New V-6, 8-Speed Automatic Lead Changes for 2017 Chevrolet Colorado


The status quo is constantly changing in the pickup-truck world, and the Chevrolet Colorado midsize truck is staying fresh for 2017 with a completely new powertrain. Replacing GM’s old 3.6-liter V-6, previously optional on the Colorado, is, um, GM’s new 3.6-liter V-6, now paired to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Don’t be fooled by the identical displacement: This really is an all-new V-6, similar to the engine already in use in several models including the Cadillac ATS and CTS, the Chevy Camaro, and the new Buick LaCrosse.

Tuned for truck duty, the 3.6-liter makes a bit less power in the Colorado than it does in those sedans. And compared to the old V-6, the improvement in power and torque is not huge, with horsepower going up 3 hp to 308 hp, and torque rising 6 lb-ft to 275 lb-ft. Disappointingly, official fuel-economy numbers aren’t available yet, although a Chevrolet spokesperson said the improvements would be “incremental” over the current Colorado V-6’s 18/26 mpg city/highway with rear-drive and 17/24 mpg with four-wheel-drive. We’ll see soon enough if the new numbers, aided by the new V-6’s cylinder deactivation feature and the taller gearing of the eight-speed, can match the current champ among gas-powered midsize trucks, the 2017 Honda Ridgeline which achieves 19/26 mpg with front-drive and 18/25 with all-wheel drive.

2016 Chevrolet Colorado Z71

No changes are in store for the Colorado’s base 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, or for its 2.8-liter turbodiesel four that’s optional on certain models. But there are a few other minor tweaks for the 2017 Colorado. A four-wheel-drive selector knob with 2WD, Auto 4WD, 4Hi, and 4Lo modes is now standard on all 4WD-equipped models (it was previously only offered on the off-road-oriented Z71 trim level). Chevrolet’s Teen Driver mode, which is being propagated across the lineup, is now optional, and heated seats are no longer restricted to leather-equipped trucks.

We’ll have to wait a bit longer for official pricing on the updated Colorado, along with those official EPA fuel economy numbers. As before, the V-6 should be optional on most extended-cab models (it cost $950–$1235 extra on the 2016 model) and standard on 4WD crew cab models and all crew cab long-box models. As for the Colorado’s slightly more upscale twin, the GMC Canyon, we expect that truck to add this new engine soon as well.


from Car and Driver BlogCar and Driver Blog

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