2015 Chevrolet Colorado: What GM Got Wrong

Bed 1 II

While there's a lot to like about the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado, there's still room for improvement with GM's new midsize pickup truck revealed at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show. Here are five things we'd like to see fixed.

1. Better Bed Tech

The bed of a smaller midsize pickup needs to be more versatile so it can deal with small and large family, buddy and couple outings. Sure, a full-size bed will likely deal with bigger loads, but the beds of smaller pickups typically cover more ground than the Colorado does. No inverter plug? No hidden or clever storage? No adjustable racks? Why not some kind of lockable "RamBox" or a more clever tailgate?

2. Better Interior Materials

There's no question this Colorado is a step up from what's it's replacing (last sold in the U.S. almost two years ago), but an improved interior is low-hanging fruit. Toyota, Nissan and Honda have not had to do anything here, so this is the time for GM offer a more activity-oriented Z71 interior with mesh netting pockets, water-bottle slots and maybe a wet-suit seat-cover option.

Interior 1 II

3. Offer a 4x4 Sport Package

We're willing to be patient on this one, but there needs to be some kind of sport-truck package offered soon. Chevy has a strong heritage in performance and to simply offer the Z71, a traditionally 4x4 exclusive badge, is to ignore a lot of historical strength. Better wheels and tires and some possible bodywork could instantly make the Colorado the street truck king. And isn't there a 3.6-liter twin-turbo V-6 in a Cadillac?

4. More bed lengths

We expect it won't take long for dealerships to get feedback on the Colorado's limited bed lengths. Even with an 8-foot bed, these trucks will still be easier to drive, offer significant fuel efficiency and be easier to repair for fleet managers, especially when compared to their full-size counterparts. The 2015 Colorado offers only two beds lengths (5- or 6-foot) for two wheelbases in crew-cab versions and one bed/wheelbase choice in extended-cab versions. By getting more creative, Chevy could add another bed length (7 foot) or include another wheelbase and get two more new bed lengths.

5. More Engine Choices

Offering just two engines for the debut of the truck borders on being just plain mean. Yes, it looks like the two gas engines will do just fine for the smaller, lighter chassis, but not offering the turbo-diesel in the Colorado until the 2016 model year smacks of nasty marketing and torture. We suppose it shouldn't surprise anyone that the new turbo-diesel option will probably have a hefty option price (we'd guess somewhere in the $2,500 range), but maybe it will be paired with a bigger fuel tank option for both fuel and diesel exhaust fluid to help justify the additional cost.

2015-Chevrolet-Colorado-4Cylinder II

Comments

It's just too damn big! We need a truck the size of the Ford Ranger. I had my hopes up but now I am disappointed and will be keeping my current Ranger.

I'm curious about the 2.5 engine. Anyone on here seen it in action? a good long-term choice if I don't really haul?

I had hoped for a compact size truck with a manual transmission mated to a diesel engine. This drivetrain combination may still come but it appears not for the 2015 launch. My biggest concerns are still TBD - crashworthiness, reliability, MPG, and of course price.

@Dr Lou

Agree re: the diesel, however unless you plan to do tons of fully loaded driving or heavy towing, the 2.5 gas engine should be a great choice for those looking for fuel economy. More power? The 3.6

For most people the diesel is an expensive option, unless you really plan to work it hard you won't recover the added initial cost of the oil burner.

Nothing wrong with the 3.6 motor, just because its in a car doesn't mean it won't be as good in truck especially a midsizer. The Ram uses the 3.6 and its does well for what it is, if you tow heavy get the diesel.

I agree with the interior and motor choices. I really don't get Chevrolet's obsession with dimestore cheap interiors at all. It just makes them look bad and have a poor quality aura about them. The Silverado and even their cars outside of the new Corvette and maybe Impala are the same way. Just cheap feeling. Why is it Ford can give you super high quality and luxurious interiors and Chevrolet cannot? Seriously? I know for a fact working on the supplier side that and extra 50 dollars into this interior would turn this truck into something people would die for once they sat inside. The absence of chrome bezels around the gauges as mentioned about is bizarre. It sticks out like a sore thumb. I can understand on a fleet truck but a Z71? And why no LTZ??

