2023 Chevy Colorado Moves Headlight Switch to Touchscreen

You can still flash the high beams from the turn signal stalk but all other headlight controls are in the infotainment screen.

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2023 Chevy Colorado Moves Headlight Switch to Touchscreen © 2023 Chevy Colorado Moves Headlight Switch to Touchscreen

I don't know about you but the placement of headlight switches is important to me. I prefer independent switches or knobs for my headlights and don't like when they're controlled via the turn signal stalk. I find the latter to be fussy, overly complicated, and just annoying. However, I'd take that any day over having my headlight controls built into the touchscreen, like they are on the new 2023 Chevy Colorado.

For 2023, Chevy completely redesigned the Colorado's interior and ditched the previous-gen truck's physical headlight controls. Instead, they're only found the infotainment touchscreen. You can access them in one of two ways, either via a digital button at the top of the screen or through a 'controls' submenu on the home screen. While stationary, that's not a problem. But while driving, that can be annoying at best, dangerous at worst.

Side view of Colorado Trail Boss in scenic area with mountains, trees and a dirt road.

Nick Katcherian, chief engineer for the new Colorado, told Road & Track that most people just leave auto headlights on and rarely use the physical controls anyway. So decluttering the stalks were more important to Chevy than a headlight switch. And he has a point. Automatic headlights do eliminate most of the need for manual controls most of the time. If you do have to flash your high beams in the new Colorado, you can still pull backward on the blinker stalk to do so. Katcherian also pointed out that if the wipers turn on, so too will the headlights. So if it's raining but isn't dark enough to trip the auto headlights, the wipers will do it for you.

Some customers might be worried about software glitches or touchscreen failures preventing them from using their headlights. However, Katcherian assured R&T that there's a legal requirement for headlights to always be controllable. So Chevy made the headlight controls separate from the screen's main user interface and overlayed on them on top, so even if glitches occur, owners will still be able to operate their front beams.

I understand that this solution is probably fine. The few times that owners will actually manually operate their headlights are rare, but enjoying the lack of clutter on the blinker and wiper stalk is constant. Do I think it's a worthy compromise? No, I think adding essential controls to submenus in a touchscreen is foolish. However, in Chevy's defense, the automatic function does do the job perfectly well most of the time.

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