2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Will Sport New Shock Absorbers

2017-Chevrolet-Colorado-ZR2-133 II

At the heart of the new 2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 off-road trim level, which is debuting at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show, is a set of shock absorbers like nothing we've seen before. They're Dynamic Suspensions Spool Valve dampers from Multimatic, and they use a set of unique, proprietary fluctuating orifices to flow fluid through the shock tubes to better control both soft and harsh compressions and rebounds.

These dampers, have never been used on a production pickup truck before; however, they have been used on the popular and hard-charging Chevrolet Camaro Z/28.

The DSSV technology was born and tested in the racing world, for races such as Formula One, Indy Lights and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Additionally, this same type of shock is standard factory equipment on supercars such as the Ford GT, the Aston Martin One-77 and the Mercedes-AMG GT.

But now Multimatic is expanding the dampers' usage envelope to include desert racers and off-road competitors. And that's when the company spoke to GM.

The Colorado ZR2 Concept was shown at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show to rave reviews but also to a lot of doubt as to whether GM would or could bring it to market. Automotive journalists also wondered if it could really compete with the likes of the Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro — which at the time offered big wheels and tires, high-performance Bilstein shocks, tons of skid plating and unique spring tuning. Now, of course, the next-generation Tacoma TRD Pro has Fox shocks, an impressive Multi-Terrain Select system and computer-controlled Crawl Control technology.

GM does have a fast-acting magnetic-ride shock absorber system it uses in select GMC Sierra 1500 pickups and full-size SUVs, but we're told that system is susceptible to overheating when punished in endurance off-road situations. The system's electronics also make it a little more complex and expensive than what GM wanted for the Colorado.

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The new DSSV in the Colorado ZR2 employs a passive system — there are no settings or electronic sensors necessary to read adjustments — that can adjust fluid rates based on real-time inputs. Different spool valves (there are three) are engaged depending on what kind of inputs are being delivered to the shock absorbers. Driving around town engages a certain range of shock travel; running down a dry wash or crawling over rocks in low-range engages a longer range of travel; and running flat out in a desert race will put all the systems at peak performance.

This type of position-sensitive damper demonstrates how these new shocks can offer better on-road performance as well as handle harsh mid-range and extreme inputs such as hitting a tree stump or dropping a wheel into a pothole.

DSSV shocks feature a remote fluid chamber to help with cooling the fluid during enthusiastic runs through the desert or super-heated flogs on the track, and they are reported to be much lighter than conventional shock absorbers. Likewise, they offer greater stiffness and rigidity strength to the chassis, potentially leading to enhanced steering and handling. GM believes using the DSSV system in this popular mid-size player will make it a better on- and off-roader, reducing the amount of trade-off most off-road enthusiasts tolerate when checking the premium 4x4 option box.

Pricing for the DSSV dampers has not been released, but we'd expect the Colorado ZR2 to be the highest trim offered for the Colorado. We'll have more to pass along once we get behind the wheel of a Colorado ZR2. Check out our ZR2 preview coming soon. 


Manufacturer images

ZR2 Multimatic DSSV PSD_02 II

ZR2 Multimatic DSSV PSD_08 II

Spool Valve II



GM, the truck manufacturer leader, bringing hi-tech innovative components to the off-roading experience. GO GM !

Interesting read,
You normally don't see parts as simple as a shock get completely reworked not for a pickup atleast.

I no like them shocks.

The old ZR2 package was impressive it looks like this one will be to. For those looking for a little toy that is cheaper/less capable than the Raptor and still a lot of fun this looks viable.

I can already tell this truck is going to be ridiculously expensive. And what happened to keeping it simple?! If it's not there,it can't fail right?!

Wow an upgrade after 45 years!

Rumored to also have a wider track width and front and rear selectable lockers. If so, it will give the Taco a serious run for it's money

This truck will be close to $50,000.

That's Power Wagon and Raptor territory after rebates.

Plus, it's a GM product, so the engineering that looks good on paper will turn out to be garbage in the real world.

