Biding Its Time: 2021 Chevrolet Colorado to Gain the Smallest of Refreshes

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
biding its time 2021 chevrolet colorado to gain the smallest of refreshes

Appearing midway through 2014 as a 2015 model, the Chevrolet Colorado and its GMC twin, the Canyon, are growing long in the tooth, which isn’t too big a concern in a segment that hosts the Nissan Frontier. However, consumers like alterations that show their truck is newer than other trucks.

As such, there’s a 2021 model-year refresh on the way for General Motors’ midsize pair. Just don’t expect wild changes.

We can’t show you what a stock 2021 Colorado looks like, as it’s still under wraps ahead of an Oct. 10 debut at the 2019 Method Race Wheels Laughlin Desert Classic. The off-road ZR2 variant, on the other hand, is here for your viewing pleasure.

GM apparently wants to better differentiate Colorado trims, so it went to town on the model’s front fascia. This is where the only real major change lies.

As you can see here, the ZR2’s grille ditches the bowtie logo and instead spells out the brand name — just like you’d find on Ford’s F-150 Raptor or Ram’s Rebel. Out back, you’ll find an embossed CHEVROLET tailgate, which is a feature coming to all Colorados. For lesser trims, the bowtie remains up front (gold on the WT and LT, blacked-out on the Z71).

Colorados without cutaway front fenders will see similar alterations up front: revised center bars and lower bumper cover, plus rejiggered skid plates. Oh, and there’s red tow hooks for the off-roader. Plus a V8.

Nah, just kidding.

Being that this is a minor late-cycle refresh (a replacement is expected in 2023), powertrains are expected to stay the same. That means a base 2.5-liter four-cylinder, 3.6-liter V6, and optional 2.8-liter Duramax four-cylinder diesel, coupled to either a six- or eight-speed automatic transmission.

With midsize truck buyers now able to choose an entry from Ford, Chevy faces greater competition than in past years. Advancing age and a new rival isn’t a great recipe for sales growth, and indeed the Colorado’s U.S. volume took a hit this year. Through September, Colorado sales are down 7.6 percent.

Still, it’s worth noting that last year was the nameplate’s best sales year to date.

[Images: General Motors]

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  • Peeryog Peeryog on Oct 08, 2019

    That red pickup in the last picture looks like it suffered a major engine fire. But its still going, so that's pretty good.

  • Nickyt89 Nickyt89 on Oct 08, 2019

    Typical GM (recent) fashion, as of late, most of the refresh performed by GM has been making their cars less desirable and this is one of them. I can’t believe some people at GM thought it looked better than before or even looked good for that matter... Oh, and for the love of good, could they offer that truck with the 10 speed automatic transmission?! I mean come on!

    • PrincipalDan PrincipalDan on Oct 09, 2019

      I wonder if they finally added rear seat vents in the crew cab models? You can't get the truck without a console, might as well add vents to the back of it for the kiddos.

  • Art Vandelay I always liked those last FWD 300's. Been ages since I've seen one on the road though. Lots of time in the RWD ones as rentals. No complaints whatsoever.
  • Cardave5150 I've had 2 different 300's - an '08 300SRT and an '18 300C. Loved them both a LOT, although, by the time I had the second one, I wasn't altogether thrilled with the image of 300's out on the street, as projected by the 3rd or 4th buyers of the cars.I always thought that the car looked a little stubby behind the rear wheels - something that an extra 3-4" in the trunk area would have greatly helped.When the 300 was first launched, there were invitation-only meet-and-greets at the dealerships, reminding me of the old days when new model-year launches were HUGE. At my local dealer, they were all in formalwear (tuxes and elegant dresses) with a nice spread of food. They gave out crystal medallions of the 300 in a sweet little velvet box (I've got mine around the house somewhere). I talked to a sales guy for about 5 minutes before I asked if we could take one of the cars out (a 300C with the 5.7 Hemi). He acted like he'd been waiting all evening for someone to ask that - we jumped in the car and went out - that thing, for the time, seemed to fly.Corey - when it comes time for it, don't forget to mention the slightly-stretched wheelbase 300 (I think it was the 300L??). I've never found one for sale (not that I've looked THAT hard), as they only built them for a couple of years.
  • Jkross22 "I’m doing more for the planet by continuing to drive my vehicle than buying a new one for strictly frivolous reasons."It's not possible to repeat this too much.
  • Jeff S Got to give credit to Chrysler for putting the 300 as a rear wheel drive back on the market. This will be a future classic.
  • Lou_BC How to Fix Auto Media? Stop fixating on soft touch plastics and infotainment systems. I did quite a bit of research on my ZR2. There was no mention of the complexity of putting the transfer case into neutral. (9 step process). They didn't talk about how the exhaust brake works with tow/haul mode. No mention that the exhaust brake does not work with off-road mode. Nannies only stay turned off with the lockers engaged. Only one review mentioned the tail pipe as a vulnerability.
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