Pickup trucks remain an important segment for manufacturers, a strong and profitable growth sector not to be ignored. Consumers want them, typically prizing these vehicles for their style, performance, comfort, and trailering capabilities.
GM is no stranger to the market, with more than a century of models built, primarily under the Chevrolet and GMC nameplates. To this day, the models are twinned with the full-size Chevrolet Silverado 1500 corresponding to the GMC Sierra 1500, along with heavy-duty versions of both. In the midsize pickup truck realm, we see the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon.
The Colorado-Canyon duo rolled out in 2004 and stayed around until 2012 when GM temporarily exited the segment. In 2015, GM returned with the same two models. That move has been widely acknowledged for helping to revive a declining segment. Today, new models from Nissan, Ford, Honda, and Jeep have joined in. And, by 2024, we should finally see a new version of the perennial best-selling Tacoma.
Third-Generation Chevrolet Colorado
The third-generation Chevrolet Colorado rolls out in early 2023, along with the GMC Canyon. What’s significant about these models is not just the design, but the powertrain strategy. Notably, GM wipes away the 2022 model’s three-engine arrangement and outfits Colorado with just one engine. Gone are the four- and six-cylinder gas engines and the segment’s lone turbo-diesel.
In its place is a 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine that also serves as the standard motor for the Chevrolet Silverado. The engine works with an 8-speed automatic transmission to send power to the rear or all four wheels. But this move has a twist: Chevrolet offers three power levels, depending on the grade or model upgrade.
The base 2.7 Turbo offering produces 237 horsepower and 259 pound-feet of torque. It is standard on the Work Truck (WT) and LT models. As equipped, these grades offer 3,500 pounds of towing capacity.
GM calls the next power level 2.7 Turbo Plus. It corresponds to the power offered in the Silverado 1500, as it delivers 310 horsepower and 390 pound-feet of torque. This engine is standard with the Z71 and new Trail Boss grades and is available with the WT and LT. This one supplies a 7,700-pound towing capacity. We think it’ll be the performance level of choice for most shoppers.
But if that isn’t enough power, then the 2.7 Turbo High-Output with 310 horsepower and 430 pound-feet of torque may do it. This engine is standard on the ZR2, although towing is limited to 6,000 pounds here.
Highlights of the 2023 Chevrolet Colorado
Along with a photo dump, Chevrolet released copious amounts of details about the 2023 Colorado. Since it is a completely new model, there is very little that hasn’t changed.
“The all-new Colorado is enhanced in every way,” said Scott Bell, global vice president of Chevrolet. “With its rugged and sporty styling, enhanced capability, new technology, and customization options, it’s designed to do more for discerning customers and still offer them great value.”
- Available in five trims: WT, LT, Z71, Trail Boss (New), and ZR2
- All models sit on a 131.4-inch wheelbase, up from the previous 128.3 inches
- TrailBoss: 2-inch lift with the widest stance
- ZR2: 3-inch lift with a wide stance
- Standard ground clearance: 7.9 inches (WT <)
- Ground clearance upgrades 8.9 inches (Z71); Trail Boss (9.5 inches); ZR2 (10.7 inches)
- Up to five drive modes: normal, tow/haul, off-road, terrain, Baja
- Standard 11.3-inch touchscreen display
- Included forward collision alert, automatic emergency braking, front pedestrian braking, lane keep assist, lane departure warning, automatic high beams
- Available blind zone steering assist, rear cross-traffic braking, adaptive cruise control, rear braking, and a high-definition rearview camera
- A suite of trailering aids available through the infotainment app or smartphone
2023 Colorado Details Pending
Chevrolet will release additional information about this vehicle closer to its release date. We expect we’ll see this model in early 2023, which would allow us to share the complete details, including our driving impressions.
All in all, we like the direction GM is taking with its midsize pickup trucks. The segment has never been stronger and by offering customers robust off-road capable models, this manufacturer ensures that they are served with solid choices.
Chevrolet Colorado photos copyright GM Corp.