LOS ANGELES – Chevrolet is counting on its all-new 2015 Colorado midsize pickup to help keep momentum growing for the brand in California, where Chevy sales were running 21% percent ahead of 2012 through 10 months.
The only problem? The Colorado, making its world debut at the Los Angeles auto show, won’t be available until next fall becauseis in the midst of a new-product barrage that includes the recently introduced, all-new fullsize Silverado pickup and derivatives plus new entries at Cadillac, Buick and GMC.
“We’ve got a cadence (of new vehicle introductions) and the truck team right now is busy with the SUV” spinoffs of the ’14 Silverado architecture, Mark Reuss, president-GM North America, says in introducing the Colorado.
The midsize pickup resurfaces after a 4-year hiatus as a totally redesigned model that targets Toyota’s best-selling Tacoma and’s Frontier. and earlier dropped out of the U.S. midsize pickup market.
“It has taken a lot of blood, sweat and tears; we haven’t been successful in the midsize market in years,” Reuss says. “We wanted to be clearly ahead of the competition, so we did what it took to beat them.”
It’s part of what he calls Chevrolet’s “three-truck strategy,” which includes the Canyon, Silverado and Silverado HD (heavy-duty) series.
Reuss says GM aggressively targeted the Tacoma and Frontier, and claims it beats those competitors in performance, fuel economy, towing capacity and content. “We’re on the attack,” he says. “We’re back in the midsize pickup market.”
Chevrolet unveils only one version of the new pickup here, a bright red Z71crew cab. However, Reuss says it will be available in numerous configurations and with three engines available: initially a 2.5L 4-cyl. and a 3.6L V-6, followed in 2016 by GM’s 2.8L Duramax turbodiesel. All-wheel-drive will be optional.
Reuss does not reveal price or fuel-economy numbers, saying those will come closer to production startup. The new truck will be built in St. Louis.
California is the biggest market for midsize pickups, accounting for 16% of total annual sales.
“Why are we doing this?” Reuss asks. “Because this is what our customers want. They may not want or need a full-size truck.” Chevy will attempt to woo buyers with active lifestyles and will offer a large menu of accessories to accommodate them, he says.