A Chevy Bison Is Set To Roam The Countryside Near You
Sometimes you want the best of two worlds. You want a smaller, compact pickup, that isn’t the same overall size as a full-size offering, and yet you also want something that’s performance-driven with enough teeth to bite any environment you might find yourself in. Well, that’s exactly what the Chevy Colorado Bison is. Chevy trucks are some of the longest-lasting, most dependable trucks on the road today, with the Colorado standing as the company’s compact pickup offering. Yet the Bison trim takes all the performance and off-roading elements of the Colorado and takes it up to 11. So if you love every bit of a Chevy truck but want more of it, the 2020 Colorado Bison looks to quench your satiating hunger.
Playing Hard To Get
The 2020 year isn’t the first year of the Colorado Bison. General Motors decided to release a small number of the trim last year as a test, to see if there’d be a desire to purchase the trim package. The company released only 2,000 and let them out into the wild to see how the truck would fare. Well, the trucks sold out in a heartbeat, leaving many compact truck enthusiasts wishing the company would have built more.
GM listened and has increased the production of the Bison for this upcoming 2020 model year. Now, it is important to realize that this production increase won’t be massive. It’ll still be a limited edition truck, as it is believed GM will release an additional 2,500 or so (the exact number is not yet known). So while there will be more available, the truck will still play hard to get, so if you have any interest in the Colorado Bison, you won’t want to sit on your hands.
So What’s The Deal With This Bison, Anyway
From time to time, automakers will partner with third-party manufacturers to build something new and original. Ford, for example, once partnered with Eddie Bauer to produce special edition Eddie Bauer editions (this partnership dated back to the days of the Bronco), although this trim package usually only came with better seating, a few tweaks inside the cabin, and a color scheme featuring a mostly blue paint job and a tan stripe along the base. This truck, however, is much more substantial.
With this partnership, General Motors collaborated with American Expedition Vehicles (or AEV). AEV is a manufacturer of off-road kits and upgrades. Fans of off-roading will already know the AEV name very well, as it truly is one of the best manufacturers of this kind of equipment.
General Motors begins by making the Chevy Colorado. The trucks are then shipped out to AEV for the additional features to be installed. This is one reason why the truck is produced in such limited numbers as it does take time to move the fleet of vehicles from the General Motors plant in Missouri to AEV.
The Bison uses the same Colorado ZR2 build and then is fitted with a number of off-roading features, making it ready for any environment. It also saves the buyer time from needing to install these features themselves.
But what exactly does the Bison feature? It takes advantage of all kinds of underbody armor plating, which is important when off-roading to help prevent punctures and other undercarriage damage. It also swaps out the traditional bumpers for steel bumpers, which are far more durable and protective. It also features Dynamic Suspensions Spool Valve dampers and cast-iron control arms. Additional steel skid plates, rocker guards, wheel upgrades, and other features are all on the Bison, making it ready to take on the world right out of the gate.
Under The Hood Of the Colorado ZR2
The Bison takes advantage of the maxed-out ZR2 trim package and then takes it up a notch. So to better understand the Bison, you need to understand what’s going on with the ZR2.
Now, it is important to point out that some of the MPG numbers will be skewed off on the Bison. This is because it has larger wheels, not to mention weighs more with the added steel protective elements. So while the standard 4WD Crew Cab ZR2 offers 16 miles per gallon in the city and 17 on the highway, the fuel economy numbers will likely dip a bit for the Bison, although the exact fuel economy isn’t stated yet.
Under the hood of the ZR2, Chevy uses a 3.6L V6 engine that produces 308 horsepower and 275 lb-ft of torque. This is the standard engine. You do have two alternative options. If you’re more keen on fuel economy, you can take it down to an I4, although realistically, if you’re interested in an off-road truck, you probably want to keep it with the larger, more powerful engine.
The ZR2 uses an independent front type suspension and a multi-leaf rear suspension for better handling while off-roading. It uses an 8-speed automatic transmission and transmission overdrive switch, although a 6-speed automatic transmission is available.
In terms of safety, beyond the added protection installed by AEV, the ZR2 comes standard with driver, front head, front side, passenger, and rear head airbags, plus 4-wheel ABS and 4-wheel disc brakes. It also comes standard with front tow hooks, electronic stability control, traction control, and daytime running lights.
Curious about what kind of entertainment features come packed into the Bison? It does come standard with an AM/FM stereo, HD radio, an AUX input for connecting your favorite external devices (as long as it has a 3.5mm headphone jack), satellite radio, smart device integration, and Wi-Fi hotspot (with subscription). Onboard hands-free communications and a wireless cell phone hookup for pairing your mobile device with the stereo via Bluetooth comes standard as well. You also have the option to add a premium sound system and navigation system.
When you’re not off-roading with the Colorado Bison, you’ll want to protect yourself and stay safe while on the road. Thankfully the ZR2 comes with all kinds of helpful control features. This includes a back-up camera (which helps hooking up with a trailer, for which the max trailering capacity is 5,000 pounds), front reading lamps, remote engine start, a heated steering wheel, vehicle anti-theft system, and numerous other features.
Upgrading to The Bison
If you’ve been itching for those extra performance features, there are a few upgrades and options you can go for that don’t necessarily come standard on the Bison trim package. Most of these are minor alterations as the majority of the features are installed as standard by AEV. However, a few of the internal features and if you want added performance upgrades (tow cables, for example), you’ll want to discuss these kinds of upgrades with the dealer. This way, you can land the optimal Colorado Bison on delivery.
Are You Hungry For Bison?
So what do you think? Are you a fan of the Chevy Colorado Bison? Have you been searching for a ready-made, off-roading truck, or do you simply like the aggressive way it looks? Make sure to let us know in the comments! We’d love to uncover exactly what you’re looking for in the perfect compact pickup here at Frank Kent Chevrolet in Ennis, TX.