Ben Parker
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History of the Chevrolet Colorado

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A blue 2009 Chevrolet Colorado ZQ8 Crew Cab is parked on an empty road among grassy hills
2009 Chevy Colorado
Photo: Chevrolet

When the mid-size pickup truck segment began calling Chevrolet’s name, the automaker answered in 2004 with the Chevrolet Colorado. This pickup (and its twin, the GMC Canyon) made a name for itself in its segment and is still going strong today.

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Early history

The Colorado was Chevrolet’s first real foray into the mid-size truck segment, with its predecessors all being considered compact. As the replacement for the Chevrolet S-10, the Colorado was first produced for the global market. It was built off a platform that was shared with Isuzu and was produced in Thailand and Shreveport, Louisiana.

The first-generation Colorado was offered in three trim levels and three cab configurations. Similarly, when it came to capability, the Colorado could be offered with three different suspension options. The Z85 offered moderate ride quality while the Z/71 Off-Road suspension was catered for heavy-duty driving. The ZQ8 Sport suspension provided improved handling and sat lower than the truck equipped with the standard Z85 suspension. During this generation, the Colorado offered 10 engines, with the most powerful producing 300 horsepower.

Upscale features available on the truck included satellite radio, power-adjustable front seats with heating and lumbar support, and a six-disc CD changer in the dash. However, in 2009, the truck received an upgrade in the form of Bluetooth and the removal of the six-disc CD changer. On the outside, owners could choose optional chrome-plated wheels in various sizes.

A bright blue 2022 Chevrolet Colorado Trail Boss sits among a mountainous area
2022 Chevy Colorado
Photo: Chevrolet

Recent generation

Chevy introduced the new-and-improved Colorado to the U.S. at the Los Angeles Auto Show in 2013. This marked the debut of the second, and current, generation of the midsize truck. The truck could be equipped with a 2.5-liter engine or a more powerful 3.6-liter V6. Just like the previous generation, the Colorado offered various cabs, trims, suspensions, and features — making it the ideal all-around truck.

In 2015, the Colorado received even more tech upgrades with the introduction of 4G LTE Wi-Fi capability, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto. When it comes to design, the Chevy Colorado was refreshed in 2021 with an updated grille and four trim levels to choose from. The 2022 Colorado is currently available in seven appealing exterior colors and has a maximum available towing capacity of 7,000 pounds. With a starting price of just $25,435, it’s easy to see why so many have chosen this small truck as their go-to vehicle.