It looks like another half assed truck on purpose so the GM Sonoma can continue to exist. Stupid. If you're gonna do it do it right. Super crap interior quality. No way those tires will make production either.

I think you're kidding yourself if you think the diesel option will cost $2500. GM will squeeze the cr*p out of that engine option. I would expect $4500 minimum and $6500 likely.

@Big T

Agree except on the figures. The engine option will not cost 6500 UNLESS you consider that it will not be offered (or found on dealer lots) with the down market trim and configuration.

So, if you don't want an offroad chassis, and you don't want 4wd and you prefer cloth or vinyl seats to leather, yeah it might be hard to find at any price.

Apart from its fit under the hood, the 3.6 should make most people happy. It's a way better motor than the Atlas engines it replaces.

$2000-$2500 for the diesel option sounds about right to me. The diesel in the Cruze ,from what I can tell, is in the $2000 range. It's a little hard to tell since it's, it's own trim level.

People talking about the diesel option as the "only if you tow or haul every day at max GVWR option" are showing a serious lack of knowledge about these trucks. The 2.8L TD should end up being the volume engine for this truck if Americans will take it. Anyone who has driven a 3.0L D4D Hilux or similar can attest to the fact that these are the perfect motors for small trucks regardless of intended use. They just flat drive better than any comparable gas engine. It is not the same comparison that you see in HD trucks, and that argument is getting old. A 2.8l TD 4banger isnt going to be a "hauling" motor. It is going to be a solid light truck motor that just does everything well be it a grocery getter, weekend warrior, or light use work truck.
If you try and cram the 4.3 V6 in this truck it will be sluggish, driveability will suck because the engine will rev slow and feel too chunky for a light truck. Like I said earlier, everyone needs to stuff it who are whining about GM not putting the 4.3 in this truck, an engine like that would make this truck a dog and would only placate those who insist that if it can be hooked to trailer ball it can be towed, ie less than 1% of those who will buy this thing (read the majority of old S10 owners).
The people who buy this are going to want a moderately sporty truck that can haul their toys around on the weekend and still cut through traffic on the weekdays and be light on its feet. Enter the 2.8l TD and 3.6 gasser, I dont see much take for the 2.5l
Also what is it with everyone insisting that anything called "pickup" come with an option for an 8ft bed... thats getting really old


They built it the way they want with no regard for what buyers want.

Just give me a V8 option in a basic/stripped reg cab, Z71 4X4 package and major rebates/discounts/cash on the hood. Is that too much to ask for?

Why the F do they think buyers run to full-size???

Still people arguing about "it won't work" and "4.3L" and of course people talking about "gubment motors."

Again, "lifestyle vehicle," not a work truck. I can see the border patrol possibly liking this, the approach and departure angles are better than a silverado, but its not going to be a tradesman vehicle, ever. It wasn't from the get go.

The 4.3L will definitely be better for industrial use, no doubt. But a Silverado 4.3L long bed WT edition will still be available, at a price likely close to what an Crew Cab 6 foot bed 2.8L Diesel Colorado would be.

So for the last time, to all the people complaining that this isn't "work truck enough:" it isn't meant to be. The silverado is for that. To the people complaining the price spread won't be enough: if the Crew Cab 2.8L Diesel comes in at $34k MSRP, this will be fine. A Crew Cab 5.3L LT Silverado comes in above $40k. Yes they can drop the silverado price with incentives, but if you haven't noticed the Colorado is built on the silverado platform: they can drop the Colorado price with the same incentives and still maintain the volume they need to make this work.

Even if I could get this truck for $30k and a Silverado for $35k, I wouldn't get a silverado. I can't park the thing in the city, its takes up way to much room in the garage, and the fuel economy sucks on a full size.

