Chevrolet TrailBlazer Origins
The Chevrolet TrailBlazer is a midsize SUV. The TrailBlazer name was originally introduced to the Blazer line produced by Chevrolet, with the TrailBlazer becoming the nameplate for the top-trim model. The TrailBlazer name was moved to its own vehicle in 2002 when the first model was introduced.About the Chevrolet TrailBlazer
The Chevrolet TrailBlazer was one of the most popular SUVs on the market. It had a fairly strong safety record in comparison to some large size SUVs and mini SUV models. The first generation, as scored by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, earned top marks in almost all types of collisions except for the front driver’s side and rollovers on the two-wheel drive versions.
Performance-wise, the TrailBlazer proved average for its class, except on the SS model. Slippery handling (solved in the SS model) was the primary concern in addition to poor fuel economy. Stability is a bit fiddly as well. However, the engine is pretty powerful and provides excellent speed, whether inline-6, V-8, or the 400-horspower TrailBlazer SS.Chevrolet TrailBlazer Features
The first generation of the TrailBlazer was discontinued in 2008 (except in Russia, where it is still produced today). A new TrailBlazer was introduced in 2012 for international markets like the Middle East and South America.
The 2013 TrailBlazer was introduced in Dubai as part of the city’s international auto show. The model is available in Thailand and Brazil.
The trim package on the SUV includes everything you would expect: large seating, Bluetooth, and USB, as well as entertainment options.Chevrolet TrailBlazer Evolution
The first generation, introduced in 2001 as a 2002 model, is available in rear- or four-wheel drive. It utilized an independent front suspension, but the rear was a solid axle design shared with other trucks in Chevrolet's fleet.
Several different engines were introduced to the TrailBlazer line throughout its run. In 2002 the standard engine was the LL8 4.2-liter inline-6 engine that pumped out an impressive 291 hp. A 302 hp option was also available. In 2003, a LM4 5.3-liter V-8 was introduced to the line with the Active Fuel Management system. The system shuts off some of the cylinders in the engine while cruising on the freeway to reduce fuel consumption, a huge issue on the TrailBlazer vehicles. In 2005, a LH6 5.3-liter V-8 engine was introduced. In 2006, an optional LS2 6.0-liter V-8 became the final upgrade for the vehicle before Chevrolet discontinued production in the United States.
The vehicle offers many trim packages. The short wheelbase is the base version of the vehicle; it measures 74.5 inches in height on 2002 and 2003 models and slightly less, at 72.5 inches, on 2004 and 2009 models.
Chevrolet also offered an EXT extended-wheelbase package. The EXT includes three rows of seating, accommodating seven passengers in the SUV. The vehicle is slightly higher in the roof than the standard wheelbase models, allowing better access to the back row of the vehicle. The TrailBlazer EXT, although somewhat popular, could not prop up the entire line. The last EXT was produced in 2006 when the Oklahoma City Plant, where the vehicle was produced, stopped production of all vehicles and shut down.
The SS model was the high-performance option for those wanting a bit more power. Based on the lighter short-wheelbase model, the SS model houses a 6.0-liter V-8 that pumps out 395 hp with 400 lb-ft of torque. The vehicle can practically take off, going from zero to 60 mph in 5.4 seconds. Other improvements to the mechanics increase the vehicle’s abilities. These improvements included a strengthened four-speed automatic transmission, cold air intake to cool the engine, sport suspension to increase aerodynamics and handling, and a top-of-the-line brake package.
All of the TrailBlazer vehicles saw upgrades in the spring of 2007. The old GMT360 chassis that the original TrailBlazer was built on was scrapped and replaced by the GMT361. Due to financial trouble within the company, the vehicle design was slightly modified but not changed drastically. Declining sales, with a high of 283,484 vehicles sold in the 2004 sales year to a low of 8829 vehicles sold in the 2009 sales year, forced Chevrolet to take the TrailBlazer out of production. The Chevrolet Traverse, a full-size crossover SUV that Chevrolet still produces today, replaced the TrailBlazer.