Avoid the 2021 Ford Ranger for the Chevy Colorado Instead

Buckle up, y’all. We have a battle of mid-size trucks today. In one corner, we have the 2021 Ford Ranger, and in the other, we have the 2021 Chevy Colorado. Will the Chevy Colorado be able to overtake the Ford Ranger, or will the Ranger leave the Colorado in the dust? 

2021 Ford Ranger vs. the 2021 Chevy Colorado 

Let’s start with prices! You can get started in a 2021 Ford Ranger for about $24,820. The 2021 Chevy Colorado starts at about $25,200. So, the Range has a minuscule price advantage. Also, these are the MSRPs, so the prices are listed before the dealership, and destination fees have been added. 

A grey and black 2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2 turbo-diesel pickup truck driving off-road, kicking up sand
The 2021 Chevy Colorado ZR2 showing off its capability | Chevrolet

With the Ford Ranger, you get an EPA estimated 21 mpg in the city and 26 mpg on the highway. The Chevy Colorado gets an EPA estimated 20 mpg in the city and up to 30 mpg on the highway. So, the Colorado wins the fuel economy crown. 

How do the Ford Ranger and Chevy Colorado perform? 

Kelley Blue Book praises the 2021 Chevy Colorado for having an optional diesel engine. The 2.8-liter four-cylinder diesel engine provides 181 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque. The base engine is a 2.5-liter option with 200 hp and 191 lb-ft of torque. You can upgrade to the 3.6-liter V6 engine for 308 hp and 275 lb-ft of torque. 

The 2021 Ford Ranger has a 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine that pumps out 270 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque. When properly equipped, it can tow up to 7,500 lbs and carry a payload of up to 1,860 lbs. The Chevy Colorado can tow up to 7,000 lbs and carry a payload of up to 1,590 lbs. 

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For 2021, the Ford Ranger has the new Tremor Off-Raod Package available. But off-roaders tend to lean toward the Chevy Colorado because it has the Z71 and Z72 off-roading trims. Both options include a suspension lift, all-terrain tires, skid plates, and more. 

According to Edmunds, the Colorado can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in about 7.3 seconds. Sometimes the transmission is laggy, and the brakes are confident. There is limited body roll, and you can race around curves with confidence. 

Edmunds noted that the Ranger can reach 60 mph in about 6.8 seconds, making it slightly faster than the Colorado. But it lacks a smooth ride over bumps, has vague steering, and sudden braking may cause a nosedive. 

Chevy Colorado and Ford Ranger features 

The Ford Ranger has a fairly quiet cabin with supportive, comfortable seats. But that doesn’t help improve the bouncy ride. The Chevy Colorado has a smooth ride with firm seats, and a little wind and road noise enter the cabin at high speeds. 

The 2021 Ford Ranger could use a better interior, according to Car and Driver. It feels dull and outdated with the use of hard plastics. Car and Driver noted that the 2021 Chevy Colorado also feels outdated. 

2021 Ford Ranger parked on a dusty hill
2021 Ford Ranger | Ford

You get a seven-inch touchscreen with the Colorado that can be upgraded to eight inches. The Ranger comes with an eight-screen that can be upgraded to ten inches. Both trucks have Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. 

The Ranger comes with standard forward-collision warning and automatic emergency braking, while these features are optional with the Colorado. The Ranger seems to only have an advantage over the Colorado in terms of towing capacity. Otherwise, the Colorado has more options and a better ride.