We're Testing Two Mid-Size Monsters

IMG_2223 II

It seemed like a natural comparison to us, pitting the newest off-road mid-size pickup trucks against each other in one of our classic head-to-head comparison tests. This time we've got the all-new 2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 matched against the 2017 Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro.

This pair offers some stunning off-pavement technology, all stuffed into a mid-size pickup package. We're out testing them this week in the deserts of California and will publish the results in a couple weeks. Look for photo galleries and other updates here and on our PickupTrucks.com Facebook page. We may shoot a few tweets out as well. Any guesses on how they'll perform? More to come.

Cars.com photos by Mark Williams



Instead due a long term test. Come back in five years. The Taco will still be running strong without much depreciation. The Chevy on the other hand will be on it's fourth recall and sitting in the service bay. But go ahead with your silly test.

GM has improved the quality of their trucks. The Tacama will have better resale but the driving position and driving dynamics are suppier in the GM trucks.

Toyota hands down, GM hasnt brought anything to the table in years

Where's the Nissan Frontier Pro-4X?


Prediction: GM will do better off road, PUTC will declare it the winner and Toyota fans will cry foul.

Should be interesting...

To the brilliant comments so far ....come back in 5 years? Seriously, Toyota's reliability and quality advantages of years ago are long gone. The differences these days between them and the Big Three , especially in trucks , is a small gap.

GM hasn't brought anything to the table in years? Way out of touch .....

Taco TRD (turd as my 12 yo son called one upon first seeing the name, not the greatest choice on Toyotas part) is a good truck . My friend/neighbor/resident off road expert of many years (dirt bikes , rock crawlers, built trucks, 4 wheelers etc.) has three in his drive way ranging from a mid nineties model to a 2016. New engine NOT as good as larger old V6 and seating position STILL weirdly uncomfortable , especially for taller folks. He LOVES new ZR2 after driving a friends (V6 powered).

Look forward to the test.....as mentioned though , why no Frontier Pro4X (still a good truck though dated)?

If you need a truck you need a F-150 , we are not going to build a Ranger for 30/40k people. Don’t tell me what I want or need to drive or how to spend my money. I would not keep it if they gave me one but WHERE IS THE RANGER ???
How is that crow???

It will be interesting.

I wonder if both GM and Toyota will ensure both pickups are performing at an optimum.

I'd like to think the Chev will take the honours due to its relatively newer design. The Taco, even though new might have an issue.

But, on the other hand here the new Hilux is a better off roader than the Colorado.

Much will come down to tyres and traction.

Come back in 5 years and your back will wish you were driving anything but a Tacoma.

X Ford Fan
Being honest and truthful is not one of Fords strong points.

The crow is tasting pretty good to Ford. Ford F-Series outsells all of Gov Motor's trucks combined!

How is that we don't need aluminum because we have the Colorado crow?

For the 1st time I purchased a 2015 Tacoma over the 2015 Colorado for several reasons. First I owned a 1998 Chevy Blazer and the tranny started giving me problems after 105K miles even after consistent maintenance. Second the Chevy Colorado had cheap plastic all throughout the interior as Chevy always had in the past. And the bed rails were so high I couldn't reach the bed even being 6'2"tall. The Tacoma had lower bed rails so reaching the contents of the bed was no issue. And the Taco had a composite bed versus buying a bedliner for the Chevy. When I found out Chevrolet wanted more for a similarly equipped Colorado my choice for the Taco was a no brainer. I also like the fact that Toyota hold its value extremely well.

Looking like quality and having quality is 2 different things. GM, Ford and Ram all have quality looks but only Toyota has quality.

wish they were both 500-800lbs lighter and about 5-8 grand cheaper.
Had a 2001 Taco, lifted and ran great, have a 2011 Canyon, lifted and runs great. Seating is better in the GM products, has more power and bettter gas mileage. They have a gorgous Dark Red ZR2 on the lot down the street from me....

GM will win hands down!

Considering their close price point, the ZR2 brings a lot of technology to the table. The tacoma will outperform on resale, bit that isn't the test here. Other reviews said the ZR2 suspension was definitely worth while over an aftermarket setup, although maintenance could end up expensive.
For me, current pick would probably be the regular TRD OffRoad with a manual transmission.

How is that crow???

Posted by: X Ford fan | Jul 12, 2017 11:50:55 AM

You must be some kind of special olympics, aren you? :D

The crow is tasting pretty good to Ford. Ford F-Series outsells all of Gov Motor's trucks combined!

