Chevrolet Colorado

The Chevrolet Colorado comes with a choice of three engines. The standard truck comes with a 2.5L 4-cylinder engine making 200 horsepower, while an optional 3.6L V6 makes 308 horsepower. The Duramax turbodiesel is a 2.8L four that boasts 181 horsepower and 369 pound-feet of torque.

All three engines achieve solid fuel economy numbers. The Colorado is rated at 26 mpg on the highway for 4-cylinder 2WD models, with the V6 truck coming in at 25 mpg highway in 2-wheel drive trim and an impressive 31 mpg from the diesel. Despite this, the truck is still able to tow up to 7,700 pounds when properly equipped with the Duramax diesel engine and a tow package.

The Colorado is available in three basic body styles: extended cab long box, crew cab short box and crew cab long box. While the extended cab has rear hinged back doors and a small pair of rear seats, the crew cab features four doors and rear seats big enough to comfortably sit adults, even on long drives. 4-wheel-drive and 2-wheel-drive variants are available in any of the three body styles.

There are four trim levels for the Chevrolet Colorado: Base, WT (Work Truck), LT and Z71. Base models are only available on extended cab variants and while they obviously feature the fewest amenities, bells and whistles, they still have several notable features. Base models come standard with 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, a 6-speed manual transmission, a rearview camera, pickup box light and a chrome rear bumper.

WT trims are similar to the base model but can be ordered with the crew cab. The WT trim also adds heavy-duty suspension, an improved infotainment system and an automatic transmission.

The LT trim adds a little bit of luxury to the mid-sized pickup. A 4-way power adjustable driver's seat is standard, as are 17-inch wheels, a body-colored rear bumper, an 8-inch color screen, remote entry and a leather-wrapped steering wheel.

For buyers who want a Colorado with improved off-road capabilities, there's the Z71 off-road package, including heavy-duty suspension, a locking rear differential, some underbody protection, a powered front passenger seat, automatic climate control and an automatic liftgate.

Safety features on the Colorado include Stabilitrak stability control, traction control and anti-lock brakes. There are six airbags in the Colorado including dual stage front airbags. A rearview camera is standard, as are 4-wheel disc brakes.

Editors' Review

The Chevrolet Colorado is an oldie but a goodie. Yeah, this midsize truck feels outdated, but despite a few deficits here and there it remains a solid option in a segment rife with less-than-stellar competitors. If you need enhanced off-road capability or the open-bed hauling convenience only a pickup truck can offer, but don't want or need a full-size rig, this Chevy is a decent choice.

To keep things fresh, the Colorado received a few enhancements for 2021. Mainline models gain a reworked -- and arguably more handsome -- front end, an 8-inch infotainment screen is standard on the LT trim and higher and 17-inch wheels are now included at no extra charge. The off-road-ready ZR2 model features similar improvements, though its face is noticeably more aggressive, looking somewhat like the boxy Silverado 1500's prow, for better or worse. Finally, three new exterior colors are available across the range including Cherry Red Tintcoat, which is what you see here.

What sets the ZR2 apart from lesser Colorados is its off-road hardware. The suspension benefits from a 2-inch lift and the track, both front and rear, is 3.5 inches wider. Keeping things under control while bombing through the desert, clambering over boulders or just cruising your local Home Depot parking lot is a set of Multimatic Dynamic Suspensions Spool Valve dampers. These shocks help manage the Colorado ZR2's starchy springs, which deliver a firm on-road ride. While the truck laughs at pothole impacts and large bumps, you feel practically every expansion joint on the highway. Its Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac tires are mounted on stylish, multicolor 17-inch wheels and should provide ample grip while trail-bashing, even if they broadcast plenty of noise on pavement.

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The Good ~ Manageable dimensions ~ Decent performance ~ Off-road hardware

The Bad ~ Full-size pickup fuel economy ~ V6 could be smoother ~ Annoying rock rails

The Bottom Line In ZR2 form, the Chevrolet Colorado is a capable and mostly agreeable midsize pickup.

Editors' Rating
  • Performance 8
  • Features 6.5
  • Design 7
  • Media 8.5

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