Visit a Chevy car dealership near you, and you’ll spot a wide variety of SUVs that certainly draw in a lot of curb appeal. Chevrolet is one of the first automakers to take on the SUV body styling, and after over a century of design and reimagining, they’ve remained on top as one of the top names. You’ve probably heard of the Chevy Suburban, a full-size SUV that delivers on all of its promises, and has continued to do so year after year since as far back as 1935.
So, as you can tell, Chevrolet has quite a legacy to uphold. So, it only makes sense why we’d be apprehensive about newcomers and model refreshes. One such model to receive a remarkable refresh is the 2020 Chevy Blazer. Here is a mid-size SUV that attempts to do it all, but we’re curious, is the Chevy Blazer a jack of all trades or a master of none?
A Fresh Face
While the 2020 Chevy Blazer may seem like a newcomer, it isn’t. The original model rolled out of factories and into showrooms way back in the 60s. Yet, Chevrolet has done a great job at turning their fifty-year-old classic into a modern contender. In an overwhelmingly crowded field of compact and mid-size SUVs, the 2020 Chevy Blazer has no issue standing apart from the rest, as the exterior styling is simply elegant. With the intriguing large front grille, which seems to be in trend nowadays, and the sharp angular headlights, the 2020 Chevy Blazer certainly comes off as a fresh face, even though it spent almost half a century in the Chevy family lineup.
The 2020 Chevy Blazer can be purchased for as little as $28,880 MSRP, which is good, considering competitors tend to start low as well. That said, the price can shoot up quite rapidly as you begin adding on packages and additional perks. Visit any Chevy car dealership near you, and you’ll likely find a selection of six different trims including the L, 1LT, 2LT, 3LT, RS, and Premier, with the price of the Premier model shooting as high as $42,700 MSRP. While this price can seem rather steep, it isn’t uncommon for other vehicles in its class, so it’s hardly a mark against Chevy. In fact, the sheer number of options is a huge plus considering how limited competitor models can be in terms of choice.
That said, the 2020 Chevy Blazer isn’t going to earn a star of approval on appealing aesthetics and low-entry price alone. As with every mid-size SUV, decent performance and utility space can both play a serious role in whether or not the Chevy Blazer is a winner or not.
Pedal to the Metal
Performance is, unfortunately, a trouble area for some compact and mid-sized SUVs. The body styling implies at least a decent fuel economy, but in order to get high-ranking mpg numbers, you’ll likely have to sacrifice in terms of horsepower and torque. Some models manage to find that sweet spot but fall short to provide more than a single mainstream option. A truly excellent compact and mid-size SUV would provide some decent low-end power, with the chance to upgrade to a more robust powertrain. Fortunately, the 2020 Chevy Blazer attempts to do just that.
In the base model, L, you’ll find a pretty simple 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that delivers 193 horsepower and 188 lb-ft worth of torque. This four-cylinder is also accompanied by a forward-focused drivetrain and a 9-speed automatic transmission that has satisfactory results on the road. This base powertrain can also only lug 1,500 pounds. While we weren’t expecting a lot from the baseline model of the Chevy Blazer 1,500 pounds worth of towing-power isn’t necessarily noteworthy.
Fortunately, this is only the start for the Chevy Blazer, as you can upgrade the engine to a 2.0-liter Turbo four-cylinder engine that puts out 230 horsepower and 258 lb-ft worth of torque. You’ll be getting that same 9-speed automatic transmission; however, you’ll have the option of all-wheel drive as well. Unfortunately, even all-wheel drive is improving handling and power-delivery, you shouldn’t expect any more in towing capacity, as things flatline at 1,500 pounds max.
Although, Chevy does an excellent job by providing a third superpowered choice to choose from, and it comes in the form of a 3.6-liter V6 engine which gets 308 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque. These are some great numbers, considering the size and class of the Chevy Blazer. And when accompanied with all-wheel drive you’ll get a considerable boost to hauling capacity, with towing limits topping out at 4,500 pounds. Fuel economy ratings are still coming in for the Chevy Blazer, but currently, the six-cylinder option earns 18 mpg in the city and 25 mpg on the highway, which isn’t bad all things considered.
So, taken as a whole, the engine options and overall performance of the Chevy Blazer meet the mark. While we’d have liked to see a hybrid option, nothing is perfect, and there is certainly room for growth for the 2021 model and onward.
Another factor worth considering in vehicles like the 2020 Chevy Blazer is what is offered inside the cabin. Fortunately, Chevy did a decent job of making the interior amenities as fleshed out as the performance options. Behind the rear seats, you’ll find about 31 cubic feet of cargo room, and if you’re looking for more, the seats fold down to expand up to 61 cubic feet of cargo room. The Chevy Blazer comes with some decent interior materials, with plenty of soft-touch plastics, durable cloth upholstery, and the option of leather furnishings in higher trims. So, all in all, sitting in the 2020 Chevy Blazer is incredibly comfortable; however, what about the technology powering Chevy’s flagship mid-sized SUV?
Well, Chevy really outdid themselves with the level of technology that comes standard in every Chevy Blazer model. No matter what trim you buy, you’ll be getting an 8.0-inch touchscreen that’s Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible. You’ll also find a pair of USB ports in the front and back consoles, which is a nice touch as well. While we were disappointed to hear that the 2020 Chevy Blazer doesn’t come standard with a lot of driver-assist and active safety features, we can’t knock Chevrolet too much as a majority of mid-sized SUVs only offer these features at higher price points as well. However, they should really consider upping their standard features for their upcoming 2021 model. That said, you’ll certainly still find a well fleshed-out package in higher trims, with features like forward-collision warnings, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warnings, and lane-keeping assist available in higher trims. Speaking of higher trims, a fully decked out version of the 2020 Chevy Blazer is on par with luxury vehicles, as you’ll get to enjoy features like an audio system designed by Bose, heated and cooled leather seats, and a 4G LTE mobile hotspot.
The 2020 Chevy Blazer is a great car, hands down, plain and simple. While there are certainly areas for improvement, we can’t complain about what’s being offered here. Chevrolet managed to create a mid-sized SUV that can be crafted to fit any myriad of drive styles and lifestyles. While we’d have liked to see a hybrid powertrain, and maybe some more standard safety tech, Chevrolet has plenty of opportunities to provide all of that come the 2021 model. Although, we’ll have to wait and see if Chevy joins automakers like Toyota and Honda in baseline model offerings.