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2012 Chevrolet Colorado Crew Cab

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2012 Chevrolet Colorado Crew Cab Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 6.1

Mid-size pickup trucks make a lot of sense, especially if you use your vehicle for work and play rather than shuttling to the office and running weekend errands. But, with budgets tight and fuel expensive a full-size pickup is probably overkill for most needs, which is why the 2012 Chevrolet Colorado is the right-size pickup for today's light-duty chores. Although its aging platform isn't as fresh as the Toyota Tacoma or Nissan Frontier, the Colorado still has a rugged charm about it. And its price point certainly can't be argued with, offering one of the most affordable entry-level trucks on the market. With the temporary demise of the Ford Ranger for 2012 (an all-new model is set to debut in 2013) and Ram not offering a Regular Cab Dakota, the Colorado has the domestic market all to itself. With a broad range of models, cab and bed configurations and engine choices, not to mention rear-wheel or 4-wheel drive, the Colorado is an attractive prospect for budget-conscious working folk and truck junkies in general.

You'll Like This Car If...

If your pickup's capabilities are more important to you than its fancy styling or cushy interior, the 2012 Chevrolet Colorado is a truck that should be in your driveway. Those worried about the cost associated with driving a pickup will appreciate the base model's impressive fuel economy and surprisingly strong 4-cylinder engine.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The 2012 Chevrolet Colorado is more compact than mid-size when compared to its competition. It is not as wide or long as Tacoma or Dakota, and Crew Cab models aren't big on rear-seat legroom, either. Those who need to tow heavy loads should note the Colorado's 3.7-liter in-line 5-cylinder engine cannot equal the torque output of the V6 engines from Toyota and Nissan.

What's New for 2012

For 2012, Chevrolet makes a number of equipment changes to the Colorado line. The Power Convenience Package is added to 1LT trims, while 2LT trims gain standard front bucket seats. LT models no longer offer a manual transmission, and the 5.3-liter V8 engine is no longer offered on the 1LT. A locking rear differential is made standard on 2LT, 3LT and 1LT 4x4 models.

Driving the Colorado Crew Cab
Driving Impressions

Among the 2012 Chevrolet Colorado's greatest strengths are its solid chassis and potent yet fuel-efficient powertrains. The Colorado's rigid body-on-frame architecture renders rattles and vibrations nearly nonexistent, even on washboard...

... roads and rough pavement. Thanks to Chevy's off-road and performance packages, the Colorado can step up its off-road game, as well as its around-town image. If there is one fly in the Colorado's ointment, it's the unusually wide turning circle, which can prove problematic when trying to maneuver in tight quarters. We think the standard 2.9-liter engine is quite robust for its size and offers exceptionally good fuel economy.

Tailgate
The Colorado's tailgate can be set at a 55-degree angle so that items can rest flat on the tops of the wheel wells and align with the tailgate.

Side Curtain Airbags
Standard side-curtain airbags are an important safety feature worth having.

2012 Chevrolet Colorado Crew Cab Details
Interior

The 2012 Chevrolet Colorado offers a no-frills interior that is highly functional and easy to maintain. Seating is comfortable for front-seat passengers, with good thigh support from the firm cushions. However, the Extended Cabs tiny jump seats are not fit for human occupancy over any great length of time, and while the Crew Cab offers true 2-person seating, rear-seat legroom is tight. Base models have an overabundance of gray plastic and gray cloth seats, neither of which is very inviting. Higher-level models can be equipped with cloth or leather cashmere colored seating and feature a bit more dash and door-panel embellishment to brighten the interior.

