$5,269 - $10,894

2009 Chevrolet Colorado Performance Review

Note: This performance review was created when the 2009 Chevrolet Colorado was new.


Performance: 7.6

The 2009 Chevrolet Colorado offers what most reviewers characterize as merely adequate performance, with the exception of the new ZQ8 trim, which PickupTrucks.com calls "a blast to drive."

Acceleration and Power

For 2009, Chevrolet added a new V8 engine to the Colorado's lineup. The base engine is a 2.9-liter four-cylinder that makes 185 horsepower and 190 pound-feet of torque. Slotted in the middle is a 3.7-liter five-cylinder that makes 242 horsepower and 242 pound-feet of torque. The V8 engine makes 300 horsepower and 320 pound-feet of torque. A four-speed automatic transmission is standard with the V8 and five-cylinder, while a five speed manual comes with the four-cylinder.  

While reviewers contend that the four- and five-cylinder engines are adequate for around-town driving, they're split on the V8.  While some like its performance (especially when matched with the new ZQ8 suspension), others question the decision to release a larger engine in an era of highly fluctuating gas prices.  Even with the V8, others say there's not much to distinguish the Colorado from its larger sibling, the Chevy Silverado.

  • "There's a pleasing amount of reserve power left at higher engine speeds for merging onto the Interstate or overtaking another vehicle on a winding two-lane." -- Truck Trend
  • "With either transmission, the four-cylinder has adequate power for around town driving." Consumer Guide
  • "It took a few dozen miles to adjust to driving the Colorado. The V-8 has lots of power, but there wasn't a way to truly test all of the horses under the hood. Acceleration was good, but other trucks feel faster." -- Detroit News
  • "The 2009 Chevrolet Colorado's inline four- and five-cylinder engines are reasonably smooth, though acceleration and hauling performance are lackluster compared to those offered by the larger V6s of competitors." -- Edmunds
  • "The Colorado's 185-horsepower four-cylinder and 242-horsepower five-cylinder engines provide good power and excellent fuel economy." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "The 300-hp V-8 is the big news for performance enthusiasts and those with more demanding utility needs." -- Cars.com
  • "From behind the wheel, the ZQ8 Colorado has the heft and ready torque of a full-size truck but one with a performance bent." -- PickupTrucks.com

Handling and Braking

Reviewers are generally pleased with the Colorado's ride, but steering draws mixed reviews. Most reviewers say the Colorado feels solid over different types of terrain. The new ZQ8 suspension option wins mostly positive reviews.

  • "Allowing for the general jiggliness of small trucks, Colorado crew cab goes down the road passably well." -- USA Today
  • "The stiffer suspension also meant it could handle itself through corners, but there's a low limit on how much you want to flog a pickup." -- Detroit News
  • "The steering drew criticism for its high effort and numb feel." -- Car and Driver
  • "The body-on-frame chassis provides a rigid platform helping eliminate rattles and shake. You can feel it in the way the Colorado handles off-road and in the corners. Even over washboard roads, the Colorado exhibited no sign of dash-rattling or squeaks." -- Kelley Blue Book
  • "One of the most compelling traits is how well it points and steers." -- PickupTrucks.com

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