What was once just a rumor has started transformed into something much more concrete: Chevrolet is definitely working a fourth crossover to add to its lineup, and the model will likely warrant the return of the Blazer nameplate. So, here’s everything we know so far about the 2019 Chevy Blazer.
Rumors of Chevy bringing back the Blazer started in November 2015, when General Motors filed two trademark applications to register Blazer and Chevrolet Blazer with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Then, in December 2016, a new Chevrolet crossover was photographed undergoing testing. The vehicle featured a similar profile as the 2017 GMC Acadia, with which the 2019 Blazer will be mechanically related (more on that, later).
In April 2017, Autoline Daily reported that GM will relaunch the Blazer name on a midsize crossover utility vehicle (CUV) and prototypes of the new Blazer were subsequently seen undergoing testing in heavy camouflage a few months later, in August.
What It Is
Crossover Utility Vehicles (CUVs) – which are SUVs on car platforms – have become a red hot vehicle category that present automakers with very unique and interesting opportunities in terms of sales and profit generation. Not one to sit on the sidelines, General Motors has a barrage of crossovers coming in the near future, one of which is the new Blazer.
The model will represent the fourth crossover in the Chevrolet lineup, which currently consists of the subcompact Trax, newly-compact 2018 Chevrolet Equinox and full-size 2018 Chevrolet Traverse. The hypothetical Blazer would slot between the Equinox and Traverse in terms of size, price and features.
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What It’s Not
In stark contrast over previous generations of the Blazer, the 2019 Chevy Blazer will not be a body-on-frame SUV. Instead, the new model will be a unibody crossover that will have a lot in common with the current, second-generation GMC Acadia that was introduced for the 2017 model year.
Whether or not Chevy made the right decision to utilize the Blazer name on a vehicle that (probably) won’t have the same kind of capability as its predecessors is still up in the air.
We don’t know much about the design of the future Blazer just yet. However, we know that it will have mid-size dimensions similar to those of the 2017 GMC Acadia and 2017 Cadillac XT5, including a 112.5-inch (2,858 mm) wheelbase and an overall vehicle length of about 192 inches (4,876 mm). We also know that the model will have a more traditional roofline, rather than sloping more aggressively.
Roughly a year ago, GM Authority artists drew up the above renderings of the 2019 Chevy Blazer. Based on spy shots, we know that the actual production model will be the same size as these renderings, but the actual design will likely be more aggressive, with cues from the Chevrolet FNR-X concept (pictured below).
The latest spy shots, captured in August 2017, show a similar LED headlight treatment and character line over the front wheel arch as the FNR-X. Spy shots have also shown the model to have dual exhaust, with some models having two exposed pipes while others, likely the higher-end trims, featuring dual exhaust outlets integrated into the rear fascia.
The side mirrors, meanwhile, will be mounted on the body line of the front doors.
Very little is currently known about the interior of the 2019 Chevy Blazer. Perhaps the biggest unknown is whether or not the model will offer three rows of seating, or only two rows.
We can see Chevy wanting to give buyers a reason to “step up” from the Equinox with a third row, but we can also see the brand not wanting to cannibalize Traverse sales. We believe Chevy would be wise to offer the new Blazer in two- and three-row seating configurations. Offering a third row would target customers looking for a CUV that seats more than a two-row model, while customers for whom the Equinox is a tad too small would opt for the Blazer. Meanwhile, customers looking for the biggest three-row crossover would do well with the Traverse.
We expect the latest Chevrolet MyLink infotainment system as well as a plethora of GM active safety/driver assistance systems.
We believe that the 2019 Chevy Blazer will ride on the short-wheelbase variant of GM’s new C1 platform shared with the 2017 GMC Acadia and 2017 Cadillac XT5. Notably, the long-wheelbase version of this platform will underpin the 2018 Chevrolet Traverse and 2018 Buick Enclave. As such, we see the Blazer being mechanically similar, if not identical, to the 2017 GMC Acadia.
Furthermore, being based on the C1 platform means a transverse engine orientation. The 2017 Acadia weighs in just a tad under 4,000 pounds (1,814 kg), and we expect the new Chevrolet Blazer to have a similar curb weight – which is in line with other segment contenders.
The powertrain lineup is currently unknown, but the naturally-aspirated 2.5L I4 LCV could be the base engine. The turbo-charged 2.0L LTG I-4 or the naturally-aspirated 3.6L V6 LGX engine could be the optional engines. Power will likely be sent either to the front wheels as standard, or to all four wheels via a dual-clutch AWD system as an option. Shifting duty will likely be accomplished by a GM 6TXX 6-speed automatic or the new GM 9T65 nine-speed automatic transmission.
The 2019 Chevy Blazer will likely compete in the mainstream midsize crossover space with the Ford Edge and Nissan Murano. Toyota competed in the segment until the 2015 model year with the Venza, but for in a very strange turn of events decided to discontinue the CUV after the 2015 model year in the U.S. market.
Other models that tend to be cross-shopped in the segment include the Kia Sorento, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Toyota Highlander, and Honda Pilot.
Though the model or pricing have been announced, we imagine that the new Blazer will have a starting price between $27,000 and $30,000. The compact 2018 Equinox starts at roughly $24,000 while the full-size Traverse starts at $30,000.
Where It Will Be Made
It’s currently unclear where the 2019 Chevy Blazer will be produced. We believe that the manufacturing location will either be the GM Lansing Delta Township plant in Michigan (home to the Chevy Traverse and Buick Enclave) or the GM Spring Hill plant in Tennessee (home to the GMC Acadia and Cadillac XT5).
Where It Will Be Sold
We expect the new Blazer to be sold in all markets where Chevrolet currently has a direct business presence, including North America, South America, China and Russia/CIS. It’s possible that the vehicle will be sold in other countries if Chevrolet enters new markets.
When Is It Coming
So, when might we see the 2019 Chevy Blazer announced? The Detroit Auto Show is in less than two weeks, followed by the Chicago Auto Show in February and the New York Auto Show in April. Our bet is that the 2019 Blazer will be unveiled at one of these venues, and launch by the end of calendar year 2018 as a 2019 model.