mini review 2016 Colorado ZZ1 4WD Ext. Cab - Chevy Colorado & GMC Canyon
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 03-13-2016, 10:06 AM Thread Starter
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mini review 2016 Colorado ZZ1 4WD Ext. Cab

I'll try to keep this going for a bit as I get more miles on the truck, but wanted to post some information after the first couple of days I've had to drive the truck under a wider range of conditions.

The first few days I had the truck I wasn't able to do anything other than drive back and forth to work. Yesterday was the first day I was able to get off road, and overall the conditions were just much more variable, but typical for me.

I'll start by saying that every time I drive this truck it makes me smile, partly because I'm thinking of all the negative posts as I'm driving along, amazed at how great the truck feels. So far I can't really say I've encountered any of the problems people complain about. My TPW was 2/22/2016, so maybe a lot of problems have just been fixed.

Based on all the negative posts, I've paid particular attention to how the engine and transmission perform. My initial impression was that both were way better than I expected, but yesterday was the first real test. I drove so many hills and many miles on state roads where the speed was constantly up and down. The truck shifted intelligently and near flawlessly. On hills it kicked down immediately and smoothly, one gear, unless I pushed the pedal down much more. It was absolutely effortless to get the truck to shift when I wanted it to. Shifts were sometimes slightly harder under load, such as going up a steep hill, but I mean slightly in that I could obviously feel them, whereas on flat roads, the shifts above 20mph were barely felt at all. Downhill was the same. I didn't test the hill descent control, but I did notice how the truck will automatically downshift if you break going down a hill. That worked flawlessly and was a nice surprise.

The engines performance was great. I'm still trying to gently break my truck in, so I haven't accelerated too hard yet, but the engine is powerful enough and the truck rides smoothly enough, that it's easy to be way over the speed limit before you realize it. I've had no issues passing on hills, merging in traffic, etc. I've actually tried to create shift problems, and have not found any issues. Doing stuff like starting up a hill and then letting off the gas mid-grade, before putting it down again...doing odd things while going in or out of turns, just to see if there would be hesitation, poor downshifts, anything like that. The truck has no problem handling even intentionally stupid driving like that!

Ride quality is just excellent in my opinion. My only complaint so far is that I feel there's a bit more lean in turns than I like, even for a truck that sits up a bit. I drove a lot in state forest yesterday, through areas I've driven for years. The ride was amazing, despite paved roads that are absolutely terrible. Potholes everywhere on winding and hilly roads, and whenever they do manage to try to fix the roads, they just throw down little spots or strips of blacktop, not making it much better. In this truck it was the smoothest ride I've ever had on these roads.

The gravel roads were uneventful. The one section that surprised me was a stretch of washboard, mostly dirt with some gravel, downhill and curved road. Usually it makes no difference what speed I go down that hill, it's incredibly rough. At anything but a crawl, the back end of an unloaded truck will bounce so much it vibrates sideways towards the edge of the road. Going up it's easy to bounce enough that you are gaining and losing traction, but it's just a rough ride, not very challenging as far as traction or grade. When I drove down it in this truck yesterday, I though they must have smoothed the road out! I couldn't even feel the washboard and figured it was just gone. When I drove back up I had to look carefully and I was able to confirm the road was as rutted as ever. Very nice performance both up and down that stretch and that's pretty much what I saw all day long on gravel and dirt roads. Thinking back on the day I can't think of a time I felt the rear-end bouncing, which is very unusual for an unloaded truck offroad.

The worst road I drove on was a very heavily rutted dirt road. This section is much more like a trail, it dead ends at a campground in the forest. The ruts are deep and do a good job of twisting the body (often turning all or part of the truck at nearly 45 degrees on a side), testing articulation, ground clearance, etc. At times it's a better test for traction (snow or deeper mud), but the mud wasn't very deep on this trip. The truck handled the incredibly uneven ground very well, no problems with traction in the wet clay (with stock tires), but with a brand new truck I was taking it very slow. I never even had to switch to 4WD.

Several stream crossings were uneventful, including one where I have to drop off a small rock ledge into the creek and then come up out of the creek over something similar, while going uphill. The air dam was a bit of a problem, I rubbed it several times, and it made me especially careful about approach angles. I was thinking about it every second down this road and I just didn't like having to be so careful about the front end. I didn't do any damage, but I'm going to have to think more seriously about removing it if I notice the clearance is a regular issue. On one hand I think it is a bit of a reminder and a warning, but I could also see it preventing me from getting by something that would otherwise be trivial, and/or pushing it so hard through or into something that it does damage the bumper. I'd rip it off in a second if it wasn't for that slight improvement in mpg that it adds, but that was one of the reasons I upgraded from my last truck so I don't really want to give up even 1-2mpg in daily driving.

No hood flutter, another issue I've watched for.

No problems with seats, very comfortable. I'm only 5'9" and 160 so I could see where larger people would have problems with the seats though, since they fit me just about perfectly. I am anxious to get my seat covers though, as there is a lot of rub on the outside edges getting in and out of the truck.

