Is there a place for coupe-SUVs in the subcompact segment?
It's been a year since we were first introduced to the 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer. Although the new SUV was a lot smaller than we expected - and much tinier than its predecessor - the upside is that the smart crossover starts at under $20,000. Now, as Trailblazer sales get underway, a designer has envisioned what the crossover could look like if it had a coupe-like roofline.
This body style was popularized by the BMW X6 over a decade ago, and since then the X6 has been joined by the smaller X4, along with others like the Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class Coupe and the Mercedes-AMG GLE 43 Coupe. But these are all super pricey vehicles - we haven't really seen many coupe-SUVs at a lower price point.
Does the "coupe" Trailblazer work? As always, these things are highly subjective, but we think the designer has done a decent job of combining the sloping roof with the Chevy's existing styling features. The designer retained the Trailblazer's massive black grille but added another distinct character line that starts just before the C-pillar and flows into the taillights, which are similar to the original SUV's items. The A-pillar is also body-colored, as opposed to the black effect employed in the regular Trailblazer.
A chrome bar was added to join the taillamp clusters, and the sporty dual tailpipes have been retained, as has a rear spoiler. We imagine that if Chevy were to make a coupe-SUV version of the Trailblazer, the main challenge would be cabin and trunk space, especially since the Trailblazer is a lot smaller than those aforementioned German SUVs.
Long before a coupe version of the Trailblazer is even considered, the more traditional yet sportily attired standard version will need to prove itself. We expect it to do well, though, since not only is it much more attractive than the Trax, but the Trailblazer is more efficient, too.
With the new crossover's online configurator having gone live in March just as the coronavirus pandemic was escalating, we'll probably have to wait a bit longer to accurately gauge how the market responds to it.