With this review I decided to get out of my comfort zone of driving cars and step into the world of a tradie, well sort of.
I decided to become a man with a pick up for hire for the week and willing to do any job, well when I say hire I meant free, when I said willing to do any job I meant take a load of wood for a friend and when I said a week I really meant for a couple of hours on a Sunday but putting that aside I had a Colorado side cab LX pick up for the week and my aim was to see how good it really would be for a tradie or somebody just wanting an honest no frills pick up to carry stuff around and tow things.
Now first thing I noticed when I picked it up was how huge it seemed to be, it is fairly high off the ground and it’s damn long from the front to the end of the tray.
Which says to me that this thing was meant to work, and give it a work out I was going to do well I was going to try to do.
Climb into the cab and as soon as you turn the key it says I’m a truck, I am a little spoilt in that I drive a Captiva which is pretty damn quiet for a diesel, the 2.8L duramax engine lets you know straight away.
The cabin is quite roomy for a single cab although I’m not quite sure how a real tall person would go in there as I had the seat back nearly all the way and I’m 5’10” in saying that I wasn’t cramped at all.
The instrument panel is very Camaro inspired which are easy to read day are night and the screen in between the dials give you plenty of information via the stalk and also contains a digital speedo which comes in handy.
The stereo is not a bad unit and features, a single cd, usb input and Bluetooth connectivity for your phone the later was damn easy to set up indeed.
The USB connection is at the bottom of the stereo behind a protective cover, there was cable in the glove box which made it easy to connect a USB stick just plug the stick into one end and plug the other into the connection. For a basic unit with limited number of speakers the sound is pretty decent.
The dash is covered in hard plastic this is meant to be a work truck no Nancy boy soft touch stuff here, the console bin is a little small for my liking but I’m use to my Captiva’s which seems to go on for ever. One thing my eldest daughter Madie pointed out was the massive amount of drink holders as well the twin glove boxes.
There is small amount of storage space behind the seats but it’s not much and a lot of it behind the drivers is taken up with the jack and such.
Even though this is a 2wd truck there is a massive amount ground clearance so there would no issues for anybody taking this onto a worksite.
This particular vehicle was fitted with a tray back with drop sides which makes it easy to load stuff on and off, one of my tradie mates did think shorter tradesmen might have an issue getting things off the back given its height off the ground but there a step on each side of the tray to stand on which makes it easy to get on.
The 2.8L duramax Diesel engine is a little noisy but with 470nm of torque this thing is built to carry and tow a load, but it can be rather good on fuel as well.
The massive amount of torque flattens any hill even with a load on, I helped a friend take several hundred kilos of wood from one side of Sydney to out Windsor way and the Colorado drove along like the was nothing in the tray at all. the 6 speed auto is perfectly matched to the engine and I had no issues with it at all. It does have a active select shift option which makes it easy to pick any gear you want and works pretty damn good.
The engine doesn’t seem to be as refined as the diesel in my Captiva but then again this is made for work not a refined family car.
This truck is built to carry a load and to tow 3.5 tonnes so it is stiffly sprung and you do feel it specially on anything but smooth roads, the ride quality was a bit bumpy although a tradie mate said most of the trucks he’s owned haven’t rode much better. The back does bounce around a little bit when it’s empty but it did settle down a bit once we had the load of wood in the back.
When you do think about it if your using one as your work truck how many times is it actually going to be 100% empty.
The steering is not bad but it does steer a bit like a truck, what did drive mental all week was how slippery the steering wheel felt it’s also very hard which made gripping it a problem.
The brakes work well and even going down step hills with a load on there was no hint of fade at all, although the active select made it easy to dial in a lower gear and let the engine breaking do some of the work for you.
Being Holden you know it’s going to be packed full of safety including ESC, EBD, EBA, ABS, Traction and Stability control, driver and passenger front air bags and curtin air bags.
The Colorado LX is built for work and is built tough as its high strength steel constructed body and frame incorporating full length frame rails combine to make an strong chassis which means it will handle anything you can throw at it, and the massive 3500kg towing capacity means you can tow just about anything you want with it as well.
If your in the market for an honest well built work truck or just a truck for towing your weekend toys around then you would be made not to take a look at the Colorado LX.
For more information on Holden’s Colorado range visit their website http://www.holden.com.au