Work on Next-Gen Colorado and Canyon for North America Under Way, Sources Say

Development of Next-Gen Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon for US Under Way
Story by Chris Doane for

The Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon small pickup trucks are expected to end production at their home in Shreveport, La., by June 2012, but that's not the end of the road for GM's midsize twins in North America, according to our sources.

We've learned that development on the next-generation 2014 Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon for the U.S. and Canada is under way, based on GM’s all-new GMI 700 body-on-frame global small truck platform that will be built in Thailand starting late this year.

The GMI 700-based Chevy Colorado is expected to make its world debut at the 2011 Thailand International Motor Expo in Bangkok.

GM’s original plans during the company’s bankruptcy and financial restructuring in 2009 called for the end of the Colorado and Canyon, but those plans were reversed in the last few months.

The move runs contrary to the latest trends in the dwindling midsize segment, whose vehicles have grown stale and manufacturers have been exiting the segment. Later this year, U.S. production of the Ford Ranger will end after 29 years. The Ranger hasn't seen a major mechanical update since 2001 or a design change since 2006. Mazda, Isuzu and Mitsubishi also left the segment in the past few years.

Ford’s next-generation Ranger, code-name T6, will start production later this year for markets outside North America, leaving domestic Ford truck buyers with the F-150 as their only option.

Next-Gen Chevrolet Colorado

GM’s new trucks will still face competition from Toyota and Nissan. A heavily refreshed Tacoma is expected to debut for 2013 with all-new sheetmetal and at least one new engine, though its platform will likely be mostly carry over. Nissan is also expected to sell a next-gen Frontier based on its latest global small truck chassis. A replacement for the Dodge Dakota may also be available by 2014, possibly riding on an innovative unibody platform.

The current Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon debuted in 2003 as 2004 models. They replaced the Chevy S-10 and GMC Sonoma compact pickups.

So how long do we have to wait for this new truck? At least two-and-a-half years. Our sources indicate that production couldn't start until at least the very end of 2013. The first half of 2014 is more likely. Production is likely to move north, to Wentzville, Mo., where GM currently builds its full-size Chevy Express and GMC Savana vans. With only one shift building vans at Wentzville, there’s untapped capacity for a new product.


Is there even a market for this vehicle in North America? The sales numbers of the past tell us there is not. The Tacoma and the Pathfinder are much better vehicles and have taken sales away from the American brands. It would be better if the Detroit three offer full-size decontented pickup trucks with 4 or 6 cylinder engines for light duty, to take the place of the Colorado/Canyon and Ranger.

GM and Chrysler are both failed companies, dudes. The only reason they are still around is because the US government nationalized them with taxpayer money. Had the government done the same for Studebaker and AMC we would not be having this discussion. This is a prime example of selectively deciding which failed companies live and which ones die. It is wrong and based on that alone many Americans will not buy their wares. I am one of them who shuns anything from GM and Chrysler. Dead is dead! The government has no business in deciding who lives and who dies in the market place. That's like telling us we all have to buy healthcare insurance..... Uh-oh! We have morphed into a autocracy...

Why GM can`t bring out a new model without informing everyone in 2 years advance? Compact trucks still make sense so why leave the market for Asian brands? And why Ford can`t sell the all new Ranger in the US? At least I`m on the right shore of the Atlanic.


Why should I be worried? The Colorado is a joke, the Toyota Tacoma has nothing to fear from a FAILED business in GM that needs big daddy to help them compete!

GM is a joke!!!


So what you are telling everyone is that you are a closet communist/socialist that does not believe in capatalism?

Maybe you need to move to China where the government can take over businesses any time or Venezuela where Chavez has many state owned businesses, we do not like that kind here in this FREE nation.

So if GM can get bailed out, if my parents business struggles then they too should get a bailout check right?

Why should GM have an UNFAIR advantage in the auto industry?

Toyota needs the absence of the U.A.W. to compete.

Make the U.A.W. go away (for American car companies) or make Toyota (foreign car companies) be a part of the U.A.W. and then see what happens? Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors would benefit (with no U.A.W.) or Toyota would struggle (with U.A.W.)? Even playing field!

