The Chevrolet Colorado now offers an all-new V6 engine and class-exclusive eight-speed automatic. It is the latest major update for Colorado pick up, which entered the market for model year 2015. Chevrolet is on track to sell more than 160,000 Colorados in the first 24 months on the market, reigniting the midsize segment.

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The most significant update for the new Colorado is an new V6 engine and eight-speed transmission, creating a combination that’s unmatched in the midsize segment. The new engine and transmission were calibrated to emphasize performance and refinement while optimizing fuel economy: Being the most fuel efficient pick up in the U.S., the Colorado has an EPA-estimated 7.5l/100 km (31 mpg) highway when equipped with the diesel engine.

With the new V6 and eight-speed combination, Chevy is focused on improving everyday driving performance. Drivers will immediately notice that it pulls harder when accelerating from a stop or passing on the highway.

This second generation of Chevrolet’s double-overhead-cam engine architecture retains the same 3.6l displacement as before, with an updated suite of advanced engine technologies. This includes improved variable valve timing for intake and exhaust, improved direct injection and for the first time, Active Fuel Management (cylinder deactivation), which disables two cylinders under light throttle applications. Horsepower and torque increase to an SAE-certified 308 hp (230 kW) at 6,800 rpm and 373 Nm (275 lb-ft) at 4,000 rpm.

The engine is mated to the class-exclusive eight-speed automatic. The GM-developed Hydra-Matic 8L45 is roughly the same size and weight as the 6L80 six-speed automatic it replaces. However, the eight-speed automatic offers a wider 7.0 overall gear ratio spread than the 6L80 transmission’s 6.0 ratio. This results in a numerically higher first gear ratio, helping drivers start off more confidently with a heavy load or when trailering, and numerically lower rear axle ratios that reduce engine rpm on the highway for improved efficiency.

In addition, extensive use of aluminum and magnesium, combined with similar packaging to the outgoing 6L80 transmission, equates to no increase in overall weight for Colorado models equipped with the new 8L45 transmission.

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The new Chevrolet Colorado is slated to hit showrooms in the fourth quarter of the year. In the domestic market, Chevrolet Malaysia *Naza Quest) will introduce the second-generation Chevrolet Colorado sometime in October.