Cars

With its 2015 Colorado midsize pickup, Chevrolet has a new MVP

Tim Barney, a salesperson at Van Chevrolet, says the Colorado midsize pickup truck was a success even before it was awarded to Super Bowl MVP quarterback Tom Brady of the New England Patriots.
Tim Barney, a salesperson at Van Chevrolet, says the Colorado midsize pickup truck was a success even before it was awarded to Super Bowl MVP quarterback Tom Brady of the New England Patriots. David Boyce

When the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado hit the market last fall, Tim Barney, a salesperson for more than 5 years at Van Chevrolet, knew General Motors had hit a home run by bringing back the midsize truck.

The first confirmation came immediately after Game 7 of the World Series when Giants pitcher Madison Bumgarner left Kauffman Stadium with a new 2015 Colorado for being selected MVP.

Three months later, the Colorado once again took center stage after the Super Bowl when New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was handed the keys to the midsize truck for winning the MVP award.

And the Colorado received another week of publicity when Brady talked about giving the truck to teammate Malcolm Butler, who made the goal-line interception with 20 seconds left and secured the Patriots’ 28-24 victory.

“You definitely love seeing your product on the national stage,” Barney said. “You love seeing a well-deserving product. That is the thing. The Colorado is a well-deserving vehicle. They did a spectacular job on this vehicle.”

Good publicity always helps.

A couple of days after the Super Bowl, Barney talked with customers who came in inquiring about the Colorado.

But even without the latest publicity from the Super Bowl, the Colorado has been leaving the Van Chevrolet lot at 100 NW Vivion Road, Kansas City, almost as fast as the dealership could get them.

“These are the first two we have had in a little bit,” Barney said on Feb. 3. “We didn’t have them yesterday. The Colorado is in high demand. Right now the Colorado is so popular that it is hard for us to keep them in stock, to be quite honest.”

As Barney was talking about the Colorado, he pointed to a co-worker who was showing a one of the trucks to a customer.

“The old Colorado was nice, but they just stepped up the technology (and) the horsepower,” Barney said. “It is just a whole different truck. It is a great truck.”

At the start of the decade, the midsize truck market wasn’t a segment that manufacturers actively went after with new redesigns. General Motors stopped making the Colorado after 2012.

According to the website Edmonds.com, that changed for Chevrolet with the success of the redesigned 2014 Silverado, a full-size truck.

The Colorado is smaller and has a sporty look. The base engine will be a 2.5-liter four-cylinder making 200 horsepower and 191 pound-feet of torque. That should be enough for light duties around town and off-road.

The 2015 Colorado is available in crew or extended cab versions, and the crew cab offers a short or long box for added flexibility. Both cab sizes offer seating for five passengers.

The price range is generally from $25,000 to $37,000, depending on what you have added.

“The Colorado is for the person who doesn’t want that big of a truck,” Barney said. “You have all the interior room that is basically close to a big truck, but it is still smaller.

“It is one of those vehicles I have seen people in their 20s to 30s all the way up to 60-year-olds. The demographics I see is just a person who doesn’t want quite as big a truck as the Silverado.”

Besides the 200-horsepower four-cylinder base engine, there is a 305-horsepower, 3.6-liter V-6 engine available that makes 269 pound-feet of torque.

“It is really a lot of truck,” Barney said of the base engine.

The market for trucks is growing. Several manufacturers are coming out with or have come out with redesigns that are garnering positive reviews.

“There is definitely competition,” Barney said. “I am not the type to undermine the competition. There are a lot of good products out there. I am just going to say Chevy really stepped up on the Colorado. The old Colorado compared to the new Colorado is almost two different stages.”

Being part of two of the biggest sporting events in the country definitely helps to promote the vehicle.

“The Chevy Colorado, like Tom Brady, is truly a game changer,” said Paul Edwards, U.S. vice president, Chevrolet Marketing, in a press release.

If you have a story you would like to see in On the Move, email David Boyce at Drive@kcstar.com.

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