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  • William Maley
    William Maley

    Here's The 2013 Chevrolet Trailblazer

    William Maley

    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com

    March 21, 2012

    Today, General Motors showed off the production model of the new Trailblazer at the Bangkok auto show in Thailand.

    Like the concept Trailblazer shown back in November, the production model uses GM's new global body-on-frame midsize truck architecture. Styling is the same as the concept; rounded and muscular.

    Engines include a base 2.5L four-cylinder diesel producing 150 HP and 258 lb-ft of torque, and a 2.8L four-cylinder diesel producing 180 HP and 346 lb-ft of torque. Both engines go through a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic.

    The Trailblazer will hit dealerships in Thailand in June, with much of the world to follow there after.

    As for the U.S. getting their hands on a Trailblazer, Chevrolet spokesman Tom Wilkinson told Autoblog,

    "There are currently no plans to bring that vehicle to the U.S."

    Press Release is on Page 2

    All-New Chevrolet Trailblazer Makes World Debut in Thailand

    BANGKOK – The Trailblazer, Chevrolet’s tough new “haul-anything, go-anywhere” SUV, made its world debut today at a special event ahead of The 33rd Bangkok International Motor Show in Thailand.

    First previewed in concept form at last year’s Dubai International Motor Show in the Middle East, the Trailblazer will go on sale around the world, beginning with Thailand in June.

    Based on General Motors’ new global body-on-frame midsize truck architecture, the Trailblazer was designed to feature premium ride comfort and handling dynamics for urban and highway driving, matched by superior off-road capabilities.

    Inside, the all-new Trailblazer features leading interior space and intuitive three-row tumble and fold-flat seating, representing Chevrolet’s most significant play in the competitive body-on-frame midsize SUV segment.

    Available in two- and four-wheel-drive configurations, the Trailblazer is powered by GM’s new four-cylinder Duramax turbo-diesel engines that offer class-leading power and torque matched with efficiency and refinement.

    Martin Apfel, president, GM Southeast Asia and Chevrolet Sales Thailand, said the introduction of the new Trailblazer, which will be built at GM Thailand’s manufacturing facility in Rayong, will boost Chevrolet’s presence in the world’s fast-growing SUV markets.

    “True to its name, the Trailblazer will blaze the trail for new Chevrolet vehicles coming into the market. It has been built tough to offer Chevrolet customers everything they need from a heavy-duty SUV,” he said.

    Designed for family transport and urban commuting, the Trailblazer is equally at home negotiating off-road terrain as it is with urban traffic and highway cruising,” Apfel added. “It will hit the sweet spot, not just for consumers in Thailand and throughout Southeast Asia, but in every place around the world where it will be sold.”

    The Trailblazer was developed in tandem with the all-new Chevrolet Colorado midsize pickup truck by a highly skilled team of GM engineers, who used their expertise to add passenger vehicle attributes to the midsize truck architecture.

    Team members lived in Thailand during the development of both vehicles, immersing themselves in the highly competitive truck and SUV market and observing how Thais use their vehicles and the driving conditions they experience. The insights gathered led to the development of Trailblazer models covering two specification levels: the mid-level LT and the range-topping LTZ.

    Powertrain and Transmission

    The Trailblazer will be powered by GM’s all-new family of Duramax four-cylinder turbo-diesel engines, featuring 2.5L and 2.8L displacements. The engines incorporate a host of technologies aimed at delivering an optimal balance of power, performance and fuel economy.

    The range-topping 2.8L variant features a variable-geometry turbocharger for optimal power and efficiency across the engine’s revolution band, and a balancer-shaft for greater smoothness. Both engines feature components designed to last for 240,000 kilometers, enhancing durability and reliability while contributing to lower cost of ownership.

    A choice of two drivetrains will be offered – a five-speed manual transmission and a six-speed automatic featuring electronic shift-control with clutch-to-clutch capability and an electro-hydraulic control module.

    The 2.8-liter engine is rated at 180 horsepower (132 kW) and 346 lb.-ft. of torque (470 Nm) with an available six-speed automatic transmission (324 lb.-ft. / 440 Nm with a five-speed manual). The 2.5-liter engine is rated at 150 horsepower (110 kW) and 258 lb.-ft. of torque (350 Nm).

    Additional powertrains for specific markets will be announced later.

