In an interview with the Detroit Free Press, GM North America president gave a preview of the product differentiation strategy between the forthcoming 2014 Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon trucks, and also gave some idea of their relative size, as well as hinting at some unique powertrains for the midsizers.

The Colorado will apparently be positioned as a "Lifestyle" pickup, with an emphasis on economy, while the Canyon will be oriented toward fleet and small business owners. This represents somewhat of a twist in the traditional upscale positioning of GMC models relative to their Chevrolet counterparts, and could see the Colorado being the better-equipped of the two. It's unknown if there will be a material difference in capability between the two trucks, although with the 2014 Sierra getting a hefty 11,500-lb max-tow rating, both payload and towing capacity is expected to be substantially less than the full-size models.

In an apparent counter-offensive to steal some of the thunder from the upcoming 2015 F-150, the launch of the midsize trucks will coincide with that of Ford's new mass-market fullsize hauler, highlighting the distinction of having the only domestic-brand midsize truck. Reuss said the new Colorado and Canyon would be larger than the Toyota Tacoma, the current volume leader in the midsize truck class, referring to the Tacoma as "compact" although the current Tacoma is significantly larger than its predecessor.

Reuss also said the pair would get a "new set of powertrains" with a focus on fuel economy. A gasoline four-cylinder and V-6, both with direct-injection, are expected, and rumors of a North American getting the 2.8-liter Duramax I-4 turbodiesel sold in overseas markets persist, and have not been firmly denied or downplayed by GM. The four-cylinder will almost assuredly be a version of the new 2.5-liter employed as the base engine in the Malibu and Impala, and the V-6 is a toss-up between the 3.6-liter DOHC direct-injected V-6, or the new 4.3-liter EcoTec3 serving as the base engine in the 2014 Silverado and Sierra.

Source: Detroit Free Press