Can we be honest people?

Keith Seymore

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How much involvement did you have in the development of the GMT400 and GMT800?
The day I left Flint Assembly and joined engineering was the day the engineering team split into the new GMT400 and the carryover R/V truck. I was assigned to the carryover R/V. I did assembly plant liaison work (new model launch) for a couple years until I moved to the Milford Proving Ground in 1986.

I was at Milford for three years and did total vehicle development on any full size truck (so R/V, GMT400, M van, G van) which was mostly brakes, overall ride/handling and noise/vibration work. I used to travel to dealerships and fix trucks that they were not able to fix, like vehicles with significant "brake pull" issues or vibrations. Those activities continued when I moved to the Desert Proving Ground and expanded to include driveline development. I was at the Desert for four years.

I left the Desert in 1994 and came back for my first design/release gig, which was the Engine Air Induction system for the GMT800 pickups. There were seven different powertrain combinations at that time; Many parts of that system are still in use today. That was the last GM project to have a specific co-located engineering team reporting to a unique Vehicle Chief Engineer (Ken Sohocki). After that GM adopted a "matrix organization" which has subject matter technical experts "on loan" to the Program Team. The Vehicle Chief has only a couple assistant Chiefs and the integration engineer(s) that report to him. This is the organizational structure in use today.

From Chassis/Powertrain design/release I moved into the aforementioned Engineering Program Management team and was the Vehicle Integration Engineer for the 2001 GMT800 Denali and 2002 Escalade, I did the 2003 mid cycle enhancement on pickups (new front end sheetmetal and new electrical architecture), back to GM800 SUVs at which point I wrote the engineering plan for what became the Hummer H2 (at that time code named "Project Maria"), then back to GMT800 SUVs and then back to what was going to be the 2011 Hummer H2 before I turned out the lights on Hummer in 2008.

I went from the H2 program to the 2011 Volt program during the 2008 calendar year.

K
 
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CheemsK1500

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Thanks @Keith Seymore That's a pretty interesting career. I suppose we can give you some credit for giving us the neat "cat eye" look on later GMT800s.
 

Keith Seymore

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Sorry to hear about the Nissan gig, what a sinking ship. I worked parts dept for a Nissan dealer that had a couple showrooms in '15-'16, and all I can say is what a terrible vehicle. Don't get me wrong, I own a few Datsuns, those old engines are awesome, but their modern stuff seems to be pure garbage built on a foundation of even worse rotten garbage.
Accessories is fun. I'm not tied to the assembly line and I a lot of freedom to design what I want. I just finished a racing stripe package for the new Z car which looks pretty good, if I do say so myself.

Plus we are working from home (mostly) so I could do this for a long time.

K
 

Keith Seymore

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Thanks @Keith Seymore That's a pretty interesting career. I suppose we can give you some credit for giving us the neat "cat eye" look on later GMT800s.
It's actually not my favorite (I like the '02 HD better) but - you're welcome.

My '04:
You must be registered for see images attach
 

Keith Seymore

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RecklessWOT

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Thanks @Keith Seymore That's a pretty interesting career. I suppose we can give you some credit for giving us the neat "cat eye" look on later GMT800s.
yuck.

Mechanically pretty solid rigs, but I've never known a time where so many Chevy guys were driven to GMC as during those fugly "angry eyes" years lol. I'd gladly have an '02 any day (which are still the nicest looking post squarebody Chevy trucks IMO to this day) over that '03-07 range, then jump gladly back onto an '08, GMT400s were kinda cheesy/forgettable/lame looking to me but whatever a product of their time, as are the later '07+ trucks, but everything inbetween (angry eyes) was just a big ole WTF to me. The Denalis were pretty sweet and the Escalades were classy too, but Chevys were a hard sell for me in that era.
 
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CheemsK1500

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yuck.

Mechanically pretty solid rigs, but I've never known a time where so many Chevy guys were driven to GMC as during those fugly "angry eyes" years lol

Some looked better than others, depending on the grille used. The 03-05 "cat eyes" looked a little better than 05 and 06 trucks. With that being said the ugliest GMT800 is still better looking than the prettiest GMT900. The GMT900 makes a Ford look pretty.
 

