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2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Wins Four Wheeler Pickup Truck of the Year

Posted in Features on January 11, 2018
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Four Wheeler is pleased to announce that the Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 is the winner of the 29th annual 2018 Pickup Truck of the Year competition.

“The ZR2 takes the capable Colorado platform to a new level with a dizzying array of modifications including front and rear electric differential lockers, Multimatic Dynamic Suspensions Spool Valve shocks, a 2-inch-taller ride height, 3.5-inch-wider track width, additional skidplating, 31-inch tires, and many more off-road-centric goodies. The result is a truck that is willing and able to conquer terrain that would leave most other trucks behind,” says Four Wheeler Editor Ken Brubaker.

The road to winning Four Wheeler’s prestigious 2018 Pickup Truck of the Year award was actually more of a rutted, rocky, hilly, snow-clogged two-track. After ramp travel index and track testing, the majority of the competition was completed off-road. All In total, the weeklong test covered over 1,000 miles.

It became clear very quickly that the ZR2 was in its element off-road. The Multimatic Dynamic Suspensions Spool Valve shocks—not seen before in a truck application—worked extremely well to damp the suspension over rough terrain and contribute to the Colorado’s outstanding handling. At speed, the judges also appreciated the added stability of the ZR2’s 3.5-inch-wider track. Judges also gave high marks to the ZR2 for its increased ride height and larger diameter tires, and there was peace of mind knowing that the underbody was protected with additional skidplating should contact occur with off-road obstacles. Also a favorite was the increased suspension travel. With 8.9 inches up front and 10 inches in the rear, the ZR2 simply floated over choppy sand or rough trails at speed, and it helped provide stable, soft landings when airing the ZR2.

Judges gave high marks to the ZR2’s optional 2.8L Duramax turbodiesel I-4 direct-injected engine, which provided a wealth of smooth power while returning outstanding fuel economy. The ZR2-specific exterior enhancements also impressed the judges, both from visual and functional standpoints. Features included 8-inch-wide aluminum wheels, a more aggressive grille and hood, stainless steel rock sliders, and a high-clearance front bumper with integrated skidplate. Inside the ZR2, judges appreciated our tester’s easy-to-clean vinyl flooring (which replaced the standard carpeting at no charge) and the full suite of connectivity features, including an infotainment system with navigation and 8-inch touchscreen.

During testing, experienced judges rotated between the field of competitors on a regular basis, which provided equal testing time. Judges included staff from various publications within TEN: A Discovery Communications Company, including Four Wheeler, 4-Wheel & Off-Road, and Jp Magazine. Along the way, judges graded vehicle criteria and logged comments in the official judging books. When testing was completed, the vehicle criteria data provided by the judges was combined with performance and other data to create a score for each vehicle. In the end, the ZR2 won three of five categories to earn the title of the 2018 Pickup Truck of the Year.

You can read the official 2018 Pickup Truck of the Year press release HERE.

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