A well-known nameplate makes a return to the Chevrolet lineup this year as the brand rolls out an all-new crossover dubbed Blazer.
That’s a name we last saw used on a compact SUV in 2005, when it was replaced by a larger truck-based model called the Trailblazer.
This may be a brand-new design, but there are some familiar elements: power comes from a choice of 2.5L four-cylinder (193 hp/188 lb-ft of torque) and 3.6L V6 (305 hp/269 lb-ft) engines, both of which come mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission and feature auto start/stop fuel-saving technology.
All-wheel drive is an option and features a disconnect function that allows the vehicle to run in front-drive mode when conditions allow, a bit of engineering conceived to further reduce fuel consumption.
Trim levels include a base trim with or without AWD and available with either engine. True North, RS and Premier designations come standard with AWD.
Available tech and comfort/convenience features include a trailer hitch guidance system that uses the backup camera to show the driver when the hitch and trailer are lined up. That backs up a robust maximum towing capacity of 2,041 kg with the V6 engine.
One of the Blazer’s security features is an electronic locking glove box activated by the car’s valet mode. Chevy says it’s a first for the brand, and offers enough space to stow a small handbag.
Other available items include a heated steering wheel and heated/ventilated front seats that turn on automatically based on weather conditions, power windows that can be rolled down via the key fob to let heat out of the cabin on hot days, and heated rear seats.
RS and Premier can be optioned with adaptive cruise control and GM’s rear camera mirror, while a hands-free power tailgate is standard in RS and Premier.
Wireless smartphone charging is available, too.
Chevrolet hadn’t set fuel consumption estimates for the Blazer at publication time, but count on ratings for FWD models being similar to those for the Impala full-size sedan, which uses the same engines. Our guess is you’ll see the Blazer come with ratings around 11.5/8.5 L/100 km (city/highway) with the four-cylinder engine and FWD, and 13.0/9.0 with the V6, and 13.5/9.5 with the V6/AWD combo.