ATLANTA, Georgia — Move over 2020 Ford Bronco, the all-new 2019 Chevrolet Blazer is back to steal some thunder. The Bow Tie has been Blazer-less since 2005 when it retired the dusty S-10 Blazer, which was first launched in 1982. For most of its life, the first-generation of the smaller Blazer was offered in parallel with the full-sized K5 Blazer that was first built in 1969, with the second-generation S-10 Blazer arriving in 1995.
Under the hood, the 2019 Blazer packs a 2.5-liter inline-four that offers 193 hp and 188 lb-ft of torque. But wait—before you bellyache, there’s an optional 3.6-liter V-6 available that delivers 305 hp and 269 lb-ft of torque.
Both engines are mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission and feature stop/start technology—that hopefully has a defeat button. Update: It doesn’t as far as we can tell. Chevy claims the V-6 version can tow up to 4,500 pounds too.
“The Chevrolet Blazer is more than just good looks,” said Waqar Hashim, Blazer chief engineer. “Both the Ecotec 2.5L four-cylinder engine and 3.6L V-6 engine are paired to Chevrolet’s nine-speed automatic transmission, providing drivers a great balance between performance and efficiency.”
Traction Select is standard and on AWD models Chevy says it allows the system to be completely disconnected from the rear axle. Sporty blacked out RS and tony chrome-filled Premier trims get twin-clutch AWD tech for better performance in messier weather.
“Chevrolet has been at the forefront of each of the major automotive industry trends by anticipating consumer demand and delivering innovative products like Bolt EV, Colorado, and Trax,” said Alan Batey, GM president and Chevrolet head.
“The introduction of the all-new Blazer builds on that momentum and further strengthens the most comprehensive lineup of crossovers and SUVs on the market today.”
Why launch the all-new Blazer in Atlanta? It’s one of the biggest markets for the brand we are told. Size wise the new Blazer fits between the Equinox and Traverse. My colleague Aaron Gold says, “It looks like the love-child from a three-way between a Hyundai Kona, a Lexus RX, and a Range Rover Evoque.”
That it does and in a good way. The squinty HID headlights, and big black grille and matching black bow tie give the new Blazer a mean mug that works. Side proportions look long and strong, with a high beltline, and there’s lots of motion going on in the sheet metal.
Around back features LED-illuminated taillamps, dual exhaust outlets, and an integrated tailgate spoiler. It rolls on standard 18-inch aluminum rims and RS and Premier trims get 21-inch wheels. The five-passenger midsize SUV offers up to 64.2 cubic feet of cargo space for your loot and the second-row seats can fold flat. There’s also an adjustable sliding rear seat.
“The Blazer has attitude,” said John Cafaro, Chevrolet design executive director tells the crowd at the launch. “It looks commanding on the road, while fulfilling the promise of versatility at the heart of every Chevy crossover and SUV.”
Inside Chevy says the new Blazer gets several color and trim choices, padded knee areas, round air vents, and grab handles on the doors. It’s pretty roomy overall and there’s decent leg room in the second row for teens and most adults.
Optional goodies include a cargo management system with rails and a cargo fence and a panoramic dual-pane power sunroof.
Standard tech goodies include Adaptive Cruise Control and Rear Camera Mirror, Hands-free power liftgate with Bow Tie logo projection for the RS and Premier trims. Also wireless charging and six USB ports are available, an 8-inch- touchscreen running Chevrolet Infotainment 3 is standard, and its all Android Auto and Apple CarPlay friendly. Sweet.
The Chevrolet Blazer will arrive at dealerships in early 2019. Pricing will be announced once production starts. Stay tuned for more photos and info coming soon.