Let’s begin with a few numbers: 27 mpg highway; 7,000 pounds towing capability; 5-passenger seating and 41.3 feet turning radius.
Welcome to the all-new for 2015 Chevrolet Colorado midsize pickup that comes pretty close to pickup perfection.
“Many people like the ‘can-do’ spirit of a truck, but they want a vehicle that is easier to maneuver in traffic and easier to park at work or at home,” said Tony Johnson, Colorado marketing manager. “For them, bigger is not necessarily better. Also, they don’t want to give up the latest in convenience and safety features, which aren’t available on current midsize pickups.”
I’m one of those people and that’s exactly why I think the new Colorado comes pretty close to pickup perfection.
With a base price starting around $21,000, 2015 Colorado have their choice of two available engines; rear-wheel, or four-wheel drive configurations; four-door extended- or crew-cab body styles; as well as regular or extended bed lengths. There is also the choice of three trim levels — WT, LT and the off-road capable Z71.
The primary engine for the Colorado is a 2.5-liter I-4 generating 200 horsepower and 191 lbs.-ft. torque. Mated to either a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic transmission, it requires regular unleaded gasoline and has an EPA fuel economy rating of 20 mpg city, 27 mpg highway for rear-wheel drive (19 mpg, 25 mpg respectively for four-wheel drive models).
Consumers also have the option of a 3.6-liter V-6 engine that generates 305 horsepower and 269 lbs.-ft. troque. Mated to a six-speed automatic and also requiring regular unleaded gasoline, it has an EPA fuel economy rating of 18 mpg city, 26 mpg highway for rear-wheel drive models (17 mpg, 24 mpg respectively for four-wheel drive models).
I’m really impressed with the new Colorado. I’ve never been a fan of big trucks and for me, the Colorado is “just right” when it comes to striking an ideal balance between capabilities, performance, fuel economy, safety and all the creature comforts that I really don’t want to do without.
And small touches make a big difference — such as the CornerStep rear bumper that makes it a snap getting in and out of the bed. I also appreciated the EZ Lift-and-Lower tailgate that can be operated with a single hand.
I was so caught up in the nuts and bolts I almost forgot to mention the new Colorado is a rolling 4G hotspot for Wi-Fi — and it comes with OnStar and MyLink. There isn’t enough space in this column to list all of its features, but I will say it allows the driver to check text messages and access their cellphone music library without ever taking their hands off the wheel or eyes off the road. And yes, one of my favorites is the seven-speaker Bose premium audio system.
When it comes to safety, standard equipment includes six airbags (including head curtain side airbags), large rearview mirror and rear-vision camera, stability control system and trailer sway control.
I highly recommend it for the test drive list.
Neal White has been covering the automotive industry for more than 20 years and is affiliated with the Texas Auto Writers Association.
The Nuts and Bolts
2015 Chevrolet Colorado
5-seat midsize pickup
Rear-, or four-wheel drive
Four-door, regular- or extended cab
5”2” or 6’2” bed length
WT, LT, Z71
2.5L I4 (200 hp/191 T)
3.6L V6 (305 hp/269 T)
EPA: 20/18 mpg city, 27/26 mpg highway (2.5/3.6 RWD AT)
FUEL: Regular unleaded
StabiliTrak stability control
LENGTH: 212.7-224.9 in.
WHEELBASE: 128.3/140.5 inches
WIDTH: 74.3 inches
HEIGHT: 70.6 inches
WEIGHT: 3960-4450 lbs.
FUEL TANK: 21 gallons
TIRES: 16-, 17-, or 18-inch
TOWING: Up to 7,000 lbs.