Colorado, Canyon lead GM's 2004 model line

THE all-new Colorado/Canyon pickups highlight changes to the 2004 GM model line, as announced at the Truck Product Conference.

The 2004 Colorado began production at GM's Shreveport, Louisiana, assembly plant in the fall.

Colorado's standard equipment (excluding fleet models) includes air conditioning; a locking, removable, dual-position tailgate; four-wheel anti-lock brakes (ABS); and driver and front passenger frontal air bags with dual-stage inflators.

The standard engine is the Vortec 2800 inline four-cylinder, which produces 175 hp and 185 lb-ft of torque, which GM says is more power and torque than any other five-cylinder in its class.

The 220-hp Vortec 3500 inline five-cylinder, standard on the four-wheel-drive Crew Cab, is available for all models and features class-leading V-6 horsepower. A five-speed Aisin manual gearbox is standard, while the electronically controlled four-speed automatic is optional.

Built on GM's all-new midsize truck architecture, Colorado features a ladder frame that is more than 250% stronger than Chevrolet's current compact pickup.

Other features: hydraulically assisted rack-and-pinion steering; large front disc brakes with twin-piston calipers; coil-over front suspension on two-wheel-drive models; torsion bar front suspension on four-wheel-drive models; and tuned body mounts that reduce interior noise and vibration.

Suspensions

All three suspensions are available with all three cab configurations.

The 2WD Z85 suspension features an independent front suspension with coil springs and conventional stamped A-arms. Also included are a 28mm front stabilizer bar, twin-tube shock absorbers, and rubber jounce bumpers. The 4×4 model incorporates independent front torsion bars and urethane jounce bumpers. Both versions feature a live rear axle with two-stage steel leaf springs.

Other Colorado Z85 highlights: stands at least 1.5" higher than the S-10 model it replaces, based on overall vehicle height; features GVWRs between 4850 and 5300 lb, depending on model and powertrain chosen; 15" wheels; P205/75R-15 tires on base 2WD; P225/75R-15 on LS 2WD (compact spare); chromed grille bar and bumpers; 4×4 models include standard Insta-Trac 4×4, Smoke Gray wheel flares and P235/75R-15 tires (compact spare).

The Z71 Off-Road Suspension is highlighted by stamped A-arms and a 28mm tubular front stabilizer bar. Firmer urethane jounce bumpers are used on all Z71 models and Z85 4×4 models in place of the softer rubber bumpers used on the Z85 2WD Suspension. Both versions of this suspension have front torsion bars that help supply performance, handling, and stance. An independent front suspension helps keep the front wheels virtually straight up and down at all times for a smooth ride and precise control.

Other Colorado Z71 Highlights: nearly an inch higher than the Z85 model; offered as either a 2WD or 4×4 model; P265/75R-15 on-/off-road blackwall tires (P235/75R-15 spare); 15" × 7" cast-aluminum wheels; automatic locking rear differential; Smoke Gray wheel flares and grille surround; front and rear chrome bumpers; 4×4 models also have Insta-Trac 4×4, a skid shield and gas-charged, monotube shocks.

The 2WD Sport Suspension features an independent front suspension with coil springs and conventional stamped A-arms. Also included are a 28mm solid front stabilizer bar, high-pressure, gas-charged shocks, and rubber/urethane jounce bumpers. The Sport Suspension features a rear axle with two-stage steel leaf springs and a 22mm rear stabilizer bar.

Other Colorado Sport highlights: 2" lower than the Z85 Suspension; quick-ratio power steering; 17" P235/50R-17 low-profile all-season blackwall tires (P205/50R-17 spare); 17" × 8" aluminum wheels; foglamps; body-color wheel flares, grille surround, center bar, and bumpers.

Vortec 2800

The in-line Vortec 2800 2.8L inline I-4 engine, available early in 2004, generates 175 hp at 5600 rpm and 185 lb-ft of torque at 4400 rpm, and includes these features:

  • More horsepower and torque than any 4-cylinder engine in its class.

  • A broad torque curve through the majority of the speed range helps this engine deliver 90% of peak torque from 2000 to 5600 rpm.

  • The Powertrain Control Module (PCM) incorporates computer technology to merge a continuous measurement of inputs to optimize engine performance and transmission shifts.

