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(From AFX Europe (Focus))
DALLAS (AFX) - Tab Harding needs a new pickup truck, but don't bother him with exhausting sales pitches. The mason contractor prefers shopping at the State Fair of Texas' auto show, where the next generation of trucks can be seen months before they reach the showrooms.
Harding gave the 2007 Silverado, on sale next month, a thorough review, examining the redesigned front end, playing with the new touch screen navigation system and gently running his hand over the leather seats.
"I want to make sure I'm not buying the same old truck," said Harding, who says he buys a truck about every two years after putting on 35,000 to 40,000 "hard" miles annually.
With pickup truck sales in a 13 percent decline this year, manufacturers feel a heightened sense of urgency over the fair's potential effect on sales. Industry executives say one out of every four vehicles sold in Texas is …