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Toyota Sequoia vs Chevy Suburban, Chevy Tahoe, GMC Yukon XL

My family is looking into buying either a Suburban or a Sequoia. As of right now, we are leaning towards the Sequoia. We own and Echo, and we love it. We think that Toyota makes a good car. We don't have any experience with Chevy. Can you help us out???


  • thirdsuvthirdsuv Posts: 209
    This almost sounds like a Toyota rep pumping the forums, but I'll bite anyway.

    Before our Expedition got totalled my wife was complaining that only a burb/yuck-xl would do for the next car. After the wreck we were just about ready to get a yuck-xl (down to choosing colors and such) when we caught a little newspaper blurb about SEQ. The usability and fit/finish of the SEQ is so good compared to GM that as long as the the demo car didn't blow a head gasket on the test drive we decided that we were probably going to buy it. If you are a family of 5-6 or less and you think you need a burb, you mostly will discover that the SEQ will meet 99.9% of your daily needs without the extra fat and troubles of the GM. If your family is 7 or bigger then you need a Burb and a box of Trojans or your next vehicle will only be available in the color orange and seat 50 ;-)

  • gpm5gpm5 Posts: 785
    I looked at both yesterday. Supposedly the Sequoia is as large as the Suburban, but the rear cargo space behind the 3rd row is virtually non-existent in the Sequoia. I don't think you could get a couple of large suitcases back there. Even less than my Windstar van. But the cargo space is huge behind the 3rd seat on the suburban. I looked at both an SR5 and a limited. Neither has enough cargo space for me, unless it comes in an extended version.
  • rruck1rruck1 Posts: 91
    The Suburban and Sequoia are not the same size. The Sequoia is roughly the same size as an Expedition. I purchased one just before Christmas and have been very happy with the amount of room. I would not have considered a Suburban though, because I just don't need that much room. I also would not have purchased any GM product due to a bad experience with my 1994 Jimmy. Toyota reputation for quality is what finally pushed me into the full size SUV market, I had been looking for the past couple of years, but didn't want to shell out the dough for a Ford or GM. I love the Sequoia.
  • gpm5gpm5 Posts: 785
    Too bad they don't make an extended version of that truck.
  • vasylvasyl Posts: 9
    It was down to the Sep, Suburban, or BMW X5. I drove the X5 and was impressed with the ride and especially the safety features- but even with only 2 children I think it is too small. When mom shows up or an extra kid or 2 to the beach we're undersized.

    Last week I went the auto show and must have jumped in and out of every SUV a dozen times. I especially was comparing the Seq to the Burb. I was more impressed with the Seq. The third row seat was adequate for adults and I liked the access via the "tumbling" 2nd row seat. Fit and finish was typical Toyota although the Ltd interior console in metal trim was not very pleasing. Cargo room behind the 3rd row was of course much smaller than the Burb. But realistically for a family of 4 or 5 the Seq seems to make more sense. In a pinch I always carry a few bunjee cords and can put a suitcase or something on the roof rack. But for most driving, being a couple feet shorter is more convenient in our garage as well as parking.

    We have a Jeep Grand Cherokee which is a total piece of junk. Since we will keep this vehicle for at least 7 years or more we have put a lot more emphasis on realiability. The Suburban we felt had to have the extended warranty to compete with the Toyota and even then, the inconvenience of having to go to the dealer and be without a ride for even 1 day is a factor.

    I was concerned that the Seq. did not have enough power for it's weight. Even though the Burb had about 40 more horsepower, the Seq actually had more torque. 315 lb-ft vs. the Burb's 290 (I may be corrected on the Seq but it is still more than the Burb) and it is torque that will make this vehicle feel good accelerating under normal and semi aggresive driving. Plus the Seq has several hundred pounds less weight to carry around.

