Chevy Trailblazer 2.8 LTZ vs Toyota Fortuner 2.8 GD6
Fortuner has long been the SUV king of the hill, but can the original SUV claim its thrown back?
We do a comparison and live with both of these for a week. And while I did take the trailblazer off-road, this comparison is more a test to see what these two cars are like to live with, day to day.
Engine and gearbox
Toyota know a thing or two about this combination especially when it comes to off road abilities. Where trailblazer feels more at home on the road, Fortuner is always itching to go off road.
Trailblazer’s gearbox tends to hunt and shuffle from time to time, even at cruising speed and especially when trying to overtake and I can’t help but think that this could just be a software issue.
Fortuner’s gearbox works great but don’t even look at those paddles behind the steering wheel as they just take too long to respond and are better left unused. Both of these cars should be left in Auto mode and enjoyed for what they are; automatics.
When it comes to their respective power plants both of these can’t really be faulted, other than the fact that there smaller engined siblings do just as good a job for less money. Trailblaizer pushes out 144kW while Fortuner makes about 130kW. The difference is obvious though with Trailblazer blazing to 100 in 10.4 seconds and Fortuner 10.8, according to the manufacturers. With 50Nm more torque at 500Nm, Trailblazer wins in the torque stakes as well, but again, hardly a noticeable difference when heading to the shops.
This could be where Trailblazer gets even more of an edge. The blingy interior of the new Fortuner didn’t make sense to me at all. Even owners of the old Fortuner say it’s a tad strange, but that still didn’t deter the loyal Toyota fans from upgrading to the 2017 model. Part of the steering wheel is wooden with simplistic dark interior features. The homage to the original Toyota clock is cool at first but after a few days of driving/ownership it’s just a really old looking clock on a modern dashboard. 2017 Trailblazer on the other hand has an interior that looks and feels great with all switch-gear making sense. The rear facing camera is one of my favourites on any car and the in-car entertainment is modern and functional. Connecting my Bluetooth was quick and self-explanatory. The big criticism of Trailblazer is still the strangely non-rake adjustable steering. It’s still possible to get comfortable but this could be a deal breaker for some.
The rear foldaway seats in Fortuner are something Fortuner owners love as even when they are used still provide excellent stowage space. Perfect for long vacations with the kids and their friends. Trailblazers seats, once engaged only allow for limited baggage in the boot.
When Fortuner first appeared the radical looks made many SUV fans sit up. The angular lines are attractive and aggressive. The 2017 Trailblazer is however just a tweaked version of the 2012 model. For me personally it would be the Trailblazer with its more understated looks and that trademark Chevy badge up front, but if you want something that’s stands out more then the Toyota is for you.
Both of these cars are obviously capable and very good at what they do. However for me personally, as a daily driver, the Trailblazer takes it. The Toyota is much more suited to farmland, gravel road and the odd off road excursion. And it is VERY VERY good at these things. Where Trailblazer is more of an everyday kind of car with real off road ability when you need it, and if you’re like me, that will be once every 6 months.