18.3 C
Monday - 30 November 2020

Xtremely Great Colorado Experience

A chance to xplore Holden’s Z71 Xtreme Colorado ute.

Being squeezed tightly into a single prop bean can to be flown to an Island in the Hauraki Gulf by a, let’s say ‘fresh-faced’ pilot in brisk and swirling winds is not the normal way to begin a road test, but Holden New Zealand is becoming synonymous with taking things to the Xtreme.

Holden Colorado Z71 Xtreme New Zealand

Taking off from NZ’s widest airport in Auckland, to (fingers crossed) land on its narrowest got the adrenaline juices flowing as advertised and the horizontal windsock at Great Barrier Island’s runway certainly added to the fun, there was something mischievous in the smile across the face of Holden’s GM Corporate Affairs Ed Finn as he greeted us at the terminal, let the games begin.

Holden Colorado Z71 Xtreme New Zealand

Aotea Great Barrier Island is a mere 30-minute flight from Auckland but it really runs at its own pace. It’s 285 square km in area and filled with an absolute raft of narrow meandering roads, (some with asphalt and many without) and laden with ‘wave happy’ locals – we were to explore most of it in a bright orange crush and black decals, Holden Colorado Z71 Xtreme.

Holden Colorado Z71 Xtreme New Zealand

Designed and developed by Holden in Australia and first introduced as a concept at the Bangkok Auto Show in 2016, the Z71 Xtreme takes the extensively tested Colorado ute to, well the extreme (or make that the Xtreme). Equipped with a big 2.8 litre Duramax Turbo Diesel engine, 500Nm of torque and a 3.5-tonne towing capacity, it boasts the same impressive credentials of the Colorado Z71, but with a new-look tough exterior and upgraded off-road capability.

Holden Colorado Z71 Xtreme New Zealand

This limited edition ute comes loaded with all genuine holden xcessories. It has upgraded front suspension, all-terrain tyres and vehicle recovery kit. It’s got a best-in-class winch system equipped with a heavy-duty bash plate as well as 10,000 lb load capacity and a 30m synthetic line. Flared fenders, a black grille and bonnet bulge, a roof tray kit and (on our model) a snorkel – although I hoped we weren’t going diving in it.  

After kissing the ground in Pope-like fashion and a spot of ‘nerve settling’ morning tea, we set out on a tour of the Island. Although in all fairness it’s not a big Island, Ed had planned out the day’s route well, we would be driving from ferry to ferry, port to port and ducking down a seemingly endless string of side roads, virtually no road would go unturned.

The big thing he was quick to underline was the waving and I’m glad he did. Almost immediately upon hitting the streets came a wave from the local driver of an oncoming vehicle, a theme that continued throughout the day. From index finger lifting or royal wave to a palm raise or gentle nod, it’s relentless – I have to admit to changing my style with each and every one.

Holden Colorado Z71 Xtreme New Zealand

We stopped for lunch on the beach and fed some rather aggressive eels along the way, we climbed hills and negotiated descents, exploring every nook and cranny of the fine and friendly island. As expected, the Z71 Xtreme took each road and road surface well in its stride, for quite a large truck it felt nimble and comfortable, it really looks good too.

Holden Colorado Z71 Xtreme New Zealand

In all, we traveled a shade over 143km in the few hours we were there and regardless of the amount of corners we had turned I could have happily driven longer. The Z71 Xtreme is a great package, offering cosmetic and very real world mechanical upgrades to the firmly established Colorado frame and of course as it’s limited to thirty, it’s even more desirable.

Holden Colorado Z71 Xtreme New Zealand

With just the Xtreme flight back to Auckland to conquer, we headed back to the airport. In so many ways, it was a shame we couldn’t have driven back!

For more on Holden, click here

More from author


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Related posts

Latest posts

Lamborghini Confirms Their V12 Will Live On

Great news for car enthusiasts! The legendary Lambo lives on.

Jaguar Racing unveil Jaguar I-TYPE 5 race car ahead of new Formula E Campaign

aguar Racing have revealed their brand-new electric race car, the Jaguar I-TYPE 5, in a virtual launch 50 days before season seven of the...

Motorsport’s Endurance ‘gap’ filled – NaZCAR Pro National Endurance Championship

If you’re too fast for NaZCAR but not quite fast/rich enough for the NZ Endurance Championship, where do you go to become a fully-sanctioned...