Now don’t tell anyone, but I kinda have a thing for off-road vehicles. And over the years I’ve been a spectator of off-road Motorsports – mainly motocross. Although I have never been a participant, I am a fan. I loved watching the rivalry between “Bubba” Stewart and Chad Reed as they fought for hole-shots and tore up “whoops” in epic battles to be #1. When televised I would watch rock-crawling. Sat in amazement of the driver/spotter teamwork using rope and hand signals to climb what looked like impossible crevices. I also tuned in to Trophy Truck racing when Deegan and the Metal Mulisha formed a team. These days I geek out whenever I see the King of off-road Ford Raptor roaming the streets of SoCal.
The other day I received a message that my buddy Blake (from my Who Needs a Golf R post) had purchased a new vehicle. He was looking for a replacement for his girlfriend’s Ecoboost Mustang. You know the Ford Mustang, a.k.a. the car event crowd wrecker. If you don’t know what I mean by that, please look up the videos on YouTube, pure insanity of people drifting uncontrollably into crowds or cars or poles as they pulled away from car events.
He was looking for something that possessed greater visibility and road presence than what the lowered Mustang could offer. Now like many of us, Blake has a passion for all things automotive. Spends countless hours on forums, researching cars, prices, styles and trends…he stays in the know. All of this came in handy in the decision making process. After plenty of research, they decided on a pick-up truck. Not just a truck but something with Off-Road capabilities. He began cross shopping a few of the popular trucks and landed on the Chevy Colorado ZR2.
Blake went on the Chevrolet website to build his perfect truck, a white over black 2018 optioned to the gills off-road package. After ticking the box on most of the options, as most of us do, it totaled up to be more than what he wanted to spend. That is what is known as sticker shock. As luck would have it, he was scrolling through the Chevy forum and found that a dealership was offering killer deals on the exact truck he spec’d out. So, without hesitation he hightailed it down to Santa Ana. Signed some paperwork and drove home with his new purchase.
With less than 1000 miles on the truck, I told him let’s get together. I figured I could get some shots of the truck in its natural element…by hitting the trails and getting dirty. Not only was I thinking is this will make for some great blog material but this will be an amazing adventure for me. I have always wanted to go off-roading and this was the perfect opportunity for me to do both.
Early Saturday morning I met up with Blake and Jon and was able to snap a few shots of a very clean Off-Road truck. I was blown away with the styling of the truck. I grew up back in the day with a Datsun pick-up and this is of course leaps and bounds above the basic grey king-cab pick-up I used to drive to the mall. The truck has a touch screen like most vehicles these days, leather seats, digital info screen between the gauge cluster showing things such as pitch angle, tire pressure, etc.
Admittedly with this level of creature comforts and good looks, I was a little skeptical of what the truck could handle. My tune changed after only 5 minutes of driving on the trail.
The trail is a fire access road but a good place to test your skills. Full of cliffside switchback, rocks and plenty of whoops to catch air at the right speed. Don’t ask me how I know. In the turns there are some banks if you feel the need to get a little sideways.
It was really great getting out there early as there weren’t many people on the trails. It allowed us to stop, chat and take plenty of pictures.
Riding the trails for the first time was a great experience and being with cool people added to the fun. It’s funny that the talk at the end was about who was getting a truck next? Who’s ready to ditch their current car or just add to their collection. I must say that I watched a ton of off-road videos once I made it back home.
To be able to go to a dealership buy a vehicle and drive it straight up a mountain is amazing to me. No modifications needed although Blake does plan of getting a set of larger tires. The Chevy Colorado ZR2 has the suspension, ground clearance, and the locking front and rear diffs making for a very impressive package out the gate. Based on how well Blake modified his GTI, I can’t wait to see if Blake can improve on what is already a great truck. All I know is that I’m ready for another ride.
Here is some video I took when I want too (butt) clinched to focus.
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