The Chevrolet Blazer (4WD model T-10) and the similar GMC S-15 Jimmy (4WD model T-15) are mid-size SUVs from General Motors. Production began alongside the larger K5 Blazer and Jimmy in 1983 and lasted through 2005. In the United States retail sales after 2004 were limited to two-door Blazer models, all other models being sold to fleets, until April 20, 2005. In the Canadian market, four-door models of the Blazer and Jimmy were sold until the 2004 model year and until the 2005 model year for the two-door models of both.
The S-series SUVs, so named because they were based on the Chevrolet S-10 and GMC S-15 pickup trucks, were produced in Pontiac, Michigan; Linden, New Jersey; Moraine, Ohio; Shreveport, Louisiana; and São Paulo, Brazil (the Brazilian version is based on the second-generation S-series; even though production ceased in the U.S., new Blazers are locally produced in Brazil with their own sheetmetal stampings). In North America, the Moraine plant produced only 4-door vehicles, with both 2- and 4-door models being produced at Linden, which was the main assembly plant after the switch (some time after 1995) from Pontiac, Michigan, which is now a full-size truck plant.
Upon the introduction of the S-10 pickup truck in 1982 to replace the Isuzu-based Chevrolet LUV, the S-10 Blazer was introduced for the 1983 model year, along with the GMC S-15 Jimmy.
Styling cues were based on the first generation K5 Blazer and Jimmy (such as the angled C-pillars and lift glass panel); the S-series Blazer and Jimmy did not feature removable hardtops like their full-size counterparts. Notably, the new, smaller Blazer and Jimmy were only offered in a two-door bodystyle, like their larger antecedents.
Base power was provided by GM's 2.0 L OHV four-cylinder engine, producing a meager 83 hp (62 kW). A 2.8 L, 110 hp (82 kW) V6 was offered as an option (coincidentally this engine was also used in Jeep's Cherokee until 1987).
Due to emissions laws, a 1.9-liter I4 gasoline engine built by Isuzu was offered as the base model engine in California in place of the 2.0-liter engine, while an Isuzu-sourced 2.2-liter diesel engine (also used in the S-series pickups) producing 58 hp (43 kW) was offered as an option.
The 1.9-, 2.0- and 2.2-liter diesel were dropped after 1985, replaced by the larger 2.5-liter engine. The V6 was refitted with a throttle-body fuel injection system for 1986 in order to improve performance and fuel economy.
Jeep replaced the Cherokee's 2.8 V6 with a new, more powerful 4.0 L, 173 hp (129 kW) I6 in 1987. To keep competitive the Blazer and Jimmy received a new 4.3 L (262 cu in) V6 option in 1988 (also used with the Astro/Safari vans), based on the ubiquitous Chevrolet Small-Block V8 engine, producing a respectable 150 hp (110 kW). Power output was increased to 160 hp (120 kW) in 1989.
In March 1990, 4-door versions of the S-10 Blazer and Jimmy were introduced as a 1991 model; the 4-door had a 6.5in longer wheelbase (2-doors had a 100.5 in wheelbase - six inches (152 mm) longer than the Ford Bronco II) and a one-piece front grille with a painted black insert (1990 2-door S-10 Blazers and Jimmies had the 3-piece grille). This new grille also did away with the separate metal filler panel under the grille, since the grille is taller and took its place. Early production models between March and August 1990 were initially available as a four-wheel drive only; 2WD versions commenced production around Summer 1990. This came just months ahead of the introduction of the Ford Explorer, which replaced the Bronco II; six-and-a-half years after the segment-leading Cherokee debuted with four doors. Snowflake alloy wheels (similar to the ones used on the Chevrolet Astro/GMC Safari) were introduced, either painted charcoal gray or argent silver.
The upscale Oldsmobile Bravada appeared the next year featuring an All-Wheel-Drive package called "Smart-Trak". Although the first generation S-series Blazer and Jimmy were initially sold as 2-doors upon its original introduction, an episode of Motor Trend TV (c. 1991) stated that the thumbs up was for the introduction of the new bodystyle, and the thumbs down was that the 4-door bodystyle was based on the first generation model, which was in the process of a makeover.
1992 models were similar to 1991s - the only way to tell the difference is the rear back glass (the rear glass does not have any trim to which two black buttons serve as the back glass strut mounting points) and front grille (chrome shell with argent silver inserts). The interior was a carryover from 1991 with the exception of the center console and steering wheel (X-bar style similar to the one used in the GMT400 trucks). Also, the "S-15" name was dropped from the Jimmy, also 1992 was the first model year were the S10 Blazer and Jimmy offered an electronic transfer case for 4 wheel (locate to the left of the steering wheel as a three-position switch (4 HI, 4 LO, and 2HI when the switch was not in the 4 HI or 4 LO position) the switch is located where the rear defroster switch is located on the S10 Blazers/Jimmys with either a manual transfer case(floor shifter) or 2 wheel drive models, however there was no neutral position with the electronic transfer case, so the owner's manual stated that the drive shaft had to be removed when the S10 Blazer/Jimmy was being towed.
From at least 1992 onward, all S10 Blazers and Jimmies came with anti-lock brakes as standard equipment. The 2.8L V6 was dropped as an option on the S-10 Blazer and Jimmy in 1990, though it was offered as an option on the S-10 and S-15/Sonoma pickups through 1993). A 5-speed manual transmission remained standard through 1994, but only with the TBI engine. Only the two 4.3 L (262 cu in) engines were offered as options - the base TBI and the CPI (introduced in 1992 for the S-series and Chevrolet Astro minivans; the latter had the "Vortec" logo on the intake plenum).
1993 had a few changes - the center console was raised, and the 4L60E transmission replaced the 700r4. The grille (alongside the S-10 pickup) was revised (which was a chrome-plated version of the base work truck grille found on base S-10 pickups), along with the addition of optional 5-spoke alloy rims (for the 2WD model - basically a copy of the 3rd generation Camaro Z28 15" alloy rim).
Although the second generation S-series Pickup debuted in 1994, the S-10 Blazer and Jimmy continued unchanged in 1994, based on the first generation S-series (with the addition of a third brake light - the high-mounted rear spoiler was discontinued). 1994 was a transition year for many automakers when it came to switching from R-12 Freon to CFC-free R134a refrigerant. The redesigned 1994 S-10 and Sonoma pickups used R134a refrigerant. Despite being nearly identical to the 1993 models, the entire 1994 model year full-size pickup and SUV lineup (C/K, Sierra, Suburban, Yukon, etc.), also used R134a. The 1994 S-10 Blazer and Jimmy seem to have used R-12 until the end of their production run and subsequent replacement with redesigned 1995 models that looked like new-for-1994 pickups.