The Chevrolet division of General Motors introduced its S10 pickup truck in 1982. With the S10, Chevy intended to directly compete with Nissan and Toyota, who were firmly established in the compact truck market. Featuring a comfortable cabin and soft ride, the S10 was marketed by Chevy as a recreational lifestyle vehicle rather than a typical work truck. Production of the S10 continued until 2004, when it was replaced by the Chevy Colorado, a compact-to-midsize truck with larger dimensions. The 1985 Chevy S10 was practically unchanged from the 1984 model, except for a new engine offering and a few minor exterior changes.
Four-wheel-drive Chevy S10 trucks received a new standard engine for the 1985 model year: a 2.5-liter, overhead valve in-line four with 92 horsepower, known as the “Iron Duke.” Available on two-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive S10s was a 2.0-liter, overhead valve in-line four engine with 82 horsepower, and a 2.8-liter, overhead valve V-6 engine with 110 horsepower. In addition, the Chevy S10 had the option of an Isuzu-built diesel engine. This was a 2.2-liter in-line four diesel, rated at 62 horsepower. The two-wheel-drive S10 had an EPA gas mileage rating of 20 miles per gallon in the city and 27 mpg on the highway.