RecklessWOT

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Some looked better than others, depending on the grille used. The 03-05 "cat eyes" looked a little better than 05 and 06 trucks. With that being said the ugliest GMT800 is still better looking than the prettiest GMT900. The GMT900 makes a Ford look pretty.
While I'm not personally a fan of the GMT900s (despite owning a '08 GMC 2500 w/t), I have to say I very much disagree. I will say that yes you are right they look pretty cheap and pedestrian (Chevy or GMC) but at least they're not offensive. They are not specicically attractive vehicles, fairly forgettable and plasticy, but at least they can just be chalked up as "plain". Whereas the angry eyes generation of Chevrolet GMT800s is straight-up offensive looking, almost as if designed to make you squint your eyebrows and say "what the fcuk?". I can say honestly you are the first person I've met with that opinion. I respect your opinion, but can't say how I could even kind of try to see where you're coming from. Also, I've never heard them called "cat eyes" by anyone, they don't resemble a cat at all. I've ALWAYS heard them called "angry eyes" since the day my uncle bought one new. Must be a southern thing

And let the record show, no ford has been pretty in several decades... lol
 

SirRobyn0

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That's just the truck part! (lol)

We didn't even talk about from 2008 to 2019 -

Or my Dad's 32 year career with GM. Or his racing exploits -

K
I would certainly be interested in the 2008 - 2019 part, and even the Nissan part. I always enjoy reading about peoples work history / story and I enjoy telling mine, though I suspect that my story in repair is much less interesting than yours is.
 

BearKing

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That's just the truck part! (lol)

We didn't even talk about from 2008 to 2019 -

Or my Dad's 32 year career with GM. Or his racing exploits -

K
I had to get a new transfer case half on my 2003 Silverado because they wear holes in them after some time. I installed the Merchant Marine fix for that know problem. GM should have done that fix for free. Oh well, I still love my truck. I got the one with 4:10 gears and the G80 RPO code. 220,000 miles and it doesn’t leak a drop of anything. Ice cold A/C and awesome in mud and snow. Still one of favorite looking trucks. I love the front end on those years. They look mean.
 

SK 99

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That's just the truck part! (lol)

We didn't even talk about from 2008 to 2019 -

Or my Dad's 32 year career with GM. Or his racing exploits -

K

I greatly enjoy reading the details and stories from your career. Your posts are much appreciated :cool:
 

Redfish

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And that's why Technicians hate engineers.

On a side note, did you know that an engineer will walk pass 88 virgins just the screw over the Technician? True fact.

Since we are all Being Honest... In my working world that isn't always true. The best and most useful engineers seek out the best technicians and operators for help and feedback and they work together. A good Engineer teamed up with a good Instrumentation/Electrical Technician and a good Operator can solve a LOT of problems in my world.

I am guessing that @Keith Seymore is probably one of the Good Engineers.

@bucket the GTZ was a 4 cylinder instead of the V6. It did have more power but it never had any appeal for me. It was very edgy and cool looking at that time though.

@BearKing I prefer the look of a black vehicle but prefer to drive and maintain a white vehicle. I have had some wonderful examples of both colors but white is so much easier to keep clean. Also, living in South Louisiana black gets Very Hot.

My '88 Beretta had the 2.8 M.F.I. After I got arrested for 120 mph (yeah I was DUMB) my Pop's work buddies said the M.F.I. was MutherF***ingInjection and that's why that car was so fast.

My '07 Classic: Some may prefer the nose of the '02 but my '07 Classic had the LBZ and the 6 speed Allison.

You must be registered for see images attach


While I find the engineers do some silly stuff, they still design a great overall package. I love my '19, it is the finest tow vehicle I have ever operated.

You must be registered for see images attach



@RecklessWOT with a decent set of tires the Beretta GT would corner with the best of them. The front wheel drive didn't hold it back as much as you would think. I lived on the only curvy road in my area and learned to make that car work for me. It was a genuine pleasure on a twisty road. A few years ago I attempted to duplicate my speeds on my curvy road with my wife's BMW 328i. I didn't have the courage to push that hard.

As far as "getting it out of your system"...some things never really do. Going through those old pics I still remember shifting that Getrag 5 speed on those Arkansas roads. That car at that time on a Curvy Road with a Curvy Girl... Just Being Honest!

