SPIED: 2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 – Broad Shoulders
Off-Road Chevy Gets Box Flares, Jacked Stance for Dirt Duty
In 2014, Chevrolet showed off the Colorado ZR2 concept truck at that year’s Los Angeles Auto Show. It was well received thanks to its beefy stance, remote-reservoir shocks, and unexpected 2.8L turbodiesel engine. Since then (and despite repeated demands from critics and customers alike), the Colorado has remained a mostly road-oriented pickup, offering great refinement, towing, and payload capacity at the expense of off-road capability.
That looks like it might change for 2017 or 2018, though, since Chevrolet has been spotted testing a Colorado sporting the same aggressive stance and tires as its ZR2 concept kin. Finally abandoning the low-hanging front airdam will give the Colorado an approach angle befitting a trail machine, and the Bow Tie looks like it’s fitted a lifted suspension to the pickup for even greater ground clearance.
While exact mechanical details are scarce, we’d expect the ZR2 to sport some progressive-rate springs controlled by remote-reservoir shocks (at least up front), and decidedly more aggressive rolling stock appears under newly blistered fender flares. Indeed, the widebody stance probably indicates increased suspension track for more control over rough terrain. That could also portend Chevrolet’s intended use for the Colorado ZR2, dialing it in more for high-speed desert work than the tight, narrow confines of a mountain trail. Nevertheless, we expect it to do just fine, particularly when equipped with the torquey, optional Duramax turbodiesel I-4. The standard powertrain will be the new 3.6L V-6 and eight-speed automatic transmission.
Overall, the Colorado ZR2 is shaping up to be an off-road winner, finally giving Toyota’s TRD Pro lineup a run for its money. We’ll take ours in the concept’s metallic green, please.
Source: SpiedBilde Photography