    Of course the Toyota dealer I visited here told me they were getting "over" invoice (about 2 months ago ) so I said "SEE YA!" So like everyone else we have a budget (mid 30's) and finally it will depend on the selling price. If anyone has any Houston area experience , would like to hear.
  • I too would select the SQ over the Sub. However, SQs are not perfect and you can't count on it never being in the shop for "even 1 day." If being "without a ride for even 1 day is a factor" (your quote) I would be at a loss to even come up with a vehicle so perfect. Of course the SQ probably will have a better reliabilty record than the Subs, but it is a first year model.

    I live in Katy and have not seen any significant discounting of SQs yet. Have you considered an Acura MDX? It should be plenty adequate for a family of four. Of course there are no discounts on it either, but a fully loaded SQ 4WD Ltd (with dealer/port ad-ons) MSRPs at close to $43,000. One such add-on in the Houston area is the $795 window etching!! Acura does not do this, and in fact a fully loaded MDX w/ Navigation MSRPs at $39,450.
  • eagle63eagle63 Posts: 599
    I think I'd choose the burb just for the looks factor alone! (IMO, the sequoia got hit one too many times with the ugly stick!) Toyota makes top-notch vehicles, but I wish they'd work on the appearance a bit.
  • We researched this one for almost four months, focusing primarily on the Sequoia/Suburban debate. Ultimately, went with the Toyota, coming out of a Chrysler mini van (into which we'd put a transmission after 40,000 miles - - a wholly separate story). The big factors in our choice were: (i) Reputed Toyota build-quality, as compared to known reliability issues with every Suburban any of our friends have ever owned - - admittedly a gamble with a new model, but we needed to buy something, and the Suburban was a known evil; (ii) eight passenger three-point seat belts, side air curtains, more sophisticated four-wheel drive and traction control, and better braking systems in the Sequoia all meant higher marks for safety in this kid die carrier for a mom in the suburbs; (iii) the ride in the Toyota impressed us hugely; more nimble than the Suburban in most conditions that we need; (iv) it was from a style standpoint a little different in an area (Washington, DC suburbs) chock full of Suburbans, and a fully dressed SR5 had everything we wanted at a slightly lower price than the Suburban LT. After about a month, the kids (4, 6 and 11) are happy and the wife is ecstatic. Worked for me. Pricing was $1850 under MSRP for the fully-dressed SR5, with $2500 in after-markets (Audio-Vox DVD player and some other goodies) thrown in at dealer cost. I had to sweat to get to that level.

    Toyota is bound to add fog lights for the SR5 next year, but until then, you have to order them as parts and then have them installed elsewhere.
  • Why? Because:

    1) It's a Toyota. Which means it's reliable, durable, and built of the highest quality materials for the interior and exterior. Fit and finish are also superior.

    2) It's got the same engine used in the Land Cruiser and Tundra (i-force V8), which is Lexus-derived!

    3) Typical Toyota resale value (very high)

    4) The Toyota will barely be broken in after all of the domestics hit the scrap heaps. Plus you won't be paying out the a$$ for repairs after the warranty expires like you would with the American brands, 'nuff said.

    I'm sure there are more reasons, but I'll leave it at this for now!
  • eagle63eagle63 Posts: 599
    responding to your point #4: are you really going to keep this vehicle for more the 3 or 4 years? be honest.
    also, what you won't have to pay in repair bills later, you already paid up front in a high sticker price.
  • ravvie4me your userid betrays your Toyota/Lexus bias. They are very good vehicles, but they are not perfect. I've owned Toyotas (four different vehicles) continuosly since 1975 and they do have to go to the repair shop every once in a while!

    And as previously noted they are more (sometimes much more) expensive than the competition. Thus total costs throught the years may not be that much different from some of that competition.
  • vasylvasyl Posts: 9
    In response to # 7.
    Yes I agree that even Toyotas wind up in the shop. We still think the odds are that the SQ will have fewer problems than the Burb.