Tacoma has nothing to worry about

@d's advocate

Take a breath! The 2.5 is going to be the most popular engine. The 2.8 is going to be the upgrade motor. The 3.8 will be the engine for people who do a lot of stop/go short trip driving with the air conditioner on (Florida, Texas, California).

The diesel will be less than half of all truck sold in this model. Do not doubt me.

The new 4.3 is going to be a very popular engine. Being all aluminum, it will be at least a third lighter than the previous engine. The 3.8 is also lighter and it will be fine in this truck as long as you don't need to do any services around those huge DOHC cylinder heads.

Repeat. The 2.5 will be the most popular engine. Uptrim models w/diesel or V6 will be less than half of all trucks sold.

Except for maybe the diesel engine option, I think you're being overly critical. The options as listed now will fit 90% of buyers looking for a smaller truck. I'm 46 yrs old and don't really care about netted bottle holders or wet suit seats. The bed also looks pretty versatile already w/o the need for any "Ram Boxes". It is a midsize truck after all.

hahaha....another Government Motors joke. Cheap, small, underpowered, it will get little respect on the streets and roads of Texas. what a whimpy little almost truck...teehee

Enjoy your Obama Trucks.....this so called truck will go the way of the ill fated Volt car that they tried to pawn off on unsuspecting GM freaks.....so funny, so GM.

And now....why should I even consider buying this cheap little truck when I can get a Tacoma or even some of the Tundras and Titans at the same price.....?????

Regular cabs should be part of any pickup lineup, but North American killed that option by buying to many of those and not enough of the others. They were an incredible value, especially after rebates, incentives and fleet discounts. What else could you get for around $15K that's not a throwaway subcompact auto?

Reg cab small pickups are available overseas from the same OEMs that sell in NA. And this is the last year of the reg cab Tacoma, so get your's now. Get it with the manual trans while you're at it. And demand all the discounts you can get too.

Well your CAFE footprint, is sure killing pickups.

It's okay, in a decade when a fullsize has to be the size of a HD and costs are much higher due to the technologies/materials to keep them viable you can thank the UAW/Big 3/Government for taking such good care of you guys.

I told you so a while ago, but I'm anti-American, remember.

Well your CAFE footprint, is sure killing pickups.

It's okay, in a decade when a fullsize has to be the size of a HD and costs are much higher due to the technologies/materials to keep them viable you can thank the UAW/Big 3/Government for taking such good care of you guys.

I told you so a while ago, but I'm anti-American, remember.

GUTS
GLORY
TAKING OUT ALL MANUFACTURERS IN 2014
RAM

@devilsadvocate That is how the Hilux and all other Japanese Pickups are viewed here.
"A 2.8l TD 4banger isnt going to be a "hauling" motor. It is going to be a solid light truck motor that just does everything well be it a grocery getter, weekend warrior, or light use work truck."

Wait before saying bad thing the truck is not ready yet and GM will probably add better engine choice or a more versatile bed etc... The truck is new but i agree with the diesel option 2016 is too far away GM should speed up the integration of the engine faster.<

I have one question who will supply the diesel engine

The 6.2 in the 1500 Silverados and the 6.0 in the HD Silverados both use the 6l80e 6 speed transmission.

The 6.2 Silverado that went up the Ike gauntlet has the best gear ratio GM offers in the 1500's, the 3.73. I said it before and I'll say it again, the GM gas truck NEED the 4.10 gears to tow heavy. They offer the 4.10 gears on the HD as a ~$100 upgrade and they make the difference.

I would rather tow with the less powerful 6.0 in the HDs with the 4.10 gears than tow with the more powerful 6.2 in the 1500's with 3.73 or even worse the 3.42. The video reiterated my claim.

My first sentence should have said: "The 6.2 in the 1500 Silverados and the 6.0 in the HD Silverados both use the 6l80e/*6l90e* 6 speed transmission."

The 6l80e and 6l90e are very very similar.

"the truck is not ready yet and GM will probably add better engine choice or a more versatile bed etc..."

