The News for July 29th, 2022

Welcome to the Hooniverse News! As always, this is a weekly recap of the biggest stories in the automotive industry without the fluff or bull. This week: Chevrolet reveals first new Colorado since 2014, Ferrari 296 goes GT3 racing starting next year, new Mustang will debut at Detroit this year, and Cadillac celebrates famous tracks on IMSA schedule with special edition CT4-V Blackwing – plus your news for the week.

2023 Chevrolet Colorado

Chevrolet is the latest manufacturer to realize that interest in midsize trucks is high enough to finally replace an aging model. The Chevy Colorado on sale now first debuted in 2014. With a new Nissan Frontier on sale and the new Ford Ranger incoming, Chevrolet has given their competitor some much-needed attention and upgrades.

Five trim levels are being offered, three of which have a focus on off-road performance to a varying degree. The Work Truck (WT), LT, Z71, and ZR2 trims return while a Trail Boss variant joining the party. It needs to be said – Trail Boss is probably the dumbest name ever applied to a trim level. In any event, each model carries the same 2.7-liter turbocharged four-cylinder gas engine but with different outputs depending on the trim. The WT and LT trims make do with 237 horsepower and 259 lb.-ft. of torque, the Z71 and Trail Boss get 310 horsepower and 390 lb.-ft., and the ZR2 gets the full 310 horsepower and 430 lb.-ft. WT and LT models can upgrade to the 2nd most powerful engine output as an option. Towing is rated at 3,500 lbs for the lowest engine output, 7,700 lbs for the middle option, and 6,000 lbs in the more powerful ZR2 (because off road suspension). An eight-speed automatic is standard across all models.

Interior materials and features will vary by each model of course, but a generally sporty-looking design seemingly inspired by the Camaro, 11.3″ touchscreen, and a new friction hinge on the center console lid to ensure it stays open at any angle (!!!!!!!) are applied across the range. Probably the best new feature on the whole truck is the built-in storage compartment in the tailgate. When the tailgate is down a lockable and watertight lid opens up to a 45″ wide and 4″ deep compartment. Just in case water does get in, there’s a drain too. Of all the tailgate gimmicks GM has tried to sell us lately, this one is easily the best.

They also took notice of the Ford Maverick’s numerous bed configuration options and added numerous bed pockets for custom storage solutions, the ability to close the tailgate halfway for extended loads, and an available 110-volt power outlet. It even has two motorcycle/bicycle tire grooves in the front bed wall.

The chassis is brand new and has a 3.1″ longer wheelbase than the outgoing model and a shorter front overhang. WT, LT, and Z71 trims have a “standard” suspension setup that is more balanced between on and off-road performance and comfort. The Trail Boss features a 2″ lift and a wider stance while the ZR2 benefits from a 3″ lift, wide stance, and its party trick – Multimatic DSSV dampers. The differences between Z71, Trail Balls, and ZR2 trims is visual and mechanical.

Z71 appears to be a very mild “I occasionally go off road” sort of truck with 18″ wheels and generic truck tires. Trail Boss is a middle ground with 18″ wheels and 32″ all-terrain tires for buyers that may go off roading more frequently, but not enough to justify a ZR2. And of course the ZR2 with its 17″ wheels and 33″ mud/terrain tires is for serious enthusiasts who are willing to make more sacrifices to refinement for the thrill of adventure. Chevy doesn’t really go into specifics about the rest of the differences in each model, but you get the idea.

For the first time, there will be a version above the ZR2. But not for long. A special-edition ZR2 Desert Boss package (still a dumb name) takes inspiration from the Colorado’s success in desert racing to go even further with the already very capable ZR2. 17″ beadlock-capable wheels, off-road bumper, sports bar, roof-mounted light bar, underbody camera, and the essential graphics will set this one apart in parking lots at Bass Pro Shops and southeastern high schools.

Pricing and launch date info is not available yet.

[Source: Chevrolet]

Ferrari 296 GT3

On the eve of the 24 Hours of Spa, the biggest GT3-only event of the year, Ferrari has pulled off the wraps on their new contender. As the 296 GTB edges closer to production, the 296 GT3 is ready to take the place of the venerable 488 GT3 starting at the Rolex 24 at Daytona next year. The 488 GT3 has had a long and successful career (in fact it’s the most successful Ferrari race car ever), so this 296 GT3 has big shoes to fill.

