But as a serious SUV?
Chevrolet dug the Blazer name out of the dustbin of history, brushed it off, and applied it to a completely different vehicle. And now it seems it's doing the same with another.
According to Motor Trend, the Bowtie brand is planning to use the TrailBlazer nameplate on a new crossover to slot not above the new Blazer, but several positions underneath it. And the new addition stands to even further expand the automaker's crossover lineup as the market moves further and further away from conventional passenger cars and towards taller vehicles of different shapes and sizes.
The last time Chevy used the TrailBlazer name (in North America) was from 2001-2008 when it was applied to a mid-size, body-on-frame sport-utility vehicle, initially offered alongside the standard Blazer and ultimately took its place. It was also extensively rebadged and sold as the GMC Envoy, Buick Rainier, Oldsmobile Bravada, Isuzu Ascender, and Saab 9-7X. Another version was later offered for overseas markets (but not in the US).
MT reports that recycling names can save automakers millions. And while some purists with a longer memory may balk, Chevy evidently feels most buyers won't care if the new model bares little resemblance to its earlier namesake.
The new TrailBlazer is poised to emerge decidedly smaller than previous versions, and ride on a more car-like unibody construction. It's anticipated to slot in between the subcompact Trax and the compact Equinox, potentially splitting the size difference with a sportier approach (not unlike the new Blazer does a class above). A solitary teaser image was reportedly shown to investors in New York.
The new model would give Chevrolet a five-vehicle crossover lineup consisting (in order of size) of the Trax, TrailBlazer, Equinox, Blazer, and Traverse. That'd be bigger than Ford's crossover lineup, shrunken to four models since the Flex was discontinued.