1999 Chevrolet Venture Base (Short Wheel Base) 3.4L from North America


I like it. I am in the process of replacing this one with a new one (my lease is up)


Very few issues in three years:

Hatch inside pull strap broken

Power door lock on sliding door not working (could still lock manually).

Both repaired under warranty.

General Comments:

A very good van; affordable and feature rich for such an inexpensive van. It has an alarm, power door locks, windows, cruise, tilt, tint, power mirrors, easily configurable seats, storage everywhere, ABS, and this is just a basic van.

An excellent engine and transmission that provide more than adequate power in a family-hauler.

A good size, narrower and lighter than most, making it easier to drive, park and handle. And fit in my garage at home and at work. That said, it is still roomy considering its size.

I have the flip and fold split rear seats, and they are easy to remove if need be, and the split and fold feature keeps them out of the way when not needed.

The only downsides:

The front seats and cheap and unsupportive. They've gotten better in recent models, but they still are not nearly as good as the Windstar or Odyssey.

The 1999 has poorly placed cupholders and badly designed seat recliners, both of which have been replaced in newer versions.

Most of the complaints that I've read in the database are dealer-related. "The dealer has said that an differential leak is normal"; "the dealer has said that they can't find the problem", etc. The dealer that I bought the van from was like this, but I tried another dealer for service, and a good dealer makes all the difference in the world.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says it is a poor performer in offset crash tests. That said, the NHTSA says it is OK, and its insurance rating (based on history) says it is OK. I guess the moral of the story is not to get into a high speed offset crash. Good advice to anyone.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th August, 2002