Chevrolet launched the compact Colorado pickup truck in 2004. Offered with a four- or five-cylinder engine, the Colorado is closely related to the GMC Canyon. For 2008, little has changed except the addition of GM's OnStar communication system as standard equipment, as well as new exterior colors. The Colorado competes with other smaller pickups, such as the Nissan Frontier, Toyota Tacoma and Ford Ranger.
Colorados come with two- or four-wheel drive and in regular cab, extended cab and Crew Cab configurations. Two trim levels are offered: LS and step-up LT.
A Sun & Sound Package with a sunroof and in-dash six-CD changer is available for the LT edition. Upgraded cloth upholstery goes into the LT and onto seatbacks of Crew Cab models. A Street Pack option adds a color-keyed appearance to base, regular-length extended cab models.
The Colorado's styling has been called aerodynamic, angular and athletic. The Colorado has an independent front suspension and a solid rear axle. New colors include Inferno Orange Metallic, Black Granite Metallic and Dark Gray Metallic.
Regular cab trucks are 192.4 inches long overall on a 111.3-inch wheelbase, while extended cab and Crew Cab models measure about 207 inches long on a 126-inch span. Standard steel wheels measure 15 inches in diameter, but aluminum or chrome wheels are available. Hydraulically assisted rack-and-pinion steering is installed.
Door handles, instrument gauge surrounds and climate controls have chrome accents on some LS and LT models.
Extended cab Colorados have four doors and forward-facing rear seats. Crew Cab models have a 60/40-split folding rear seat that holds three adults. Regular cab trucks feature a 60/40-split bench seat upholstered in cloth or leather, and bucket seats are available.
Options include remote keyless entry, heated leather seating, and XM Satellite Radio.
Under the Hood
A 2.9-liter four-cylinder engine utilizes variable valve timing to make 185 horsepower and 190 pounds-feet of torque. The 3.7-liter engine makes 242 hp and 242 pounds-feet of torque. Five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmissions are available.
Chevrolet's shift-on-the-fly four-wheel-drive system operates with a dashboard-mounted switch. A locking differential is optional, and rear-drive models can be equipped with traction control.
When properly equipped, a four-cylinder Colorado can tow up to 3,300 pounds. The larger engine enables 4,000-pound towing.
Front disc and rear drum antilock brakes are standard, as is GM's OnStar communication system, which comes with a one-year subscription to Safe and Sound service. Dual-stage front-impact airbags are standard, and roof-rail side curtain airbags are optional. Side-impact airbags for the front seats are not available.