Yes, it is indeed possible to get an entry-level Colorado with the most power and torque.
One of the biggest revelations of the 2023 Chevy Colorado is its move away from a gas V6 and four-cylinder turbodiesel offering to a single, 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. However, GM’s offering it in three different states of tune and you can only get the most powerful version with the expensive ZR2…at least until now.
By now, we’ve covered the new truck’s different states of tune. The standard WT comes with a 237 horsepower version of the 2.7-liter (destinated L2R) with 259 lb-ft of torque. The mid-range variants get the more potent L3B “Turbo Plus”, putting out 310 horsepower and 390 lb-ft of torque. A Motor Trend report notes that there’s now an easy (and relatively cheap) way for some Colorado buyers to get an cheaper WT, LT or Trail Boss with ZR2 levels of torque: 430 lb-ft.
Your Chevrolet dealer can, for an extra $395, tune the middle-variant L3B up to produce the extra 40 lb-ft. of torque (the 310 horsepower figure is the same for all L3B-equipped trucks). Interestingly, that engine is only a $1,185 upgrade on the WT, meaning you can get a basic truck with ZR2 levels of power for an extra $1,580.
Have you spotted the catch yet?
That’s one hell of a bargain, but there’s a major caveat to consider. You can only do this with the L3B, and not the less potent L2R. The standard Turbo engine is markedly similar to the upgraded version, as you’d expect, but you do face a few key differences. While both engines get an 8-speed automatic transmission, the less potent powerplant gets a lighter-duty 8L45 unit with different gear ratios. The L2R itself also features some hardware changes specifically for a more efficient application, which makes it incompatible with the high-output tune.
Speaking of the new Colorado’s engine, Andre hosts a deep dive video that you can check out below, as well as an off-road review between the Z71 and Trail Boss: