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Cars in the City

Chevy Colorado offers maneuverability, comfort and improved fuel economy

3/6/2024

Pickup trucks are big in Iowa not only in size but in the number of trucks sold. The Ford F-150, Chevy Silverado and Ram are all bestsellers.

But maybe you want a truck that isn’t so huge or that may cost you fewer bucks. A mid-sized truck might be ideal. The Chevy Colorado fits the bill. 

The Colorado was introduced in 2004 to replace the Chevy S-10. The Colorado ranks second in popularity in the class with the Toyota Tacoma being the bestseller. Mid-sized pickups account for about 4% of all vehicles sold.

The test model driven was a high-end 2023 Colorado ZR2 with a sticker of $52,935. Lower-end LT models start at about $33,000.

So why a small pickup versus a regular-sized truck? Fans say they are slightly easier to maneuver and offer better comfort and fuel economy with a lower price.

CNA - Stop HIV Iowa

They may be smaller, but, without running boards, I could barely climb in without using the steering wheel for support. Unless you’re nearly 7-foot tall like my buddy Kyle, pay the extra $500 and get the running boards. Your short passengers will thank you.

Driving around in a pickup, including this one, I feel like I tower over other vehicles. Making turns was easy, similar to an SUV. Pickup drivers will appreciate the 360-degree camera, making backing into parking spots — which seems to be a trend among pickup drivers — effortless.

Nearly all new vehicles have wireless Apple Car Play, so it’s more of a necessity than a luxury feature. The 11.3-inch touchscreen is user friendly and connects easily with apps. 

The truck tows up to 7,700 pounds and offers four-wheel drive for bumpy terrain and snowy conditions. It’s a twin cab with a five-foot sprayed-on bed liner, which is why you bought a truck, right? It’s so your friends can call on you to help haul their furniture by promising you a six-pack for your efforts. 

A 240-volt power outlet in the bed can be used for plugging in essentials. What do most folks use their plugins for? If using it for blender drinks during tailgating, just remember, the outlet usage will eventually drain your vehicle battery.

The Colorado comes in the color “sand dune metallic,” and this earthy tone stands out among the white, black, silver and gray vehicles.

Parents with teenage drivers can set up a teen driver key fob before the kids take the wheel. After programing specific settings, the fob engages the features. It mutes the radio until the front seat occupants fasten their seatbelt and sets a speed limit on a vehicle so it won’t go more than 85 mph. A driver report card shows the vehicle speeds, distance driven and times the accelerator was floored. This seems too “big brother” for me, and I’m relieved my parents didn’t have it when I was a teenager because I would have been in heaps of trouble.

Mid-sized has its place in the pickup market, and this truck delivers. The state of Colorado a stunning place to visit, and the Colorado pickup is an ideal mid-sized truck option. ♦

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