1990 Chevrolet Suburban Review from North America

1990 Chevrolet Suburban 1500 Silverado 5.7L V8 (350 cubic inches)

Model year1990
Year of manufacture1990
First year of ownership2003
Most recent year of ownership2005
Engine and transmission 5.7L V8 (350 cubic inches) Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired271000 miles
Most recent distance293000 miles
Previous carFord Taurus

Summary:

293000 miles and still going strong..

Faults:

Nothing unusual considering the mileage. As a matter of fact, this truck has aged far more gracefully than other vehicles with less than half the mileage.

General Comments:

I used to own a 1993 Ford Taurus LX, equipped with the 3.8 litre V6. The car was okay, but it certainly had its moments, particularly with trouble that's fairly commonplace with this model and its sister, the Mercury Sable. However, the car has performed pretty well since it has mileage in excess of 226000 miles and shows no signs of breaking down thus far. But when things do break down, parts can be expensive and repairs difficult to perform due to some creative contortionist engineering on Ford's part. In addition, gas mileage on this car was less than stellar for its class, averaging between 18-21 MPG.

With the arrival of another car, a 1999 Nissan Sentra, my father's 1990 Chevrolet Suburban is going to me while the Taurus, due to its overall expense of ownership, will be sold.

My father required the Nissan as it certainly gets better mileage than either the Suburban or the Taurus, and he must drive in excess of 90 miles on certain days of the week for work. So I get a Suburban while the Taurus goes away.

Ironically enough, the Suburban gets excellent gas mileage for its class and, disturbingly enough, is better than the Taurus! For those doubting this, you all must remember that this truck is the 1500 series with regular rear wheel drive and the 5.7L V8 with nothing special done to it except being filled with Amsoil synthetic oil. This is not like the 2500 series where an engine with greater displacement is used and may come equipped with the 4x4 option. Plus, Ford doesn't really design the most fuel-efficient vehicles, anyways. GM seems to have better economy than Ford with many comparable models.

There were a few repairs that were required, like replacing a rear-end seal. But, this isn't a complaint as stuff like this is to be expected in a vehicle with miles in excess of 290,000. As a matter of fact, it's in fantastic condition for the mileage and the body was given a new paint job with expert bodywork done (no bondo crap, but REAL metal welded in to replace metal in a couple of spots that had rust (which was, of course, cut out and prepped for the weld, and then prepped for painting afterwards).

Working on this truck is a breeze. Everything is easy to get to and is usually arranged in a no-nonsense fashion. Even major work, such as a drivetrain overhaul, can be accomplished fairly easily in little time. Plus, parts are cheap for this thing! You can also do a lot of the work yourself, which saves more money compared to hiring a shop to do various kinds of work with the Taurus (like changing the heater core).

This thing is a true truck, made before the term "Sport Utility Vehicle" was ever coined by anyone for describing these kinds of vehicles. I am very happy to own this truck and look forward to when the odometer rolls over to 300,000 without a sweat.

Of course, if the tranny or the engine croaks: no problem. I'll just get a crate replacement and install it with the help of my father. You can't do that with a Taurus (well, you could, but it's truly a PITA compared to the Suburban). - Reinhart.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 19th May, 2005

24th Nov 2013, 22:48

BETTER GAS MILEAGE THAN THE TAURUS?!?

Mine's a 2500 4x4, but it still only has the 350. So it's a bit heavier, but that's about it, and it gets 6-8 MPG without a trailer, and with a trailer, 5 MPG. Granted it's not in the best shape, but still!

I just don't see it. Not saying you're wrong or lying. I just don't see it.

27th Nov 2013, 14:38

I do. The elevated vehicle with 4WD, likely big off road tires, and added weight. My Silverado work truck with 2WD does better than my 2500. I have P235 16 Michelins; there's little roll resistance on the 2WD model.

4th Dec 2013, 09:48

The truck-based SUV's from GM are the best vehicles on the road. In 2003 we bought my wife a new GMC Envoy. Up until then she had averaged trading vehicles every 18 months. She fell in love with the Envoy. Last week she asked me "Do you think it will last me another ten years?" Considering that in 11 years and 120,000 miles it has cost us a whopping $77 in total repairs I said "Sure". Several of our friends have well over 200,000 miles on their Suburbans, Trailblazers and Envoys. Ours is like brand new and has not even required brake pads yet.

Average review marks: 7.0 / 10, based on 1 review