The 2015 Chevy Colorado Trail Boss has a really cool name. And a few accessories from GM's GearOn catalog, and some decent all-terrain tires. Sorry boys, Chevrolet doesn't think you're man enough for the ZR2 and this is the "off-road" Colorado you're getting.

So... Why?

Chevrolet's official answer: "We're gauging customer interest in 'off-road' and other directions for this truck."

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Let me interpret that for you: the ZR2 Concept was the company's "extreme" idea to get your attention, the Trail Boss is what they're willing to risk to see if anybody will actually pony up the money for a factory-prepped "off-road" Colorado. What they're "willing to risk" is nothing, so the exercise is largely meaningless.

There's absolutely nothing special about the Trail Boss nor is their a compelling reason to buy it. From where I'm standing, the ZR2 should have been the "interest gauger" and I'm pretty sure that's what Chevy called it when they showed it off last year.

Stand back folks, it's rant time– the ZR2 was the perfect compromise! Same frame, same running gear, just really cool OEM bumpers and wheels paired up with hardcore tires and a complete suspension upgrade that's legit enough to hammer on but reasonable enough to daily drive. That's all we really want.

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Make it limited run, make it special-order only, whatever. The ZR2 was/is Chevy's chance to offer a "baby Raptor" that could get away with being inferior to the mighty Ford on performance by undercutting the hell out of it on price. All they'd have to beat is the Tacoma TRD Pro and until we see the 2016 redesign in action (which may or may not actually be better) that thing's a fat, juicy, slow-moving target just begging to be picked off by a rival.

But I digress, back to the Trail Boss. Let's look at it from a practical perspective. $31,825 gets you an extended cab four-cylinder 2WD Z71 Colorado Trail Boss with:

  • Transfer case shield (on 4WD)
  • Front recovery hooks
  • Black, three-inch round rocker steps
  • Spray-on bedliner
  • Projector beam headlamps
  • Front fog lamps
  • All-weather floor mats with Z71 logo
  • Moveable cargo tie-down rings
  • Load bar and cargo divider
  • Fender flares
  • G80 automatic locking rear differential
  • Goodyear Wrangler DuraTrac 265/65R17 all-terrain tires

I built-and-priced a Colorado as close to those specs as I could and wound up with an MSRP of $31,065. So for an extra $760 with the Trail Boss you get a set of tires that cost almost exactly that on TireRack.com.

Within the context of current Colorado offerings, the Trail Boss ain't the worst deal. Just a damn shame it isn't something more than that.