Chevrolet today unveiled its Colorado Show Truck on the eve of the Bangkok International Auto Show, where it is making its global public debut.
The is said to be concept virtually identical to the next-generation Colorado mid-size pickup truck that goes on sale in Thailand later this year, and will eventually be on sale in the U.S.
“Thailand is the world’s-largest market for mid-size pickups, so this was the perfect location in which to unveil our new Colorado,” said Susan Docherty, vice president, General Motors International Operation Sales, Marketing and Aftersales.
Thailand is among the largest pickup truck markets in the world, with small pickups making up more than 40% of the vehicle market because of government incentives. Ford GM and Toyota all manufacture small to mid-size pickup trucks in Thailand and export them.
The Colorado show truck previews the next-generation mid-size Chevrolet pickup truck, which goes on sale in Thailand later this year, and could appear in the U.S. a year or so later.
Production of the current Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon in Shreveport, La., is scheduled to end when the plant closes no later than June 2012 after a deal to sell the plant to the Chinese fell through. Shreveport also built the now defunct Hummer H3. The plant was a victim of the GM bankruptcy as well as rising gasoline prices in 2008 which caused truck sales to plummet.
A Chevrolet spokesperson refused to say if the new Colorado would be imported or locally made, a volatile issue in what is a UAW contract year, and for what remains a low volume truck at 5,000 units year-to-date.
The Chevrolet Colorado show truck has an extended-cab body, all-wheel-drive and 20-inch wheels with off-road tires. Power comes from a 2.8-liter turbo-diesel engine, which likely won’t be available in the U.S.
“Pepperdust” metallic exterior paint is used with polished aluminum details in the fascias. There are also nicely integrated side steps and black-masked projector-style headlamps with LED lighting.
Inside, contrasts are used with the light-colored leather seating and dark wood trim accented with chrome. The show truck has a 7-inch LCD display in the center stack, for easy viewing and web access, navigation system, music and hands-free phoning. Automakers continue to expand electronic use in spite of the growing problem of distracted driving, which is responsible fore more than 5,000 deaths annually in the U.S. and hundreds of thousands of serious injuries, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.