What can you tell me about the Chevy Avalanche?

phsycle

Adventurer
Kind of window browsing an Avalanche. I’ve always liked them. But only the 03-05 models with the cat eyes and black cladding. Not too keen on the looks of the ones after that.
Obviously, fold down rear seats with the pass through to bed is super cool.
Most of the ones I see have the 5.3. How were those engines? I was actually surprised to find there were 2500 versions available with the 6.0 and 8.1.

This would be used for solo or family camping trips. Not a daily. No crazy trails. More for distance backcountry roads.
Anyway, if the right one comes up for cheap, it could be a winter project for me.
 

Christian P.

Expedition Leader
Staff member
My neighbor has one and I borrowed it a couple times to do some work and towing. I was actually surprised, I kind of like it. Well, not so much the look, but the practicality.

His has been super reliable, and he has been using a lot - that's his work truck. It is a "North Face" edition, I believe one of the oldest versions.
 
My wife and I just recently purchased one but it is an 07 so it’s the first year of the new body style. The mid gate is a super cool option, it’s nice having the ability to take the whole family somewhere and be able to fold down the back and have a full 8 foot bed. We got lucky with ours and it came with 4.10 gears and the G80 so it doesn’t do half bad out in the sticks either.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

rkj__

Adventurer
Owners I've talked to seem to be very happy with them. I've heard several say the Avalanche is the best vehicle they have owned.

This is purely anecdotal, and not very helpful, so take it for what it's worth.
 

Todd n Natalie

OverCamper
They'll be as reliable as the same generation Suburban / Yukon XL which they are based. Over all pretty good vehicles. Of course it will depend on maintenance history.

I believe 1500 versions use rear coils where 2500 versions use rear leafs. (As far as I can recall anyway)
 

phsycle

Adventurer
They'll be as reliable as the same generation Suburban / Yukon XL which they are based. Over all pretty good vehicles. Of course it will depend on maintenance history.

I believe 1500 versions use rear coils where 2500 versions use rear leafs. (As far as I can recall anyway)
Did the 2500's have SFA? I'm trying to tell the difference between a 1500 and 2500 from the ad pictures. Other than lug nut count, anything else that sets them apart?
 

Todd n Natalie

OverCamper
Did the 2500's have SFA? I'm trying to tell the difference between a 1500 and 2500 from the ad pictures. Other than lug nut count, anything else that sets them apart?
No, it will have IFS. I don't think GM trucks / SUV's have had SFA since '90 / '91?

Engine / transmission combo's are different for 1500 vs 2500 and 1500 had rear coils and 2500 had leafs.

I'm quite sure they used the same chassis from the Suburban / Yukon XL.
 

Explorerinil

Observer
Did the 2500's have SFA? I'm trying to tell the difference between a 1500 and 2500 from the ad pictures. Other than lug nut count, anything else that sets them apart?
It’s just like any other gm 1500 or 2500, only difference is the body. My friend had an 03, it was very reliable, just not really good at hauling much. i would just look at a regular truck.
 

Martinjmpr

Wiffleball Batter
So there are two "generations" of Avalanche and 3 different models:

02 - 06 (GMT 800) 1500 Avalanche
02 - 06 (GMT 800) 2500 Avalanche
07 - 12 (GMT 900) 1500 Avalanche

There was no 2nd gen 2500. The Avalanche is exactly the same as the Suburban of the same year except for the body. Same engine, transmission, T-case, except that I think the 1500 Avalanche for some reason did not get the flex-fuel (E-85 capable) version of the 5.3 until 2004 while the Suburban got it earlier (maybe as early as 2000.) Suspension on the Avalanche is the same as the corresponding Suburban, so an 02 - 06 1500 would have torsion bars up front and coils in the back, while the 2500 will have torsion bars up front and leaves in the back. Same 31 gallon gas tank in the 1500 and I assume the same 37 gallon gas tank in the 2500.

07 - 12 1500 Avalanches will have coilovers front and coils rear.

2500 Avalanche's are pretty rare birds, much more rare than 2500 Suburban/Yukon XL. 2500 Avalanches would have had the same engine options as the corresponding year Suburban/Yukon XL, which would be the 6.0 or 8.1.

The Cladding was an option on the 1st gen Avalanches. AFAIK the cladding was available on both 1500 and 2500 models. Cladding was dropped for the 2nd gen 1500's.

I always really liked the Avalanche and wish that GM would have continued it. But apparently their marketing folks determined that most users didn't really appreciate the whole "disappearing midgate" feature and rarely used it, which meant that for them, a regular crew cab pickup (which is much cheaper to make) would be sufficient.

I notice GM has recently started selling trucks with optional "fake roll bars/sail panels" to mimic the Avalanche "look" on both Silverado and Colorado pickups. :rolleyes:
 

phsycle

Adventurer
Found a couple of 2500's. One with 8.1 and the other 6.0. One had "Avalanche 2500" written on the cladding. Both were in the $7-8k range with 140k miles. May go check them out.
 

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