The Colorado looks like it could be a seriously competitive truck, but is switching from a traditional compact to a mid-size the right move?
Road Test/Future Vehicles Editor
Road Test/Future Vehicles Editor
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I do know that GM has worked on development of a turbo version of the I-5 for the Bel- air concept, so that may alleviate the power concerns of some initially.
Clearly GM needs to step up and eventually offer either the i-6 or the v8 if they really want this truck to sell well.
On the flip side, a turbo 5 delivering over 300hp would seem to be plenty of power!
Hope that helps!
For some reason, despite the flaws of the S-series, I love them.
2wd trucks to me, are useless. Give me a 4x4 and I'll be happy. Jeep's been kicking EVERYONES backside in that area since word go. Why? Two words: LIVE AXLE. Look at the CJ, YJ, XJ, and TJs... Fairly small 4x4s with live axles up front. Makes for awesome strength, better articulation, and easy upgrade. What does GM run? IFS. It's a pain to lift, a pain to maintain, and damn near impossible to fit big tires onto. Sure, you can buy subframe lifts, crank the torsion bars and then add shackles in the back, but you're only making a bad setup worse. There's a reason why 4-wheelers call it Inferior Front Suspension. There's limited flex, and too many things to break.
Not to mention the weak drivetrain. The engine choices were positively miserable until 1988, and still are. Yes, you can fit a 350 into an S10 engine bay. It's tight, but it fits. Then there's the ever popular 700R4 that was in the S10s and many other GM vehicles... The NP207 found in early 4x4 models wasn't the best either. I still say the best transfer case found in the S-series was the NP231. The scaled down 10-bolt rear axle is a joke too. Some people say that the only good thing going for the S-series is the dimensions of the 2 door Blazer & Jimmy, with it being only 100 or so inches long, and 60 inches wide. Makes for a great turning radius and a very nimble trail machine, if you can get past its fatal flaws.
I don't really care what GM does with the 2wd midsize/compact trucks, but if they really want to compete in the 4x4 market that's been dominated by Jeep and Old Toyotas, they should start by offering a Blazer package with live axles, front and rear coil suspension, a beefed up transmission and transfer case, and solid V8 power. Limited Slip diffs and/or lockers would be an added touch.
But I'm not holding my breath for it.
This is why I am modifying my 88 2door Blazer.
*pass the crack-pipe---puff-puff* Oh! wait its a good idea! Lets nolonger aim at all those folks that own an older model S10 and would like a newer model! lets take a whole new twist in the truck market and forget everything we have learned!!!
Like another poster said"What about all those S10's out there?" Its NOT a dead breed of truck, even tho GM would like us to believe.Sure, go ahead and make the colorado but give us back the S10!!!
I am a proud owner of a 1989 S15 Jimmy 4x4, but you know what? I won't be buying another GM product! I am most assuredly NOT a SoccerDad that needs a poser-mobile to go to and from the mall!!!! My next new vehical will be from a company that knows its roots and is keeping it simple-JEEP.
GeneralMotors, you lost a fan today!
I would bet that if GM want's to compete with the Dakota, for one they need to put in a V8, not an I5. secondly they should put on a live front. that's when they will be able to compete with the Dakotas.
as for not buying GM, I wont go as far as to say that. but I will say I'm not happy with the way the company is going, and I will deffinently look else where before deciding on a GM product or not.
IFS is not my ideal setup(by a long shot), but my truck is surprisingly tough. I certainly could complain about the 10 bolt rear diff I have too, but I haven't blown it up yet, so I won't complain about that.
Ford is conquering the market for 3/4 and bigger trucks, and why is that? a solid front axle is the key stone here. I'd like to see a Dana 30 (a D30 if nothing else) come stock under the front of an S-truck.
Sounds like the new 2.8 is going to be about as good as the one in my truck. Give me a break, an I4, I wouldn't buy it, would you? An I5, well, we're up in displacement but I still wouldn't buy it, give me good a good ol' pushrod V8 thank you very much.
I wouldn't be surprised if GM equipped the Colorado with a single speed transfer case, and in that case, you might as well go with independent rear suspension too. As long as we're hopping on the soccer mom band wagon, how about just calling the whole 4 wheel drive quits in leu of all wheel drive. not in my driveway!