Given the timing and size of the truck, I expect the following engines:

2.5L 4-cyl direct injection @ 200hp/200 lb-ft
2.0L 4-cyl direct injection turbo @ 220 hp /260 lb-ft
3.6L V6 direct injection @ 300 hp / 280 lb-ft

all with 6-speed automatics...remember that 2.4L can do 31 mpg in the Equinox, so I have no doubt this truck will target 30 mpg highway in at least one version

"Why should GM have an UNFAIR advantage in the auto industry?"

The same way that foreign car companies (non-U.A.W.) have an UNFAIR advantage in the auto industry!

@Mike Levine
do you know if the next gen. will come with a stick shift?

Since when is an advantage unfare? This is big business. The Detroit 3 allowed unions to get too big, too fat, and too lazy.
That is not Toyota's fault.

One could argue that GM and Chrysler are at an unfare advantage because they are taxpayer/government owned and supported.

Boo Hoo... poor Ford... poor Toyota...

Back on topic. The same comments start floating around every time there is a compact truck post.
I do not think the market is there for one of these trucks.
The Tacoma is the most successful because it is the "biggest" compact. Many say it is a "mid-sided" truck.
The only reason the Ranger is #2 in sales is because it is dirt cheep to buy.
Ford hasn't done anything with it, for what? 20 years.

If gas hits 8 - 10 a gallon we might see a rebirth of compacts.
Look at the current market - full size offers comparable or better fuel economy and at a comparable price.

@Lou: you hit the nail with the hammer with this "Look at the current market - full size offers comparable or better fuel economy and at a comparable price."

I disagree with you only on the point that I do believe there is a market, but if the big 3 subsidize their big trucks with incentives (old game) and ask the same or less than for a midsize (Dakota) or compact (Colorado/Canyon), then it is hard to sustain a market for something. Clearly the 70000 Ford Ranger buys wanted a Ranger because it is a cheap, reliable, and possibly the right size for them. Same for the 100000 Tacoma buyers. That was / is the right truck for them, be it size, brand, price. They wouldn't by a full size. Toyota's Tacoma only rose to the top after the 2005 update of the Dakota failed and the Ranger had already been on the market for 7 year plus after the last engineering remake.

The New Colorado and Canyon Models should follow the examples of the Small Chevy Equinox and GMC Terrain SUV's, with new innovative engines and Transmission that will more than likely be at the forefront of these trucks, size definatley does matter for this particular segment. Rewrite the chapter for these trucks and shrink them in size a bit (i.e the GMC Granite Concept Pick Up), also individual exterior styling would also be nice for the new models as well.

@Lou outside the North America it is a totally different market. Smaller or slightly smaller in some cases diesels with a substantial payload and good off road performance are the preferred choice. HD Pickups have a tiny market outside the US. One third of the global market uses RHD.

@sleder: I don't but I doubt it will offer a MT.

@ Robert Ryan - big vehicles are a North American phenomenon. That will not change soon.
The rest of the world gets by on smaller vehicles, I've always found it interesting that we are so different.

I currantly have a 2005 GMC Canyon 4 door crew. I love the truck its been trouble free for 6 years now but..... If I'd known the crappy fuel milage I was going to get with my inline five banger I would have bought a full size half ton crew cab with V-8 power. As far as this next generation Colorado/Canyon goes unless it has a option for a small turbo diesel that gets good milage ill just go with a full size next time. And also those hooks on the box remind me of those 70's era LUV trucks who's box rusted instantly after you drove it off the lot. I live in a northern climate where the roads are salted, the salt would eat those bed hooks alive.

@Buy American or say Bye to America,

GM and the big 3 have the choice to shut down UAW ran plants and move them to Mexico, who's stopping them?

No excuse, if the UAW is the problem, then get rid of them or move operations to where non exist. I thought FREEDOM meant something?

By the way Toyota shut their only UAW plant in California like not much time after GM bailed out of their committments at NUMMI.

Toyota did it, what's the big 3's excuse?

@Lou you will find a lot of Class 8 sized trucks on farms and worksites in Australia, that is a pretty rare occurrence in the US/Canada. Slightly smaller and small pickups and what does not exist in the US/Canada , car/utes. Yep pretty different in tastes, fascinating to see how outside influences shaped the mix.

