is what the Chevy SSR should have been when it came to market.
the GM Performance Division to showcase design talents and engineering
expertise, the Colorado Cruz is an over-the-top sport truck with more
than 400 V8 horsepower and plenty of attitude.
is one of two vehicles built under the Employee Enthusiasm program at
GM Performance that made their debut at the 2004 Woodward Dream Cruise
in Detroit. The other was a Pontiac GTO Ram Air 6. Both vehicles were
designed and assembled by more than 200 volunteer employees using parts
donated by GM Powertrain, GM Performance Parts and GM Design Center.
started out as a Colorado standard cab. The exterior is emphasized with
a classic high-dome hood, aggressive front fascia, sleek rockers, mind-bending
wheel flares, custom side mirrors, shaved door handles and metallic blue
paint. The suspension was lowered using dropped spindles up front and
tuned leaf springs in the rear. Big Brembos are found at all four corners
along with 20-inch HRE 5-spoke wheels shod with Michelin Pilot Sport PS2
tires (335/30 rear, 285/30 front).
Under the hood is a 6.2-liter V8 pumped up to deliver 420 horsepower
and 420 lb-ft of peak torque. The engine was shoe-horned in using modified
engine mounts, the accessory drive from a Cadillac CTS and a radiator
and fan from a C6 Corvette. The remainder of the driveline consists of
a T56 6-speed manual transmission, modified stock driveshaft and a 9.5-inch
American Axle rear end.
The interior is adorned with race pedals, Sparco seats, 4-point belts,
center console and carbon fiber trim plates.
will also appear at SEMA and selected auto shows during the winter. GM
officials deny that the Cruz is a preview of future Colorado models, but
it confirms that a V8 will fit into the engine bay. Chevy should take
a hard look at this truck. The Silverado SS is a joke compared to the
Ford Lightning or Dodge Ram SRT-10, and sales of the SSR aren’t
meeting expectations. Maybe it’s time to stop building show trucks
and build a real performance street truck for the dealers.