This early Trailblazer design shows a Camaro-style SUV is very much in Chevy's thoughts.
Last year, the Chevrolet Trailblazer returned to the market for the first time since 2009, but it's a radical departure from its rugged, body-on-frame predecessor. Slotting between the Trax and Equinox, the all-new version is a subcompact crossover in contrast to the previous-generation model, which was a midsize SUV. However, these design sketches have revealed the new Trailblazer could have looked very different.
On Instagram, General Motors has shared an early sketch of the Trailblazer designed by Youngho Jung, Exterior Design Team Manager at GM Korea, and it looks wild. With its larger grille, massive air intakes, sculpted hood, wider body, and lower roofline, the design render looks a lot more aggressive and futuristic than the final production model.
Essentially, it looks like a Chevrolet Camaro on stilts and is arguably more worthy of the Trailblazer name than the tamer production model. Like most concept designs, the final production model was toned down significantly, but the Trailblazer still borrows some design cues from the Camaro's front fascia.
Under the hood, the Trailblazer is offered with either a 1.2-liter turbo producing 137 hp and 162 lb-ft of torque or a 1.3-liter turbo rated at 155 hp and 174 lb-ft of torque. But we'd prefer to imagine this Camaro-style SUV is powered by the muscle car's 6.2-liter V8 delivering 455 hp and 455 lb-ft of torque.
Will Chevrolet build a sporty SUV version of the Camaro? It sounds sacrilegious, but Camaro sales continue to fall behind its chief rivals, the Ford Mustang and Dodge Challenger. This has led to fears that GM will discontinue the beloved American muscle car after the current generation. Ford has found success with the Mustang Mach-E electric SUV, so we wouldn't be surprised if Chevrolet decides to apply the iconic Camaro nameplate to an SUV to give it the new lease of life it desperately needs.