2018 Chevrolet Colorado
Best Pickup Truck of 2018: Chevrolet Colorado ZR2
The 2018 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 is not just an interesting example of a new pickup truck, but is quite possibly the most distinctive vehicle that's come along in years. This is the kind of vehicle that off-road enthusiasts would build in their garage, giving it a good suspension lift, upgraded approach and departure angles, bigger wheels and tires, front and rear locking differentials, and some high-tech racing shocks planted at each corner.
There's really nothing special about all those parts and pieces when considered individually or even when collectively installed on a single vehicle, except that it's been done by one of the largest and most conservative companies on the planet.
That's what makes this vehicle so special. During the development phase, there must have been hundreds of steps along the way where someone could have said the truck doesn't need to be this good; even the most casual Chevrolet or GMC fans have had to endure their fair share of sticker shock when looking for a more aggressive 4x4. But those road blocks did not happen here. All we see is an almost-perfect combination of passion and technology, producing an amazing amount of fun to be had during both high-speed runs through the desert or on a crazy rock-strewn trail through the mountains.
Additionally, many will be surprised by how well the ZR2 performs on the pavement as a daily driver and how well it does standard pickup truck work, like hauling 1,200 pounds or more of payload in the bed or towing a 5,000-pound trailer off the bumper.
And we know it can handle the rough stuff because we've tested it to its limits and found that it has all the right parts in the right places, taking a leadership position in a segment where Chevy has never had it before. We like that the Chevy Colorado has not only pushed a growing pickup class to great heights, but it's also raised the bar. Yes, the ZR2 was a big risk for GM, and like the huge investment it made in making a new Colorado two years ago, this off-road-focused experiment looks like it will be turning the heads of new-truck buyers as well as impressing off-road enthusiasts who get to watch it perform in the backcountry. We say congratulations to the 2018 Chevy Colorado ZR2; this award is well-deserved.