The new 2019 Chevy Blazer is nothing like the classic Blazer models of the past, but does that mean that it can’t handle the dirt?
First of all, to get a sense for exactly what the new Blazer is, we put it through out TFL Off-Road Index, to see where it would rank. Not surprisingly, it didn’t score all that high, coming in with a total 30.5 points out of a possible 100.
This is a unibody crossover with less than eight inches of ground clearance and no all-terrain tires. In other words, don’t expect the new Blazer to live up to the off-road chops of the old one. This Blazer is meant for families looking for transportation in a stylish package, not for those looking to tackle the trail.
The RS model we tested arrives with with standard all-wheel drive though, so it is safe to say that the Blazer is ready for dirt roads. A small knob behind the gear shift lever allows you to place the Blazer into one of its five selectable modes (2WD, AWD, Sport, Off-Road and Tow/Haul), which means that the all-wheel drive system here is proactive, allowing you to send power to all four wheels before you get into a situation where you need it.
On a dirt road in AWD mode, the Blazer stays sure footed even during emergency maneuvers, and there is a clear difference when you turn that knob. One more click finds off-road mode, which is probably better named as ‘rally mode,’ allowing you to slide around a corner with much less interference from the traction control system. The ABS is less active as well to allow for some full lockup, and more wheel spin will help get you out of sticky sand or mud.
Over in Sport mode, the Blazer really comes to life, with the 3.6L V6 under the hood climbing into its high rev-range quickly, delivering all of its 308 horsepower at 6600 rpm. Pushing this crossover through paved corners shows that it is definitely tuned to live up to its sporty appearance, remaining stiff enough have some actual fun with it. It’s still not a Camaro, but it seems to be a tick sportier than many of its midsize crossover counterparts.
In Canada, the Blazer starts at $37,095, while in the US the crossover starts at $29,995.
Make sure you watch the full video review above to see for yourself how the Blazer handles on the dirt.