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One of the top selling points of the previous version of the Chevy Colorado was that you had lots of choices. That’s not the case for the third-generation model coming to us for 2023. Every version of this midsize Chevy truck now uses the same engine, sourced from the larger Silverado. Did Chevy make the right changes to the Colorado? Let’s find out.

What engine does the 2023 Chevy Colorado use?

Red 2023 Chevy Colorado Trail Boss Kicking Up Dust on the Trails
2023 Chevy Colorado Trail Boss | Chevrolet

To describe what’s happening with this midsize truck, we can say the Colorado has gone full-four. Every version of this Chevy truck now comes with a 2.7-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine and an 8-speed automatic transmission. In addition to deleting all engines from the previous generation, this new truck only comes in one body style. Every 2023 Chevy Colorado is a Crew Cab truck with a short truck bed.

How much power does this new powertrain offer in the Colorado?

Unlike the GMC Canyon, which delivers only the highest power level across its trim range, the Chevy Colorado has three power levels tuned for this single powertrain. These power levels are:

  • Colorado WT and LT – 237 horsepower, 259 lb-ft of torque
  • Colorado Z71 and Trail Boss – 310 horsepower, 390 lb-ft of torque
  • Colorado ZR2 – 310 horsepower, 430 lb-ft of torque

Notice that the Turbo High Output engine in the ZR2 makes more torque than the previous Duramax diesel engine, which achieved 369 lb-ft in this truck.

The tow rating for the 2023 Chevy Colorado is 3,500 pounds for the WT and LT trims, while all other models can pull up to 7,700 pounds.

Are there differences in the height and width of the various Chevy truck trims?

Yes, every model of this new Chevy Colorado has a longer wheelbase which is now 134.1 inches. That’s three inches more than the outgoing 2022 model. Beyond this, various trims will have different amounts of ground clearance and track width.

  • WT and LT – 7.9 inches ground clearance, 62.8 inches track width
  • Z71 – 8.9 inches ground clearance
  • Trail Boss – 9.5 inches ground clearance, 66.2 inches track width
  • ZR2 – 10.7 inches ground clearance, 66.3 inches track width

Does this mean all Chevy Colorado trucks are off-road models?

Yes, although the WT still offers an RWD version at the bottom of the pile, the ground clearance and wider track allow even this truck to handle some off-road trails. The midsize truck market shows that more consumers turn to this truck size for trail-riding capabilities, and the Colorado gladly obliges.

How hardcore is the new Chevy Colorado ZR2?

2023 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Desert Boss
Detail of Desert Boss badge | Chevrolet

The ZR2 trim still has the benefits of spool valve dampers, cast-iron control arms, front and rear electric locking differentials, and a two-speed transfer case. You’ll ride on 17-inch wheels wrapped in 33-inch mud terrain tires. If you want more out of this off-road trim, the special edition Desert Boss package could be what you want. This package includes:

  • Beadlock-capable wheels
  • An underbody camera
  • Special bash bar for the front bumper
  • A roof-mounted light bar
  • Special Desert Boss decals

The Colorado offers a unique tailgate

Tailgate 2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2
Tailgate 2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2 | Chevrolet

The Chevy Colorado ZR2 comes standard with a new tailgate that provides a lockable space that’s 45 inches wide and four inches deep. This could be the ideal place for some tools, drinks, or items you don’t want to get wet while on the trail. This tailgate is available as an option on the four lower trims.

Does this Chevy truck have an upgraded interior?

Dashboard View of 2023 Chevy Colorado
Dashboard View of 2023 Chevy Colorado | Chevrolet

Yes, the redesigned interior is much more comfortable and modern than the outgoing model. Every trim of the Colorado has a large 11.3-inch touchscreen and delivers wireless connectivity via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The gear shifter and cupholders are relocated to be more convenient. You’ll find an Off-Road Performance Display when you take this truck out on the trails, which gives you the information you desire.

What driving modes are offered in the 2023 Chevy Colorado?

There are four driving modes offered across the trims of this midsize Chevy truck. Tow/Haul, Off-Road, Terrain, and Baja modes, nearly matching the GMC Canyon. You’ll also find up to ten camera views to help you with towing, off-roading, and parking.

When will the new Colorado be available?

2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2 Desert Boss
2023 Chevy Colorado ZR2 Desert Boss | Chevrolet

This Chevy truck goes into production during the first half of next year. Shortly thereafter, it will be available for sale. Look for updates with more information as we get closer to the production dates.

Next, check out four reasons truck owners avoid the Honda Ridgeline, or watch this 2023 Chevy Colorado video below:


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