1998 GMC Safari Reviews

1998 GMC Safari SLE (AWD) 4.3 V6 from North America

Model year1998
Year of manufacture1998
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission 4.3 V6 Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.2 / 10
Distance when acquired70000 miles
Most recent distance130000 miles
Previous carCadillac DeVille

Summary:

A very good minivan

Faults:

Replaced water pump at 95,000 and again at 115,000 (aftermarket) and front brake lines at 120,000.

General Comments:

Lack of front leg room. This van has been a very reliable and is very roomy. Drives nice and ours is AWD and in Erie, Pa. it handled a lot of snow and ice better than my 4wd truck. Take the back 2 seats out and you have a lot of room, although the seats are heavy. Great engine, but gas mileage is less than most minivans. We would recommend this van.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 31st October, 2007

1998 GMC Safari from North America

Model year1998
Year of manufacture1997
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission Automatic
Performance marks 6 / 10
Comfort marks 6 / 10
Dealer Service marks 6 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.5 / 10
Distance when acquired202000 kilometres
Most recent distance304000 kilometres
Previous carMazda Mazda

Summary:

Roomy and power, but with few defects

Faults:

Transmission between 1 and 2 gears, kicks, slips.

Licking from differential, even gasket changed, still.

Wears badly the door handler inside, driver side.

Engine stalls for a second, computer doesn't get it.

Engine stalls, seems when hot weather.

Vibration underneath, much more evident at 100 Km/hr.

Air fan inside slips very often.

Air fan outputs are killers when air conditioner on.

When rains water accumulates in the floor, inside.

Rust in the right side of the lifting door in the back.

General Comments:

It' s nice car, roomy and I love the sliding door.

Love the back lifting door separated by the lower one.

Smooth driving over long distances.

Has power and is nice to drive.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th August, 2007

1998 GMC Safari SLE 4.3 vortec from North America

Model year1998
Year of manufacture1998
Engine and transmission 4.3 vortec Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.5 / 10
Distance when acquired140000 miles
Most recent distance148000 miles
Previous carGMC Safari

Summary:

Great vehicle performance wise and looks

Faults:

Have not had any major problems. Couple little things that was done by a previous "mechanic'. wouldn't start in the rain. They broke the distributor housing when installing a new cap and never told anyone. But overall great van.

General Comments:

This makes the 3rd Gm van. We had 2 astros prior and no real complaints. Bought this 98 Safari AWD and really happy with it.

Were looking into a newer caravan and could have got a much newer one with lower miles for what we paid for this, but did not want a "disposable' caravan. I would continue buying astro / Safari vans.

Gas mileage isn't great, but then again it is a truck not a mini van!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 3rd December, 2005

1998 GMC Safari SLT V6 from North America

Year of manufacture1998
First year of ownership1998
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission V6 Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 2 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 1 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.4 / 10
Distance when acquired12000 miles
Most recent distance97000 miles
Previous carDodge Ram

Faults:

Repair: Twice replaced rear axles, ring and pinion, bearings, twice replaced catalytic converter, replaced alternator with GM lifetime alt., windsheild wiper computer box or whatever it's called, window motors and switches, now have loud engine knocking, car goes to repair in 2 days.

General Comments:

Car is very comfortable - particularly the seats, lots of room.

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

Review Date: 15th November, 2002

16th May 2003, 15:36

I have a GMC Safari 1999, that at 56,000 miles, it does not start sometimes, and the window power fails, the locks get stuck, and even the back door to the trunk would not open. Took it to the dealer, and they say they can't fix it unless I pay for it. I paid 18,000 for this van.

1998 GMC Safari SLX 4.3L Vortec from North America

Year of manufacture1998
First year of ownership2000
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 4.3L Vortec Automatic
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.6 / 10
Distance when acquired52000 kilometres
Most recent distance138000 kilometres
Previous carGMC Safari

Summary:

LOVE IT, I will never purchase a WindStar, Or a Caravan, Montana

Faults:

No real Problems. Normal Oil changes, Change brakes once a year, Rotors twice a year. Never Left me stranded. Only repair I've done was to get a vac hose fixed for the A/C / Heat.

Great Van. Never have any problems, $ different people drive it and love it.

But you have to remember this is a Van, not a wagon like the Caravan. You don feel like you are driving a Van/Truck.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th July, 2002

29th Feb 2004, 01:39

I can't really believe you change the brakes once a year and the rotors twice a year and still give this vehicle a great rating. This sounds a little excessive on these repairs.

11th Sep 2012, 16:49

That's common with cheapo Chinese rotors & pads if you're an aggressive driver.

1998 GMC Safari 4.3L Vortec from North America

Year of manufacture1998
First year of ownership1999
Most recent year of ownership2000
Engine and transmission 4.3L Vortec Automatic
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 6 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired0 miles
Most recent distance0 miles
Previous carMercury Villager

Summary:

The best van made today

Faults:

No major problems, routine brake maintenance, oil changes, etc.

Plastic thing along the bottom of the driver's seat came off and the rubber things at the bottom of the cupholders came out and needed re-gluing.

The engine is kind of hard to service since half of it is in the van.

General Comments:

This is a great van if you have a large family or need a lot of cargo space. It has tons of room, the beefy V6 has plenty of power, and the 4WD works great in winter.

My only complaints are lack of footroom in the front and the gas mileage isn't that great. It rides and handles like a truck but it's built on a truck chassis so that's expected. I like the interior options, no flimsy cupholders or thinly padded seats.

This van is in a class by itself, none of those other minivans can compare. Don't listen to Consumer Reports; listen to someone who actually owns this van, it's been very reliable. Good for towing a trailer or boat. If you don't want a large vehicle or don't want a boxy looking van then you should probably stick with a smaller van, but if you want a rugged family workhorse and don't mind driving a truck then this is the van for you.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th October, 2000

5th Jul 2001, 10:51

I have a 99 GM Safari AWD. I guess if you call replacing pads AND rotors every 20,000 miles normal brake maintenance, then you're right. Front end goes out of whack every 15,000. None of which, of course, is backed by GM.

I agree with this person, don't listen to some know it alls like Consumer Reports, listen to Safari owners. Check out what they have to say at Edmunds.com about this wonderful piece of machinery.

Average review marks: 6.8 / 10, based on 6 reviews