Exterior

While the Colorado's look is not exactly ground-breaking, it is unmistakably Chevrolet. Like its Silverado big brother, the 2012 Chevy Colorado displays its strength through bulging fender flares, slab-sided doors and bright machine-finished alloy wheels. Regular and Extended Cab models feature a 6-foot bed, while the Crew Cab offers a slightly shorter 5-foot, 1-inch bed. Thanks to the tall side walls, the Colorado's bed offers best-in-class volume, and the clever tailgate has a 2-position setting that allows it to either lay flat or be propped at a 55-degree angle. When in the propped position, the top of the tailgate is parallel with the tops of the rear wheel wells inside the bed making it easier to load and carry, for example, sheets of plywood or dry wall. Regular Cab models ride on a 111.3-inch wheelbase while Extended and Crew Cab models are on a 126.0-inch wheelbase.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2012 Chevrolet Colorado WT features a 5-speed manual transmission, 2.9-liter 4-cylinder engine, air conditioning, cruise control, anti-lock brakes (ABS), side-curtain airbags, stability control, Bluetooth, tilt steering wheel, dual outside mirrors, automatic headlights, carpeting, AM/FM stereo, XM Satellite Radio, tachometer and forward-facing jump seats in the Extended Cab. The LT trim adds an automatic transmission, chrome front and rear bumpers, Deluxe Cloth upholstery, CD player, power mirrors and leather-wrapped steering wheel. To that the Z71 adds the Z71 off-road suspension, auto-dimming mirror, rear sliding window and the 3.7-liter 5-cylinder engine.

Optional Equipment

Options for the 2012 Chevy Colorado include 4-wheel drive, 4-speed automatic transmission, power windows, power door locks, power mirrors, heated leather seats, automatic locking rear differential, tow package;, 16-, 17- and 18-inch wheel options; 6-disc CD changer, traction control, Z71 off-road package, the ZQ8 performance package (18-inch wheels, sport suspension and 5.3-liter V8 engine) available on the Sport trim.

Under the Hood

Engine choices for the 2012 Chevy Colorado include 4- and 5-cylinder powerplants, as well as a V8 engine on the LT trim. The standard 2.9-liter 4- and the optional 3.7-liter 5-cylinder engines might seem small, but they are both big on power. The 2.9-liter 4-cylinder produces an impressive 185 horsepower and offers up most of its 190 pound-feet of torque between the ranges of 1,200 and 5,600 rpm. That's enough power to muscle any lightly-equipped 4-wheel-drive vehicle through the toughest terrain. The optional 3.7-liter engine makes 242 horsepower. Both of these engines produce class-leading horsepower while returning good fuel economy. The big 5.3-liter V8 is powerful but not easy on gas and is best ordered only when towing is a priority.

2.9-liter in-line 4
185 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
190 lb-ft of torque @ 2,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 18/25 (2WD), 18/24 (4WD, manual), 17/23 (4WD, automatic)

3.7-liter in-line 5
242 horsepower @ 5,600 rpm
242 lb-ft of torque @ 4,600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 17/23 (2WD), 17/23 (4WD), 16/21 (4WD, Crew Cab)

5.3-liter V8
300 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
320 lb-ft of torque @ 4,000 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20 (2WD), 14/19 (4WD)}

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2012 Chevrolet Colorado Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
7.8
Out of 10

Based on 995 Ratings for the 2004 - 2012 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.1/10
    Quality
    8.0/10
  • Reliability
    8.5/10
    Performance
    8.2/10
  • Comfort
    8.1/10
    Styling
    8.4/10

Well worth it

By on Wednesday, January 20, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 165,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "few repairs"

Cons: "cosmetic issues, light bulbs, buzzer,"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought my Chevy Colorado as an internet special with 16K on it. Now at 165K I've done next to nothing in repairs, only normal wear such as battery, tires, exhaust, and brakes. It's been great in snow and has held good value over the years."

18 people out of 23 found this review helpful

Reliable trail barnstorming

By on Thursday, January 07, 2016

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 80,085

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
7/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 7

"I've regularly taken my truck places that my friends have shied away from. With aggression. We're the temp tag and tire crew. We've made a few payments, some popped tires, we scratched rims along the way. My lil' mule scoots around the obstacles like a v8 can't muster. Around Georgetown, CO. the v8 crew might pick on my I5 because they didn't know that their highway $70k city truck was about to be shamed by El Chupacabra, out on the trail. I've had hikers ask me, "how did you get here?". I love my 2006 Chevy Colorado with 87k miles, with 20K of those hard, because we go anywhere. Oh, mind that you change your fuel filter every 30K or so miles."

