After a brief hiatus, Chevy has returned to the mid-size truck market with its all-new 2015 Chevrolet Colorado. We've reported on the truck's launch, and now have had the opportunity to spend additional time with Chevy's challenger to the Toyota Tacoma and Nissan Frontier. 

As it sits, our 2015 Chevrolet Colorado tester rings out at $36,535 and that includes an $875 destination charge. This final asking price includes an optional Bose audio system ($500), Chevy's MyLink infotainment system ($495), and a trailering equipment option ($250). Everything else featured on this Colorado was standard including a back-up camera, remote keyless entry, and an EZ Lift and Lower tailgate. A similarly equipped Silverado tacks on an additional $4,000 and includes the 4.3-liter V6 engine, not the 5.3-liter V8, which is a $1,095 option. 

Smaller footprint

Price differences aside, one of the selling points for the Colorado over the Silverado is its relatively smaller footprint. Navigating a crowded parking lot or trying to fit in to a space on the street is much easier to do than with a full-size truck. The Colorado's turning radius made swinging around after missing a street easy.

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Among the features that caught our attention was the user-friendly MyLink system. Syncing a smartphone was as easy as a push of a button. Interacting with the touchscreen system was also simple and made everything from using the sound system to changing the climate controls a breeze.

The Colorado's interior is a comfortable way to spend slogging miles. The driver's seat has multiple ways to be adjusted and the seat heaters act quickly. The front bucket seats are supportive and passengers in back will have legroom to pass the ride comfortably as well. 

Weekend Warrior

Over the weekend, we took the Colorado down to Valley Center, California to visit friends and experienced the truck on highways and back country roads over the course of a 200 mile road trip. Under the hood, a 3.6-liter V6 engine rated at 305 horsepower and 270 lb-ft of torque was up to the task of cruising the highway and hauling a load in the bed. One gripe was the sluggish transmission downshifts on acceleration, which in turn delayed the application of power. If you really step into it, acceleration is marginally better but most owners won't be that aggressive in normal driving. However, the 6-speed automatic transmission did play its part in hitting the EPA's estimates for the Colorado. 

The 2015 Chevrolet Colorado is rated at 17 city/24 highway and 20 mpg combined. Upon arriving home, we noticed that the Colorado's onboard trip computer was reading 20.4 mpg, just as forecasted after a day of mixed driving conditions. Filling up the Colorado won't take your breath away either. With fuel just below a quarter, we decided to top off before heading home. The Colorado took on 15.571 gallons at $3.29 per for a grand total of $51.37. In comparison, our long-term Ram 1500 EcoDiesel averages $100 per fill-up.  A smaller size, decent fuel economy and pickup utility should help the Colorado float back to the top of the segment. 

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