Sales of sport-utility vehicles continue to climb, with buyers gravitating toward the smallest and largest of the breed. For Ford Motor Co., that means the gamble to build the industry's largest SUV, the Excursion, is paying off.
And it is hurting General Motors Corp., which once disparaged the Excursion but is moving now to copy its leviathan dimensions in a six-door, extended-length Chevrolet Suburban.
GM products account for more than 40% of the trade-ins that Ford dealers are accepting for Excursions, according to retail sales data collected from dealers in 11 major metropolitan markets by the J.D. Power & Associates Power Information Network.
The big Fords are selling at a faster pace than Suburbans, even through the most expensive four-wheel-drive version of the Excursion is going for about $3,700 more than a comparable Suburban.