Chevrolet K5 Series Blazer

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When you live in the deep woods you usually want to have something around incase you decide to go to town. Mere ordinary cars don't cut the mustard because they are low, drag bottom, and fail to navigate mud and snow very well. This 1987 Blazer 4x4 is not a dream boat for adverse elements, but does a fair job. Chevy neglected to make the body wide enough to cover the wheels so even with running boards these machines throw mud up on the sides of the vehicle which is an annoyance.

The real handling compromise with these things is their short wheelbase. This makes them very difficult to control in snow/ice conditions. With the rear wheels so close to the front wheels, on a slick road, the rear wheels can overtake the front wheels very quickly, making it very difficult to recover from a slide. These things will go quite well, but not always front end first. If this is of concern to you, the longer wheelbase cousins such as the Chevy Pickups and Suburbans will consistently navigate snow and ice with a little less excitement.

These 2-door critters are pretty much history in the market place at the moment. The Blazer name went to the smaller mini-sports utility and Chevrolet/GMC has produced the Tahoe/Yukon as the replacement attempting to end the market confusion caused by having both the 'full sized' and the 'Mini-Blazer' which were completely different vehicles with the same name.

It all began with the Willeys jeep of World War II fame. After the war there came to be civilian versions of the jeep along with civilian versions of the famous Dodge Power Wagon which was essentially the Army Pickup. There were a few Dodge command cars around which was the conceptual ancestor of the Suburban.

The problem with the Jeep design was that it simply was not weatherized. It was designed as a convertible, and even with an aftermarket hardtop, it was cold and windy and not something that the wife and kids would take to safeway in the winter. International Harvester saw the opening, and produced the Scout. It was a jeep knock off. It was narrow and short, but offered real doors and a weatherized cab, and later models also included vastly larger engines than the mouse power 4 that was in the traditional Jeep CJ Series.

Then along comes Chevy with the Blazer (and Ford with the Bronco). Instead of being narrow track like the Scout and Jeep, they were simply a chopped off pickup. If you can imagine a standard Chevy pickup. Then cut the back of the cab out and chop off the front couple feet of the pickup box, and weld the last 6 feet of the pickup box to the back of the cab, and then shorten the frame to fit--you can Imagine a K5 Chevy Blazer. the White top that you see is simply a plastic/fibre glass canopy sealed nicely to the weather.

Except for the sheet metal and plastic on the back, the K5 Blazer is little different that the 'shorty' 4x4 pickup. After using this same C/K body for many years, in 1992 Chevy produced a new body style which is shared by all the full size pickups, Tahoes and Suburbans as well as the newly popular extended cab pickups.

The 2 door k5 Blazer has given way to the 4 door Tahoe which is a 2 seat Suburban. Oh, to be sure there are 2 door versions of the Tahoe, but there are very rare. The market is not for mud runners, but rather for moms who can't figure out how to get both the groceries and the kids into a sedan of the day.

- - Updated 01/20/2013
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