Prefer your Chevy Colorado prepped and ready to take on whatever Mother Nature can throw at it? Say no more as the bow-tie brand was busy making a special edition Colorado that can do just that. Say hello to the 2019 Colorado ZR2 Bison, an all-new performance variant that is purpose-built to take on the roughest terrain and weather conditions, and then some.
Made possible with American Expedition Vehicles (AEV), one of the leading off-road aftermarket manufacturers in the US, the ZR2 Bison is equipped with a wide array of off the beaten path upgrades, as well as plenty of undercarriage and body protection.
“The Colorado Z71 offers a full suite of off-road equipment, the maneuverability of a midsize truck and the driving range of a class-exclusive diesel engine. The Colorado ZR2 offers even greater off-road capability with class-exclusive front and rear locking differentials and Multimatic DSSV dampers. And now, Bison offers customers an even more extreme turnkey off-road truck ready to tackle your next adventure,” said Sandor Piszar, Director of Marketing at Chevrolet Truck.
AEV played a huge role in making the necessary upgrades for the Colorado ZR2 Bison. For starters, the pickup has a total of five skid plates which protect the engine oil pan, fuel tank,transfer case, and front and rear locking differentials. Each skid plate is constructed out of durable hot-stamped Boron steel. There's also the new front and rear steel bumpers which protect the ZR2 Bison from obstacles and other debris. The former can be equipped with a power winch and comes with foglights as standard. Meanwhile, the latter is fitted with recovery points for easier towing or pulling.
Gone is the standard bow-tie logo, as well as the dual-port grill on the ZR2 Bison. Replacing it is a bespoke 'flow-through' black grill with Chevrolet lettering prominently displayed. 'Bison' decals, as well as 'AEV Bison' logos on the tailgate further accentuate the pickup's off-road prowess. Further setting the ZR2 Bison apart from the rest are the huge 31-inch Goodyear Wrangler Duratrac off-road tires that sit beneath equally huge fender flares.
Despite having plenty of aftermarket add-ons and upgrades, the ZR2 Bison retains some of the key features from the standard ZR2. These include: front and rear locking electronic differentials, Multimatic DSSV dampers, off-road rocker protection, cast-iron control arms and the Autotrac transfer case. In addition, the ZR2 Bison also keeps the factory 3.42 rear axle ratio, 3.5-inch front and rear widened tracks and the factory suspension lift kit rated at 2 inches.
Under the hood, the ZR2 Bison is powered by a 3.6-liter V6 that pushes out 308 PS at 6800 rpm along with 373 Nm of torque at 4000 rpm. Power is then transferred to an eight-speed automatic transmission with 4WD system. For those that prefer diesel power, the ZR2 Bison can also be specified with the 2.8-liter Duramax turbo-diesel. It musters 188 PS with 500 Nm of torque and is connected to a six-speed automatic transmission.
“We’ve been following Colorado since its introduction, and the ZR2 really captured our attention. As this is the first Chevrolet vehicle we’ve given the AEV treatment to, we wanted to do something special with the industry’s first use of hot-stamped Boron steel. We also expect that Colorado drivers will love the added ruggedness of our front and rear bumpers on ZR2 Bison,” said Dave Harriton, founder and president of AEV.
The 2019 Colorado ZR2 Bison will go on sale in January 2019 and is backed by a full factory limited warranty in the US. Sadly, there is no word if the USDM Colorado ZR2 Bison will be made available outside of the US market.