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To say the least, the capability of midsize trucks over the years has been on the increase. And that is especially true when you look at the off-road ability and new trims dedicated to 4×4 use. The 2023 Chevy Colorado is one of these pickups. The Colorado has finally entered its third generation, and the ZR2 trim is back. And this time, it is legitimately advanced.

What does ZR2 mean on a Chevy?

Back in 2017, Chevrolet introduced the Colorado ZR2. It is meant to be an off-road truck that’s ready for just about anything the average driver will throw at it. Think of it as a competitor of something like the Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro. 

Although it has a lot of off-road tech, including locking differentials and tuned suspension, the first Colorado ZR2 did get some criticism. According to MotorTrend, it lacked some of the comfort and tech that you’d expect from a vehicle at this price point. 

For 2023, the Chevy Colorado is all-new. And it seems like many of the ZR2 trim kinks have been worked out. 

The 2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2 is ready to hit the trail

From the factory, the 2023 Colorado ZR2 is ready for life on the trail. Under the hood is a 2.7-liter turbocharged inline-four engine. And while you might long for a V6, this engine makes 310 horsepower and 430 pound-foot of torque. Giving you legitimate power as you tackle 4×4 situations. 

A 2023 Chevy Colorado shows off as an off-road truck. It has 2 pretty great characteristics.
2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2 | Chevy

Additionally, it gets 10.7 inches of ground clearance, 33-inch tires, and lockable diffs. Another perk is the Multimatic spool valve dampers for comfort when handling rough terrain. 

This 4×4 truck also feels livable

OK, I’m not going to beat around the bush. Most folks who are buying a nearly $50k truck might not be off-roading every weekend. Extreme off-roaders often buy cheaper vehicles and make modifications themselves. Because of that, it is important that the 2023 Colorado ZR2 can feel comfortable when it’s on the pavement. 

The interior of Chevy's off-road truck, the Colorado ZR2.
2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2 interior | Chevy

Inside, Chevy has given much-needed attention to the materials used. It feels and looks modern, with soft-touch materials where needed. In terms of tech, you get Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, thanks to an 11.3-inch touchscreen. 

That’s not all; the Chevy Colorado ZR2 can display various information you might need when you’re off-roading. This information includes tire pressure, pitch and roll, and transfer case status. Up to 10 different camera views can be added for an added fee. 

The Colorado ZR2 isn’t cheap

When it comes to cost, all of this capability does not come cheap. According to Car and Driver, the 2023 Colorado ZR2 has an MSRP of nearly $50,000. In comparison, the work-spec model starts just slightly over $30k. 

2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2 Tearing Up a Sandy Trail
2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2 Tearing Up a Sandy Trail | Chevrolet
Related The 2023 Chevy Colorado Is Closing in on the Toyota Tacoma

The 2023 Chevy Colorado Is Closing in on the Toyota Tacoma

Unless you plan to off-road often or you really want an aggressive midsize truck, the Colorado is available in different trim levels. Including two others focused on ruggedness, like the Z71 and Colorado Trail Boss. Ultimately, it comes down to your personal preference and budget.