2012 Holden Colorado LX Road Test and Review…
There is little doubt the biggest attraction of a dual-cab ute for most people is the adaptability they provide.
In recent years families in particular have been drawn to them and manufacturers have followed suit by making their dual-cabs more comfortable and refined.
With a host of different models available from a number of different manufacturers, expectations among buyers are high and the sales race is fierce.
Holden recently launched this new model Colorado and with competitive pricing, the huge Holden dealer network and a big dollar advertising campaign, the new offering is sure to find many Australian driveways.
But beware; you will have to make some compromises if you’re going to adopt a Colorado as your family vehicle.
I had the top-spec 2012 Holden Colorado LX 4×4 auto Holden Colorado which will set you back from $47,490.
Firstly let’s have a look at the good bits…
The Colorado range comes with the choice of just one engine, a 2.8 litre turbo diesel that delivers 132kW and 470Nm and without a shadow of doubt it is the Holden utes best attribute.
Despite being a touch noisy, all that torque allows you to tow up to 3500kgs, just as importantly it’s eager to really get the Colorado moving when you want it to.
Best of all fuel consumption is excellent, the official combined figure is 9.1L/100, I managed exactly 10.0L/100 in the city.
The six speed automatic transmission also serves the engine well.
Other strong points that the Holden Colorado can boast include reasonably good looks, a nicely laid out interior, good stereo system with aux/USB inputs, cruise control, Bluetooth, trip computer and a 5-star ANCAP safety rating.
Now we get down to where you have to make some compromises…
Firstly the brakes, my test vehicle had the worst feeling brake pedal I have ever come across.
You could push the brake pedal more than 25mm without any brake resistance being felt at all!
When pushed further you would eventually feel the correct pressure but I wasn’t satisfied and I wasn’t left reassured by the overall spongy and disinterested feel.
The steering is heavy, so much so that it could be a turn-off for some female buyers; it’s also fairly vague.
Taking into account that this is a commercial vehicle first and foremost (and a 4×4 as well) the body roll is very noticeable in corners, this is exacerbated by seats with very flat bases, the result is you get left slipping and sliding around the cabin.
Again this is not a surprise with the Holden Colorado having leaf spring suspension on the rear – great for carrying a load but it lets down the comfort and drive-ability of the big ute.
The leaf spring rear would also most likely hamper the Colorados off-road ability in situations where axle articulation is required.
You should also know that the brakes on the rear of the Holden Colorado are also the antiquated drum design and despite this being the top of the range model you are stuck with steel wheels instead of alloys.
In saying all that however the big 245/70/16 tyres do a great job in soaking up the bumps.
Inside the cabin the fit and finish doesn’t represent what you would normally find, or expect in a vehicle that commands a near $48,000 price tag.
In particular the plastics used in abundance around the cabin appear to scuff and scratch quite easily.
Comfort levels are also down thanks to rock hard contact surfaces such as the armrests and steering wheel.
It’s also disappointing that a vehicle commanding this kind of money comes with neither the option of a rear reversing camera or satellite navigation.
Summing it up – despite its none-too-subtle flaws I can see why people will be drawn to the Holden Colorado, the engine in-particular is the highlight.
NUTS and BOLTS
Engine: 2.8 litre turbo diesel delivering 132kW and 470Nm
Transmission: Six-speed auto or six-speed manual
Safety: Five stars