That's not realistic. The truck is ready and what you see is what you get.

If this was a concept truck then yes it wouldn't be ready and there would be changes. This was the debut. Nothing will change.

In order:
1. Better Bed Tech -- What? This thing is already going to be too expensive and you want to jack that price up even more? Let's stick to the K.I.S.S. rule. This thing has sufficient tie-downs in convenient (and useful) locations for almost any purpose. All those 'hidden storage' features add cost without really adding that much convenience.
2. Better Interior Materials -- Ok, but you're jacking up the price even more.
3. Offer a 4x4 Sport Package -- I thought the Z71 WAS a 4x4 Sport Package.
4. More bed lengths -- Why? These are already as long as the typical full-sized truck. Or are you wanting to make sure it's longer than one. An eight-foot long bed would make it as long as my old F-150 sitting right outside my door. I want smaller, not bigger. A six-foot bed is plenty for a compact/mid-size truck. You want bigger? Buy a full size.
5. More Engine Choices -- You're kidding. Three engine choices is more than most trucks ever had. Even now, most full-sized trucks only have 3-4 engine choices. A choice of transmissions would be a better option. I prefer stick over automatic.

People can claim GM should have a Reg. Cab or they should have a 7" or 8" bed or a manual tranny. Remember though GM has to sell these trucks and I can tell you as someone who has been selling trucks for a living for over 9 years, its a tough sell getting anyone to buy a Regular cab-everyone always wants more room.
Try to sell them an 8' box? Nope!, "Too long for parking spots/garage!", or, "I like the looks of the short box better." or, "The turning radius is too big!"
Manual tranny? Nope ! "I can't drive a stick" or, "Most of my driving is in stop and go city traffic, a manual tranny would be a pain!"
Not enough goodies in the truck? They have got to keep these trucks as a more affordable alternative to a half ton. Adding goodies just makes that tougher! better to offer customizable upgrade packages for those who want them and keep the base truck, nicely equipped with good qualtiy and durability at an attractive price.
As for fuel economy- mid size truck=trade off in fuel economy vs the old mini trucks with 5 speeds and 4 cyl engines of the past. You want more room , more capability, more safety it will cost you more in fuel. At least with the engines being proposed, fuel economy should be reasonable. The diesel would be great so long as its not too pricey.

@Bat: Standard cab is too cramped for big people and the average American is a lot bigger than they were back in the '80s. The extended cab, especially if the rear seat can be removed (or the option of not having one at all, as suggested by at least one article) gives room to slide the seat back farther and room behind the seat to carry tools, dog and more. I'm not one to carry 'junk' in the bed of my truck like I see in the vast majority of beater trucks, but with a standard cab, I have little option even when all I want to carry is my bowling balls.

@devilsadvocate

You are an idiot. The 4.3 is smaller and lighter than the 3.6. Don't talk about "high displacement" until you understand the different characteristics of a DOHC motor vs a CIB motor. "Ruin the driveability"? Are you even serious? Leave this website and do not come back, you are much too stupid to post here.

@devilsadvocate
You are quite correct about the use of the diesel pickups we have. I own one and use it daily, great vehicle to own.

The mostly are sold as diesel, over 90% percent of them. I do disagree about towing. They tow extremely well.

Some of the claimed issues regarding the operation of a diesel is a bit overblown by some of the commentators.

In other words they haven't had exposure to this style of vehicle.

The only killer for the Colorado is the downrating of them by Chev, it appears we have "HD" versions of midsizers. I suppose they don't want what we have and take sales away from Silverado's. Business.

If the diesel variant for fleet buyers comes out I bet you will eventually see single cab Colorado's.

The other lame comments on what a "truck engine" is are quite inaccurate. 1/2 ton pickups from the 60s/70s and 80s all used car drivetrains and engines. Maybe the engine had a different tune for a different torque curve.

@DeverMike or whoever you want to call yourself.

Quit the crap, really.

It's getting long in the tooth.

You want to debate, but it has to be on your terms.

