The Bowtie is adding more special editions to the growing Colorado family

The second-generation Chevrolet Colorado is one of America’s most popular pickups. To commemorate the fourth anniversary of the current-generation model, Chevy’s rolling out a pair of special edition Colorado models, specifically the Colorado RST and the Colorado Z71 Trail Runner. The two special edition pickups cater to off-road specialists and street cruisers, respectively. They also join a growing slate of Colorado models that have been released in the past few years, including the Z71, ZR2, and the muscular ZR2 Bison. Both the Colorado RST and the Colorado Z71 Trail Runner will go on sale in 2019.

Born out of Popularity

It’s hard to believe that it’s only been four years since the second-generation Chevrolet Colorado burst into the pickup scene. Since then, it’s become of the highest-selling pickups in the U.S. Chevrolet moved 112,996 units of the Colorado last year, and this year, it’s already reached that threshold, ensuring another record-setting sales year for the popular pickup. In total, Chevrolet is approaching 500,000 sold units of the Colorado, a staggering number considering that the second-gen model is only four years old. Good vibes abound within Chevrolet, which probably explains why the automaker is two new special editions — the Colorado Z71 Trail Runner and the Colorado RST — to the model’s lineup.

Colorado Z71 Trail Runner

Chevy Unveils Pair of Special Edition Colorados for the Dirt and the Street
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Key ingredients include new shocks, a heavy-duty automatic locking rear differential, and beefed-up suspension characteristics

Let’s talk about the new 2019 Chevrolet Colorado Z71 Trail Runner first. This is the special edition Colorado you want if you’re going to dive deep into the outdoors. This special edition Colorado blends packages from the Z71 with extra protection coming from the ZR2. It’s fitted with the Z71 Off-Road Package, ensuring that the pickup is capable of roughing it out without even batting an eyelash.

The key ingredients included in the Z71 Off-Road Package include new shocks, a heavy-duty automatic locking rear differential, and beefed-up suspension characteristics. In addition to the Z71 Off-Road Package, the special edition Trail Runner also benefits from components taken from the beefier Colorado ZR2. The underbody skid plates in the front and rear are now made from stamped aluminum so even the sharpest of rocks have no chance of penetrating it, especially with Chevy throwing in additional rocker protection. The new Colorado offspring also benefits from riding on a set of burly Goodyear Duratrac tires.

To say that the Colorado Z71 Trail Runner is ready for the outdoors is a massive understatement to its full capability. It sits one notch lower to the ZR2 in the Colorado trim hierarchy so it’s loaded in what it can do in the outdoors. Its bed - buyers can get it as a 6-foot-2-inch Long Box or a 5-foot-2-inch Short Box — is deeper than most of its rivals, making it easier to haul bulky items. That same bed is also equipped with the EZ Lift-and-Lower tailgate, another feature the Colorado Z71 Trail Runner has at its disposal.

Colorado RST

Chevy Unveils Pair of Special Edition Colorados for the Dirt and the Street
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Unfortunately, the Colorado RST doesn’t have the same performance chops as the Z71 Trail Runner

Now let’s move on to the second special edition Colorado: the RST. The nomenclature sounds familiar, doesn’t it? That’s because we’ve already seen other Chevrolet models use it, including the Tahoe, Suburban, and Silverado. Unfortunately, the Colorado RST doesn’t have the same performance chops as the Z71 Trail Runner. It’s not even based on the Z71 trim the way the Trail Runner is. Instead, the Colorado RST is a prettier version of the pickup’s LT trim.

Don’t mistake it, though, for a pushover, because it’s far from one. The Colorado RST still benefits from all the LT trim’s features. It’s equipped with goodies like keyless entry, satellite radio, and an upgraded version of Chevy’s MyLink system, complete with an eight-inch touchscreen. At the cost of extra cheddar cheese, you can opt to include packages like the Luxury Package and the LT Convenience Package. All of that comes on top of what makes the Colorado RST a special-edition model in the first place.

You can opt for extras like the Luxury Package and the LT Convenience Package

The exclusive touches are mostly of cosmetic variety. It’s dressed in a monochromatic theme in the exterior that’s offset with black beltline and body side moldings. It also wears a black tailgate bowtie and RST badging throughout its body, and it’s also the first variant of the Colorado to come out of the factory wearing a set of 20-inch wheels. There’s a reason why Chevrolet bills the Colorado RST as a street-focused version of the pickup.

As an added treat, both the Colorado Z71 Trail Runner and the Colorado RST come with the same flow-through “CHEVROLET” lettered grille that it first introduced on the range-topping ZR2 Bison. That’s awfully nice of Chevy to throw that in, though even if you’re not buying either of these two special edition Colorados, you can avail of the same grille for an extra $395.

