It’s happening again. GM is tantalizing the market with a little lift of the skirts on its new trucks. For the Silverado and Sierra it was footage and still photos of camouflaged vehicles months before they had them available for journalists — and well before they would hit dealers’ showrooms. This time, it’s the upcoming Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon that are being hinted at by quarter views of both vehicles’ grilles and lighting.
From the rendering/photo it is clear that these mid-size entries will repeat the design cues of GM’s larger trucks, with distinctive brand features to create separate identities. Earlier in August at a conference attended primarily by automotive execs, analysts and some media, GM announced that production would begin in 2014 at their Wentzville, MO, assembly center.
The trucks are no surprise. GM has marketed a version of the Colorado in Europe and back in June, spy photographers for automotive.com caught on-the-road testing vehicles. Since the shots are copyrighted, I can’t publish them here but I can direct you to their site, (http://blogs.automotive.com/spied-2015-chevrolet-colorado-and-gmc-canyon), if you want to grab a peek.
The introduction of two new midside trucks into the North American market marks a not-so-subtle change. Currently, Toyota’s Tacoma and Nissan’s Frontier are the only two players. Ford and RAM have consistently said that they are building 1/4-ton trucks that meet the market needs effectively without bringing back the Ranger or the Dakota.
I suspect that they will weigh GM’s success with these new entries (and the enthusiasm that the market shows) and revisit the question. Readers have been begging Ford to bring its highly-regarded Ranger back into the U.S. If they decide to, and RAM decides to re-enter this segment, it could be a really interesting horse race.
What are your thoughts on the place for midsize trucks in the sport vehicle market?