Chevy Blazer Generations Guide – History of the Chevy Blazer

For more than five decades, the Chevy Blazer has been an iconic fixture on American roads. As the years have gone by, it’s undergone multiple redesigns and upgrades, changing from a classic SUV to a modern electric vehicle. Since its debut in 1969, the Blazer has become an instantly recognizable symbol of practicality and style. This article serves as an overview of the various generations of the Chevy Blazer and an exploration of its upcoming all-electric variant.

1st Generation K5 Blazer (1969-1972)

The first generation of the Chevy Blazer, known as the K5 Blazer, was produced from 1969 to 1972. It was based on the Chevrolet C/K pickup, which was evident in its frame and front-end styling. It also adopted the truck’s engine and suspension components.

The 1969 model was a two-door, full-size SUV that came with either a soft convertible top or a removable hardtop. A four-wheel drive (4WD) system was the only option for this model year, as the rear-wheel drive (RWD) variant only became available in 1970. A choice between a three-speed automatic, or a three- or four-speed manual transmission was offered.

2nd Generation K5 Blazer (1973-1991)

Blue 1980 Chevrolet K5 Blazer

The next generation of the K5 Blazer enjoyed a significantly longer production run than the first and was marked with numerous improvements and modifications. One of the major changes was the shift from a removable top, which was a standard feature of the Blazer until 1975, to a fixed steel roof with a half-cab design in 1976. This paved the way for the introduction of the 1976 Blazer Chalet.

In the early 1980s, Chevrolet began offering a diesel engine option with 4WD and a four-speed automatic transmission. Then, in 1989, Chevy introduced a restyled Blazer with a more aerodynamic front end inspired by the lineup of Chevy pickups released at the same time.

S-10 Blazer (1983-1994)

Chevy expanded its Blazer line in 1983 with the introduction of the S-10. This was smaller than the K5 Blazer and more reminiscent of the S-10 pickup. In 1991, Chevrolet added a four-door version of the S-10 Blazer to its lineup, which effectively transformed the small unit into a family-friendly vehicle. It was also during this model year that four-wheel anti-lock brakes became a standard feature in the Blazer. The S-10 Blazer’s various iterations, including the upscale Tahoe trim, remained in production until 1994.

Full-Size Blazer (1992-1994)

For the 1992 model year, Chevy removed the K5 prefix from the K5 Blazer name and re-introduced the model as the Full-Size Blazer. This was larger than previous Blazer models, and came standard with a 5.6-liter V-8 engine paired with a five-speed manual transmission. A 6.5-liter diesel engine and four-speed automatic transmission were optional. This generation was only produced for two model years and was relaunched as the Chevrolet Tahoe in 1995.

All-New Blazer (1995-2005)

The all-new Chevrolet Blazer that was introduced in 1995 was actually the second generation, redesigned version of the S-10 Blazer. The S-10 prefix was dropped because the Full-Size Blazer was discontinued, and the All-New Blazer was meant to fill the void. This new model came standard with RWD and optional 4WD, and it was available in two- or four-door configurations. It was designed to be a mid-sized SUV that could handle both on-road driving as well as some light off-roading. It was popular for its ruggedness, spacious cabin, and its reasonable pricing.

The Return of the Blazer (2019-Present)

The Chevrolet Blazer returned for the 2019 model year as a crossover instead of the traditional SUV style of its earlier iterations. It’s a deviation from the previous models, featuring a unibody construction rather than a body-on-frame design. It also resembled the Camaro in appearance, with its sharp lines and strong stance, and even adopted several of the car’s interior features.

The 2019 five-passenger Chevy Blazer came standard with an inline-four engine paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission. A choice between front-wheel drive (FWD) or all-wheel drive (AWD) was also available. This all-new crossover boasted numerous modern safety and infotainment features that made it a very attractive package for the mainstream market.

2024 Chevrolet Blazer EV

White 2024 Chevrolet Blazer EV parked

Chevrolet is set to launch the electric variant of the Blazer in 2024, making it the first vehicle in the company’s lineup to be fully electric. The new Blazer EV will feature a range of up to 320 miles on a fully charged battery and accelerate from zero to 60 mph in under four seconds. It’s available in FWD, AWD, and RWD, and you can choose from four trims: the base 1LT, 2LT, RS, and SS. The MSRP for the 2024 Chevrolet Blazer EV is projected to be around $44,995.

The newest addition to the Chevy Blazer lineup has a sporty exterior and a spacious interior with a host of convenience features. It comes standard with Chevy Safety Assist and an impressive infotainment system, with Super Cruise technology as an option. If you’d like to know more about the 2024 Blazer, our product specialists at Sweeney Chevrolet are more than happy to answer your questions.

Popular Chevy Blazer Models

While all versions of the Chevy Blazer have found success in the marketplace, some models stand out more than others. One of the most iconic is the first-generation K5 Blazer, which combined off-road capability with comfort and convenience and paved the way for subsequent generations. The S-10 Blazer is one of the most beloved models because it was the first in the lineup to offer a four-door option. The All-New Blazer also enjoyed a successful run as a midsize SUV that could handle both on and off-road driving.

The Chevy Blazer has been a part of the American car industry since 1969, and it’s been a popular choice for drivers of all types. From its off-road capability to its family-friendly features, it’s had a long and successful history. If you’re in the market for a new SUV, the legendary Chevy Blazer is worth a closer look. Contact us at Cochran Chevrolet in Youngstown, Ohio, to learn more!

1980 Chevrolet K5 Blazer by Greg Gjerdingen is licensed with CC BY 2.0

Image via Chevrolet Pressroom licensed by CC BY-NC 3.0