The Chevy Colorado compact/midsize pickup truck is one of General Motors’ offerings in the compact/midsize pickup truck segment. It was introduced in 2003 alongside the GMC Canyon (its mechanical twin) to replace the compact Chevy S10 pickup truck. It started out as a compact pickup truck in its 1st generation and then grew to a midsize pickup truck in its 2nd generation. The Colorado may not be as big as its Silverado pickup truck siblings, but it is powerful and capable. It can handle fleet duty and it also makes an excellent weekend adventure vehicle.
Like most other similar-sized pickup trucks, the Colorado is available in a variety of configurations. It can be had with either RWD or 4WD. Also, its 1st generation models (2003-2012) were available in 3-passenger regular cab, 5-passenger extended cab, or 5-passenger crew cab body styles; its 2nd-generation models (2012-present) are available only in 4-passenger extended cab or 5-passenger crew cab body styles. Also, in both generations, the Colorado is available with any of two cargo bed-length options, the longest of which is 6 feet 2 inches in length. To add to all these configurations are several trim levels that include the well-equipped LT models and the Z71 off-road-themed models.
It is important to point out that the Chevrolet Colorado and the GMC Canyon were the products of a collaboration between GM North America, GM Brazil, and Isuzu Motors Ltd. of Japan. Design teams from the three companies worked together to develop the concept vehicles for these trucks. Isuzu even ended up offering its own line of i-series midsize pickup trucks between 2005 and 2008 that were mechanically identical to the Chevy Colorado trucks.
The 1st-generation Chevy Colorado was based on GM’s GMT355 platform, which was a modified version of the platform that was used for the Hummer H3. This generation was known for its unusual two-tier headlamp design. In the USA, It was available with either a 2.8 L I4 gas engine or a 3.5 I5 gas engine that was specific to the four-door models. These engines could be had with either a 5-speed manual transmission or a 4-speed automatic transmission. Its Z71 models featured 4WD, an off-road-tuned suspension, and exclusive rugged styling, while its performance-focused ZQ8 model featured a sport-tuned suspension, a lower ride height, and sporty exterior styling that included low profile fender flares, side skirts, and much more.
The 2nd-generation Colorado was introduced in 2012 in Australia, but it did not come to the USA until November 2013 when it was unveiled at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Also, the US-spec version of the 2nd-generation Colorado is a bit different in design from the versions that had already debuted in Australia, New Zealand, and Thailand. The US-spec Colorado was designed to look more like the 2nd-generation Chevy Silverado, so it looks beefier than its Asian and Oceanian counterparts. The 2nd-generation Colorado benefits from GM’s new GMT 31XX platform that is lighter yet stronger than its predecessor. This highly rigid platform delivers improved handling and responsiveness. Under the hood, this generation offers a 2.5-liter I4 gas engine, a 3.6-liter V6 gas engine, or a 2.8-liter Duramax turbodiesel engine. In terms of model offerings, this generation offers a basic WT (Work Truck) model, a mid-level LT model, an off-road-oriented Z71 model, and an ultra-capable ZR2 off-road performance model.
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