And the Best Pickup Truck of 2015 is … the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado.
When PickupTrucks.com's sister site Cars.com chooses a Best Of award like this, especially when in a class of competitors that offers so much diversity, it can be difficult comparing brand-new vehicles with significantly improved ones or heavy-duty models with midsizers. But that's what we do here each year — make the hard calls and choose a winner. We review the entire lineup of pickup trucks in every segment, looking at each change and modification made by the truckmakers. We examine the impact those changes will have on the segment, and eventually we narrow our top choice to the one that most deserves to be called the Cars.com's Best Pickup of the Year.
This year the choices were exceptional, with vehicles in each of the three categories — midsize, half-ton and heavy-duty — represented, each offering a strong argument for why they should win the top honor. In the end, though, we selected the Chevy Colorado as the pickup that resets the bar not only in its segment, but possibly in the entire pickup truck arena when it comes to efficiency, quality and bang-for-your-buck value.
By re-entering the struggling midsize pickup truck segment with the 2015 Colorado, GM engineers accepted the challenge of aiming to be the segment leader — which they knew they had to do — along with needing to lure back buyers who had migrated to other segments like crossovers, sedans and full-size pickups. To call this an expensive risk would be an understatement — after all, GM had to rebuild an entire production plant that shares little with any other GM vehicle. If this truck is anything less than a home run, it could be one of the costliest experiments GM has ever conducted.
It's one thing to create a new and improved pickup that outperforms the vehicle it's replacing — just doing that is no small feat. It's quite another to birth a vehicle into a blank space that is required to reset the bar and send shockwaves as deep into the marketplace as possible. We have no doubt the Chevy Colorado — and sibling GMC Canyon — will send other truckmakers scrambling to the drawing boards as more people are lured back to midsize pickups, especially if the coming small turbo-diesel is a hit. We think this new truck will do that, forcing Nissan, Toyota and others to do more and do it better. It's for those reasons that we selected the Colorado as the truck that stands above the competition this year.
This award acknowledges the GM engineers who have made a solid product with a boatload of value for those who love traditional truck traits as well as for those just looking for functional transportation. Congrats to all involved.
Other eligible pickups for 2015 award were:
- 2015 Ford F-150
- 2015 Ford Super Duty F-250/350
- GMC Sierra 2500/3500
- Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro
- Toyota Tundra TRD Pro
Cars.com photos by Mark Williams