Advertisement

Why ads?
Popular at KBB.com
  • 12 Best Family Cars of 2014
  • 10 Best Midsize SUVs
  • 10 Best SUVs Under $25,000
  • 10 Best AWD Cars & SUVs Under $25,000
Go

2011 Chevrolet Express 1500 Cargo

Overview
Share this page
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2011 Chevrolet Express 1500 Cargo Review

By

Versatility is what the 2011 Chevrolet Express Van is all about. Available in Cargo and Passenger versions, Chevy's ultimate hauler can transport up to 15 passengers or, when the job requires moving parcels instead of people, whatever you can fit into a mobile storage locker offering nearly 285 cubic feet of usable space. Either way you look at it, the Express will be tasked with moving what could potentially be a substantial amount of weight, which is why Chevrolet offers buyers a variety of engines, including a torquey Duramax diesel. Factor in the options of regular- or extended-length models, a selection of basic to well-equipped trims and the availability of rear- or all-wheel-drive (AWD) capability, and you have a vehicle ready for most anything.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you frequently need to accommodate several passengers, require a work vehicle offering space and configurability or want a van that covers the gamut from light-to heavy-duty capability, the 2011 Chevrolet Express is one not to be missed.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If your priorities include comfort or efficiency, the Chevy Express will likely leave you disappointed. Despite being offered with its share of creature comforts, this is a work vehicle, one that rides and handles more like a Silverado than a Honda Odyssey and isn't recognized for outstanding fuel economy.

What's New for 2011

For 2011, the Chevrolet Express van has been updated with standard StabiliTrak, the newest version of OnStar and desirable options such as Bluetooth connectivity and a WiFi feature. Also, the optional diesel engine now delivers more power and greater efficiency.

Driving the Express 1500 Cargo

Driving Impressions With EPA ratings of up to 20 mpg, the base Express Cargo van's V6 offers the lineup's greatest efficiency, but its 195 horsepower can be overwhelmed by heavy loads. In...

those situations, the available 310-horsepower 5.3-liter V8 is a better choice, or perhaps the optional 324-horsepower 6.0-liter V8. However, none of those engines can compete with the 6.6-liter Duramax diesel, updated for 2011 to deliver 260 horsepower and 525 lb-ft of torque. If something needs to be moved, chances are that turbocharged oil-burner will get it done.
Favorite Features

Side Access Doors
The Chevy Express Van's side doors provide easy access to the cargo area without having to climb in from the back.

Capability
Consider the 2011 Express Van to be a Jack-Of-All-Trades, one that can carry up to 15 people, boasts 284.4 cubic feet of cargo space and tows up to 10,000 pounds.

2011 Chevrolet Express 1500 Cargo Details
Interior

Styling for the 2011 Chevrolet Express Van's dash and instrument panel borrows from other Chevy models, including the Silverado pickup truck but, otherwise, the look is unique. In its basic Cargo configuration the Express is essentially a 2-passenger rig comprised of a couple of seats and a big empty box devoid of any type of trim or decoration. A variety of interior storage provisions can be added. Standing in contrast is the Express Passenger Van, where you'll find such luxuries as carpet, rear windows and additional seats.

Exterior

A need for interior space is what leads shoppers to the 2011 Express Van, meaning Chevy designers were challenged with the task of making the vehicle look fresh and modern while not affecting overall capacity. As a result, the silhouette of today's Chevrolet van isn't all that different from models sold over the past few decades, though the taillights are mounted higher, the edges have been softened and the front end looks more like a German Shepherd than a Pug.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

Listed among the 2011 Express Cargo Van's standard features are a V6 engine, vinyl flooring and upholstery, air conditioning, a step-up rear bumper and manually-operated exterior mirrors. Frills are not part of the deal, though the Passenger Van does jazz things up some, with a V8 engine and cloth seats. All Chevrolet Express models are equipped with stability control, 4-wheel antilock (ABS) disc brakes and dual front airbags.

Optional Equipment

Creature comforts are not what you'd call plentiful on the Express Cargo Van, so shoppers will need to look to the options list if they want power windows and door locks or, if they're really feeling crazy, a radio. There are also choices of engines, light- or heavy-duty models (1500, 2500, 3500), body lengths and various packages. Some of the more noteworthy items include side-curtain airbags, Bluetooth connectivity and the most recent version of OnStar.

Under the Hood

If fuel economy is a primary concern, a Chevrolet Express 1500 equipped with the base 4.3-liter V6 is a buyer's best choice. That 6-cylinder is expected to average 20 mpg on the highway but, with 195 horsepower, it's not exactly a powerhouse. Though less efficient, the 2011 Express van's four available V8s promise to get most any job done with up to 324 horsepower and, thanks to this year's updates, 525 lb-ft of torque. That latter amount is what you'll get from the available 6.6-liter turbodiesel V8, which has been tweaked to deliver additional output complimented by cleaner emissions.

