A closeup is showing the grille of a tan 2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2.

What’s Different in the 2021 Chevy Colorado

There may be a bounty of different pickup truck models out there, but few have made a lasting impact within the pickup truck driving community quite like the Chevy Colorado. Since 2003, the Chevy Colorado has been Chevrolet’s number 1 midsize pickup truck, and for the 2021 model year, Chevy hopes to continue the legacy of this impressive pickup. That said, we can expect a slight departure from last year’s model of the Chevy Colorado. While none of these changes are particularly dramatic, we can still expect a pickup truck that is very different from its predecessor. From the coat of paint it wears on the chassis to a different spread of features, the Chevy Colorado is changing, and we’re excited to keep you in the loop with how this 2021 model will be different. The Chevy Colorado has always been a heavy-hitter within the Chevrolet lineup, and the 2021 Chevy Colorado is going to be no different.

How the 2020 Model Made an Impact

A tan 2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2 is kicking up dirt on a trail at sunset.

The 2020 Chevy Colorado is a heavy-duty pickup truck that delivers exactly what you can expect from a vehicle of this class. Starting at an MSRP of $21,300, last year’s Chevy Colorado starts off being rather affordable, and potential buyers get plenty of choices. When you visit a Chevy dealership to purchase a 2020 model, you’ll get to choose between the Base, Work Truck (WT), LT, Z71, and the ZR2. This solid spread of trim levels ranges from simple trucks that would make great additions to any construction fleet to all-out off-road vehicles that can handle the rough and tumble of the trail.

Roaring beneath the hood of the 2020 Chevy Colorado is a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that makes 200 horsepower and 191 lb-ft worth of torque with the help of a rather simple six-speed automatic transmission. If this bare minimum engine doesn’t quite do it for you, don’t worry, the 2020 Chevy Colorado could be upgraded to sport a beefy 3.6-liter V6 engine that produces 308 horsepower and 275 lb-ft of torque. This V6 engine has a remarkable towing capacity of 7,000 pounds and gets a far more nimble 8-speed automatic transmission. On the flip side, if you want something more torque-heavy, you can invest in the 2.8-liter four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine that pumps out 369 lb-ft worth of torque. This diesel engine variant also bumped towing capacity up to 7,700 pounds, making it quite the capable hauler.

Truck beds in the 2020 model were limited but managed to get the job done, giving drivers the option between a bed that measured in at 5.1-feet and another at 6.2-feet. Base models of the 2020 Chevy Colorado got a standard issuing of cloth upholstery and vinyl dressings; however, materials jump up a notch in higher trims adding leather, heated seating, and power adjustment.

Speaking of interiors, the Chevy Colorado, even at low-end models, sports some serious technology onboard. Base and WT models sport air conditioning, a four-way power driver’s seat, and a rather spacious 7.0-inch infotainment touchscreen that gets Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Step up to the LT trim, and you’ll get an infotainment screen that is an inch bigger, as well as an audio system designed by Bose, a leather steering wheel, and a sunroof. Although, when you upgrade to the Z71 and the ZR2 trim, you get a wealth of additional performance features that allow the 2020 Chevy Colorado to venture off of the pavement. The Z71 trim, for instance, gets a limited-slip rear differential, and a more robust suspension system. Alternatively the ZR2 trim packs in a raised suspension, skid plates, a light bar as standard, and so much more.

The one major miss of the 2020 Chevy Colorado is the lack of safety features. Sure, you’ll get seatbelts and airbags in base models, but you’ll have to upgrade your model if you want more. And unfortunately, you won’t find automatic emergency braking anywhere across the Chevy Colorado lineup, which is remarkable because even last year, automatic emergency braking was starting to become a standard add-on.

How the 2021 Chevy Colorado Departs from the 2020 Model

A tan 2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2 is shown from the front and kicking up sand on a trail.

While the 2020 Chevy Colorado was pretty great, it did have some clear weak points, such as the lack of safety features. The 2021 Chevy Colorado is expected to advance on its predecessor and offer an all-around better package. That said, there is still plenty that we’re learning about the 2021 Chevy Colorado, and until this model makes an official release, we can’t yet know for sure whether this new midsize pickup truly improves on what was established last year.

For starters, the Chevy Colorado lineup is going to be very different in 2021 than it was in 2020, as Chevrolet has decided to get rid of the Base model. With this entry-level model removed, you’ll only get to select from the Work Truck, LT, Z71, and ZR2 trim levels. We still aren’t sure what this means exactly for the entirety of the lineup, but we can expect the removal of the base model comes from a lack of buyer demand. With the base model gone, we can expect that the 2021 Chevy Colorado will start with a stronger listing of features and characteristics.

One of the major changes that have been confirmed is in what the 2021 Chevy Colorado will look like. For instance, the 2021 Chevy Colorado will be available in Bright Blue Metallic, Cherry Red Tintcoat, and Sand Dune Metallic. At the same time, the colors Pacific Blue Metallic, Silver Ice Metallic, Kinetic Blue Metallic, Shadow Gray Metallic, and Cajun Red Tintcoat have been removed entirely. Drivers will also get to ride on either a set of 17-inch Silver Metallic wheels or 17-inch Bright-Machined aluminum wheels. The various trims are getting different stylistic changes as well. For example, the WT and LT will get a new golden Chevrolet bowtie logo; meanwhile, the Z71 Chevy bowtie is going to be black. On the other hand, the ZR2 will get a lettered grille spelling out: CHEVROLET. The ZR2, the Chevy Colorado’s most off-road capable trim, will also get red tow hook as standard.

Interior features are also set to change in the 2021 Chevy Colorado. One such add-on is the auto-dimming rearview mirror, which will be found as standard on all LT models. A new audio infotainment system will also be packed into the 2021 Chevy Colorado, adding in an 8-inch color touchscreen with audio streaming for up to 2 devices, and of course, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

A Step in the Right Direction

While we have yet to learn what the 2021 Chevy Colorado’s safety feature spread might look like, this midsized pickup is already starting to look better than the previous year’s iteration. The 2021 Chevy Colorado is going to have a sharper, more modern appearance, and at the same time, gets rid of trim that didn’t bring much to the table. We’re still ways out from the official release of the 2021 Chevy Colorado, but needless to say, we’re excited about what Chevrolet has in store for its flagship mid-sized pickup truck.