Still won't hang with Toyota's offroad. The only thing this has over the Pro Taco is the front locker, everything else about this truck platform is geared towards the street. Hopefully they ditched that low hanging spare tire.

No one that actually offraods will be willing to pay $45k+ for this thing, like others have said you could purchase a Power Wagon, Raptor, TRD Pro or a Wrangler Rubicon for that price and have equal if not better offroad performance.

The GM midsize twins will be so advanced and refined that by the time the Ranger gets released it won't even be able to compete. Ford is too late to the game, again.

Toyota has been re-tuning shocks in their Tacoma since 1995, you people seriously need to get out more.

TRD Pro will eat this one for lunch!

@ Clint, less capable than the Raptor? Please explain because what I am seeing it will be close in fast speed stuff and better in slow speed stuff...

@Jack, won't hang? You are correct, because now it is a step above. Those street tires and electronic gimics and graphics of the Pro do nothing but leave it further behind the ZR2. Give me a locker over electronics any day. Much better suspension, lockers all around, diesel, auto 4wd and hybrid tires; you can't be serious.

@Oxi, we know you are just a joke. Please tell us how the Pro will eat its lunch. The lower approach angles (obvious even with out the numbers). The lower tech shocks? The street tires? The lack of an electronic front locking diff and instead electronic gizmos? Or could it be the street tires they fit to it? You always have and always will be a Toyota fan boy and a joke when it comes to actual knowledge.

The ZR2 just one upped the Pro with a Royal Flush to the Pro's three of a kind. Even the Pro Tundra is a joke with no locker, get out of here, Toyota has fallen from grace...

We don;t even kow how much added suspension travel has been given to it. It could be a mid travel kit with the added track width for all we know.

Man clint sure is mad GM has a better much more capable and useable truck for off road use then the Ford craptor HAHAHA.

Man clint sure is mad GM has a better much more capable and useable truck for off road use then the Ford craptor HAHAHA.

Plus, it's a GM product, so the engineering that looks good on paper will turn out to be garbage in the real world.
Posted by: WXman | Nov 16, 2016 9:06:10 AM

That's Ford expertise. Bent Raptor frames and busted ecoboosts will be the real world for 2017 Raptor owners.

Well now this new truck has not even hit the street or dirt and old oxi moron has deemed it unworthy of being in the taco shadow? I bet it will be about the same price, when bought in ext cab configuration, with the min of options, that mean above anything Toyota offers, with more power and speeds, not to mention a more involved and high tech suspension than anything Toyota has offered in the taco yet, not to mention being offered in diesel! with a lot better adventurous MPG! With my regular 2016 Colorado Z71 V6 4x4 ext cab, I can haul more legally and tow more, all the while getting better MPG than your precious taco!

I agree this will probably land very close to the price of the TRD Pro. The wider control arms look very similar to the Silverado's cast LCA (carry-over part?). The front and rear E-lockers will add some cost but not enough to push the price into Raptor territory like some are trying to claim. As advanced as these shocks are, they are not as impossibly expensive as some people are assuming. The 2014 Camaro Z/28 uses similar Multimatic DSSV shocks and they cost around $750 each. Pricey but very similar in price to a set of Fox 2.5's with an external reservoir which run around $1600/pair. And those Fox Racing shocks are going to have inferior performance compared to the DSSV's. The Fox Racing 2.5's with the DSC adjuster are the only shocks that perform much closer to the DSSV's, yet they'll run you nearly $1900.

TLDR- The ZR2's price could easily land very close to the TRD Pro's price. The shocks aren't as expensive as some people assume. The other parts don't add up to a huge cost either.

40 to 50 thousand for a Toyota trd pro off road Tacoma
way too expensive for what it is.
GM will probably sell this for around the same 40 to 50 thousand
they will sell a few of these but the main thrust will be base models and mid level models still at 40 to 45 thousand dollars.
too expensive no wonder the Nissan Frontier is having a sales Renaissance .

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