GMC is a division of American automaker General Motors (GM) that focuses on trucks and utility vehicles. William C. Durant, the founder of GM purchased the Rapid Motor Vehicle Company in 1909. The same year, Durant purchased the Reliance Motor Car Company. Rapid and Reliance merged in 1911 and GMC was formed in 1912. The first GMC truck went on exhibit in 1912 at the New York International Auto Show. Although 22,000 trucks were produced in 1912, only 372 were contributed by GMC.
GM then purchased a controlling interest of Yellow Coach in 1925. It was a bus manufacturer from Chicago, Illinois. In 1943 GM purchased the remaining interest and renamed the company GM Truck and Coach Division. Manufacturing of interurban coaches were produced until 1980 and transit buses until 1987.
GMC manufactures SUV’s, pickup trucks, vans, light-duty and medium-duty trucks. Past productions included fire trucks, ambulances, heavy-duty trucks military vehicles, motor homes and transit buses.
Until recently the only difference from Chevrolet trucks and GMCs were the grill, headlamps and nameplates. In 2007 the two began differences in style and sheet metal. GMC light trucks are available at Buick and Cadillac dealerships as well as GMC franchises.
GM merged GMC with Pontiac in 1996 to allow Pontiac dealers to carry trucks to compete with Chevrolet dealers that offered a full vehicle line up. The GMC and Chevrolet trucks are mechanically the same, but GMC is considered to be a more luxurious vehicle.
GMC survived the reorganization of GM in 2009 and after Pontiac was discontinued, Buick dealers began to sell GMC trucks.
Recent additions to the GMC lineup include the Acadia SUV crossover in 2007 and the Terrain, a mid-sized crossover SUV that replaced the Pontiac Torrent in 2009.
Image Caption: 1919 GMC Truck Advertisement. Credit: National Geographic Magazine by infrogmation/Wikipedia (public domain)