The 2021 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Gets A Mean New Face And A Cool Old-School Tailgate

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Truck YeahThe trucks are good!

The current Chevrolet Colorado mid-size pickup feels a bit dated compared to the competition, so The General is spicing things up with a new face that looks like it wants to eat you and also a classic tailgate design.

Let’s get straight to the most off-road capable of Colorado variants, the ZR2 shown above. It’s got a new face, with “flow-through” Chevrolet letting making up the grille, and you’ll notice a bowtie emblem below that grille, offset to the driver’s side. Under that bowtie, near the bottom of the fascia, are a pair of now-standard red tow hooks.

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If you’re curious to see a before-and-after, here’s the 2020 Colorado ZR2:

And here’s the 2021 model:

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I think it looks a bit odd with all that grille below the bar, and kinda reminds me of the Silverado HD, but it’s not bad.

As for the cheaper Colorados, the WT, LT, and Z71, Chevy says in its press release that they all get new grille center bars and revised lower fascias and front skid plates. Plus, the first two of those three trims get a new gold Chevy bowtie badge and the last gets a black bowtie.

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But the big news as far as I’m concerned is at the rear, because every 2021 Chevy Colorados gets a tailgate with C-H-E-V-R-O-L-E-T embossed on it, a design that reminds me of Chevy Silverados from the 1990s and even earlier.

Here’s the new look, a welcome improvement over the boring old bowtie:

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Here’s the aforementioned boring bowtie:

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I’d prefer it if Chevy ditched “Colorado” and just left “Chevrolet” on the tailgate to simplify the design, but overall, it’s an improvement nonetheless.

As for why Chevy’s doing this, CNET Roadshow talked with a Chevy rep who said it’s all about bringing the truck in line with the rest of the brand’s truck line, which we can all agree, is full of pretty aggressive designs. From the article, which also addresses the 2021 Colorado’s lack of interior changes:

A Chevrolet spokesman said these exterior changes are intended to help the Colorado better fit in with the rest of the brand’s pickup lineup, which has gotten quite aggressive-looking with the introduction of the totally redesigned Silverado range. When asked about potential interior enhancements, he said no significant alterations were coming to the Colorado’s cabin for 2021. This truck’s cockpit is good enough, but it could certainly benefit from a little redecorating.

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So a few fascia changes here and there, but nothing wild. I’d like to see a new interior, but it’s at least something to keep Chevy’s mid-sizer from becoming too stale.

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About the author

David Tracy

Writer, Jalopnik. 1979 Jeep Cherokee Golden Eagle, 1985 Jeep J10, 1948 Willys CJ-2A, 1995 Jeep Cherokee, 1992 Jeep Cherokee auto, 1991 Jeep Cherokee 5spd, 1976 Jeep DJ-5D, totaled 2003 Kia Rio