Posted by: Gregory Stevens | Jul

Fordnatics have to keep trading their trucks in every couple years because as soon as the waranty expires they break down and their Fords are



These trucks should be banned in California. Land of the electric car. Where a 17 mpg truck is just ducky and a 40+ mpg diesel is regulated out of existence, repurchased and crushed.

Nissan Pro-4X? I'd like to see how it stacks up. 2004 technology vs. 2017 technology. I'd expect the Nissan to be in third place no doubt. It might just be closer in capability than expected.

Weve already seen the bias reviews of the ZR2 defeating the Tacoma Pro. Somehow the ZR2 will win with less ground clearance and a slower 0-60. Somehow a diesel with low end torque will be the Halo motor even though it cant accelerate any faster than prius pulling a 10,000lb trailer. Somehow better fuel mileage in the Tacoma wont matter now that its saving fuel, or this fact with the V6's will be ignored and Putc will just say the diesel version matches the Pro for fuel economy but wont mention it lacks 100HP by comparison or mention how slow the diesel is. Somehow the old egg shaped dash in the ZR2 will be nicer interior than the Pro. But then as usual we can get the truth via sales data and see the Tacoma is still better to more buyers and resales for more money because the ZR2 is better because the Colorado is the Halo midsize truck to journalists for what now, since 2015 and still cant touch the interests of enough real world buyers who know better and buy what they know is the better choice but journalists can have their minority opinion and in the end lose integrity.

Come back in 5 years and the Toyota will have a rusted chassis and break in two.....

journalists can have their minority opinion and in the end lose integrity. Posted by: Rambro | Jul 12, 2017


Get professional help. Seriously.

You seem to say that anyone who disagrees with you is morally deficient in some way, in fact you say they lose their integrity if they don't endorse your exact point of view.

We all know the Tacoma Pro is a better off-roader and value long term, but they will give it to GM because that has been the case since GM introduced the new Colorado.

The liberal media loves the Colorado.

Any wonder why I have a 2010 and 2016 Tacoma? Because they are reliable, last long and have better re-sale value and better off-roaders with just a 4-cylinder than anything the Colorado can dish out!

My 2016 is just an SR 4x4 and I parked next to a Colorado, not sure what model, but I put on 265/75's or a 32" tire without any mods, you cannot do that with a Colorado unless you spend big bucks!

Advantage Toyota as always off-roading!

Please use a civil tone when addressing Rambo.

Attempt to present yourself as an amicable person.

66000 on my Tundra with only tires & a battery replacement. Ford/GM/Ram cannot say the same.

@Big Al,

Please stop using other IDs. Did you create Rambro? Is Rambro part of your team.

If so my advice to him fits you like a glove.

It might come as a surprise to you but Rambo is not of my making.

I do find it unnecessary for the quality and tone of your comment directed at Rambo, as illustrated below;


Get professional help. Seriously


So, please use fact in lieu of inference regarding the behaviour of others as this is an anti-social trait.

The behaviour you just displayed towards me is divisive in an attempt to create dissent on the site.

I will not respond with an immature retort at you comment.

Have a wonderful day.

Please try and play with others.

We are lead to believe that RAMBRO is of the RAM & GM trvll committee.

@ Big Al,

Kumbaya to you.

If you're really sincere about this new-improved Bafo b.s. then please share with your fellow commenters all of the bogus identities you've used on this site over the years. The multiple IDs, Al.

If you share this information, your new-improved Bafo identity will be a lot more believable.

What's to lose?

Most of you Taco fans are still living in the 80's. Sheesh! Toyota's lead of reliability and dependability has shrunk so much, it's a toss up between which truck will be around in 10 years or whenever? Toyota isn't the company it was 20 years ago and I think most of us who are educated and know how to read, know this. You Toyota homers need to wake up, it's 2017 not 1987! Most of you have never driven a Colorado or know anything other than your rusted out Tacoma. That's too bad because you're missing out on something special. We have a fleet of them at our company and every one of our techs loves them! These ZR2's are incredible trucks and all the publications will start talking about them as soon as the testing starts. The Toyota is old news. Buy from an American company, not a has been Japanese one. And spare me from all the posts about where it's made, the profits go back to Japan, where the company was founded. That will never change unless GM or Ford buys them.

