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Sales of trucks in the region pick up

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Pickup trucks are the hot vehicle in the Upper Midwest and Great Plains states.

There's an old saying among long-haul truckers that goes, "If you got it, a truck brought it." But if you've got a pickup truck, chances are a train brought it.

The Associated Press reports railroads are busy as a result of the high demand for trucks. The head of BNSF, the biggest railroad serving the region, said hauling pickup trucks by rail has accelerated rapidly. BNSF is hauling 240 pickups daily by rail to Fargo and St. Paul, a 543 percent increase since 2011.

Executive Chairman Matt Rose joked that pickup truck hauling by rail appears to be "the next great line of business" for the railroad.

Truck sales have been an engine for domestic manufacturers. At the start of the month of May, Bloomberg reported that General Motors, Ford, Chrysler and Toyota had all seen a jump in the sales of trucks in the U.S. in April. Sales of GM’s redesigned full-size pickups gained 12 percent. Fox Business reported that Ford saw considerable strength in F-series pickup trucks in its April sales figures. Ford truck sales grew 8 percent overall and the company sold a total of 63,387 F-series trucks last month, marking their best April since 2006.

USA Today said the battle is on to capture the luxury segment of the truck market. The newspaper said GM has introduced the Sierra All Terrain HD, which the article described as "GM's latest pimped-out, four-wheel-drive truck." Ford and Chrysler Group have also introduced pickup trucks for the premium market, loaded with luxury features and a price to match.

Through April of this year, the average GMC truck sold for $40,099, a 12 percent jump since 2009, according to Automotive News.

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