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All-new Chevrolet Colorado pickup truck shown overseas

Consumer Reports News: March 22, 2011 09:42 AM

General Motors just released a preview of the redesigned Chevrolet Colorado small pickup that it will show at the Bangkok International Auto Show this week. The concept truck is an extended-cab model with body-on-frame construction, and it wears a front end reminiscent of Chevrolet's Equinox SUV. It has all-wheel drive and is powered by a 2.8-liter turbodiesel engine. The front of the bed covered has a "cab collar" that extends the cab visually. Chevrolet spokesman Michael Albano says GM is testing the concept in global markets, which apparently doesn't include the United States; the concept is not scheduled for the upcoming New York International Auto Show. The current Colorado ranks very low, only outpointing the outdated Ford Ranger.

This follows news that Ford is also introducing a new Thai-designed and -built Ranger to the rest of the globe--which also won't come to America. The new Ranger debuted in Australia and was even shown earlier this month at the auto show in Geneva, Switzerland--hardly truck country.

Ford has announced it will quit producing the archaic U.S. version of the Ranger this fall, leaving the full-sized F-150 as the only light-duty trucks in its lineup. Meanwhile, GM stopped production at the U.S. factory that produces its current Colorado (and GMC Canyon) pickups because of parts shortages after the Japanese earthquake.

We think there are some buyers who would prefer a smaller pickup--a truck that easy to drive and park every day and gets better fuel economy than full-sized behemoths. It could appeal to home owners who want it for dump runs, light-duty towing, or picking up a load of firewood.

How about you: Would you consider buying one of these smaller pickups over a larger offering if domestic automakers sold their latest designs here? Sound off in the comments below.


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