1997 Chevrolet Suburban lt 350 from North America


So far it sounds like all the suburbans are pretty much the same. The first thing to go was the air conditioning, then the transmission. Then the interior lights started coming on while sitting in the driveway, going down the road; almost like it was possessed. Then the starter (3 times), some of the dash lights, the steering box, front end alignment won't hold, exhaust pipes rattle like a 1950's farm truck; the intake manifold leaked, and various other annoying things have gone wrong. Too bad Chevrolet can't figure our these things... they certainly charge like they have! For a vehicle of this caliber, I have to admit I'm disappointed. I can't afford to sell at this stage of the game... everyone now knows the things that go wrong and not willing to trade. Good on slick roads!

General Comments:

As far as travel in this vehicle, you couldn't ask for a better ride. It's roomy, and the ride is great. The ABS works better on my 1997 than on my former 1993 suburban. I would buy again if I thought Chevy had fixed all the problems I've had on this one. Of course, the only thing covered by Chevy on my 1997 was the air-conditioning; everything else has come out of my pocket!

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

Review Date: 4th May, 2007

1997 Chevrolet Suburban LX 5.7 small block from North America


The best family vehicle!


The only thing that we had to have done to this car is that in the transfer case (it's four wheel drive), a snap ring broke and I (being a mechanic) was able to fix it, all that it did was rumble sometimes, so it was still drive-able.

General Comments:

This is an excellent vehicle, it is very roomy and confortable, it has all the storage you'll need for normal use, plenty of cup holders, an excellent top of the line CD player that has never skipped once, and it has excellent sound quality.

There is low road noise.

This truck is also excellent in the snow or rain, you could play with this thing if you needed to, never been stuck even in northern Pennsylvania.

The air conditioning is pretty darn cold, front and back, but it seems to lose its charge in about two years.

The acceleration for a truck this size is excellent and it has plenty of power when it comes to passing going up hills, or getting there in time.

It is not a slot-car in the corners, but it does what a huge sport ute should. I really like it a lot and think that it is the best family vehicle.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 15th August, 2001

30th Jun 2005, 21:49

I really love this car because it's run best and I have one for 8 years since 1997 and guess what it have not break down yet at all. I think I will keep it forever with me. Oh, by the way if you think I am lying to you then that be your problem

1997 Chevrolet Suburban LT 4WD 350 from North America


The best I have owned in 38 years of driving


Exceptionally little, never failed to start, never needed to be towed, no major components replaced.

Replaced: (2) alternators (warranty), tranny had a minor repair at 89,000 miles (warranty).

Replaced front brake pads at: 36,000, 81,000 (turned rotors) & rear shoes, at 120,000 new rotors ($52 each) + pads.

Replaced plugs, oxygen sensor, distributor cap & plug wires at 120,000 miles.

New Michelin LTX tires at 120,000 (3rd set since new).

General Comments:

Love my Burb. 3rd one I have owned. Previous Mercedes 300E, Lexus LS400 were great cars with maintenance costs through the ceiling. Suburban maintenance is non existant compared to my 2 previous cars.

Comfort, room & reliability are the Burbs strongest points. OK, I sound like an ad, but this is truly an honest American pleasure to own, drive & feel safe in.

Regular fuel helps keep running costs within bounds. Power is OK & the 2001 has a lot more engine.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th January, 2001

13th Jul 2002, 23:53

I have a '97 Suburban; I bought it used in Oct 2001. It had 90,000 miles on it; driven mostly on the Interstate back and forth from Ky to FL, never towed anything. (I know as I had a tow bar installed, to pull a popup camper.) So far it hasn't been towed and probably won't, (see below.) So far I have put $3,000 into it and it is still malfunctioning. Wiper module failed ($240), Rear end lost most of lube: (service $168), manifold gasket replacement ($288), now the oxygen sensor is (according to code) is bad & dealer wants $120 just to look.

Tranny chewed itself up at 96,000 miles (without ever having towed ANYTHING). Had it rebuilt; lasted 8,000 miles/5 months. Rebuilt again (warranty) ; two weeks later planetary is whining like a banshee - rebuilt a third time. One month later; sounds like a crippled jet. They don't know what to do! They offered to give me credit on all parts that I had paid for on original repair ($775) toward a 'brand new' GM factory built tranny. I would only have to pay $1400 (in addition to the $1800 I already gave them.)

This vehicle is supposed to be able to pull at least 5,000 lbs worth of trailer and it can't even pull itself carrying me and my teenage daughter and maybe 20 lbs of groceries.

I baby this truck (at 14 mpg, I can't afford to get on it!) I could see the tranny going all to pieces if I were pulling logs out of deep ditches over rocky ground, but this piece of junk never gets over 2800-3000 rpm on level (paved) ground.

I had an '89 Burb that went 300,000 miles before a double semi saw fit to run me into guardrail on PA turnpike and keep going. A mechanic friend in Michigan told me that GM started 'skimping' on tranny parts beginning with the '96 truck series. I believe it.

I would strongly recommend that prospective buyers of this class vehicle look at the big Dodge's now that they are offering 7 years/100,000 miles on their powertrain. It's no surprise that GM will not offer the same warranty on their vehicles.

17th Dec 2002, 17:54

Bought a 97 Suburban 4x4 this past Summer with about 100,000 miles on it. It is the middle of December now and the repair bills total over $5,000. A hairline fracture in the transmission cost $2,800. Two oxygen censors had to be replaced, at about $500 total. Now the encoder for the 4x4 high gear is out and will cost almost $700. Other repairs have totaled around $1,000. The vehicle is great for the road and feels safe, but it is putting me in the poor house.

12th May 2003, 15:26

From my experience with Chevy vehicle, all these problems with transmissions is caused with poor maintenance. I have over 130,000 on my Chevy and I have had no problems. Out of countless Chevy owners I know, the problem all stems around not having your transmission fluid changed regularly.

5th Jul 2003, 18:21

We are supposed to change the tranny fluid???

14th Sep 2013, 18:34

Transmission fluid should generally be changed every 30,000 miles, but so many people skip out on regular maintenance.