2015 Chevrolet Colorado: Highway Impressions on the Way to the Big A
July 3, 2015
As soon as I got into our long-term 2015 Chevrolet Colorado, I remembered how much I like driving compact and midsize trucks. The Colorado may be a new truck, but compared to most other new vehicles on the road, it's a throwback to an earlier time, about 15 years ago, when a bouncy ride and slow steering were accepted in a great many so-called family-friendly vehicles. Now you have to drive a small pickup or a Jeep Wrangler if you want these attributes. Of course, you can get them in a Frontier or Tacoma as well.
This might sound like faint praise, but I really enjoy the Colorado's size and personality. And as others have written, it has a pretty civilized ride quality for a four-wheel-drive truck with the Z71 suspension tune.
So my family and I took it to Angel Stadium for an Angels-Mariners game.
This was my first time driving our Colorado at highway speeds for any significant duration. I'm not crazy about this V6 engine and six-speed automatic transmission in passing situations for the reasons Mike Magrath sited. The engine is loud and rough, and the transmission takes far too long to find a gear. I haven't sampled Toyota's 4.0-liter V6 in a while, but the last Frontier I drove (with a 4.0-liter V6 and five-speed automatic) felt more responsive and refined. Of course, the Nissan's EPA combined fuel economy rating is a couple mpg lower, but I suspect the difference wouldn't be that large in real-world driving.
Still, the Chevy's V6 is plenty strong, and eventually you remember to account for the transmission's conservative programming when setting up to pass. I also like the precise steering in our Chevy. The effort level is just about right as it's neither overly heavy nor too light.
The brake pedal is on the firm side and gives the impression that the truck will come to a halt quickly, but really, it takes just as long to get this thing stopped as anything else in the class. Which is OK, because you really shouldn't be in a hurry if you're driving a compact truck.
Finally, the front seats. Just like Josh Jacquot said, they are very comfortable and supportive. They're easily best-in-class, if you're 5 feet, 10 inches tall and in the 150-pound range.
And here's a photo from inside the Big A.
Erin Riches, Deputy Editor @ 12,229 miles