@Chris We all know you are a GM 'plant'. 'Your Got Mechanic Coming' junk can't hold a candle to any Toyota. And what's more is it is far less built in the USA than the Toyota. Most GM products are now built in China and South America. Just look at their 'build sheets'.

Papjim it has nothing to do with my opinion. Integrity is lost for many reasons. One that makes me laugh is when they had the question about which truck was the best off road truckk and this site based it on key criteria based on a point system for any options with off road chops. The Raptor won by the narrowest of margins and got extra points for having two extra tow hooks. The Powerwagon however got no points for having a winch or articulating suspension which would have given it the win. This is not my opinion but a fact. Its a fact the powerwagon has a winch and articulating suspension and its a fact that that deserves off road prowess. Articles like that dont deserve to be read or published. Wastes peoples time. And the Colorado has always been the sweetheart with this magazine, it can do no wrong, thats not opinion, its bias. The fact that the Colorado is always rated higher on this magazine and the fact more people buy Tacoma's just shows the lack of truth and favouritism that many journalist give to the Colorado. Its all just politics, new vehicles make them money, Toyota is frowned upon by them because they make slow changes, which I dont like, I like new but that doesnt sell magazines. The Pro is better in almost every way. Even stops faster but I am sure drum brakes will be brought up as a point loss, you see how that works. Thats whats coming.

Papjim it has nothing to do with my opinion


This statement contradicts your previous remarks. Thanks for responding though. I'm sure we all look forward to seeing how the two trucks look after PUTC does their evaluations.

@ Chris,

The uneducated one is you with comments like "Toyota homers" and "rusted out" Tacoma's. Nobody will take you seriously because you have never owned a Toyota to simply attack them!

You are a disgrace and sound like a crying liberal with a response like that!

And please STOP calling private companies "American" please! GM has NOTHING to do with our nation nor its Constitution! We do not elect their horrible leadership in national elections and they do not set policy in this nation, so STOP doing the union thing of comparing companies to nations! That shows IGNORANCE!

You have a hatred for Toyota's, that is not deniable, thus your opinions are biased and twisted and not bases on anything factual, also known as FAKE NEWS!

I have owned Toyota trucks for 25 years and they have been the best trucks I have ever driven, better than your precious Colorado. No wonder sales are 2 to 1 in favor of the Tacoma. Nobody believes folks like you and their purchase of more Tacoma's is evident of this. FACTS!

I currently own two Tacoma's, a 2010 built by the UAW in California which is not Japan and a 2016 built in Texas, which is not Japan!

Americans built both of my Tacoma's, Americans shipped them to the American dealership where Americans prepared it for me to take delivery!

If you do not like the FACT that Americans are building Toyota trucks, maybe you should move to North Korea where you can ban free enterprise and a free market system in favor of your precious GM that cannot even balance its books and needed a bailout because they are a pathetic company!

WE all know the liberal media loves the Colorado and calls it a darling. But in the REAL world, folks are buying more Tacoma's like myself because they have higher retention of value, lower operating costs and they are more reliable and last longer!

I know this because I own two of them right now!


I get called out a lot for my rants. You and I should have a talk.

Some idiots on this site, still not aware the new US Ranger was slated for 2019...geeez

What's to lose?
Posted by: papajim | Jul 13, 2017 7:49:00 PM

Remember Apollo 13 is watching:)

@oxi--Calm down before you have a stroke or a heart attack. Colorado is a newer truck and has some great attributes and the Tacoma is older and still a very solid truck. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but I saw nothing in anyone's comments that indicate they are against free enterprise and America nor have I seen a comment of how great North Korea is. I doubt anyone on this site is that anxious to go to North Korea especially after Warmbier. North Korea is even a new low for you. No one desires to go to North Korea which is less desirable than Hell.

@ Trucker,

Sorry, but "it" is claiming falsehoods that are untrue that border r a s c i s m, h a t r e d and ignorance!

The Tacoma is a all-around better truck than the Colorado. Sales are not the only indicator, but so is retention of value and lower ownership costs and a huge following and repeat buyers!

Social media and fake journalism make the Colorado to be this cute darling of trucks, but it really isn't.

This is the same media that will focus on the Cubs rather than the much better Brewers that are in first place! That is what you get with social and fake media. Twisting of logic and merit because they are cuter than the other one type of coverage!

Heck, just put the Ridgeline in the mix and give them the award, why not!

Prediction: GM will do better off road, PUTC will declare it the winner and Toyota fans will cry foul.
Posted by: NoQDRTundra | Jul 12, 2017 11:24:30 AM

I predict the Tacoma will be declared the winner. GM Johhny and his 3 usernames will blame it on Ford.

