile journey from Brazil to Michigan celebrating GM Brasil’s 80th anniversary. The truck played such an important role in the rapidly emerging economy of Brazil in the 1960’s and 70’s that it was officially called the Chevrolet Brasil. Read More . . .

1971 Chevrolet C10 Pickup

The 1971 C10 was the most popular Chevy truck offered, with over 260,000 built. Driving that popularity was the C10’s new Cheyenne interior trim package which brought a new level of comfort, convenience and style to pickups. Four engines were offered, giving buyers the widest range of engine choices in the industry. Base price was $2,967. Read More . . .

1975 Chevrolet C10 Pickup

The 1975 Chevrolet truck line was the best-selling truck in the industry, selling nearly 750,000 vehicles. The C10 was available with two different pickup box styles (Fleetside and Stepside), four trim levels and two wheelbase lengths. Standard engine was the 250 CID in-line 6. Chevrolet’s famous 350 CID small block V8 was optional. Base price was $3,609. Read More . . .

2018 Centennial Edition Silverado
The Centennial Edition Silverado includes all of the features available on the LTZ Z71 crew cab and adds the Centennial Blue exterior paint color, front and rear heritage bowties, 100-year door badges, spray-in bedliner with heritage bowtie emblems and accessory floor liners with heritage bowtie emblems. The Centennial Edition also adds 22” painted wheels with chrome inserts, 22” all-terrain tires, chrome tow hooks and a chrome bowtie on the steering whee

2018 Centennial Edition Colorado
The Centennial Edition Colorado includes all of the features available on the Z71 crew cab and adds the Centennial Blue exterior paint color, front and rear heritage bowties and 100-year door badges. The Centennial Edition Colorado also includes a body-color rear bumper and accessory grille surround, chrome belt molding, chrome accessory tow hooks, mirror caps and handles, spray-in bedliner with bowtie emblems and LT optional 18” wheels with monochromatic cap.

For 100 years, Chevy trucks have been a part of the American Dream, as strong and dependable as the people who drive them. The GM Heritage Center, its Reference Collection and the Media Archive have proven to be indispensable resources in helping construct this view of 100 years of Chevy Trucks.