Going on Sale in 2019

Both the Chevrolet Colorado Z71 Trail Runner and the Colorado RST are scheduled to go on sale in 2019. Chevy hasn’t released pricing details for the two special edition Colorados, but rest assured, both will be hot-ticket items when they arrive.

Further Reading

2015 Chevrolet Colorado High Resolution Exterior
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Read our full review of the Chevrolet Colorado.

2015 Chevrolet Colorado Z71 - Driven High Resolution Exterior
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Read our test drive of the Chevrolet Colorado Z71.

2019 Chevrolet Silverado Exterior Wallpaper quality Interior
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Read our full review of the Chevrolet Silverado.

Note: all images courtesy of Chevrolet.

November marks the four-year anniversary of the return of the segment-redefining Colorado midsize truck. Introduced as a 2015 model, the Colorado recorded its first full month of sales in October 2014. Since then, U.S. customers have bought more than 428,792 Colorados.

To celebrate, Chevrolet is expanding the Colorado range with two new special editions, the off-road Z71 Trail Runner and street-focused RST, that offer options to match customer interests on the trails and on the street.

“The success of Colorado helped reignite the midsize truck segment, which increased 27 percent from 2015 to 2017,” said Sandor Piszar, director of Marketing for Chevrolet Trucks. “It changed what customers expected from a midsize truck, brought new customers to Chevrolet and has inspired competitors to follow Chevy’s lead.”

The Colorado also helped make GM the most successful truck company for four consecutive years, selling 634,505 more pickups than the closest manufacturer from 2013 through the first three quarters of 2018.

Colorado’s success has been fueled by one of the broadest lineups in the midsize segment — including three powertrains, three configurations and a wide range of models and special editions — with a steady cadence of innovation.

Upon its introduction as a 2015 model, Colorado brought a new standard to the segment with three powertrain options, an EPA-estimated 27 mpg highway and 7,000 pounds of towing capability, and it introduced features such as the built-in Wi-Fi Hotspot with available 4G LTE data.

Since then, Colorado has made updates every calendar year, including:

2015: First available diesel engine offered in the segment (excluding other GM brands). Four years after it was introduced, no other competitor offers a diesel engine*, with class-leading 30 mpg highway fuel economy and class-leading towing capacity of 7,700 pounds.

2016: All-new V-6 gas engine and segment-first eight-speed transmission.

2017: ZR2 model with wider track, lifted suspension from the factory, revolutionary Multimatic DSSV dampers and class-exclusive standard front and rear electronic locking differentials.

2018: ZR2 Bison performance variant developed in partnership with AEV that will reach dealers in early 2019.

2019: Two new special editions added to the lineup: RST and Z71 Trail Runner.

Both new special editions feature the flow-through “CHEVROLET” lettered grille first introduced on the Colorado ZR2 Bison. The grille is also available as an accessory for an MSRP of $395, not including installation or tax.

The Colorado RST builds on the successful street-focused RST models offered on Tahoe, Suburban and the all-new Silverado. For Colorado, the RST is based on the LT trim and adds monochromatic exterior offset with black beltline and body side moldings. It also adds a black tailgate bowtie, Colorado and RST badges. The RST is also the first Colorado to offer 20-inch wheels, finished in low-gloss black.

The Z71 Trail Runner begins with the Colorado Z71 off-road package and adds the Colorado ZR2’s underbody protection. Changes include stamped aluminum front and mid skid plates, functional rocker protection and Goodyear Duratrac tires.

With the Z71 Trail Runner, the Colorado lineup now offers four distinct levels of off-road capability:

Colorado Z71: Z71 Off-Road Suspension, automatic locking rear differential and unique 17-inch painted wheels and all-terrain tires.

New Colorado Z71 Trail Runner: Adds additional off-road protection to the Z71 trim with the Colorado ZR2’s front and mid skid plates, rocker protection and 17-inch Goodyear Duratrac tires standard.

Colorado ZR2: Compared to a standard Colorado, the ZR2 features a factory-installed 3.5-inch wider track and a suspension lifted by 2 inches. Class-exclusive features include front and rear electronic locking differentials and Multimatic DSSV Dampers. The ZR2 also features front and mid skid plates, rocker protection and front and rear bumpers modified for better off-road clearance.

Colorado ZR2 Bison: The ZR2 Bison adds even more extreme off-road capability with five hot-stamped Boron steel skid plates and stamped steel front and rear bumpers with front winch provisions and rear recovery points.

*Excludes other GM vehicles.

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