If Ford offers the upcoming Ranger with the 2.7 EcoBeast and 10spd, everyone who buys/bought any other mid size truck in the past 2 years should get sick to their stomach. That thing will downright embarrass engines twice it's displacement. If Ford doesn't offer the 2.7, then shame on them,,,,,

If Ford doesn't offer the 2.7, then shame on them Posted by: 2.7EcoboostRoost | Jul 15, 2017


I predict that the 2.7 and the 3.5 are too wide to fit in the engine compartment. Ditto with the previous Ranger. The cylinder heads on the DOHC engines are huge.

Instead Ford will offer a 2.5 ecoboost that will be plenty hot in truck the size of a Tacoma or Ranger.

I've even heard of the Raptor 3.5 being considered for the new Ranger Raptor. Now that would be a seriously quick machine.

A Ranger Raptor would have the F150 Raptor for breakfast any time, anywhere.

But, like you I would think the 2.7 will be used for a significant reason. Ford Australia has dropped the V8 and inline 6 Falcon ute. Ford needs another quick ute.

I read and article and saw some photos in Australia of a global Colorado with a 6.2 LS3 in it. Now that would make it a Silverado and Sierra killer off road.

It's good to see the Aussies get back into real performance utes and pickups. That is one thing they do well.


something to consider regarding my previous comment. If you want to see how tight the fit of the DOHC engine is in the Ranger engine bay, just look at the fit in today's Ford Mustang. You can't fit a feeler gauge between those wheel wells and the heads of that Coyote motor. Super tight.

This becomes significant with the Ranger because suspension travel in a truck that runs off road is a much bigger issue than it is in a sporty car that is never intended for off road use.

Just a thought!

I'm not buying either of these trucks but what's the deal with Toyota fans who can't spell?

something to consider regarding my previous comment. If you want to see how tight the fit of the DOHC engine is in the Ranger engine bay, just look at the fit in today's Ford Mustang. You can't fit a feeler gauge between those wheel wells and the heads of that Coyote motor. Super tight.

This becomes significant with the Ranger because suspension travel in a truck that runs off road is a much bigger issue than it is in a sporty car that is never intended for off road use.

Just a thought!
Posted by: papajim | Jul 16, 2017 8:57:33 AM

Amen! Anybody that's had to replace a cracked exhaust manifold on a 5.4 or Coyote can agree, Ford's wide DOHC engines are really shoehorned in there. And on a small truck like a Ranger, just trying to squeeze a V6, let alone all the plumbing required for a turbocharged system is going to take up TONS of space.

Then of course there's the issue that the EPA calculates emissions requirements based on the footprint of the vehicle and it makes it even tougher for Ford to make the numbers work. The 2.7EB works out alright in a larger full-size pickup, but when that footprint shrinks down to a midsize truck, it gets really really tough to meet EPA requirements. I would wager that it's the reason why GM didn't attempt to put the Ecotec 4.3 V6 or 5.3 V8 (both small enough to fit nicely in the engine bay) in the Colorado/Canyon and why Toyota dropped the legendary 4.0 V6 for the turd that is the 3.5. EPA emissions and fuel economy requirements.

The Religious comments by fanbois are quite funny. Keep em coming


Lets go off-roading and climb man made cement objects.

A day in a desert 20 minutes from town?

Get f^cking real.

I have 2 friends who have had their new Tacos taken back by Toyota since they were total lemons. One with a rear diff leak they could not stop despite months of trying. How hard can that be? Have not gotten the full story on the second. Toyota did the first friend right by upgrading him to a Pro on the swap out.

Not going to bash Toyota as have had 2 4Runner with over 180k with zero problems. But crappy quality can creep into any brand and model. It happens. Cut a little quality here and a little quality there for margins..... Adds up. IMHO Toyota got in a big race to be No. 1 globally and lost track of the prize. Quality suffered. Hope they have seen the error of their ways.

Post a Comment

Please remember a few rules before posting comments:

  • Try to be civil to your fellow blog readers.
  • Stay on topic. We want to hear your opinions and thoughts, but please only comment about the specified topic in the blog post.
  • Your email will not be shown.

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In

Home | Buy or Sell a Truck | News | Special Reports

Powered by Cars.com. By using this site, you agree to our terms of service | © 2017 Cars.com | Privacy Statement | Contact Us