Learn to debate with good information, then we might be able to have a decent debate.

Opinions are good, but if they are only your view to support the UAW, then how good are they. Look at what you guys have done to Detroit.

Terror tactics (union tactics) don't work on me.

If PUTC wants the UAW or whatever to control this site I suppose it's their decision.

It's not kids like I've been told by PUTC.

They don't seem to care. So this will go on.

@Big Troll from Oz

How many times have you posted that exact same thing? Me thinks you're a spammer.

I have ordered my CC long box with V6,owned 160 Chevy's with no problems & my current 08 Duramax that has had it's ass worked off has 210,000 miles & NO problems
They are both winners

160 Chevys and no problems? Golly!

If the target market is someone like me, I like and use trucks, not professionally, but for hauling small loads, a dirtbike, and for commuting. I don't want or need a dash that reminds me of a video arcade, I actually like what I have seen on the new Colorado. What it MUST have, is a manual transmission offering on more than just the base model. Some of us yearn for a well-optioned truck with a manual but this is where many miss it. Don't blow it, Chevy.

They took the global truck and softened the heck out of it. This looks like an SUV with a bed stuck on it as an afterthought. The rear side windows and how the lower lines rise up, not matching the bed looks terrible. This isn't a small version of the full sized trucks, this is a bedded version of their SUV's. This is what Ford eventually did to the Sport Trac.

@chevie

dude! the Sport-trac was an Escalade compared to this little work truck. The upgraded Ford even offered a six speed V8 option that completely transformed that little guy.

This truck is going to be sold to folks looking for a cheap new ride. The 2.5 will be the predominant choice and the downscale trims will sell the most. If they don't offer a six speed stick shift they will lose sales (and some steel wheels).

GM dealers will not like having this one on their lots after the first season. Toyota, Nissan and Ram will all target this guy with special packages and pricing.

It also borrows design and engineering bits from the ’14 Chevy Silverado fullsize pickup, which bowed earlier this year as a completely redesigned product.

Because of fuel economy and design challenges, GM engineers were selective about what strategies to carry over from the global Holden Colorado. Some design cues are similar, but the only carryover parts include the roof and a handful of bolts.


Revisions to the Colorado from a model newly on sale in Thailand include taller bedsides to better secure cargo, and likely to better accommodate some of the many accessories GM plans to market with the truck.

It also borrows design and engineering bits from the ’14 Chevy Silverado fullsize pickup, which bowed earlier this year as a completely redesigned product.

“The all-new Colorado benefits from the solid foundation established by the Silverado, and it reinvents the midsize truck, while reinvigorating the segment at the same time.”

The three engines will mate to a 6-speed automatic transmission that include auto grade braking and a tow/haul mode

The 3.6L V-6 engine, a workhouse GM uses in many car and CUV products, delivers an estimated 302 hp and 270 lb.-ft. of torque (366 Nm).

Items borrowed from the Silverado include triple-sealed, in-laid doors, a new design that reduceswind noise for a quieter cabin.

Corner steps on the rear bumper and a grab area on the bedside make climbing into the cargo box easier, and the tailgate uses an internal torsion bar to make it easier to raise with one hand. A damper keeps the tailgate from slamming down when it’s lowered. Those ideas also come from the Silverado.

But all of this pales to the change lurking beneath the surface: North American Colorados ride on a completely different frame from their global counterparts.

According to Luke, the 2015 Colorado’s fully-boxed frame is essentially a scaled-down version of that employed by the 2014 Chevrolet Silverado.

Luke says the switcheroo was dictated in part to meet side impact standards, but it does also result in a fairly stout package. Full towing and payload details have yet to be released, but GM does say gas Colorado models should be able to tow up to 6700 pounds.

Regardless of the engine ordered, all 2015 (and 2016) Colorados will be built with a six-speed automatic transmission.

A manual transmission is not in the cards, but Luke says his team is investigating “other numbers of speeds” – something we’ve heard before during the launch of a larger Chevy-branded pickup truck, and likely pointing to either the 8- or 10-speed automatics GM is presently developing.

