Today, a majority of “SUVs” from mainstream manufacturers are crossover vehicles, based on cars and offering limited off-road and towing capabilities. In the full-size segment there is still many body-on-frame models, like the Ford Expedition, Chevrolet Tahoe/Suburban, Toyota Sequoia etc. In the mid-size market, it is mainly limited to vehicles like the Toyota 4Runner, Nissan X-Terra and Nissan Pathfinder. Chevrolet’s entrant, the Trailblazer, was discontinued in 2008. It was based on the same platform as the current Chevy Colorado and GMC Canyon.
The Trailblazer was developed by GM do Brasil as part of a “five-year, $2-billion vehicle program developed across five continents for customers in more than 60 markets around the world.” That’s a significant investment, and it means the Colorado and Trailblazer feature as an important part of GM’s global efforts.
The Trailblazer will launch globally in 2012, and the wraps are taken off the new model in November at an auto show in Dubai. GM hasn’t confirmed the Trailblazer for U.S sale, initially. It’s highly likely that we’ll see it sold here though. The Trailblazer name has strong recognition here, and it would find a perfect place in GM’s lineup.
A mid-size, off-road capable SUV is something that GM lacks, and with global sales to offset costs, it could be a business proposition that makes sense. A good amount of volume will be realized in global countries that it is launching; thus having a U.S launch sometime in 2013 make a lot of sense. This is an introduction schedule that GM has followed with global Chevrolet products like the Cruze, Sonic and Spark.