General Motors introduced the new 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer to the North American market at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show, unveiling two trim levels – the outdoor-oriented Activ, and the sporty RS. There’s a lot we like about the new Trailblazer, but there’s also a few things we don’t like. Here are our top five in both categories.
5 Things We Like About The 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer
1. Two-Tone Roofs Are Cool
The 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer offers a standard two-tone roof on both the RS and Activ trim levels, and we’re loving it. It’s a cool detail you don’t see very often, so kudos there.
2. Styling In General Looks Great
It’s also not very easy to find a decent-looking piece of design in the subcompact-plus crossover segment, but luckily, the new Trailblazer is an exception to that. With a front end inspired by the new Chevrolet Blazer and a boxy rear end, this one sweet-looking vehicle.
3. Huge Value
The new Trailblazer is simply packed with value. Starting at under $20,000, the Trailblazer still offers oodles of features – for example, all trims come with a long list of standard safety and driver assists, including Forward Collision Alert, Automatic Emergency Braking, IntelliBeam Headlamps, Rear Vision Camera, and a whole lot more.
4. The Trims Actually Matter
Sometimes, trim levels don’t really mean too much. That isn’t the case with the 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer, which comes with some real differentiation in the model cadence. For example, the outdoorsy Activ stands apart for its off-road-flavored suspension tuning, upgraded tires, and improved ground clearance.
5. Nine-Speed Automatic Transmission
Buyers can equip their new 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer with the GM nine-speed automatic transmission when paired with the 1.3L engine option and AWD. Impressive stuff for the segment.
5 Things We Don’t Like About The 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer
1. Dilution Of The Nameplate
Granted, their are more egregious examples of this (the Ford Mustang Mach-E comes to mind), but fans of the old-school body-on-frame Trailblazer SUV might be irked that the new model is a tiny crossover.
2. Underwhelming Engine And Transmission Options
The 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer is offered with two engine options, both of which are turbocharged three-cylinders – the base-level 1.2L LIH, and the available 1.3L L3T. The former makes 137 horsepower and 166 pound-feet of torque, while the latter makes 155 horsepower and 174 pound-feet of torque. Both engines pair with a CVT on FWD models.
While most buyers in this segment probably don’t care about cylinder counts or transmission types, three-cylinders and CVTs fail to elicit any sort of excitement on our end.
3. Interior Needs More Differentiation From Buick Encore GX
The 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer and Buick Encore GX are very closely related, with both offering the same engine lineup, and both built on the same GM VSS-F vehicle platform set. And while the new Trailblazer does a great job in setting itself apart in terms of exterior styling, the interior design is way too close to that of the Buick.
4. The RS Is Still A Trim Level
We wrote about the weirdness going on with the RS sub-brand back in October, but it’s worth bringing up again. The 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer offers a range-topping RS trim with loads of sporty aesthetic upgrades. Unfortunately, that means any buyer looking to add some extra visual spice to the new Trailblazer will need to dole out big bucks in order to do so. A better option would be an RS Package that adds the same aesthetic, but without the extra equipment of the RS trim.
5. Made In Korea
Again, most buyers don’t really care where their car is produced, but for those that do, the fact the 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer is produced in South Korea could be a dealbreaker.