@Robert Ryan - you arre right. I see some 3 - 5 ton service trucks in the logging and mining industry. These are ususually owned by big companies or large machine companies like Catepillar. Most smaller companies and private contrators use 1 ton pickups or 1 ton pickup trucks with service decks. It would make sense just to move up to a larger truck as there usually is a longer service life.

I'm a strong beleiver in the mid-size segment, especially for the next generation of trucks. They're still about 1000# lighter than a fullsize in the same configuration. That, coupled with the right powertrain will give you real fuel economy advantages. Given the upcoming economy standards, they will have to be part of the picture. Once they can offer real economy advantages, price alone no longer needs to be the main driver. Some people (myself included) really prefer something that actually fits in a parking spot and the garage. Any decent midsize can still haul a yard of mulch. For towing, its very rare that I find the need to pull anything bigger than the 5k my truck is rated for.


Hey moron, Toyota is not bankrupt and has not FAILED like GM!

Currency adjustements are a macroeconomic issue that governments routinly try to manipulate. The article mentions Toyota but it is MACROECONOMIC that the Japanese government is seeking changes in currency to assist their corporations like Toyota. It is industry wide and not just the auto industry.

Companies get loans all the time, GM got a WELFARE check and bailout, HUGE DIFFERANCE! Learn business please before you make ignorant comments!

Here's my problem...
I am an avid lover of the S-10 platform. I liked the pickup trucks, and I like the blazers. For someone who wanted a pickup to throw stuff in and haul things now and again, but doesn't need a big truck, they were great. Now, everything has just gotten bigger and bigger. Is there really no market for a smaller, cheaper pickup? Something that gets reasonable gas mileage, that doesn't cost almost as much as the full size by the time you add a few options?

I find it hard to believe that the S-10 sales were that bad when they ended production in '03. I would imagine the Colorado sales were never up to par with the S-10. I doubt that the market is dead, I think there just aren't any viable options anymore in that market. There is no small Nissan Hard body, S-10, ranger, or Tacoma anymore. They all have grown and grown so much that they have really closed the gap on the full size trucks... so at that point, just get a full size instead.

Last time I checked you don't have to pay back a welfare check. A loan is a loan. Toyota has taken loans at one point or another, so did GM. BTW, GM got out of the NUMI plant first, Toyota struggled to get out then finally just closed the plan all together.

BTW- The difference between bailing out your mom and pops store and GM's is over 10,000 employees. Your mom and dad lose their jobs, that's sad. 10,000+ people lose their jobs, distributors lose their client and dealers lose their cars, that's enough to crash an economy. Obama couldn't NOT bailout GM with a federal LOAN. Had he not, he would have had well over 10,000 people sitting on capitol hill asking him for a job.

Toyota's not some kind of super company, they have problems too. Their current problems is a stale lineup of uncompetitive cars and trucks.

To bail or not bail(out), that is the question...
How many guys remember Shakespeare? Lol

It is a debate that rages on.

Where does goverment intervene or where should government intervene?

They should of keep greedy and reckless bankers and business heads in check.

That is where the intervention should of occured.

People argue and so do politicians - that bailouts were neccessary to protect the working man.

look at it closely - "government by the people for the people" is more accurately "government by the elites for the elites."

How many bankers, bureaucrats, or CEO's went to court or jail over this mess?

Would it been bad to leave GM and Chrysler to their own devices?
Yes - but it would not of been the end of the world.

Someone would of bought Chrysler or merged with them.

GMC is much larger and no one would of touched them due to their massive debt.
They would of been forced through bankruptsy procedings and not survived.
The pieces would of been purchased by other companies.
Mahindra, Great Wall, and other companies would of bought divisions of GM. Arabs or other wealthy individuals would also of bought divisions.
GM would of died as a large entity but most of its products would of survived.
Even if GM totally, completely was wiped off the face of the earth - Ford, Toyota, Nissan and all of the remaining companies would ramp up production to fill the void. Most of those workers who would of lost jobs would of been re-employed elsewhere in the industry.


"Had he not, he would have had well over 10,000 people sitting on capitol hill asking him for a job."

Fear mongoring, you sound like the UAW speaking.

I do not care, maybe if GM's leadership and union was held ACCOUNTABLE for their actions and decisions, this would have not happened. So I not only blame them but also their shareholders for doing NOTHING!