4 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Reliable truck with good gas mileage

By on Saturday, November 28, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 192,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "good gas mileage, reliable"

Cons: "seat doesn't recline, spare tire need special tool"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"This truck was purchased new from dealer in 2006, I have put the full 180k+ miles on it myself. I changed the fuel filter about 7 times (every 30k miles or so) change oil every 3-5k miles maybe went once or twice of 5-7k miles. I clean the throttle body and air sensor (got a check engine light saying this was problem at about 63k so I've done it around 50k since then). Truck was lowered 3" and seasonally use 20" performance rims with lo-pro. I would say that about 60% of miles are highway and freeway miles. (also used as delivery truck for 4 years) FOLLOWING FAILED PARTS: at 58,354 miles the Front U-joint began making horrible noise and was replaced with a greasable one within 100 miles. (likely due to lowering vehicle) at 78,329 miles my passenger tie rod was replaced (les swab realized the problem due to uneven wear on my tire) it was also replaced by a greasable one. at 127,935 miles I was forced to replace my rear u-joint (replaced with greasable one) at 138,732 miles I had a few problems with the vehicle turning over but not starting (replaced battery connections) also started having problems with anit-lock brake warnings randomly around this 139k and at 141,732 miles my front driver side wheel bearing began seezing up (very horrible experience since it started forcing vehicle left) replacement was surprising easy and I did it on side of road with limited tools in about 2 hours(this also fixed my anti-lock brake light). (bearing and hub one piece) price $247. 151k replaced shocks (were getting soft) at 164k replaced water pump as it started leaking (still drove for 3 days probably woulda lasted longer but didnt wanna push it) at 177k I got an engine light for "engine cold to long" replaced thermostat. I have definitely pushed this vehicle hard, diven many mountain roads, towed at least 2 tons 3k miles on a 400lb tongue (and I got the 4 cylinder.) Driven a 36 hour non-stop trip. So I would definitely recommend this vehicle. I would say that I like the peppy-ness it has yet its not so fast that I am getting speeding tickets (peppy since I know how to drive a manual) The only part of the vehicle I had a problem with was that the seat does not recline at all (likely since single cab.)"

11 people out of 16 found this review helpful

Excellent Small (Midsize) Pickup

By on Tuesday, November 24, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 30,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
Not Rated
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Fun to drive, handles great, and very comfortable."

Cons: "Bigger people may not be too happy with this PU."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Excellent pickup for highway travel or tooling around to the hardware store and back. Seating very compfortable (up front)' for I never road in the back seats. But if you are a big and tall or burly type person you may have problems getting in and out. For travelling, it has plenty of get up and go, even for a five cylinder. Carrying a huge load won't work on this vehicle for the bed is too small. But big enough for the everyday shopper, or to haul around the mower. In the snow, the handling was exquisit. It is an all around fun and functional vehicle from the get go."

5 people out of 8 found this review helpful

Good Truck with only minor issues.

By on Saturday, October 17, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 89,885

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
6/10
Reliability
6/10
Quality
6/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "Decent fuel economy, plenty of power"

Cons: "Too many sensor issues, needs more cab room"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"I purchase this truck new in 2007. Overall it has been a good truck with only minor issues (so far). A transmission sensor failed while under warranty so dealer fixed it and no more problems with that. For the last 20,000 miles the check engine light has been on. Autozone checked and said it was a fuel solenoid but since it has not caused any serious issues in the performance of the truck, I have not carried it in to the dealer. For the last 10,000 miles the check TPM light has come on. Carried it to the dealer and they reset the TPM. That worked for about 10 minutes after I left the dealer. Now I just let the sensors flash and don't worry about them. Another issue is the anti-theft sensor. About every 3 months the truck will fail to start and the anti-theft sensor will flash. I let the truck sit for 10 minutes and then it starts. This seems to be a common problem with Colorados and something Chevy should do a recall on but I know they won't. I wish the vehicle had less sensors. They only seem to cause problems. I get around 20 MPG which is not bad but could be better. It has plenty of power but a little extra cab space would be nice. Other than that, I have only added gas and oil. Even with the issues I mentioned, I don't see myself trading off my Colorado unless I it starts giving me some serious problems."

26 people out of 29 found this review helpful

Funnest automobile I've ever owned.

By on Friday, October 09, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 56,347

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Power, fun, sport suspension,"

Cons: "plasticy interior"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I own a rarer 2009 5.3L, 300hp, v-8 equipped colorado Lt. It has a ZQ8 suspension package. This has been the funnest, most surefooted vehicle I have ever owned.It has 56.000 miles with no mechanical issues whatsoever. The interior is a little on the cheap side. I think it is a very sharp looking exterior. I get a lot of looks and compliments."

9 people out of 16 found this review helpful

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