The all-new 2023 Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon are powered by two versions of the 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine. One is called “Turbo Plus”, and the other is a “High Output”. How much more performance does the high-output engine offer? We put these two pickups side by side in a drag race to find out. We also run a braking test with surprising results.
2023 Chevy Colorado Trail Boss
This truck’s engine is rated at 310 horsepower and 390 lb-ft of torque. The “Turbo Plus” engine code is L3B. This is already an impressive number on paper. The engine is mated to an 8-speed automatic transmission. The Trail Boss trim level gives the truck a two-inch suspension lift and a two-inch track width increase. This Trail Boss is rolling on optional 32-inch Goodyear Wrangler Territory MT tires.
2023 GMC Canyon AT4
All of the new GMC Canyon pickup trucks offer a suspension lift and a wider track. This means the Canyon AT4 and the Colorado Trail Boss have identical footprints and suspension heights. They also have identical curb weights. Ok, this Canyon weighs 15 pounds more than the Trail Boss, but this is negligible. What is more important is that the AT4 is wearing slightly smaller and slightly less aggressive Goodyear Wrangler Territory AT tires.
The high-output 2.7-liter engine is rated at 310 horsepower (same as the Turbo Plus), but a higher 430 lb-ft of torque. It has the same 8-speed automatic transmission.
We tried several drag races in 2WD and 4Wheel-Auto modes. Having the traction control system enabled (normal driving mode) causes a tremendous delay (maybe a full second) before full engine power comes into effect off the line. Turning the traction control system off makes the truck way more responsive off the line.
In the end, the Canyon AT4 has a small advantage in speed. The Canyon AT4 you see here costs about $8,000 more than the Colorado Trail Boss. Is this small speed advantage worth it? Well, there is a lot more to it. The Canyon’s interior is a lot nicer and more inviting. The GMC has many options that the Chevy does not.
The 60-0 MPH braking test was a surprise. I expected the two trucks to have approximately the same stopping distances, but the Colorado Trail Boss stopped much better. The Trail Boss stopping distance is significantly shorter. This may have a lot to do with the tires. The Territory MT tires did a better job this time. Perhaps these tires do better on and off the pavement.
Join the fun in the video below.