Joel Helmes road tests and reviews the 2015 Holden Colorado Z71.
The flagship in the Holden Colorado ute range, the new 2015 Holden Colorado Z71 aims to tempt ute buyers looking for some style and flair.
Interestingly, this Holden Colorado compares favourably in terms of drive-ability and quality over the Holden Colorado 7 SUV that I reviewed last week. Interesting because the vehicle designed for families seemed a little less well put together than this more allegedly ‘utilitarian’ offering.
Beyond that, the Colorado 7 was actually a better built car than the 2014 version that I drove, it’s interesting to see some quality-control and driveability variations between Holden Colorado products.
The lesson is then to make sure you give your Holden Colorado a good looking over before leaving the dealership, just to make sure everything is 100%.
But, in this case we are here to specifically look at this new Z71 version of the Colorado and I must say, overall, it’s a pretty good mix.
So, what makes a Colorado Z71 a Z71? Well, as covered here, the top of the range model picks up grey metallic 18″ alloy wheels, gloss black mirror covers and door handles, black bonnet decals and the distinctive sailplane on the back of the cabin.
Inside, Holden has given the Colorado Z71 leather seats and front seat heaters.
The end result is a vehicle that gets a lot of attention out on the roads.
OK, running through the vehicle now and I was very pleased to note that the brake pedal was nowhere near as spongy as that in the Colorado 7. The steering, while still exceedingly heavy, felt just that little bit less vague and the ride, even by my passengers reports, seemed a bit more forgiving.
Interestingly though I reckon the turning circle was slightly larger than the impressive performance of the seven-seat version.
As with the Colorado 7, the Colorado dual-cab ute has a hard and mostly quite forgettable cabin. It’s just not up to the softness and attractiveness of rivals like the Ford Ranger, and the new Toyota HiLux looks to really be going in a more ‘car like’ direction.
In saying that, legroom is good upfront and for a dual-cab ute the rear legroom is acceptable. You get the Holden MyLink infotainment system and a reverse camera and rear parking sensors too. Disappointingly sat-nav isn’t available.
The engine, the same 147kW/500Nm 2.8 litre turbo-diesel unit as found in the Holden Colorado 7, is a highlight. Yes, it’s noisy and the auto transmission at times hinders its performance, but in all you don’t want for any extra torque.
Acceleration from a standing stop is not exciting and given the size and weight of the Holden Colorado Z71 this shouldn’t come as a surprise.
Fuel economy sat happily on a combined 9.9L/100kms in my week of city and suburban driving, this was 0.4L/100km above the Colorado 7’s fuel consumption.
One of the extra bits on the Z71 is the tonneau cover which seems to be of a different design to the regular Colorado. On this one you have a strip that locks into a channel down each side and then a cable set-up to tension the cover at the tailgate.
This however is not Holden’s greatest design – the thin cable used to tension the cover on my test car pulled out of its crimp and will need to be replaced. It’s a cheap and flimsy way to get a result and is mostly likely going to be a headache for owners.
Points also come off for the rather flimsy cross section pieces that assist in holding the tonneau cover up and the way that the whole thing rather clumsily rolls up when not in use.
It should be noted too that the plastic clamps on the elastic ties that hold the rolled up cover to the tray are cheap and flimsy in feel and may not last too long either.
The Holden Colorado Z71 comes standard in flat white or red paint; metallic shades (Black Safire, Solid Steel Grey and Orange Rock) will cost you an extra $550. Towing capacity is 3,500kgs and the entire Colorado range in 2015 boast a five-star ANCAP safety rating.
Summing it up; in 2015 the dual-cab ute has been come an aspirational offering and one with a sporty, customized or extra ‘tough’ image is keenly sought-after by many guys, and girls!
As always, the Colorado isn’t perfect and is definitely more ‘truck’ than soft-roader. It’s not a great drive but it is rough and tough enough for those who want to throw some dirt bikes in the back or hook up a boat trailer and look the part.
Priced from $54,990 manual and $57,190 auto, the 2015 Holden Colorado Z71 is a fair price and has enough on (and off) road presence to make most potential buyers very happy.
NUTS and BOLTS – 2015 Holden Colorado Z71
Engine: 2.8 litre turbo-diesel producing 147kW and 500Nm
Transmission: Six-speed automatic or six-speed manual
Safety: Five stars
Price: From $54,990