Stopping power comes via 4-wheel disc brakes featuring 4-piston front calipers as standard equipment and GM’s Duralife brake rotors, a heat-treatment coating that makes rotors last longer and retain a rust-free appearance.

The Colorado also will offer an automatic locking rear differential to improve traction. It will come standard on Z71 models and as optional equipment at lower trim levels.

Creature comforts take square aim at the target customers’ active lifestyles, with items such as an available 8-in. diagonal color touch screen and multiple USB ports; a 3.4-in. diagonal driver information screen in the instrument cluster; OnStar and MyLink infotainment technologies; and an optional navigation system.

Safety items include six standard air bags, including head side-curtain air bags designed to keep occupants inside the vehicle during a crash; large rearview mirrors and a standard rear-vision camera system for enhanced visibility; and segment-first availability of forward-collision alert and lane-departure warning. Trailer-sway control, hill-start assist and hill-descent control complement standard stability control.

Lastly

Tread Lightly
As exciting as it is to see innovation and fresh sheetmetal in a rather stagnant market segment, GM needs to tread lightly with the new 2015 Colorado to avoid competing against itself. We’re not just talking about the Colorado’s twin, the forthcoming 2015 GMC Canyon, which is due later in 2015 – we’re talking about stepping on the toes of the new 2014 Silverado itself. Though the Colorado is a bit smaller than the Silverado, that 6700-pound tow rating steps on the toes of base-grade 2014 Silverados built with the 4.3-liter V-6.

Big Al, I know exactly where you are coming from. I owned and drove a Hilux 3.0 D4D for two years when living in Latin America. Great truck. I never used it to its full potential so having something with the same power train even if capacities are diminished slightly sounds perfect to me.

Re the diesel for hauling, I agree with you. I didnt mean it was not a good hauling motor where others would be, I was more answering everyone who insists on the tired cliche people use iwth HD trucks of only buy the diesel if you tow/haul every day at max GVWR. Thats nonsense, the small global diesels are the best all around motor offered for these trucks and because they arent like the mammoth diesel engines offered in HD trucks in terms of cost etc they will always be the best engine for this truck regardless of if it lifestyle vehicle or workhorse at maximum capacity.

To anyone who still thinks the 4.3 is a good choice, go drive one of the 8.1l equipped Silverado HD's from 2001-2007, those things could tow like mad, but unloaded driveability just flat out sucks. I have owned a 6.0l and an 8.1 silverado HD and for hauling loads in the bed and driving unloaded the 6.0 has wayyyy better driveability... period. It likes to rev and it revs quickly due to smaller reciprocating mass and more of a square if not slightly over square bore to stroke ratio. The 8.1 does not, and it was a slow revving pig of a motor with a big heavy power sapping transmission behind it that really only shined compared to the 6.0 when you had over 6k hitched to the bumper. The old 4.3l were slow revving meaty pigs of motors. The new one will be a little bit quicker because it is DI and all aluminum but it still will rev slower and feel slower than a modern 3.6L DOHC V6, and that will be really noticeable in a pickup like the Colorado. The only area a 4.3 in the Colo will shine is at high % of max working. Everywhere else (read the majority of what this truck will be used for) the DOHC 3.6l will be a better all around performer. I wont buy either, as I have already mentioned my money would go to the 2.8l TD. Its called having your cake and eating it too :)

@devilsadvocate The Hilux is NOT Recommended for towing here. That is why the latest Hilux will change that. As an all round engine The Hilux Diesel yes it is very good.

Towing guide for locally made 5th Wheeler the Hilux is not recommemnded. One of the major criticisms of the Hilux is its very poor towing ability.

http://www.caradvice.com.au/137084/2012-toyota-hilux-review/
"Toyota Australia says the issue of increasing towing capacity has been raised with Japan, with the chief engineer of the new HiLux program visiting Australia three times this year alone to better understand local market needs."



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