The car was developed in-house at Ferrari almost like a prototype with a completely modular design. This will simplify assembly as well as trackside operations and repairs. The GT3-spec bodywork and aero elements aim to improve performance and drivability in all scenarios and at all skill levels and make it less sensitive to ride height. They claim a 20% improvement in downforce compared to the 488 GT3 thanks to new CFD simulations and a swan-neck-style rear wing that is becoming more popular.

As with the road car, the race car runs with a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 which can produce a maximum of 600 horsepower and 525 lb.-ft. of torque, but this will ultimately be determined by series regulations and balance of performance. And since these are sold to customer teams, it won’t have to rely on Ferrari strategists when it sees global competition beginning next year. Sportscar365 learned that customers will begin receiving their cars around the end of this year, and that up to six cars are expected to compete in its first outing at Daytona.

[Source: Ferrari via Sportscar365]

Ford will debut new Mustang at Detroit next month

Ford CEO Jim Farley took to Twitter to confirm some exciting news for lovers of pony cars, V8s, and manual transmissions. The North American International Auto Show in Detroit will set the stage for next-generation Ford Mustang.

“Excited to confirm that we’ll unveil the all-new, seventh-generation @FordMustang September 14 at the Detroit Auto Show. It’s a stunning car and I’m excited to share it with the world! #SaveTheManuals

So far all that’s known for certain is the existence of a V8 and a six-speed manual transmission. There’s also a GT3-spec competition version in the works too. Farley is one of Ford’s biggest fans and he’s the one in charge. I don’t doubt he flexed a bit with his title to get a few things developed as he wants it. If he’s excited about it then I am too.

[Source: @jimfarley98]

Cadillac CT4-V Blackwing Track Edition

Cadillac is a major force in IMSA sports car racing with a highly successful DPi race car and an upcoming LMDh prototype. So they’re celebrating this involvement with a Track Edition for the CT4-V Blackwing which pays tribute to three historic tracks on the IMSA schedule.

Three different versions, one each for Watkins Glen, Sebring, and Road Atlanta, offer unique color combinations along with interior and exterior accents. Graphics that are clearly inspired by the factory liveries on the Cadillac DPi race cars adorn the hood, both sides of the car, and part of the front seats. The Watkins Glen model is only available in Electric Blue, which is inspired by the signature blue guardrails that surround the track. The Sebring car is painted in Maverick Noir Frost which I guess could be reminiscent of the nighttime finishes at the Sebring 12 Hour. As for the Road Atlanta car, it’s painted in Rift Metallic. I’ve been attending races at Road Atlanta for 12 years now. I have no idea how they looked at that track and thought “white”.

All track edition cars come standard with carbon fiber seat backs and both of the Blackwing’s two available carbon fiber packages. Only 99 of each model will be produced. Pricing hasn’t been confirmed.

[Source: Cadillac]

What’s your automotive news?

hooniverse news whats your naws

That’s all I’ve got for you this week, so now it’s your turn. If you saw anything, fixed something, broke everything, or otherwise did anything even remotely car related that you want to share with your fellow hoon, sound off in the comments.

Have a good weekend.

I'm the guy that spoiled the site with all the new car stuff. Hooniverse News Editor since 2011, amateur motorsport photographer, sim racer, and mountain road enthusiast.

14 Comments

  1. Well, I got the heater box out of the GTX. Only took about 1 hour, 3 cans of beer, and 7 skinned knuckles. Now this weekend we’ll see how reassembly goes. My guess – it’ll be much, much worse. I am really dreading getting all the vent cables back and operational. It will be nice to have an actual heater/defroster again.

    1. So my fears were fully realized. Reassembly was not enjoyable. It didn’t help that I didn’t label what cables went were, so that took a lot longer having to switch them around. But, success. New heater core, new heater hoses and it seems to be fully operational. I even took the eldest for a celebratory victory lap, and left a nice set of dual black marks down the highway.

  2. Did a track day at The Bend racetrack in South Australia last week, as well as a small road trip (& plane, bus and train), and had a good time. Last time I was there was in a vastly different car and probably more fun without any real concern for making brakes live for what turned out to be over 200 miles on track (sharing the car).

    Must get my race car running again!

  3. Help! I think I’m about to buy a Ford Ranger! Like, a brand new one. There must be a good reason not too, or to buy anything else. Right?

