General Motors (GM) has plans to launch Chevrolet Trailblazer Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) in the Indian market through Completely Knocked Down (CKD) route after it has been launched in Thailand. The production of the vehicle has already begun in Thailand and GM's manufacturing plant in Rayong has rolled out the first unit. 5,200 employees, key suppliers and Chevrolet dealers from all parts of the country were present on the occasion to see the first unit when it came out. The best-in-class LTZ variant that was the first unit of the Trailblazer to be rolled out from this plant is powered by a 2.8-litre Duramax turbo-diesel powertrain.
Thailand is the first country to receive the Trailblazer and the Rayong plant is the first one to produce it. After Thailand, the company plans to export the vehicle to over 50 countries across the globe, which also includes India. Based on the platform it shares with the Chevrolet Colorado pick-up truck, the SUV was exhibited at 2011 Dubai Auto Show held in November 2011. Back then, the car was still in its concept form though its production version was unveiled at Bangkok Motor Show.
The seven-seat Trailblazer offers premium ride comfort and boasts of handling dynamics for urban and highway driving, together with superior off-roading capabilities. It is built on General Motors’ new global body-on-frame mid-size truck architecture. Summit White, Black Sapphire, Sizzle Red, Auburn Brown, Blue Mountain, Royal Gray and Switchblade Silver are the colour options available in the car.
There are two powertrain options available in the model, including a 2.5 litre motor with 148 hp of power and 350 Nm of torque and a 2.8 litre unit delivering 178 hp of power and 470 Nm of torque. These turbo-diesel engines will be coupled with either a five speed manual or a six speed automatic gearbox.
The CKD units brought to India will be assembled at the Halol plant of GM, making sure that the company can aggressively price the vehicle in range of Rs. 17 and 21 lacs. Trailblazer is expected to hit Indian roads by this year end or beginning of 2013 and will compete head on with Ford Endeavour, Toyota Fortuner, Mitsubishi Outlander and Renault Koleos.
President, GM Thailand and Southeast Asia, Martin Apfel, said, “The Trailblazer will be built in Thailand for Thailand, and will soon also make its way into the rest of the world. And delivery of the Trailblazer to our customers starts right now.” He further said, “Production is now getting into full-swing. Since May this year, we have added a third shift to our assembly and powertrain plants.” He then added, “The increase in production isn’t just to meet customer orders for the Trailblazer, but also to address increasing demand for the Colorado truck, which we have started exporting earlier this year. At the same time, demand for other models is also growing. This will be a very busy year for Chevrolet.”