Reliability & comfort and able to tow it all!
By VTtoolman on Tuesday, April 29, 2014
I own this car - My approximate mileage is 145,000
overall rating 9 of 10rating details
- Overall Rating
Pros: "Reliability, low cost of ownership. A capable 4X4"
Cons: "It's big and milage isn't the greatest."
Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9
"I ordered my 1997 Suburban new from the factory and have had it for 17 years now. Original engine, transmission, transfer case, drive train, etc. and it still has the original stainless steel (factory) exhaust system without rust or holes in it! This has been a workhorse that can go long distances without stopping nor worrying about passenger comfort. We regularly made trips from VT to IL with minimal stops (rest rooms) and once for fuel, with the 42 Gallon gas tank. It carries 7 and all their luggage and other stuff with ease. I requested that all the pre-filled fluids be synthetic and I've always used Mobil 1 oil in it, and it really makes a difference, in my opinion and experience. I get 18 to 19+/- mpg on the highway, if you keep it at 65 mph. Still looks and runs like new and I've only had to replace common wear items, brakes, tires, the drive belt. The belt tensioner failed about a month ago and that was a $48 part that took 10- minutes to replace myself. I did install new front brake rotors at 100k, but the rear drums are still OK. Other than that, this thing has been a beast with reliability that has, frankly, surprised me - it just keeps going!
If Chevy didn't have a new design every 5-7 years, you'd think this was still a new SUV. I've run this up some backwoods roads and steep hills and never gotten it stuck, which is good, as the weight is enough that it would be difficult to get out otherwise. The A/C only needed a "top off" on the Freon this past Summer, and still blows so cold my wife keeps a blanket onboard for when we travel (I like it cold, she prefers it a little less cold). In the snow, it's a tank and I've never feared driving in the worst weather, but growing up in New England you learned to drive in the snow or you stayed home a lot! If the new ones weren't over $65K I'd probably buy another new one, but without the need for all the extra space and cargo capacity, this is likely our last Suburban, unless we win the lottery!"
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