One other thing I almost forgot to mention, the truck is so amazingly quiet, at least with the windows up. With windows down there is a lot of wind noise, but that's not much of a surprise. With windows up I feel like I'm driving a luxury car. It's been a while since I've been able to comprehend voices on the radio, at low volume, while driving at high speed...lots more road noise on my last truck. Even though the truck itself is less noisy, it's also very clear how well they did with soundproofing, because even outside sounds like the sounds of other vehicles are greatly reduced.

Not much more to add yet. With the conditions I've been driving my gas mileage has been all over the place, but I'm still hanging above 19mpg with no highway driving yet. The only high speed driving I've done so far has been on state roads where there was still a lot of stop and go.

I didn't think to take pictures yesterday because I was concentrating so much on not ripping the air dam off, but I'll try to get some pictures of some of these conditions I'm driving in as I'm out over the next few weeks. They aren't extreme by any stretch of the imagination, but they are definitely the kinds of places you want a capable 4x4. I also haven't hauled anything in the bed yet, but pretty soon I'll be making some trips for mulch and will be able to get a sense of how the truck performs with a heavy payload.
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2016 Chevy Colorado Ext. Cab Z71 4x4 Red Hot
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-06-2016, 10:06 PM
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Thanks for the great review, of ride, performance, & quality, make's me look forward of getting mine hopefully in a month or so; Z71 cc sb v6 rwd. spray in bed liner.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 06:04 AM
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The problem with all forums is the majority of post are from people who are having trouble hoping for additional help. Of course this creates a perception for a lot of people that the truck is troublesome...it must be...look at all these people posting problems..lol. If you go onto a Mercedes or BMW forum you'll see the same thing...I guess they make crap cars too !

My truck was built around the same time as yours and no complaints. I do have the hood flutter at highway speeds 75+mph but it's minor to the point where I'm not really sure it's worth brothering to have the foam thing done per the tech bulletin...end of the day all aluminum hoods do it. I recently got a chance to drive my 2005 GMC Canyon and its hood fluttered a bit at highway speeds...the funny thing...11 years of owning that truck and I never notice it before until I read about it as being a problem here on the 2nd gen models...LOL!

Very happy with my 2016 and maybe it's still the newness, but look forward to driving to work everyday in it!
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Last edited by bac522; 04-07-2016 at 12:42 PM.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 07:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bac522 View Post
The problem with all forums is the majority of post are from people who are having trouble hoping for additional help. Of course this creates a prescriptions for a lot of people that the truck is troublesome...it must be...look at all these people posting problems..lol. If you go onto a Mercedes or BMW forum you'll see the same thing...I guess they make crap cars too !

My truck was built around the same time as yours and no complaints. I do have the hood flutter at highway speeds 75+mph but it's minor to the point where I'm not really sure it's worth brothering to have the foam thing done per the tech bulletin...end of the day all aluminum hoods do it. I recently got a chance to drive my 2005 GMC Canyon and its hood fluttered a bit at highway speeds...the funny thing...11 years of owning that truck and I never notice it before until I read about it as being a problem here on the 2nd gen models...LOL!

Very happy with my 2016 and maybe it's still the newness, but look forward to driving to work everyday in it!
I feel the same way. I only get a slight hood flutter on windy days at about 75mph with cross winds and wouldn't of ever noticed it or thought about it until I saw it posted here. I probably had it in my old trucks too and just never noticed it. My 2016 doesn't have the problems that people complain about here. These forums can make you paranoid.

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 04-07-2016, 12:27 PM
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Great review, I have a 2015 I bought in July of last year and it just rolled over 8,000 miles. My experience is very similar to yours. Coming from a Ford family (and my dad forever disowning any vehicle suggestions I make now) and owning a Tacoma before the Colorado I must say that I still smile when I drive my truck. I do understand the transmission tuning issues people discuss because sometimes I have to put the pedal to the floor just to get my truck to downshift, but it sounds like they got that worked out with the 2016 MY. With the windows up and the Bose stereo I can feel like it's just me and the music even at low to moderate volumes. After I took off the air dam, I have yet to find an Alaskan back road that the truck can't tackle. But I do wish it had a dash indicator to inform me when I have 4WD engaged. It's awkward to look through the steering wheel just to see if I am in 2H, 4H, or 4L.


Overall, I must say that I was very pleasantly surprised on how well GM built this truck. Looks great, performs well (and has loads of get-up-and-go!), I can get just about anywhere with it and the only problem I have had with it is a drill bit in a tire and the hood striker recall that is getting done this weekend. So, in summary, I suspect that your experience so far will continue and you will only continue to enjoy the truck more and more.

2015 Colorado Z71 4x4 - CCSB
Bose - Navi - Tow Pack - Sliding Rear Glass - 20% Tint - Air Dam Removed - Monstaliner Bed Liner - Fought a Black Bear, and Won!

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265/70R17 Tires - Bilstein 5100 adjustable shocks - Fender Flares - Bumper LED light bar - Stereo??


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Custom stereo - General Grabber AT2 Tires - 20" LED Light Bar - my "Beater with a Heater"/back roads vehicle
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-27-2016, 05:03 PM
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Real hood flutter!

If you want to see real hood flutter, ride in a big rig KW, MACK, etc and watch that full fiberglass nose shake rattle and role! The little bit that this aluminum hoods flutter, you really have to be paying attention to that and not the road to get the full picture of what is perceived as a problem. Just my 2 cent worth.
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