You probably remember the 70’s Blazer. A boxy, somewhat tough and rugged truck that was domesticated enough for the common family to make decent mileage on the road. We didn’t call them SUVs or crossovers at the time, and they were made for the great outdoors, some towing, and a hint of badassness. Today’s rebirth of the Blazer hints a new beginning for the nameplate, but for considerably different purposes. And in order to make it in the midsize SUV segment, a well-known name is surely an asset.
Aesthetically, Chevrolet is going with the “modern-aggressive” styling argument. The new Blazer does it right, with a Camaro-like look that fits in with the rivals. It will be offered in base, Premier and RS variants.
Under the hood, Chevrolet did not reinvent the wheel. The 2019 Blazer uses known powerplants: a standard 2.5L I-4 and an available 3.6L V6 engine, each can be mated with a nine-speed automatic transmission. The smaller mill is rated at 193 horsepower and 188 lb-ft of torque while the bigger option will output 305 horsepower and 269 lb-ft of torque. Chevrolet says twin-clutch AWD system will be available, so we assume the base variant will be offered with FWD. Because customers in the segment are looking for a versatile vehicle that can drive to school, occasionally hit the trail and maybe tow a boat or trailer, 4,500 lbs estimated max trailering capacity will be possible with the 3.6 Litre V6.
Inside, Chevrolet promises amenities and technologies such as Hitch Guidance, available on models capable of towing (3.6 Litre engine), automatic heated steering wheel and automatic heated/ventilated front seats, wireless charging, six USB ports and, of course, 4G LTE Wi-Fi and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility.
In its beginnings, the Blazer used to compete with the Jeep Grand Cherokee and, of course, the Ford Bronco. Both off-road, adventurous machines with powerful engines. We’ll have to give this new Blazer a whirl before giving it our marks, but looking at the platform, which is shared with the GMC Acadia and the Cadillac XT5 and the choice of engines, we can hypothetically assume that the Blazer is not going after off-road counterparts, but rather surfing a wave of midsize SUVs that are about lifestyle and versatility.
This new contender in the midsize SUV segment will make its way to Canadian dealerships in early 2019.