They deserved to fail and why should we reward bad behavior? Under nre management would have been the theme, GM should have dies with their FAILED leadership.

Communism should NOT be allowed here!


"Their current problems is a stale lineup of uncompetitive cars and trucks."

An why can't the Ranger, Colorado or Dakota sell today when compared to the Tacoma?

A ONE WAY FREE TRADE POLICY, should not be allowed here, also!

While the Colorado/Canyon may be similar in price to the Silverado/Sierra and not get substantially better mileage they do have a key attribute that led me to purchase one.

They are not as ponderous to drive and park and actually fit in a garage. Ever notice how many full-size trucks are left sitting in front of the garage door in front of homes? They usually won't fit.

A smaller truck offers the capability most people need for weekend projects, are easier to manuever, offer a fuel economy advantage, and can sit inside a heated garage at night.

And today Autoblog reports that the Chevy Cruz will get the Aussie 2.0L diesel in 2013. It is hard to believe that GM would jump through those certification hoops and not put that engine in other models. 147 horse, 235 lb-ft torque, 34 mpg... sounds like a good match for a small pickup to me.

@MahindraPlanet. The 2.0L diesel a bit small for the Colorado. The current Holden one has a 3.0l diesel and is getting a new VM Motori engine for the new Colorado

They did not get a welfare check. And they are paying off their loans. Plus, they did save jobs. Maybe you would be happy if the whole country followed Wal-Mart's example and bring (almost) everything from China or elsewhere and put homegrown companies out of business and people who want to earn a decent wage out of work and on welfare lines.
I think that it is funny

I think the trucks are nice, and practical for certain people, but the sales have not been that well. Maybe the new design will draw some attention and pull some sales. Smaller trucks that are reliable are hard to come by. Chevrolet has always had good trucks. I just think they are making them all look like cars, and not so much like trucks.

glad GM nged their minds. ford s missing the mark by not offering the new rnager here. not everyone wants or needs a full size truck. the only reason toyota claimed 42% of the market to fords (rangers) respectable 22% is because ford quit investing in ranger development. but it still sells well! it outsold the mustang one recent quarter! basically 20yr old platform outselling a new generation. also for it to still have the marketshare it does is a testament to ford that people still want smaller trucks. it outsells nissan frontier and the GM twins combned. ford could still rule ths segment if they wanted to... the current ranger is still a very competent truck that can tow 6100lbs. a silverado can tow 7000. so i only gain 900 lbs of towing wth a truck that cost 10K more?

with mahindra coming to the US this yr or next, the small truck wars are coming back. smaller trucks are part of the future of the industry here and around the world. wake up and see it.
toyotas hilux in europe gets around 38mpg. yep a 4x4, its diesel of course. just imagine how well something like that would sell here? before you go quoting epa regulations, just think about the actual idea of a smaller yet capable (the new ranger can still tow over 6500 lbs) more fuel efficient truck would do? no sacrifice n power more refinement... we the consumer would be the winners. most people i know with a full size truck dont haul stuff 99% of the time, if they do its a trailer that doesnt constitute even 3000lbs of cargo, including the trailer.

i'm all for smaller capable trucks that do not sacrifice power, handling, or refinement.

I drive a 2001 checy s-10 crew cab. I have 168,000 miles and going. I want to replace it in the near future. I want a front wheel drive small truck that gets 25 -30 mpg. Like this new truck GM is building over seas. I do not tow any thing. It is all about gas milage and an open bed to haul stuff.

I like the exterior looks of my current Colorado, and the interior is definitely the old GM, low quality plastic interior. Maybe keep more of the currently body style and update the engines, transmissions, and interior to the newer GM equipment.

If its not diesel, it wont sell globally. Hope this is a sign the US will finally get a small diesel pick-up. 3-3.4l turbo diesel, 6speed stick shift...

I could care less either way but why would GM spend the money necessary to continue a line that for all intents and purposes is not a profitable one?

We bailout GM and they repay america by having the frames built in Thailand and not Texas anymore. Wake up America and buy American made.

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You guys sound like a broken record. Give it a rest! Get over it!
The Bailout happened. Dwell on the past or Look for a better Future.

I bought a 2004 Colorado two wheel drive Z71 four door the first week the went on sale 75 k miles later its still a great truck. But i cant wait for the new one.

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