    Ride and Handling

    The Trailblazer’s foundation for both its on- and off-road capabilities is its robust body-on-frame architecture. With the support of an independent five-link rear suspension, a feature found in more upmarket, premium SUVs, the Trailblazer displays none of the typical characteristics of conventional body-on-frame SUVs. In fact, it enjoys a combination of best-in-class luxurious ride and responsiveness. The use of coil springs throughout also provides the Trailblazer with better suspension articulation, a useful trait in off-road conditions, in addition to providing passenger car-like handling dynamics on the road.

    “Our objective when developing the Trailblazer was to achieve ride and handling dynamics that match, and in many cases exceed, those of similar-size crossover vehicles,” said Brad Merkel, GM’s Global Vehicle Line Executive for Midsize Trucks and SUVs. “The Trailblazer will cater to a wide range of driving styles and requirements. It is car-like responsive and premium in its ride quality while offering the off-road capability that our customers demand. That makes it the complete SUV package.”


    The Trailblazer range boasts an impressive array of active and passive safety features, including:

    • Electronic Stability Control
    • Anti-lock Braking System
    • Hydraulic Brake Assist
    • Traction Control
    • Dynamic Rear Brake Proportioning (first use of Rear Drive Brake in the market)
    • Electronic Brake-force Distribution
    • Panic Brake Assist
    • Engine Drag Control
    • Hill Descent Control
    • Driver and Occupant Air Bag Protection

    Exterior Design – Sophisticated Muscle

    The Trailblazer’s bold road presence was created by the GM South America Design Center in São Caetano do Sul, Brazil, and shares a number of design cues with its sister vehicle, the Chevrolet Colorado, in line with Chevrolet’s global design DNA.

    Exterior highlights include a “body in-wheels out” design that delivers high approach and departure angles. A dramatic power dome in the hood combined with a raised cowl designed to give the Trailblazer a strong, purposeful appearance, while higher-mounted dual projector headlamps are positioned beneath the power dome, emphasizing the visual strength in the face of the vehicle.

    Also prominent is the contemporary dual-port grille – an unmistakable Chevrolet cue – that carries a three-dimensional grille mesh. It is complemented by polished aluminum decor trims in the fascias, rockers, belt line, tailgate and roof rack.

    “The Trailblazer delivers a great combination of capabilities, from negotiating off-road trails to daily city driving, that we wanted to convey visually,” said Matt Noone, director of Design for GM do Brasil. “There’s an obvious sense of muscle in the design, but at the same time a very sophisticated appearance in line with the world’s premium SUVs. From every angle, the Trailblazer looks agile and athletic, with a refined finish that makes it a vehicle our customers will aspire to own.”

    The Trailblazer will be available in seven exterior colors: Summit White, Black Sapphire, Sizzle Red, Auburn Brown, Blue Mountain, Royal Gray and Switchblade Silver.

    Interior – Spacious, Refined and Flexible

    Signature Chevrolet cues continue inside, conveying spaciousness, flexibility and an upscale appearance in all control interfaces. With a flowing instrument panel, integrated center stack and signature Chevrolet dual cockpit design, the interior of the all-new Trailblazer combines car-like characteristics with the boldness expected of a true SUV. The seven-passenger interior offers intuitive three-row tumble and/or fold-flat seat versatility and best-in-class spaciousness in the third row.

    “We made the seating both flexible and intuitive. There’s no need to pull out the owner’s manual to figure out how to configure the seats,” Noone said. “The third row in the all-new Trailblazer isn’t an afterthought. It’s an authentic third row where people can sit comfortably for long trips. Combine that with luxurious interior appointments and it is easy to see why the Trailblazer really is an all-purpose vehicle.”

    Additional interior details include:

    • Second row 60/40 split seats with single latch forward gravity tumble, fold-flat capability, and six-degree seat-back reclining with integrated folding armrests, incorporated with cup holders;
    • Third row 50/50 split seats with center console storage and fold-flat capability;
    • Flat floor storage from the front row rearward when all seats are folded to provide extreme load capability;
    • Auxiliary power plug with USB and Bluetooth connectivity.

    Contrasting trim used with the light-colored leather seating and dual-grained surfaces on the instrument panel provide a premium feel. A number of storage compartments are located throughout the interior, including a covered center bin for the concealment of valuable items, and a large dual glovebox.

    Pricing, full specifications and features will be released later.

    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments

    NOPE, as long as there are people willing to buy and if the numbers are justified, then you will see it here.

    If they do bring it, I truly hope they bring it with the 2.8 liter turbo Diesel Duramax. This would rule the roost!!!

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    I hope they kept the cool LED blue lighting they had in the ceiling. It will be interesting to see actual pictures of the production blazer to see how much detail from the concept they kept.

