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The Upcoming 2021 Chevy Colorado

A tan 2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2 is shown from the rear on a dusty dirt road.

Although details remain scarce on the exact configurations and options that will be available on the new 2021 Chevy Colorado, enough information has been released to give us a basic picture of what it will offer. We can also make some educated guesses based on the current Colorado to fill in the details of what the refreshed 2021 model will look like when it finally hits the streets.

The Chevrolet Colorado is one of the most popular midsize pickup trucks on the market. First introduced for the 2015 model year, over half a million Colorado’s have been sold to date. But this success is no surprise given the wide variety of available styles and trims, which all but guarantees that a version of the Chevy Colorado can be found to fit almost any buyer’s needs. From a basic work truck to a versatile daily driver to an off-road monster, the Chevy Colorado offers it all.

A Bold New Look

Looks are one of the details that we know the most about. Unveiled at the 2019 Method Race Wheels Laughlin Desert Classic, the 2021 Chevy Colorado sports a sleek modern look, with updated front styling and new badging. Further enhancing its image, the 2021 model year will introduce three new color options, including an attractive “Sand Dune Metallic” tan that was shown on the display vehicles.

On the somewhat more functional side, we also know that the 2021 Chevy Colorado will upgrade to standard 17” wheels from the 16” wheels that it is currently offered with. Together, these exterior updates will make the refreshed 2021 Chevy Colorado stand out no matter where it goes.

The grille of a tan 2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2 is shown while parked off-road.

The Same Reliable Power

Under the hood, the 2021 Chevy Colorado will likely continue to offer the same three engine options of the current model. These consist of a 2.5L 4-cylinder, a 3.6L V6, and a 2.8L 4-cylinder Turbo-Diesel.

The 2.5L is a great engine for daily driving, and on the current Colorado it is coupled with a 6-speed automatic transmission that offers 20 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. But that does not mean that a Colorado with the 2.5L engine is weak. With its 200 hp, 191 lb-ft of torque, and 4.10 rear axle, the 2.5L can tow up to 3,500 pounds if needed.

Although the gas mileage on the V6 (18 mpg city and 25 mpg highway) isn’t quite as good as that of its smaller sibling, it does have 308 hp and 275 lb-ft of torque, giving the truck the extra muscle it needs for heavier work. Currently offered with an eight-speed automatic transmission that has a special Tow/Haul Mode, a Chevy Colorado with the V6 has no problem pulling up to 7,000 pounds.

Finally, it is confirmed that the 2021 Chevy Colorado will continue to offer the 2.8L Turbo-Diesel on its top trims. Although diesel engines may not be popular with the average driver, there is a reason they are preferred by many professional users. On the current Colorado, this powerful engine comes with a six-speed automatic transmission and boasts an incredible 369 lb-ft of torque. This combination can tow 7,700 pounds while still offering a best in class 30 mpg on the highway. However, it is possible that on the 2021 Chevy Colorado, the 2.8L Turbo-Diesel may be upgraded to use an eight-speed transmission, which would probably further improve mileage.

Too Many Versions To Count

Although little information has been released on the trims and configurations of the 2021 Chevy Colorado, we can make some guesses based on the 2020 Colorado. As with the current Colorado, the 2021 model year will almost certainly continue to offer a huge variety of styles and options. However, Chevy claims that the 2021 Colorado will offer “greater differentiation from trim to trim,” so we should not expect it to exactly duplicate the trims of the 2020 Colorado.

Currently, the Base trim on the Colorado is your standard truck. It comes in a single configuration that includes the 2.5L engine, 2WD, an extended cab that seats four, and a 74” long box bed. Standard features include a 4-way power-adjustable driver’s seat, a backup camera, and USB ports for charging electronic devices. However, there is no mention of a Base trim in Chevy’s 2021 Colorado press release, so it is possible this trim will be discontinued for the 2021 Chevy Colorado.

The WT trim on the current Colorado is where the truck’s variety can be seen and comes in no fewer than three different body styles with four drivetrain options. The body styles include the same extended cab and long box offered for the Base trim, a five-seat crew cab with the long box, and the crew cab with a 61.7” short box bed. All three of these configurations can be had in either 2WD or 4WD and with either the 2.5L or V6 engine. It is unlikely that anything here will change significantly with the 2021 Chevy Colorado.

A tan 2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2 is driving on a dirt road and kicking up sand.

Going Up the Scale

The next level up on the current Colorado is the LT trim, which offers the 2.8L Turbo-Diesel on top of the same body styles and powertrain options as the WT trim. The LT trim also comes with some additional standard features. These include items such as cruise control, an HD radio, a 6-way adjustable driver’s seat, an HD backup camera, and steering wheel mounted controls. If Chevy does seek greater differentiation between trims, the LT trim will probably see the most changes as it currently overlaps heavily with the WT and Z71 trims. It is possible that the LT trim will lose its Turbo-Diesel option, as this engine is not currently available with all body styles.

Following the LT trim on the current Colorado is the Z71 trim. Although this offers the same three body styles as the LT and WT trims, engine options are either the V6 or the 2.8L Turbo-Diesel. In addition to the power upgrade, the Z71 trim also includes a standard off-road suspension package and, on its 4WD versions, an Autotrac 2-speed transfer case with automatic locking rear differential. Further upgrades include projector-beam headlights and fog lamps, as well as comforts such as automatic climate control, heated seats and steering wheel, and rear parking assist. Similar features should be expected on the 2021 Chevy Colorado.

The ZR2 trim level is the only trim on the 2021 Chevy Colorado that has been publicly revealed, and only in the crew cab short box version. If the current Colorado is any guide, the 2021 ZR2 will also come in an extended cab long box variant, but not a crew cab long box version. The ZR2 trim takes the off-road potential of the 2021 Chevrolet Colorado to its limit, adding increased ground clearance, a wider track, skid plates, driver-selectable locking front and rear differentials, and DSSV Multimatic suspension dampers.

Pricing

Currently no information on the MSRP of the 2021 Chevy Colorado has been released. However, we can expect that it will be similar to that of the 2020 Colorado. Right now, the MSRP for the 2020 Base trim is $21,300. When this model hits showroom floors, you can expect a price around there.

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