If you’re a buyer looking into GM trucks, you face an age old question. Which one should I actually buy? Today, Andre takes a closer look at their two latest examples in the midsize segment: the GMC Canyon and the Chevy Colorado. Specifically, he compares the Canyon AT4 to its closest direct sibling, the Colorado Z71. Yes, Chevrolet does have an even more off-road worthy ZR2 model, but that competes a step above the Canyon AT4’s price point.
If you’re looking at either one of these GM trucks, here’s how the pricing breaks down. The 2021 GMC Canyon AT4 starts at $39,395, before any manufacturer or dealer incentives. On the other side, the 2021 Chevy Colorado Z71 starts at $38,195 before any options. As these two trucks are equipped today, the pricing comes within about $300. Both are about $42,000.
What do you get for the money?
So if you can’t split them on price, what are the differences between the two? Styling is the first area you’ll immediately see a difference. The Colorado gets a new face for 2021, as well as a revised lower fascia. New fog light surrounds and a chin spoiler also come with both trucks. For the GMC, keen-eyed observers will notice a larger grille to more closely resemble its larger siblings, like the Sierra 1500. This AT4 trim — now a mainstay across the entire GMC lineup — replaces the old “All-Terrain”. Both of these GM trucks are four-wheel drive with an automatic (non-selectable) locking rear-differential.
Both this Colorado Z71 and Canyon AT4 come equipped with a familiar 3.6-liter gasoline V6. In both trucks, the engine produces 308 horsepower and 275 lb-ft of torque. Gas versions come mated to an 8-speed automatic, but a 2.8-liter Duramax diesel paired to a 6-speed ‘box is also an option. In the GMC’s case, it’s a “late availability” option that will eventually arrive on dealer lots in 2021. These two trucks come with four-wheel drive and a two-speed transfer case as part of their off-road packages.
One point of contention with both these GM trucks is that chin spoiler. Obviously, it compromises approach when you are going off-road. On the Ford Ranger, the spoiler — while better for fuel economy — is deleted as part of the FX4 package as part of its off-road capability. However, it’s now easier than before to remove that spoiler if you so desire, by removing several screws that hold it on from the bottom.
Inside, both trucks are fairly similar. On the 2021 GMC Canyon AT4, though, you do get “AT4” embroidered into the headrests. As far as 4WD controls, infotainment and general usability, both trucks will offer the same experience.
GM trucks: Which one should you actually buy?
When it comes time to pull the trigger, which of these GM trucks is the one to get? Really, you’re not losing out much on capability if you go in either direction? As Andre points out, the Canyon AT4 does sport slightly more aggressive off-road tires than its Z71 counterpart. On styling, it also looks better (at least in our opinion) than the Colorado, but that’s not to say by any stretch of the imagination that the Colorado is a bad truck against its GMC sibling.
Which of these two would you pick? Let us know in the comments!