The 2015 Chevy Colorado marks GM’s return to the mid-size truck market, and some high-tech, low-weight materials aim to keep the Colorado’s MPG competitive. These new materials will make the Colorado between 880 and 1,400 pounds lighter than its bigger cousin, the Chevy Silverado. Combined with the promised four-cylinder diesel engine, the Colorado could deliver some killer fuel economy.
While it helps that the Colorado is overall a smaller vehicle, it isn’t that much smaller, coming in at about 17-inches shorter and 5-inches narrower than a comparable Silverado. So yeah, it’s smaller, but the real weight savings comes from the use of high-strength steel and aluminum to shave weight wherever possible. This includes an aluminum hood, cylinder heads, and engine block, which drastically reduces weight…at least in the non-diesel models.
All these weight savings add up to a Colorado that, in 2WD with a 2.5 liter four-cylinder engine, comes in at just under 4,000 pounds. Even the extended cab, V6-equipped 4×4 model only weighs 4,266 pounds, which is actually less than the Tesla Model S, but is capable of towing up to 6,700 pounds.
This is GM’s first response to the mostly-aluminum 2015 Ford F-150, as the next generation of GM pickups won’t debut with aluminum bodies of their own until 2017 or 2018. Can the 2015 Colorado, with its lightweight and available diesel engine, really bring car-like fuel economy to the dying mid-size truck segment?