4.3-liter V6
195 horsepower @ 4,600 rpm
260 lb-ft of torque @ 2,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/20

4.8-liter V8
280 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
295 lb-ft of torque @ 4,600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 11/17

5.3-liter V8
310 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
334 lb-ft of torque @ 4,500 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 13/17

6.0-liter V8
324 horsepower @ 4,700 rpm
373 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 11/16

6.6-liter Turbodiesel V8
260 horsepower @ 3,100 rpm
525 lb-ft of torque @ 1,600 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: N/A

Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2011 Chevrolet Express Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.1
Out of 10

Based on 218 Ratings for the 1996 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.4/10
    Quality
    8.3/10
  • Reliability
    8.6/10
    Performance
    8.5/10
  • Comfort
    8.5/10
    Styling
    8.3/10

Great VAN!!

By on Thursday, April 10, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 180,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "GREAT RIDE, VERY SOLID AND SAFE, GREAT FAMILY VAN"

Cons: "BLINDS ON WINDOWS TOO DELICATE"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"IF I HAD IT TO DO OVER AGAIN, I WOULD GET THE SAME EXACT VAN! EVEN THOUGH IT WAS NOT THE BEST IN GAS, AND THE FUEL PRICES FOR THE LAST SEVERAL YEARS HAVE HURT, IT WAS STILL WORTH FILLING UP THIS VERY RELIABLE VEHICLE."

4 people out of 7 found this review helpful

We love our van!

By on Friday, March 28, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 250,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Versatile, reliable, tough."

Cons: "Parking takes some creativity sometimes."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Great vehicle for a large family! We love the versatility in the seating (can move the four bench up etc.) and the towing capacity! Highly recommend. Very reliable!"

4 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Of all the full size vans this is the best ever.

By on Friday, March 14, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 100,300

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "A strong, well built truck, totally love it."

Cons: "The paint on the radio buttons does wear off."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Overall, this is the best van ever. I have owned and driven nothing but full sized vans starting with a 1974 Dodge Tradesman B100 followed by a 1978 ChevyVan 20; a 1981 Ford Econoline; a 1987 Dodge B250; a 1999 Chevy Express 2500 and now my current 2008 Chevy Express 2500. The '74 Dodge will always be my favorite van! Of all the remaining only the 2008 Chevy Express comes close. I love this van. It almost handles as good as a sports car...gets a little sloppy and unstable at speeds above 90 MPH! When loaded, also takes a little bit longer to stop. I always drive hard and fast. This van has had no major repairs needed - only routine maintenance. I would recommend this year and model to anyone interested in a full sized van. Lightly loaded, long distance mileage around 16-17 MPG, hot-rodding in stop-n-go traffic gets 11-13 MPG."

11 people out of 19 found this review helpful

good work van

By on Sunday, January 19, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 210,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
5/10
Comfort
5/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"not a bad van ,i changed tie rods , throttle body and starter at 200.000 , but no other problems . no rpm gauge and that's not a good idea when we talk a work car . the interior/comfort is the worst part at this car.seats are uncomfortable , window handle is hurting your knee ,driver seat to close to the cars body , makes you feel squashed . i can go on and on . i think none of the big companies ( gmc, ford ) seems to think workers are drivers also when it comes to interior . they think big engines , more space , more hp but don't care about the driver . i spend at least 3 hours driving every day and i can use a little bit of comfort ."

6 people out of 13 found this review helpful

Hate to part with but I am sick

By on Tuesday, January 07, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 94,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
Not Rated
Styling
10/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"This is a must see vehicle,very clean and well kept.Has most available features,Power door locks,windows,mirrows,cruise control,AM FM CD great wheels,would replace tires but raise asking price if I would."

8 people out of 10 found this review helpful

Good van with great engine ie.. 6.0 V8.

By on Saturday, January 04, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 115,000

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
6/10
Quality
5/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "A fun van with a powerful engine. Handles well !"

Cons: "not put together to well. Paint is terrible."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"Bought this van 2 years ago with the purpose of using it as a carpet cleaning van. Did this for short period and became second vehicle for family. The 6.0 litre V8 is amazing. Very powerful and smooth running. Fuel milage is not too good. 12 miles per gal. in city and maybe 16 mpg on highway. Paint is coming off several areas. Overal quality of vehicle not too good. Drivetrain is great. 6.0 litre engine is phenominal. Fast and has a ton of torque. Much nicer than Fords engines. Also much better than Chevy's 5.0 V8 as well. I wouldn't want it with the 305 V8 as it is woefully underpowered. It handles somewhat better than similar equipped Ford E150s. Likely newer models have improved in overall quality. I have seen newer Chevy vans and their paint stays on. That is a glairing fault on the 2003 model Chevy Vans."

5 people out of 9 found this review helpful

Share this page

Advertisement

Why ads?
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?