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    I would be glad to see this one replace the Traverse. It would do so much better vs the Explorer.

    Anymore I really don't beleive GM when they say no plans as this is what they have done with many new models. But I do hold back a little since Chris said he did not believe it would come here. His is informed enough to have a valued opinion. But then in this day and age of a quiet GM you never know what to expect anymore.

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    Bull$hit... GM/Chevrolet would sell every single one produced if offered here in the States. Plenty of people that still drive older TrailBlazers and Envoys that would want another truck-like SUV instead of all the CUVs out there. Not everyone needs/wants a Tahoe or Yukon, nor afford the price of one and the cost of gas they consumer. GM is blind if they can't see a market here in the US!!

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    I could see this competing against the Explorer, with the Traverse competing against the Flex. And the Equinox against the Edge. Leaving a gap at the bottom (no Escape competitor).

    Equinox - RAV4 - Murano

    Trailblazer - 4Runner - xTerra

    Traverse - Highlander (sorta, but still bigger) - Pathfinder (the new one)

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    The Nox kind of splits the Escape and Edge. It is a little bigger than one and cheaper than the other.

    The Flex is a non factor, I see as many of thsoe as on the road as a CS wagon.

    The Travers is kind of like the Nox and kind of splits gaps with the Tahoe Explorer. It really is not in direct compitition with either. and appears as much as a large minivan a it is a SUV. The Trail blazer would be more SUV like and have much better appeal to this group.

    Besides with the coming MPG CAFE issues the Trailblazer size could be were the Tahoe is going at some point.

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    Put together a Eco package with this that gets class leading MPG with gas and it will help make up for the loss of sales of the larger SUV's everytime gas spikes.

    Package it also like the Nox as a lot of good features but at a affordable price. This is why the Nox sells. It give many standard and luxury features in a package most can still afford. That is what the old S-10 Blazer offered.

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    Put together a Eco package with this that gets class leading MPG with gas and it will help make up for the loss of sales of the larger SUV's everytime gas spikes.

    Package it also like the Nox as a lot of good features but at a affordable price. This is why the Nox sells. It give many standard and luxury features in a package most can still afford. That is what the old S-10 Blazer offered.


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    Put together a Eco package with this that gets class leading MPG with gas and it will help make up for the loss of sales of the larger SUV's everytime gas spikes.

    Package it also like the Nox as a lot of good features but at a affordable price. This is why the Nox sells. It give many standard and luxury features in a package most can still afford. That is what the old S-10 Blazer offered.


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    Midsize BOF not in the US? Next thing you'll tell me is that Morain OH will not reopen to make them. It is time for it to come home, with a diesel engine along with the gas engines.

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    The Nox kind of splits the Escape and Edge. It is a little bigger than one and cheaper than the other.

    And since he mentioned Nissan, it splits the Rogue and Murano as well.

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    Exactly, Bring in the new Trailblazer with the Duramax Line of engines with awesome fuel economy and towing and you will win over converts I truly believe.

    You can't put all the chips on a Diesel. While you may be able to grow this market with time you can not expect it to carry an entire line.

    Also how much woud it add to the cost. if it adds too much people will go to other vehicles.

    While those in other markets love and undestand Diesels the Ameican market needs to start all over again. Accept for the pocket of full size buyers there really is little love or understanding in the general public. You can do it with time and you will need to offer them but it will still not carry the vehicle alone.

    You will need to come up with an efficent gas package with a few tricks.

    There are plenty of people who have small fishing boats or waverunners and could use a smallSUV like this trailblazer without needing the big Tahoe.

    Might want to note most small SUV's will do 3500 pounds now. I would like to see them bump this up for this one to make it more appealing.

    Most small SUV with a V6 will haul two wacerunners ans a small boat with ease now.

    I would like to see them target the Explorer with this one. A powerful DI Turbo V6 would be nice amd challange Ford head to head and under cut their price. Lets face it the Ford Explorer, Edge and Flex are all nice but way over priced for what you get. We looked at an Edge vs the Terrain and it was stickered over $10K more. There is no way that it is worth that much. The same for the Explorer.

    Fords Ace in the Hole is the Ecoboost. While the MPG is not that much more than a V8 by a MPG. Also it has great power. The key though is Ford has done a better marketing job with it than I have seen with any engine for a long time. The Ecoboost is a brand onto it;s own, GM beat Ford to the DI Turbo but who really knows about it? This alone helps Ford sell trucks and SUV's.

    Edited by hyperv6
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