2016 Chevrolet Colorado
Chevrolet wastes no time improving the Colorado midsize pickup truck, a genuine hit that faces new competition in 2016.
Changes for 2016
• Duramax turbo-diesel engine option debuts
• Upgraded multi-color driver information display for LT and Z71 models
• New Chevrolet MyLink technology adds Apple CarPlay technology, potentially Android Auto will be offered later in the model year
• Midnight Edition and Trail Boss models debut
• Reduced powertrain warranty, fewer free scheduled maintenance visits
2016 Colorado Highlights
Availability in extended cab and crew cab styles, with 2-wheel or 4-wheel drive, and in WT, LT, and Z71 trim levels, makes the 2016 Colorado lineup is fairly diverse. This year, new Midnight Edition and Trail Boss option packages expand the truck’s appeal.
The Midnight Edition starts with LT trim and adds a sporty, blacked-out appearance. The Trail Boss builds on the Colorado Z71, which is equipped with standard skid plates, a locking rear differential, and all-terrain tires. To this, the Trail Boss equips the Colorado with a sport bar, LED trail lighting, black wheels, fender flares, assist steps, and more.
Depending on the truck’s configuration, the Colorado is offered with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine, a 3.6-liter V6 engine, or a new Duramax 2.8-liter 4-cylinder turbo-diesel engine. Opt for the Duramax engine to raise towing capacity from 7,000 pounds to 7,700 lbs., a full 900 pounds better than the new Toyota Tacoma.
Chevy promises that the Duramax engine is the cleanest diesel truck engine that General Motors has ever made, claiming that it meets some of the toughest U.S. emissions standards. The engine includes a cooled exhaust gas recirculation system to clean the exhaust, a driver-activated smart diesel exhaust brake, a trailer brake controller, and a 3.42 rear axle.
A modified 6-speed automatic transmission with a Centrifugal Pendulum Vibration Absorber manages the power, which rates 181 horsepower at 3,400 rpm and 369 lb.-ft. of torque at 2,000 rpm. The Duramax diesel is also B20 bio-diesel compatible.
The Colorado’s standard engine is a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder making 200 horsepower and 191 lb.-ft. of torque. A 6-speed manual gearbox is available for this engine, but most will have a 6-speed automatic with automatic grade braking. Chevrolet calibrates this engine to deliver at least 90 percent of peak torque across most of the rev range to help make the Colorado feel more energetic.
A 3.6-liter V6 engine is available, cranking out 305 horsepower and 269 lb.-ft. of torque. It is paired exclusively with a 6-speed automatic transmission.
Every Colorado features a Corner Step rear bumper design and a locking tailgate. An EZ Lower-and-Lift tailgate and a spray-in bed liner are options, as are a number of GearOn accessories that convert the Colorado into a gear-hauling champ.
A reversing camera is standard, along with six free months of OnStar subscription services, which includes automatic crash response. A forward collision alert and lane departure warning system is an option, but Chevrolet does not offer a blind spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, or automatic emergency braking systems for the Colorado.
Seats use dual-firmness foam for improved comfort, as well as stain-resistant fabric. Leather is optional, along with a Bose premium audio system, remote engine starting, heated front seats, automatic climate control, and more. A new Chevrolet MyLink system debuts for 2016, complete with Apple CarPlay, a smartphone integration technology that makes it easier to access your phone’s mobile apps right from the touchscreen display. OnStar with a 4G LTE Wi-Fi connection is also available for the Colorado.
Alternatives to the Chevrolet Colorado
When the redesigned Colorado debuted for the 2015 model year, it breathed new life into a midsize pickup truck segment on life support. The Colorado, and its corporate cousin the GMC Canyon, proved popular enough that the factory operated three shifts to keep up with demand.
This year, a redesigned Toyota Tacoma arrives, and Nissan is readying a replacement for the aged Frontier. All four of these trucks have their pros and cons, but Chevrolet and GMC dominate in terms of towing and payload capacity