I'm about done ranting for now, although as more information abounds, i'm sure I'll find something else to complain about.
If your going to put a mid-size truck on the market be competative with the marketplace, It's a no brainer. Your engine engineers must be a bunch of wimps. Don't listen to them. Listen to your consumers, your long time customers.......Put at least the In-line 6 in the Colorado and Canyon.......Put a 6' bed on this truck. The ZR2 is a good package keep it on the new models. If your going to build a 4 door make the back seat big enough for adults, two bucket seats as an option I know would work.
www.isuzu-tis.com (select English at the bottom of the page, this is a Thai site, the same country the vehicle is built in).
As KingQuad1 alluded to earlier, these trucks have been primarily engineered in Japan. As you look through the spec pages and interiors (yes, right-hand drive)please note the following:
- Dimensions are smaller than the existing
S-series/Sonoma if my metric oconversion calculations are right. All the scuttlebutt earlier had these trucks growing larger. True, the Shreveport plant may be able to put bigger cabs/beds on the chassis, but I'm not so sure of a bigger cab because of the interior.
- The interior(though reversed), looks exactly like the one seen in all those Brenda Priddy/Hans Lehman Hidden Image spy photos of the Colorado Canyon. Hard to make a bigger cab when you are even using the same door hardware.
A SS model would be cool though, like the old S-10 Typhoon with the turbo charged 4.3, man that was a real runner there. Oh well there are aftermarket companies that will come out with the go fast stuff we crave. Now if it didn't void the factory warranty....
- If similar in size to their platform mate, the Isuzu D-max,
these trucks will not be as big as expected. Heck, GM is now calling the present Sonoma a mid-size:
Why make a mid-size when you can market your old compact as one (Revenge of Ron Zarella?!?). Maybe GM got some good intel on the Dakota being shrunk next generation and decided not to be behind the power curve. Probably GM also read the writing on the political wall (read: CAFE) and knew they needed to compensate for Yukons/Denalis, Escalades, Silverado 1500's and the like. Might be the reason GMC, quite a while after the Colarado was announced, finally announced the Canyon. Corporate might have forced them to have a small truck so all the CAFE averaging pressure isn't on Chevy.
- The engine debate is also interesting. Again GM is going for fuel economy IMO. An exec practically said so when he was quoted as wanting to sell a lot of 2.8/5-speed combos. Owning both a vehicle with a 4.2L I-6 Vortec and one with the old 4.3 V-6 Vortec, I can attest for the new engine's smoothness and higher end power. But GM is putting in an I-5 version for mileage. Even with balance shafts it won't be as smooth. Plus, it has less torque than the 4.3. In the end it might come down to buyer's perceptions. Ford dealer's will be quick to learn "Yes, their's is nice, but OUR's has a V-6.
The 3.5L will best the 4.3 Vortec by 25-35 HP (depending on which version (2wd/4wd)4.3L is compared to) but it does lose 20-25lb-ft of torque in the same comparision. Will buyers be more concerned with torque output and engine size/number of cylinders? Ford's top Ranger engine is a 4 liter four with 238lb-ft of torque.
The 4.3 had this beat on both accounts. Of course, the Ranger out-sold it, so maybe the 3.5 will outsell it due to horsepower (8hp more). I'm not so sure though. With the I-6, GM out-muscled the 4.0 in the Explorer and even out HPed the
V-8. The advantage was clearly GM's. In this case though, I don't think the advantages are as clear cut. Especially with Ford salesman asking True-Blue American pick-up buyers if they want a "Japanese-designed pickup with one of them smaller foreign style five-cylinder engines in it."
Hopefully, GM's gambit to lower it's CAFE numbers with this truck will work, but it might be at the expense of the truck's marketability (read: fleet sales). To address the lack of a "new" six cylinder truck, GM could introduce a 4.2L I-6 powered limited option base version Silverado/Sierra when the 4.3L goes out of production, similiar to the old W/T C/Ks. Problem is GMC wouldn't want a version because it doesn't fit there "Professional Grade" upscale image. Of course, this helps CAFE numbers some more (nice since EPA just raised them) but lessens profitability on a per unit basis, which continues to make Wall Street nervous. Got to like it when Government "enviropolicy" rather than market forces effect product decisions.
Autoweek does also.