    With a $30K budget I can spec out a 2-door stripper with a locking diff. (Two doors and no backseat is the best! F%@k doors, gimme the 6′ bed) Actually, in that neighborhood I can get the FX2 package maybe if I can get them to give me steelies instead of ‘loominum wheels. I’m planning to move to a rural county by the coast and the 14 MPG rustbucket Econoline ain’t gonna cut it. Right now is a great time to sucker some Burnin’ Dude dreamer into buying it for $3K.

    I started look at Mavericks and of course the website was like, “You might also like… Rangers!” and I do… sort of. Body on frame is a good thing in my book, cheaper to fix after a crash; not like I crash more than once every ten years. Two doors is a good thing, and the Maverick don’t do that. The Mav is basically a crossover with a vestigial truck bed, and if you spec it with an eco-boost and a tow package it’s approaching the cost of a Ranger that comes standard with alla that. So that’s how I stated looking at Rangers.

    Except, every Ranger I’ve ever been in has sucked to drive; but those were all pre-Y2K trucks. And there’s no saying the Maverick will be better or worse.

    So, what else in that category ought I to look at? That Chev up there?

    1. If you can wait a few months (or probably more, idk) then you’ll have a brand new Ranger on the horizon which might drive down prices on the current model. I’ve never driven it so I couldn’t tell ya if it sucked or not. I remember a lukewarm reception when it finally came here, probably because it was already sort of an old truck given how long it had already been on sale overseas. I’m sort of looking at one of those too in hopes that prices will fall with the new one coming. I want a 4-door FX4 or Tremor if I can swing it.

      Pricing on the new Colorado isn’t out yet. But maybe those prices will start to fall too. Of course that assumes any prices are falling in this market. My buddy likes his Tacoma but he has a short commute and goes off road with it a lot. I hear they sort of stink on the road and aren’t comfortable. New Frontier seems nice but I’ve not been in one.

    2. The current Ranger is more Mazda than anything else and free of the sins of the OG Ranger. I’ve looked at XL spec two doors myself as a more economical and maneuverable replacement for my F150. I use the bed way more that the the back seat so I can relate. That said, we put four of us in the F150 and my wife was complaining about her back hurting in the rear seat, although trying the center front was worse so she got stoic and we went kayaking.

      1. No the current Ranger is designed by Ford, unless there’s a Mazda connection with the 2.3 Ecoboost. I suppose Mazda may have had some input as they had the BT50 (new model is paired with Isuzu) but Ford also did a lot more development through the life cycle and that’s before they made huge changes when they brought them to the US. My brother in law worked on the development over about 10 years.

        It was the previous generation rest of world Ranger that was designed by Mazda, ironically the only one I’ve driven (a PK model from around 2010) and they are a much different animal. Much narrower and more basic in every way.

  4. Last weekend we had the educational experience of replacing the failed window regulator in our son’s 2000 Corolla. Fortunately these are so common we could get an assembly in a day or two from O’Reilly. Also somebody was there first since a trim fastener and the plastic sheet were missing. We also used the left rear seat in the 02 F150 for the first time in an attempt to give my wife and daughter and dog some elbow room. It will be 100 degrees F all weekend so I’m avoiding automotive work but will do the paperwork to get the 83 Honda CM250 back on the road since in these times 60 mpg is nothing to sneeze at.
    I still need to do some cleaning and check the Buick’s transmission fluid situation, and find a tail light.

  5. Started getting a rattle/clunk from the back of the Mazda2 a few weeks ago, jacked it up and confirmed one of the shocks is blown, and the other is starting to look crusty and on borrowed time. Ordered new shocks and struts yesterday just for the company to get back to me today that they’re back-ordered for about a month, so now I have to see if there’s anything worthwhile available any time sooner.

  6. Did a fair bit in getting everything back on the engine and it back in my Imp, main obstacle was the more than 2 years since I took it out and have had several tidy-ups/rearrangements that meant I struggled to find fasteners etc that came off. Plus an uncooperative clutch slave cylinder – at least until the next thing pops up… main concern is the aftermarket electronic ignition might be dead.

  7. I had the 2.7 liter turbo 4 & 8 speed auto in my Silverado and it was awesome. Sold it last week though because I don’t need to be making payments on a big ole truck

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