Yes, the ZR2 is far from a base truck. But based on a suggestion from the peanut gallery (*waves at PrincipalDan*) we thought it would be a good idea to see if a “base” off-roader is a healthier bet than upgrading to the full meal deal.
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In fact, calling the ZR2 a base truck – with its DSSV dampers and other gonzo off-road kit – seems like heresy to your author. Jumping a Colorado ZR2 at 40 mph over an obstacle on a trophy truck track proves just how capable the thing is.
(How’s that Ranger Raptor coming, Ford? Oh, it isn’t? I see. Thanks for the mobility scooter, then.)
Chevy has, however, added another layer onto the ZR2 cake. Called the Bison, is its extra gear worth the cash? Or are gearheads better off with a “base” ZR2 and spending the money on mods of their own? Let’s see.
By the way, did you know that Chevy quietly dropped the manual transmission option that used to appear on the 2WD base Colorado? Me either, despite the build-n-price tool showing a stick on the floor in the promotional image. Chalk up another loss in the standard column.
Jumping right into the deep end, the Bison is technically an option package and not an additional trim. For $5,750, shoppers will net themselves front and rear bumpers designed by the off-road boffins at AEV. In fact, it is said that development of the Bison started not long after the ZR2 appeared, with the company’s boss essentially being told to envision a ZR2 as if he himself were taking it to rugged locales like Road of the Bones in Russia.
AEV additions also include more robust skid plates, new wheels, and a few styling tweaks like the CHEVROLET billboard grille and a set of fog lamps. Mercifully, the Bison package is a standalone option, one that does not require selecting other gear in order to get the good stuff.
You’ll notice the truck shown here is the Extended Cab model, not a Crew. This is because your author firmly believes that Colorado buyers are far better off taking the longer bed than longer cab, since legroom is so woeful in the Crew that it’s just as logical to get the smaller cab. It’ll likely only get used for enclosed storage, anyway.
According to the AEV website, very little of what makes up a Bison is available as standalone parts. I’m sure if someone waved a bag of cash at AEV they’d craft the bumpers for them but it doesn’t seem to be mass-market stuff. Yet. However, their snorkel kit is $459 compared to Chevy’s $725 performance air intake system.
My answer? Yes. I’d pop for the Bison. In a world where a set of bumpers are close to $3,000, and skid plates are equally expensive, the Bison package is a fair (but not bargain) priced package. Just stay away from everything else on the ZR2’s option list.
For more view source: https://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2019/04/ace-of-base-2019-chevrolet-colorado-zr2/