• Ram Power Wagon and Chevy Colorado ZR2: Stock Trucks Shine at the 2017 Rebelle Rally

    2018 chevy colorado zr2 rebelle female girl rally
    Chevy Colorado ZR2 (photo credit: Rebelle Rally)

    The 2017 running of the Rebelle Rally is a 1,200 mile week-long rally complete with two all-stock pickup trucks on the podium. The Rebelle Rally is an annual endurance off-road event with all female competitors. The rally covers nearly every off-road terrain you can think of (with the exception of mud) through the Nevada and California deserts. This rally is not about flat-out speed. It’s about teamwork, navigation for shortest path between checkpoints, and precision off-road driving during the Time Speed Challenge (TSC) stages.

    Out of the 36 teams that entered the race this year, half used Jeep Wranglers as their off-road racing machines. In fact, a modified 1999 Jeep TJ won the rally overall. A stock Ram Power Wagon of Nena Barlow and Chris Mayne won the “Bone Stock” 4×4 vehicle class and came in second overall. A stock Chevy Colorado ZR2 of Emme Hall and Rebecca Donaghe came in third overall to round out the podium.

    Ram Power Wagon Rebelle Rally (photo credit: Nena Barlow)

    Nena Barlow says: “The Rebelle Rally is all about teamwork. Each team consists of three teammates: driver, navigator, and vehicle. If all three work great together, that is the key to success.” Nena reports that the Power Wagon was a great off-road racer for this rally despite its formidable size and weight. The truck was not that completely at home in high speed desert sections, but it shined in rocky terrain, dunes, canyons, and steep climbs.

    The Rebelle Rally is scored on the team’s ability to navigate difficult terrain without the use of GPS (no smartphones are allowed here). It’s about paper maps, compasses, and raw terrain navigation skills. The team with the shortest distance traveled between checkpoints wins.

    Emme Hall recollects: “This year’s rally was more challenging than the inaugural 2016 rally. The terrain and windy weather during the week made it for an exciting challenge.”

    The TSC stages are timed road-book based challenges. There is a set travel distance that each competitor must complete within three seconds of a set time. If you are too fast or too slow, you lose points.

    Here is the 2017 Ram Power Wagon on TFLtruck’s most difficult off-road test – the Cliffhanger 2.0.

    The Chevy Colorado ZR2 takes on the Cliffhanger 2.0 mountain trail side-by-side with Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro and Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Recon.

    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov
    Andre Smirnov is an Automotive Enthusiast, Producer, Reviewer, Videographer, Writer, Software Engineer, Husband, Father, and Friend.

    39 thoughts on “Ram Power Wagon and Chevy Colorado ZR2: Stock Trucks Shine at the 2017 Rebelle Rally

          1. Yep, not only do the boys who buy Raptors have dumb trucks, they have dumb girls too.

            I stopped short in my first comment, but just had to come out with the TRUTH.

            1. Raptor still has a lot of nice advantages to make it a good truck for those who dont race though. If it does race it will be comfortable and still do well. Depending on conditions it would win out on high speed traction and acceleration unless a regular F150 showed up with the 3.5EB that would win the accelertion battle. I think a regular cab FX4 witth the 3:73 rear end with the 3.5 EB would do really well in a showdown like this. The Powerwagons kryptonite is the breakover angle which will stop it dead where a short wheelbase will keep going. All depends on the conditions.

    1. Andre – – –

      I like the Rebelle Rally.
      Good work, Nena** … and all the gals!
      Wish there were an identical format for guys, too. (Maybe guys don’t cooperate with teamwork as proficiently (^_^).)

      I can understand the choice of Jeep, Power Wagon and Land Rover, but where is the Ford Raptor?
      Yet I am delighted that the new Colorado ZR2 did well!

      ** For those who may not know, Nene runs “Barlow Adventures”, and off-road excursion company, — and this sort of thing is exactly her area of expertise:


      1. ADDENDUM – – –

        It is interesting that Nena’s big, heavy, STOCK Power Wagon got 1175 points; whereas Kaleigh’s light, nimble, MODIFIED Jeep TJ got “only” 1177 points… 🙂

        I would have expected O.R. modified, lifted, and otherwise adapted Jeeps to sweep this rally. But no such result occurred.

        Maybe Chevy is really onto something with the Colorado ZR2, as I see that the famed Toyota Tacoma TRD-Pro is also MIA!


        1. @Bernie Kressner: Yeah, I’m surprised to see no Tacoma’s. The Tacoma’s primary market share are weekend off roader types (dirt bikers, 4×4, etc.).

            1. NoQDRTundra, LOL, no, I am in a Tundra now and it won the Baja in the stock class, I just traded my Tacoma and that post was meant as a joke. LOL No Tundra’s entered either so I am going to default back to my original reason why if that’s ok and doesn’t bunch up the panties

          1. Yeah it’s strange, Toyota had a TRD Pro in the Mint 400 back in March but I haven’t heard of it racing in any other BITD events since then. Nice to see GM taking the ZR2 seriously. The Hall Racing ZR2 just raced in the Tonopah 250 this last weekend and the Camburg/Toyota TRD Pro Tacoma wasn’t there either. They’re both in the same class so it’s a bit disappointing.

