Note: When I refer to Colorado in this post I am referring to both the Colorado and the Canyon. You get the point :)
The new Colorado is a fantastic truck. It's an improvement over the old Colorado in every way. Except there is one problem - it's too expensive.
Comparing a base model 4x4 WT crew cab, the Silverado is only about $6,000 more:
Comparing a Z71 4x4 crew cab, the Silverado is only about $3,000 more:
And the fuel economy is very similar between the 3.6L V6 Colorado and the 4.3L V6 Silverado.
The Silverado makes more sense when towing. The Colorado 3.6L V6 has better tow capacity in some configurations than the Silverado only if the Silverado is outfitted with base 4.3L V6 3.23 gear ratio. With a 3.42 the Silverado rises above in towing capacity.
All of these things would be fine if the Colorado was noticeably cheaper than the Silverado. Sure, it is a little bit cheaper, but if you can shell out more than $30K for a truck you can spend ever so slightly more. Also, the Silverado probably holds its value better.
It's also builds on the many years of experience GM has with it's full-size trucks in terms of legendary quality and longevity. The Colorado is an all-new platform.
As far as the Duramax Colorado, yes, there is no comparison. There is no Silverado 1500 with a diesel - you'd have to step up to a 2500HD to get the 6.6L V8 Duramax diesel engine. But the Dodge Ram EcoDiesel 1500 is always an option. I hate Chrysler, Dodge trucks have historically had inferior interiors and unreliable transmissions, but I think that is the case less and less these days. Would I buy one? No... if somebody gave me a Ram EcoDiesel I'd trade it in for a used Duramax-powered Silverado 2500HD, but my point is there are options now.
If the 2nd-gen Colorado had come out in 2013 at a lower price point, they would be all over the place by now. But I think it's too expensive, too late.
If you're reading this and you're considering a 2nd-gen Colorado, go ahead, get it - it's a great little truck that's more modern than the outdated Tacoma and hopefully turns out to be as reliable. But just think carefully about whether a Silverado would work for you because it's a bigger, better truck for just a little bit more money and just a bit less MPG.