Chevrolet has been known for its high performing, rugged line of trucks for many years. The Suburban has been around for quite some time and it has been though many changes along the way. The Suburban was actually introduced around 1935 and has been going strong since. The original pickup had more of a station wagon style body. The Suburban is one of the largest vehicles on the road and it is a fully capable truck that can be used to move up to 8 passengers at once or to tow a huge payload. This truck is also one of the most expensive truck models from Chevy, but there is no question that you get what you pay for when you buy one of these beasts.
The standard Chevrolet Suburban start out at $40,925 and that is before you even look at any extra options packages. The standard engine and transmission can town up to 8,100 pounds and if you need a stronger towing package, then you can upgrade to the LTZ model that brings a bigger V-8, a 6 speed automatic transmission and some other off-road necessities to the table. This is the vehicle that pretty much defined what an SUV was and should be.
Engines: 5.3L V-8, 6.0L V-8
Transmission: 6-speed automatic
Models: 1500 LS, LT, LTZ, 2500 LS
New paint colors for the 2011 Chevrolet Suburban are Mocha Steel Metallic, Steel Green Metallic and Ice Blue Metallic. The 1LS trim level gets standard rear audio system controls with two headphone jacks, Bluetooth connectivity, floor console with storage area, wood grain interior trim, luggage rack center rails, body color outside door handles and mirror caps, and premium cloth front buckets with optional 40/20/40 bench. The 1LTZ 4WD adds standard chrome recovery hooks and two-speed transfer case.
Chrome 20-inch wheels are a new option on 1LTZ. The Z71 Off Road appearance package includes high-pressure monotube gas shocks, 18-inch off-road tires, automatic locking rear differential, color-key fender flares and bright chrome grille insert.
Optional features for the three-row SUV include a power-release fold-and-tumble second-row seat, first- and second-row heated seats, Ultrasonic parking assist, driver information center, tri-zone automatic HVAC, rearview-mirror camera, touch-screen navigation and eight-inch DVD screen.
Performance & Handling
It handles like a truck, of course, but the torquey small block V-8 launches the Suburban quite well. The RWD 1500 comes with an iron block 5.3-liter Vortec, and the 4WD 1500 has an aluminum-block 5.3. Both have cylinder shutoff technology, E85/flex fuel capability and make 320 horsepower and 335 pound-feet. The 2500 comes with a 352-horsepower/382 pound-feet iron-block 6.0-liter.
Standard features include roof-mounted head curtain side airbags with rollover protection for all three rows and front seatbelt pre-tensioners designed to provide deployment in rear-end crashes. StabiliTrak stability control with rollover mitigation also is standard.
EPA Fuel Economy
1500 LS, LT, LTZ (5.3L) RWD/4WD: 15 mpg city/21 mpg highway
2500 LS, LT (6.0L) RWD/4WD: 10 mpg city/15-16 mpg highway
- Interior space
- Variety of configurations
- Off-road capability (4WD)
- Torquey small-block V-8
You Won't Like
- Parking it
- Refueling it
- No flush-folding third row
- Aging design
The big oil shock survivor
If You Like This Vehicle
- Ford Expedition
- Toyota Land Cruiser
- Cadillac Escalade
- Mercedes-Benz GL-Class