Riding along in the new Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 at the LA Auto Show

Riding along in the new Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 at the LA Auto Show

Riding along in the new Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 at the LA Auto Show

0 comments 📅10 December 2016, 20:00

Chevy in fact built the 2017 Colorado ZR2, staying valid to the concept, and good on ’em for it. It’s a diesel-powered (a gas mechanism is also available) midsize pickup that can gust across the desert right off the showroom defeat. We already told you about the inner workings of this trade’s party trick, the Multimatic spool valve shocks which had to be heavily adapted to vocation on a truck. But our first taste of those shocks in undertaking has us dying to compare them to the few choices out there that are loosely comparable.

GM had us out to a warehouse (where the climax of the movie The Departed was filmed, by the by) where an obstacle course had been set up to rally the ZR2’s capabilities. Like most courses of this genus, it was built expressly to show the ZR2 at its most portentous, so there was no chance the truck would meet with disaster at any point. Here’s an overview of the obstacles at the go-down merchandise course.

There were half-cylinder whoops that we took at a thriving pace, a 30-degree incline with rollers, simulated column tracks at the top of a small artificial hill, and an articulation demonstrator that yanked one veer a few feet off the ground. The expectation, on seeing the progress, was that riding through it would be a Lilliputian like being inside the blender in a “Thinks It Blend?” episode, but thankfully that wasn’t the in the ev.

On the incline, which the video above doesn’t do lawfulness, the truck at one point had three wheels on metal rollers. This was a assess of the ZR2’s front and rear lockers, and so the right face tire was the only thing keeping us from falling uphold down this metal mountain. As expected, it worked phenomenally.

When we hit the half-barrel hoops and the staff tracks, the instinct was to tense up for a big event. The tonic wasn’t necessary, as the spool-valve shocks had 8.6 inches of tourism up front and a full 10 inches in the hinie. And as Gary Klein, Chevrolet lead chassis contrive, and Multimatic’s Michael Guttilla explained, the want of drama also has to do with how the advanced shocks reckon with with the compression event throughout the string of that travel. As curated as the experience was, it was cloudless the Chevy and Multimatic engineers were courageous that the ZR2 would hold its own in the real the public, against the short list of competitors’ trucks that could be described as similarly off-passage oriented.

We just drove one of these opposition vehicles, the Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro, which represents a distinguishable, more conservative approach. That isn’t to say it wasn’t stimulating in its own right; the long-travel Fox shocks provided a suitable ride over some bumpy dual-tracks and a few gnarly scarp outcroppings. But there were no artificial obstacles that could be described as comparable to the ZR2’s despatch. We’re licking our chops at a real-world, side-by-side confrontation to see if the more conventional remote-reservoir Fox shocks, which are absolutely impressive units, can stand up to the advanced and more unique Multimatic spool-valve shocks on the ZR2. And of despatch, we don’t need to mention the larger Ford F-150 Raptor, truly the progenitor of the desert-ready production sundries genre, and about to go into its second days. We’ll be driving the Raptor soon, and will description back if the next act is as good as the first.

Until then we’ve driven all these trucks in the bona fide world, over all sorts of terrain, it’s condensed to tell which will prove to secure the best compromise of real-world usability and off-means prowess. But the ZR2’s shocks seem like the murderer app in this genre, so it’s Chevy’s game to yield at this point. Play on, trucks.

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