You must be registered for see images attach
 

dvdswan

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@Keith Seymore I wonder if our paths ever cross when you worked at the Desert Proving Grounds (assuming it was the one in PHX metro). I honestly don't remember the Engineers name that we saw most often. I will say the Engineers that we did work with to correct issues did work hand in hand with the technicians to solve problems.
 

BearKing

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Since we are all Being Honest... In my working world that isn't always true. The best and most useful engineers seek out the best technicians and operators for help and feedback and they work together. A good Engineer teamed up with a good Instrumentation/Electrical Technician and a good Operator can solve a LOT of problems in my world.

I am guessing that @Keith Seymore is probably one of the Good Engineers.

@bucket the GTZ was a 4 cylinder instead of the V6. It did have more power but it never had any appeal for me. It was very edgy and cool looking at that time though.

@BearKing I prefer the look of a black vehicle but prefer to drive and maintain a white vehicle. I have had some wonderful examples of both colors but white is so much easier to keep clean. Also, living in South Louisiana black gets Very Hot.

My '88 Beretta had the 2.8 M.F.I. After I got arrested for 120 mph (yeah I was DUMB) my Pop's work buddies said the M.F.I. was MutherF***ingInjection and that's why that car was so fast.

My '07 Classic: Some may prefer the nose of the '02 but my '07 Classic had the LBZ and the 6 speed Allison.

You must be registered for see images attach


While I find the engineers do some silly stuff, they still design a great overall package. I love my '19, it is the finest tow vehicle I have ever operated.

You must be registered for see images attach



@RecklessWOT with a decent set of tires the Beretta GT would corner with the best of them. The front wheel drive didn't hold it back as much as you would think. I lived on the only curvy road in my area and learned to make that car work for me. It was a genuine pleasure on a twisty road. A few years ago I attempted to duplicate my speeds on my curvy road with my wife's BMW 328i. I didn't have the courage to push that hard.

As far as "getting it out of your system"...some things never really do. Going through those old pics I still remember shifting that Getrag 5 speed on those Arkansas roads. That car at that time on a Curvy Road with a Curvy Girl... Just Being Honest!

You must be registered for see images attach
80’s girl we’re the BEST. Best hair and style. I married my 80’s girl. 36 years together this year. It’s been a blast. Oh, that car in my avatar has seen speeds over 150 with a lot more to go. Scares my wife when we do it but it’s on a safe high speed highway.
 

bucket

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Since we are all Being Honest... In my working world that isn't always true. The best and most useful engineers seek out the best technicians and operators for help and feedback and they work together. A good Engineer teamed up with a good Instrumentation/Electrical Technician and a good Operator can solve a LOT of problems in my world.

I am guessing that @Keith Seymore is probably one of the Good Engineers.

@bucket the GTZ was a 4 cylinder instead of the V6. It did have more power but it never had any appeal for me. It was very edgy and cool looking at that time though.

@BearKing I prefer the look of a black vehicle but prefer to drive and maintain a white vehicle. I have had some wonderful examples of both colors but white is so much easier to keep clean. Also, living in South Louisiana black gets Very Hot.

My '88 Beretta had the 2.8 M.F.I. After I got arrested for 120 mph (yeah I was DUMB) my Pop's work buddies said the M.F.I. was MutherF***ingInjection and that's why that car was so fast.

My '07 Classic: Some may prefer the nose of the '02 but my '07 Classic had the LBZ and the 6 speed Allison.

You must be registered for see images attach


While I find the engineers do some silly stuff, they still design a great overall package. I love my '19, it is the finest tow vehicle I have ever operated.

You must be registered for see images attach



@RecklessWOT with a decent set of tires the Beretta GT would corner with the best of them. The front wheel drive didn't hold it back as much as you would think. I lived on the only curvy road in my area and learned to make that car work for me. It was a genuine pleasure on a twisty road. A few years ago I attempted to duplicate my speeds on my curvy road with my wife's BMW 328i. I didn't have the courage to push that hard.

As far as "getting it out of your system"...some things never really do. Going through those old pics I still remember shifting that Getrag 5 speed on those Arkansas roads. That car at that time on a Curvy Road with a Curvy Girl... Just Being Honest!

You must be registered for see images attach

The GTU, GTZ and Z26 were all available with the Quad 4 or the V6. Iirc, the Z26 might have been V6-only after '94, but I don't remember for sure.
 

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