        2. The Toyota will far Outlast a Colorado but when it comes to performance is not even a competition! Lockers, clearances and engine performance all go to the Colorado.

          Reliability and resale Toyota will take in spades but that’s not what this competition is measuring

            1. There’s less than a half-inch of difference between the TRD Pro and ZR2. Not to mention the TRD Pro’s transfer case is one of the lowest hanging parts of the truck and is only shielded by a thin piece of sheetmetal.

          1. The Tacoma isn’t going to outlast anyone as long as Toyota continues to use substandard steel frames that rust so bad customers have to sue Toyota in a multi-billion dollar class action lawsuit in order to get them to do anything about the problem. The beds have a long history of rust too. And now that Toyota dropped the legendary 4L V6 for a problematic 3.5 V6 that has already suffered from sensor failures, severe hesitation issues, and a troublesome fuel system that includes two distinct sets of fuel injectors, 12 port injectors and 12 direct injectors, and a failure prone high pressure fuel pump, longevity is far from guaranteed. I should also mention that the 3rd gen has been plagued with differentials that howl, burn up, lock up, and potentially even cause a deadly crash. The auto transmission has been plagued by issues since its release and it was bad enough that the Tacoma has been rated the least reliable midsize pickup by Consumer Reports for 2 years in a row. That famous Toyota longevity died alongbwith the 2nd gen Tacoma.

      1. Probably, since it’s not sold here, and Mexico has a common border with the USA. But the Frontier Pro 4X is sold here, — and that one was missing too!


      2. Robert. This is not really a race for speed. The description points out that it test the skills of the girls finding the shortest route from point A-B. Using paper maps and basic tools. No electronics. This is more of a race for human skill vs vehicle.

        1. Jimmy – – –

          Yup. Typical Rally format. That’s why I was so surprised that Jeeps didn’t absolutely dominate. The traction and climbing stuff should have been a piece-o’-cake for them, allowing the drivers to concentrate on the stop watch….


          1. From what I gather of this article, it really has nothing to do with it being a Jeep or anything. The driver and co pilot skill has more to do with this race. It could be the best off road truck in the world and you put in a crappy driver, you could end up in last place. I have been at some motorcycle races and some of the lower CC bikes kill the bigg CC bikes. The rider knew how to ride much better and killed it.

          2. I think that would be due to driving skills,or some lacking thereof. Better more experienced rally drivers will usually come out on top even with somewhat lesser vehicles.

          1. Jim – – –

            I don’t think that “Jimmy Johns” meant any disrespect by calling women “girls”, any more than I did by calling them “gals”. This is the exact equivalent of calling men “boys” at sporting events, parties, games, and the like.
            I once had a vibrant energetic aunt in Colorado who, in addition to raising a family and working/building an 80 acre “spread” in the Rockies, constantly referred to women as “gals”. Maybe it was a Western thing, I don’t know, but no one was ever offended or felt it was demeaning. Maybe we are all getting a bit to sensitive about these things? Just sayin’….


            1. Indeed. Politically correct speech has entered even truck talk. I can understand correcting it where it’s use was clearly disparaging but not otherwise. But that requires thought and it’s easier just to respond in a knee jerk fashion.

    2. Bone stock scoring went as follows: (and as mentioned, the vehicle was only one part of the competition, it was how well the team could follow directions)

      1. Powerwagon
      2. ZR2
      3. Navara
      4. Frontier
      5. Raptor
      6. LR4
      7. Rubicon
      8. Rubicon
      9. Bronco

    3. Wow. FIAT won again. That must be very interesting and fun race to experience. Real life situation. FIAT makes best offroad vehicles. Congratulations. Raptor is fine machine, but not for offroad and drivers are not as smart as FIAT’s , like someone said. You can’t win this race, if you are dumb.

      1. The truck had nothing to do with it. A ZR2 would smoke a Power wagon in any offoad race type event. Your 100 dollar bilsteins would melt down way before the shocks on a ZR2, TRD Pro, or a Raptor.

    4. I see there was one Raptor entry, but based upon what I read on the site this Rally is scored based upon the shortest distance between checkpoints. It really has nothing to do with the vehicle. Heck, there was a bone-stock 1995 Ford Bronco in the event.

      1. It does depend on the vehicle somewhat, because based on the vehicle and driving abilities, you may be able to take a shorter route than others. Per Nena Barlow, as reported by Allpar.com, the “Power Wagon was the only vehicle powerful enough and with enough clearance to make it to the top of Oldsmobile Hill in the famous Glamis Sand Dunes portion of the event.” This was also on the stock tires. So, not knowing anything about the event or possible routes, it seems the Power Wagon was able to do some things that the other vehicles couldn’t do, allowing for shorter distances traveled between checkpoints. A Power Wagon also won last year.

    5. Congratulations gals! What a fun race this sounds like.

      I believe that’s Emme Hall that helps TFL out?

      I think these type if events are awesome. Its all about teamwork, old school navigating, and smart driving with a healthy dose of reliability!

    6. The capability of the vehicle will determine which route it can take between points. So vehicle capabilities can determine the winner.

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