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2009 Chevrolet Tahoe

Overview
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2009 Chevrolet Tahoe Review

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The 2009 Chevrolet Tahoe continues to be one of the best full-size SUV values on the market. Despite rising fuel costs and slowing sales, those who simply cannot do without the Tahoe's capability will find much to like, including a hybrid model with city fuel economy ratings in the low to mid 20's. As the bestselling full-size SUV since the previous redesign in 2001, the Tahoe has long had a lot going for it, including top rankings in the J.D. Power and Associates Initial Quality Survey. Despite the slightly conservative exterior styling, the Tahoe is still handsome, and its ride quality and overall responsiveness have never been better.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you have a number of children, tow a boat or horse trailer and like the feel of a substantial V8-powered vehicle, the 2009 Chevrolet Tahoe could be just the ticket. Another plus: The Tahoe's powerful V8 engines offer Active Fuel Management technology and many are E85-ready.

You May Not Like This Car If...

Our one quibble with the Tahoe is the necessity to remove and store the third-row seats to gain maximum cargo room. But the new seats are easier to handle and come in two- and three-passenger configurations.

What's New for 2009

A new six-speed automatic transmission is made standard on all models, as is a removable third-row seat. New options include a 6.2-liter V8 on LTZ trims, two different rearview camera choices, the Side Blind Zone Alert system and Bluetooth hands-free cell-phone connectivity.

Driving the Tahoe

Driving Impressions GM's latest full-size SUV platform gives the 2009 Tahoe a markedly better ride-and-handling combination than previous-generation models. The fully-boxed frame (for more chassis stiffness), coil-over-shock front suspension and rack-and-pinion steering...

result in a surprisingly maneuverable and tractable vehicle. We were also struck by the Tahoe's quiet cabin and its inviting, upscale interior. The 5.3-liter V8 with Active Fuel Management puts its 320 horsepower right at your command thanks to a wide torque curve, and you never notice when the engine switches between eight- and four-cylinder operation. By using this technical wizardry, the two-wheel-drive version of the Tahoe achieves a 20-mpg EPA highway mileage rating, which is best in the class. The two-wheel-drive Tahoe LT with the HD towing package and 6.2-liter V8 is tow-rated at 8,400 pounds, while the four-wheel-drive version is rated at a stout 8,200 pounds. We also praise the fact that Chevrolet has made its StabiliTrak electronic stability control system standard on the Tahoe, because it is potentially life-saving technology that can significantly reduce single-vehicle accidents. Additional new safety features include roof-mounted head-curtain side-impact airbags with rollover protection.

Smooth, Quiet Ride
With its new frame, suspension and steering system – plus additional sound dampening – the Tahoe offers a luxury-car-like ride.

Active Fuel Management
Helping you have your cake and eat it too; the Active Fuel Management system, which cuts the operation of four cylinders when they are unneeded, enhances fuel economy.

2009 Chevrolet Tahoe Details
2009 Chevrolet Tahoe photo Interior

The 2009 Chevrolet Tahoe has definitely moved up a notch or two when it comes to interior refinement and luxury, as befitting a vehicle that can cost $40,000 or more. Leading the list of features is the clever power-release fold-and-tumble second-row seat. This makes gaining access to the third row of seating as simple as pushing a button, as the seat immediately folds out of your way. Heated second-row seats are also available (why make the kids second-class citizens?), and other niceties include sonar-based rear parking assist, rearview camera parking assist and touchscreen-operated navigation system. The instrument panel with LED backlighting is fit for a luxury sedan.

Exterior

The face of the Chevrolet Tahoe is its most distinctive exterior feature. The latest design features a twin-port horizontal grille with a bold Chevrolet "bow tie" in the center. The flared fenders, power bulge on the hood and large wheels and tires (up to 20 inches in diameter) speak to an understated but substantial presence on the road. The steeply-angled windshield, wraparound fascia and faired-in headlights help contribute to a best-in-segment 0.363 coefficient of drag, which translates into enhanced fuel economy. Even though the Tahoe is both long (202 inches) and wide (79 inches), it is still easy to handle and park.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

There are four trim levels – LS, LT, LTZ and Hybrid, with the LT level further divided into LT1, LT2 and LT3 – and that means the vehicle can be configured from well-equipped to super-luxurious. Even the LS model includes dual-zone manual air conditioning, anti-lock brakes (ABS), cruise control, head-curtain side-impact airbags, six-way power driver's seat, StabiliTrak stability control system, third-row seat and tire-pressure monitoring system. The LT group adds (depending upon LT1, LT2 or LT3) tri-zone automatic air conditioning, power-adjustable pedals, remote vehicle starter, leather seats, audio system with six-disc CD changer and MP3 capability, ultrasonic rear parking assist and universal garage door opener. Stepping up to the LTZ trim adds 20-inch polished aluminum wheels, heated and cooled 12-way memory front seats, heated second-row seats with power release, heated windshield-washer fluid system, locking rear differential, power liftgate, Bose Surround Sound speakers, RainSense intermittent front wipers and Autoride rear air-assisted load-leveling.

