By KBB.com Editors
As gasoline prices continue to edge upwards, the compact pickup is beginning to look mighty attractive. Though it can't tow or haul like a full-size Silverado, the 2008 Chevrolet Colorado makes an attractive alternative for those whose truck use tends to be more recreational than occupational. The Colorado's 185-horsepower four-cylinder and 242-horsepower five-cylinder engines provide good power and excellent fuel economy, while a four-wheel-drive option allows the compact pickup to tackle deep snow and venture off-road. Although the Colorado's cab and bed are not the largest in this segment (and its turning radius is uncommonly wide), the truck remains competitive with Ford's Ranger series and, to a lesser extent, the Toyota Tacoma, Nissan Frontier and Dodge Dakota.You'll Like This Car If...
If you like the rugged, bold look of the full-size Silverado, but want it in a smaller package that gets better fuel economy, check out the Colorado. The standard four-cylinder engine is surprisingly strong yet, with two-wheel drive, is EPA-rated at 24 miles per gallon on the highway.You May Not Like This Car If...
Some may find the Colorado too narrow and, with the Crew Cab model, short on rear-seat legroom. Also, the Colorado's optional 3.7-liter in-line five-cylinder engine does not offer as much torque as the V6 engines from Toyota and Nissan.What's New for 2008
OnStar with the Safe and Sound package is standard on 1LT and Z71 trim levels.Driving It Driving Impressions
The Colorado's greatest strengths can be found in its chassis and powertrains. The newest body-on-frame chassis is much more rigid than previous Chevrolet compact pickups and 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. Chevrolet has also created a number of performance and off-road packages that enhance the Colorado's rugged image. Surprisingly, for such a small truck, the Colorado has a rather wide turning circle. The standard in-line four-cylinder is fairly potent for such a small engine. When ordered with the manual transmission, it also offers exceptionally good fuel economy.Favorite Features
The Colorado's rear 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.
Optional side-curtain airbags are a first for this segment.