Review and Test Drive: 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer AWD RS

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The Activ model is intended to have a more aggressive look than its Trailblazer stablemates.  It features a “sport terrain” drive option, Hankook all-season tires, and a fairly stiff but forgiving suspension.  The cabin, meanwhile, is relatively quiet for a car in this price range, with little wind and road noise.

Driver-assistance tech is on par with the Cadillac XT6 I had recently spent time with.  The adaptive cruise control works perfectly, as do the LED headlights with the Intellibeam automatic high beams.  Also included are a blind-sport warning system, forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, lane-departure warning and automatic lane-keeping assistance, rear park assist, and rear cross traffic alert. While I had no occasion to use the automatic emergency braking, the forward collision warning did warn me (correctly) of the wall at the head of my parking spot.

The panoramic sunroof seems rather luxurious for a sub-compact crossover and it gives the cabin an airy feel.

We relied heavily on Apple CarPlay for navi as well as music and having wireless CarPlay along with a wireless charger was downright decadent as I first noticed those trickling into Cadillacs in the past few months.

This was my first experience driving a three-cylinder powered vehicle, to the best of my knowledge. There was just a hint of turbo lag with a noticeable amount of vibration as three-cylinder engines are naturally unbalanced.  Once underway, however, the car had more than sufficient power to keep up with traffic, although I felt I had to plan overtaking rather carefully.

The radar-based cruise control did a superb job of maintaining distance between cars and fuel economy was about what I expected, 23.5 mpg (10 l/100 km), for my week with the car, in mostly city driving.


The all-new Chevy Trailblazer is very well equipped at the high end, with features that only a year ago were limited to far more expensive vehicles.  With a comfortable ride and excellent infotainment functionality, it is unquestionably worth your consideration if this is the type of vehicle you are seeking.


2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer AWD RS
Base price/price-as-tested $26,900/$30,580
Drivetrain Front engine, all-wheel drive
Engine 1.3-liter inline 3 cylinder
Horsepower/Torque 155 / 170
Transmission 8-speed
Curb weight (lbs) 3,223
Wheelbase (inches) 103.9
Length x width x height (inches) 173.5 x 71.2 x 65.2
0-60 mph (seconds) (est.) 10.1
Fuel economy(mpg) (city/hwy) 26/30


(Photos: Accura Media Group)


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