Optional Equipment

The three trim levels should allow you to get the equipment level you need, but the 2009 Chevrolet Tahoe can also be "optioned up" in a wide variety of ways. Among key options are an engine-block heater, cross rails for the standard luggage rack (to make it functional), rear-seat entertainment center with DVD player, roof-mounted head-curtain airbags, Z71 Off-Road Package, FlexFuel E85-capable engines, Bose premium nine-speaker sound system, Side Blind Zone Alert System, 20-inch chrome wheels, rearview camera system and a navigation system and radio that includes CD, MP3 and XM NavTraffic compatibility. A choice of two- and four-wheel-drive models and a variety of axle ratios are also offered.

Under the Hood

While we expect the 4.8-liter V8 to be more than adequate for most driving, we recommend either the 5.3-liter or 6.2-liter V8 engine. They offer significantly more power and torque (pulling force) with very little penalty in fuel economy.

4.8-liter V8
295 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
305 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/19

5.3-liter V8
320 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
340 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20(2WD), 14/19 (4WD)

5.3-liter V8 Flex-fuel
320 horsepower @ 5200 rpm
340 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20 (2WD, gasoline), 10/15 (2WD, E85), 14/20 (4WD,gasoline), 10/15 (4WD, E85)

6.0-liter V8 Hybrid
332 horsepower @ 5100 rpm
367 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4100 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 21/22 (2WD), 20/20 (4WD)

6.2-litre V8
395 horsepower @ 5600 rpm
417 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4300 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 12/19 (2WD, gasoline), 10/14 (2WD, E85), 12/19 (4WD, gasoline), 9/14 (4WD, E85)

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

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2009 Chevrolet Tahoe Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.7
Out of 10

Based on 532 Ratings for the 2007 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.7/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    9.1/10
    Performance
    9.0/10
  • Comfort
    9.2/10
    Styling
    9.2/10

in general I really like my Tahoe

By on Tuesday, May 26, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 50,124

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "Price high but comfortable LTZ mod"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"The only problem I have had was at about 19,000 miles the transmission was a problem, Chev had it dfor about two weeks and found that when the transmission was built a main bearing was left out. They ended up rebuilding it rather then a new one worked fine ever since. Because of this Chev gave me a extended warranty to about 79,000 miles until Oct of 2015 bumper to bumper "0" deductible. The only ongoing problem is the on-star but I think that is the dealership not working on it right as they seem to not be able to call on-star to find out whats wrong.Have had it in many times for this, it seems to work but as I have told on-star I'm tired of going 35 to 40 miles to a dealer and they can either find nothing wrong or have an excuse why they can't fix it or they broke a part."

Excellent all around vehicle for this area.

By on Sunday, May 24, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 20,000

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
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Safe, comfortable and capable vehicle."

Cons: "Wish 3rd row seats were hidden below deck."

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

"I have found the Tahoe to be very reliable in this Northern Illinois area. It has never failed to start of deliver me and my family safely to our destination. Excellent, comfortable ride on highway trips. Especially like the seats for long distance driving. The towing package makes it capable of towing almost anything. However, I have never had the opportunity or need to tow with it. It is highly rated for towing capacity. If we decide to trade it on another vehicle, it is quite possible some family members will show high interest in purchasing it do to it quality and very low mileage."

Excellent automobile with every option

By on Monday, May 11, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 63,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

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

"LTZ Package. Excellent Condition, New Tires, Garage kept/non smoker. 3rd row seating, rear heat & air. Heated & cooled seating. Entertainment package."

6 people out of 8 found this review helpful

GREAT VEHICLE

By on Sunday, April 12, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 85,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
8/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "great shape"

Cons: "needs new floor mats"

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

"We purchased car new and it has been serviced at same dealer each time, we had free oil changes every 3000 miles, new tires fresh wax"

12 people out of 22 found this review helpful

Owned since new. Excellent performance+reliability

By on Friday, April 10, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 105,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

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

Pros: "High level of confidence+comfort. Easy to drive"

Cons: "Not much. One axle seal. Cost $200 to fix."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"No significant repairs in over 100K miles. Very low cost to maintain. Still runs and drives like new!"

3 people out of 5 found this review helpful

This has been our best SUV out of thre we have had

By on Sunday, April 05, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 88,346

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

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

"This Tahoe has absolutely nothing wrong with it, I wax every year twice a year. All upkeep kept up and always in garage."

2 people out of 6 found this review helpful

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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

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