1996 Chevrolet Suburban LS 5.7L Vortec V8 from North America

Summary:

It's unbreakable, SERIOUSLY!!

Faults:

Transmission went out somewhere after 100,000 miles.

Fuel filters, belts, tires and just about everything else on this truck has held up well and has been maintained regularly.

Alternators have gone out at various mileages.

A/C lost the "HI" setting and can only go as far as the setting before "HI".

The CD player shorted out, but the radio itself still works.

It's been beat on more times than I can think of and it still works!

General Comments:

My family and I have had this thing since my dad custom ordered it straight from Chevrolet in 1996. With its white with navy blue underside paint choice, it's pretty recognizeable aside from its size.

Other than the stuff mentioned above, this American leviathan from Chevrolet has some of the best towing power you can ever find in a truck/ SUV. The 5.7L Vortec V8 (commonly known as the 350 Small Block) isn't the most fuel efficient piece of machinery out there, but it works and I still feel that this truck can go on for YEARS to come. The engine is seriously bullet proof and I'm not joking. Sometimes I throw absolutely anything at it and it still pulls through! Like I said, gas mileage is the only issue with me here in this type of economy.

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

Review Date: 12th July, 2009

1996 Chevrolet Suburban K1500 LT 5.7 liter from North America

Summary:

An American icon, nothing beats a Suburban for hauling lots of stuff

Faults:

Alternator at 49,000 miles (based on previous owner's records).

Starter at 75,000.

Air conditioning header hose assembly at 90,000.

At 100,000 miles, replaced leaking rear axle seals, which also required rear brakes to be replaced, leaking transmission cooler lines, leaking water pump, which also required serpentine belt to be replaced, and replaced air conditioner compressor.

Also around the 100,000 mile mark, an intermittent "service engine soon light" started showing up. The dealer replaced a fuel injector, several sensors, and even reloaded the engine control unit software, but nothing permanently solved the problem. One of the reasons I got rid of the vehicle is that I knew this problem would cause it to fail the emissions test in my state (Washington) and would require additional expenditures.

Replaced leaking power steering pump at 130,000.

General Comments:

The Suburban is a big, comfy, giant station wagon that can haul an incredible amount of stuff. That comfort comes at the expense of a driving experience that is soft and mushy - lots of body roll and brakes that are barely adequate.

This is the perfect vehicle for long distance trips when you need to haul a lot of people and all of their stuff. Well, it's perfect as long as you can afford to fill the 42 gallon tank. I usually averaged 14-15 miles per gallon, which is better than a lot of smaller vehicles with less power and less capacity.

Despite the mechanical failures, and all of the usual stuff that wears out, the 5.7 liter engine itself was always strong and reliable. I did a compression test of the motor at 130,000 miles before I traded in the vehicle and all cylinders were between 185-200 psi. One advantage of these vehicles is that they have been around so long and there are so many of them (along with the Yukon, Tahoe, and Denali variants), is that parts are plentiful, relatively cheap, and just about any shop can work on them.

This is a big truck, though (eighteen feet long), and in the end I got tired of driving such a beast as a daily commuter, especially since I didn't need all of the carrying capacity on a regular basis.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 15th March, 2007

18th Apr 2007, 07:29

I agree with you on all your points about the Suburban.

Mine is a 1996 1500 LS and a great vehicle.

Pros are the size to carry, the power to pull a travel trailer, and the 4WD ease.

Cons are the fuel economy (12 to 13 mpg), the brakes seem adequate, but still need a runway to stop, the moving around tight parking lots.

I do pull a travel trailer, and the 5.7 size engine does fine. If you pull remember to try to size your trailer to weigh less than your vehicle. My 1996 Suburban weighs 6000 pounds dry, and my travel trailer 4500 pounds dry.

I love the vehicle overall, and it has 126,000 miles on it!

Simpledale@aol.com.