Looks to me that GM has a winner in the redesign of the S10/Sonoma.
I'm not sure if I like the looks. The fender flares look cheap, the interior and bed scream "Japanese" and the package seems to have a "lightness" to it I don't like. The Canyon seems looks very much like a Chevy, like GMC is embarrased by it or got it stuck down their throat and didn't have the budget to design "brand character" into it. The I-4 should do well, but I still feel the I-5 could be a liability in a V-6 world. But, the I-5 gets three extra MPG over the 4.3 and these trucks will help GM's CAFE numbers, a big reason they are making them.
This all the information GM has released, expect a small V-8 or a Turbo I-5 for the SS version in about 2-3 Years!
If GM wants these trucks to make up some of the CAFE gap caused by selling Suburbans and HD pickups, they have to get 20 / 24 from the 4 cyl and 19 / 22 from the 5 -- minimum.
If the 16 / 20 is correct, why would anyone buy small? The Silverado isn't far from that with a V8!
I guess will see when the Feds at the EPA test them.
Personally I would jump at the chance to have a light truck with a diesel. Ford and GM already offer diesel in Ranger and S10 in markets outside of US so it would not be a problem to engineer, just a problem to sell.
When is this truck hitting the showrooms? June or Sept?
PS any idea of what the Payload and Max towing capacity of the
I5 200hp will be?
I5 220hp will be?
Automotive News / February 24, 2003
DETROIT - General Motors will assemble crew-cab versions of the Chevrolet S10 and GMC Sonoma small pickups through 2005 as it sells their replacements.
The Sonoma and S10 are built in the Linden, N.J., truck plant, which also builds the Chevrolet Blazer mid-sized SUV. GM's small pickups will be replaced by the mid-sized Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon, which will arrive in late fall from the retooled Shreveport, La., plant.
Tom Wallace, vehicle line executive for mid-sized trucks, says that although the new pickups will have nine models, GM would be short of crew cabs without the Linden production.
Wallace said the Colorado and Canyon will be offered in regular, extended and crew-cab versions, each with regular, sport and high-trim packages.
GM projects annual sales of up to 175,000 Colorados and up to 40,000 Canyons.
I'm going to give GM at least a year to work the bugs out before making my decision.
you can check http://www.chevrolet.com/fullthrottle/
and use the drop down menu under colorado.
Passenger Accommodations: up to 5
EPA Vehicle Class: Compact Pickup
Displacement: 171ci (2.8L), 215ci (3.5L)
Bore&Stroke: 93x102 mm
Compression Ratio: 10:1
Horsepower: [email protected] (2.8L), [email protected] (3.5L)
Torque: [email protected] (2.8L), [email protected] (3.5L)
Recommended Fuel: Regular
0-60mph: 11.1secs (2.8L), 9.5secs (3.5L)
EPA city/hwy: 26.2mpg comb (2.8/auto), 16/20mpg (3.5/auto/4x4/crew)
Range: 15 - 312/390 (4x2 crew)
Fuel tank: 19.6 gal
Wheelbase: 111.2in (reg), 125.9in (ext+crew)
2wd Tread front/rear: 57.5/57.5in
4wd Tread front/rear: 59.6/59.8in
Overall Length: 192.4in (reg), 207.0in (ext+reg)
Overall width: 67.6in
Height: 64.8in (2wd), 67.7in (4wd)
Min Ground Clearance: 8.2in (Z85-stand 2wd), 9.0in (Z71-2wd & 4wd)
Bed Volume: 36.7 cu ft (crew), 43.9 cu ft (reg+ext)
Turning Circle (ft): 37(2wd reg), 41(2wd ext+crew), 39(4wd reg), 43ft (4wd ext+crew)
Wheel sizes: 15x6, 17x8, 15x7
Brakes: front disc/rear drums 4wheel ABS
Head Room f/r: 39.3/37.6(ext), 39.3/37.1(crew)
Leg Room f/r: 42.2/30.8(ext), 42.2/34.4(crew)
Traction control (2wd)
Locking diff with both engines
Side Roof Rail Air Bags
Hope this helps.
It might be good idea, however. The Equinox, like the Escape, CRV, RAV4, etc. will be basically a tall car. That would leave the Freelander and the Liberty as the only real small truck SUV.
GM could possibly have a player in both the car and the truck small suv market.