  • Electronic Throttle Control relays acceleration information to the PCM. The PCM then positions the cylinder air valve in the best position to help achieve optimum vehicle drivability.

  • The coil-on-plug ignition system delivers a high-energy spark which lead to consistent combustion.

  • Pistons and rods are lightweight, helping this engine run comfortably at high RPMs, producing more power from smaller displacements.

  • The roller follower valve train and state-of-the-art Powertrain Control Module improve engine performance and efficiency compared to engines that don't have this technology.

  • Variable valve timing offers a number of advantages over conventional valve timing in the areas of power, efficiency and emissions, and helps produce near-peak levels of torque over an extended range.

  • Dual balance shafts offset the secondary forces generated by piston movement while helping to provide smooth, quiet operation throughout the entire RPM range.

  • Premium aircraft-grade A356 aluminum and an advanced heat treatment process give the engine block and cylinder heads light weight with exceptional strength.

  • Nodular iron crankshafts were optimized using the most advanced math-based computer tools available to GM to help provide quiet operation, long-term reliability and remarkable durability.

  • Dual-overhead cam, four-valve per cylinder aluminum heads provide high fatigue strength and exceptional durability.

  • Platinum-tip spark plugs help this engine travel up to 100,000 miles before the plugs need to be replaced. The recommended engine coolant change interval is up to five years or 150,000 miles, whichever comes first. And the accessory drive belt is designed to operate up to 150,000 miles before requiring replacement. Maintenance needs vary with different uses and driving conditions. See the Owner's Manual for more information. See your dealer for the Chevy Colorado maintenance schedule.

Vortec 3500

The in-line Vortec 3500 3.5L inline I-5 engine generates 220 HP at 5600 rpm and 225 lb ft of torque at 4000 rpm, and includes these features:

  • More horsepower than any V6 engine in its class.

  • A broad torque curve through the majority of the speed range helps this engine deliver 90 percent of peak torque from 1600 to 5600 rpm.

  • The Powertrain Control Module (PCM) incorporates computer technology to merge a continuous measurement of inputs to optimize engine performance and transmission shifts.

  • Electronic Throttle Control relays acceleration information to the PCM. The PCM then positions the cylinder air valve in the best position to help achieve optimum vehicle drivability.

  • The coil-on-plug ignition system delivers a high-energy spark which lead to consistent combustion.

  • Pistons and rods are lightweight, helping this engine run comfortably at high RPMs, producing more power from smaller displacements.

  • The roller follower valve train and state-of-the-art Powertrain Control Module improve engine performance and efficiency compared to engines that don't have this technology.

  • Variable valve timing offers a number of advantages over conventional valve timing in the areas of power, efficiency and emissions, and helps produce near-peak levels of torque over an extended range.

  • Dual balance shafts offset the secondary forces generated by piston movement while helping to provide smooth, quiet operation throughout the entire RPM range.

  • Premium aircraft-grade A356 aluminum and an advanced heat treatment process give the engine block and cylinder heads light weight with exceptional strength.

  • Nodular iron crankshafts were optimized using the most advanced math-based computer tools available to GM to help provide quiet operation, long-term reliability, and remarkable durability.

  • Dual-overhead cam, four-valve per cylinder aluminum heads provide high fatigue strength and exceptional durability.

  • Platinum-tip spark plugs help this engine travel up to 100,000 miles before the plugs need to be replaced. The recommended engine coolant change interval is up to five years or 150,000 miles, whichever comes first. And the accessory drive belt is designed to operate up to 150,000 miles before requiring replacement. Maintenance needs vary with different uses and driving conditions. See the Owner's Manual for more information. See your dealer for the Chevy Colorado maintenance schedule.

Other news from the presentation:

  • The TopKick C6500 has engine options that include Vortec 8.1L V8 — the only gas engine available on class 6 and 7 medium duty trucks. There are no emission changes before 2006. There is a complete line of electronically controlled Allison transmissions — 2400 models feature an integral parking pawl up to 26,000 GVWR.

  • The WT5500/FRR will be discontinued for 2005. The new model, with increased body and payload capabilities, will be released at The Work Truck Show.

  • The 2004 Silverado/Sierra 1500HD will be rebadged as 2500 and will have new gas engine ratings. Work truck packages 1SW are for most work-truck applications and 1SA for personal use.

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