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The year of the goat! That is what 2015 is classified according to the Chinese Zodiac. I personally could care less about the Chinese zodiac calendar. That’s why I call 2015 the year of the light duty truck. There are six new offerings, and there is no better time to be a truck guy or gall.

So let’s just run down the list of all the new trucks debuting in the next twelve months or those introduced this year, that are coming in the not to distant future.

  • Chevy Colorado/GMC Canyon
  • Ford F-150
  • Ford Raptor
  • Ram 1500 eco diesel
  • Nissan Titan
  • Toyota Tacoma

That means that every major truck manufacture in the US, has given us something to be excited about, and when major corporations compete we, the consumers win. For instance, only 3 years ago if one was in the market for a light duty pick up your choices were an inline 4 cylinder, V6 and a V8 that’s it. It’s a quite a bit different now. In the group listed above there are  SEVEN different engine options. Inline 4 cylinder, naturally aspirated V6, naturally aspirated V8, turbo (ecoboost) V6, diesel inline 4, diesel inline 6 and the most anticipated engine of the bunch the Cummins diesel V8. Choices galore! Not to mention a smorgasbord of gearbox choices, including one 9 speed auto.

So which is best? Well, there is no easy way to answer that question. They all deserve loads of credit and recognition, and I don’t want to get into the details of why every one of them would be an ideal candidate for your light duty trucking needs just yet. Because you’ll be reading into the night and my fingers would be full of carpal tunnel from typing. So let’s pick one and tell you why it’s best. Drum roll please!

Chevy Colorado/GMC Canyon

As much as I hate the horrific “Back in Black” commercial that plays every time the Seahawks draw a flag, I don’t hate what Chevy has done with its mid size pick up.

Simply put they reinvented, for the time being, the entire segment. Introduced in China in 2012, this Australian built truck is just what was needed to revive the mid size American truck segment that was dwindling on extinction. Not since the original 1968 Nissan/Datsun 521 has this segment seen a greater impact.

With the Ford Ranger out-of-the-way and no re-design for the Nissan Frontier in sight the main competitor of the Colorado is the Toyota Tacoma.

So how do they stack up?

Really well. Both are brand new, both offer fantastic fuel economy, around 25-28 MPG highway, and both can tow around 3500 lbs and carry around 1500lbs. Horsepower ratings are also very similar with Chevy getting the slight edge. So where are they different and why is the Chevy better? In one word, diesel power. The US Colorado will be the only pick up truck in its class; to be offered with 4 banger 2.8L Duramax diesel. Meaning as a truck buyer you will have an option of a truck no larger than a family sedan with an estimated 400 torques (as Clarkson would say) and a towing capacity of an estimated 6,000 lbs. That’s more than most light duty trucks like the F150. This allows you to have a vehicle which, drives like a crossover, parks like a sedan, tows like a big boy truck and sips fuel like a child does cough medicine. Wrapped up in a package that starts right above 20 grand. In other words, the best of all worlds.

Those zodiac people got it completely wrong. Clearly this year is the year of the Chevrolet Colorado.


*disclaimer* the Ram 1500 eco diesel was introduced in 2014 but I decided to show it some love as well