Chevrolet unveils freshened Trax in Chicago – Detroit Free Press
Chevrolet is reviving special editions of its Silverado light-duty and Colorado pickup trucks, two new packages of the Camaro and a freshened look for the 2017 Trax subcompact crossover at the Chicago Auto Show Thursday.
After Chevy launched five redesigned cars in 2015 — Camaro, Malibu, Cruze, Volt and Spark — 2016 is the year of midlife updates and special editions.
First, the new Trax boasts a more aggressive grille and newly sculpted taillights. The interior reflects a dual-cockpit contour in front that is consistent with other new Chevrolet car models. The seven-inch diagonal MyLInk touchscreen features sharper graphics, as well as compatibility with either Apple CarPlay or Android Auto to replicate the key icons from the driver’s smart phone.
Chevy introduced the South Korean-built Trax in the U.S. a little more than a year ago and it has done well. Small passenger cars are out, but small higher-riding crossovers are in.
But 95% of the 2017 Traxes, which will reach dealerships this fall, will be assembled at GM’s San Luis Potosi plant in Mexico.
On the truck front, both the Silverado full-size pickup and the Colorado midsize will soon come in the black-on-black accessory-packed Z71 Midnight Edition.
This has already been offered on the heavy-duty version of the Silverado.
Key elements of the Midnight Edition include specially tuned off-road suspension, Goodyear Wrangler Duratec all-terrain tires, black front fascia and matching grille, tow hooks and fog lamps, black alloy wheels and a spray-in black bedliner.
Sandor Piszar, Chevrolet truck marketing director, said special editions like this appeal to slightly younger, but more affluent truck buyers.
“This would be the guy who owns the company rather than the guys on the construction crew,” Piszar said.
Midnight Edition packages also appeal to the 40% of Chevrolet truck buyers who want to add one or more accessories when they drive off the lot. This enables them to get all the bells and whistles in one factory-built vehicle.
The fully-equipped Silverado 1500 Midnight Edition carries a sticker price of about $55,000 and the heavy-duty version goes for about $60,000.
The standard powertrain on the Z71 Silverado 1500 is a 5.3-liter V8, with an optional 6.2-liter V8 available. The Z71 Colorado Midnight Edition comes with a standard 3.6-liter V6.
Finally, with gas prices free-falling toward $1 gallon, it would be marketing malfeasance not to roll out another Camaro performance package.
So in Chicago, Chevy will show two 1LE versions, one for the 3.6-liter V6 Camaro LT and the other for the 6.2-liter V8-powered Camaro SS.
“The Camaro 1LE packages follow a recipe any track-day enthusiast will appreciate,” said Al Oppenheiser, Camaro chief engineer. “Start with a lightweight, stiff structure and then add higher levels of suspension stiffness and damping, more aggressive tires, higher downforce, more powerful brakes and more cooling.”
Distinguishing features include a satin black hood, 20-inch forge aluminum wheels, Goodyear Eagle F1 tires, high flow upper and lower grille with satin black accents and a Performance Data Recorder enabling one to view and share the track experience.
The new 1LE packages will be available in late 2016, on 2017 Camaro SS and LT V6 coupes equipped with manual transmissions. Pricing and performance data will be announced later this year.
Contact Greg Gardner: 313-222-8762 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @GregGardner12