    As far as the Acura MDX, without having any figures to support me, I felt a lot more confined -especially in the 3rd row. The SQ felt a lot roomier. Aesthetically, the MDX just doesn't do it for me (too minivan like). I'd also like to say that design wise the SQ is no big deal. I agree with eagle63 (#8) that the Burb is better looking. And as outlined in #'s 9 and 10 it's easier to swallow "the look" when overall the vehicle is so competent mechanically and safety wise.

    The $795 window etching "add on" you refered to is something I never saw. Ultimately we have a budget and if the dealers play their typical games we'll look elsewhere.

    By the way, I did check out Tuscaloosa Toyota's web site ( from a link at the other SQ forum. Several days ago they listed 18 SQ's with Invoice,MSRP, and Selling Price. For instance they had a 2001 SQ 4WD SR-5 w/leather : MSRP $41,749.00 Selling Price $37,146.00 or just $100.00 over Invoice. Of course I'm suspicious (those "add ons") - but who knows. Of course for $37k you can easily find a Suburban LT loaded although in 2WD. Last time I checked Tuscaloosa's site their was no more mention of Invoice or Selling price - just MSRP's. I'm seeing a lot of Suburbans for $5k less than MSRP so I'm still curious what the real bottom line is on both of these vehicles.
  • One big reason people buy a full size truck is to tow a trailer or boat. SEA only can handle 6200 bbs. That is too little to compare with bur. To carry 7 person around, it doesn't need a 40k full size truck. It only needs a 25K mini van.
  • eagle63eagle63 Posts: 599
    Isn't the Tahoe more of an apples to apples comparison with the Sequoia? seems to me the burb is in a different class of vehicle. (extra large suv)
  • kreykrey Posts: 41
    You took the words right out of my mouth. The Suburban/YukonXL/Excursion are different tools altogether than the Tahoe/Yukon/Sequoia/Expedition class.

    If anyone doubts this, check out the room behind the third seats in each. In the full-sized SUVS, it's 6-7 people AND luggage; in the Tahoe/Yukon/Sequoia/Expedition, it's 6-7 people OR luggage.
  • STOP!. All of you about to buy a Sequoia, STOP! If nobody buys a Sequoia for 60 days you will see the prices DROP like a brick. Guaranteed to work.
  • I looked at the Accura DX, Mercedes ML (I had a -98) Sequoia, Tahoe and the Suburban. The Suburban has the best ride, is the biggest and can be purchased for less than any of the others except the Tahoe. I am not a GM fan- a swore I would never buy another one after I had a Mid 80's lemon from GM. The fit and finish appear to be fine. I bought one on 2-2-01. I paid invoice and am buying it over 4 years for less than the three year lease payment on a Sequoia.
  • AS the owner of 2 Suburbans in the past and the owner of a new Landcruiser, their is no comparison in build quality. Unless you have to haul mega weight or people, go with Toyota. You be much happier in the long run. both my Suburbans fell apart at 40K
  • I have a '91 GMC Suburban and am looking around for a replacement. In the discussion of the Suburban vs. the Sequoia, a central issue is the build quality of the Toyota vs. the lack of build quality for the Suburban. I have no experience with the new Suburban, but my '91 with 147,000 miles on it would indicate the following:

    1. The overall build quality of the Toyota is significantly better. I think Toyota uses their perceived quality as a central marketing issue and they pursue it relentlessly.But things are more complex than that simple statement. The small block V-8 and the Turbo-hydramatic transmission are noted for their reliability. After all these miles, my 350 V-8 uses less than a quart of oil in 3,000 miles and the transmission has never been touched other than changing the fluid and filter. The other components of the Suburban - the body hardware tend to have problems while I think Toyota simply has higher quality components. To me the build quality concerns for the Suburban are not of a cataclysmic nature, but more of an occasional annoyance.

    2. Even a high quality Japanese vehicle has problems. It is just that the Suburban is more likely to have more of these relatively minor problems which take a trip to the service department.

    3. Overall, if Toyota built something with as much space as the Suburban and priced it competively, I think there would be no question which to buy. But the Sequoia is priced significantly higher on a real world basis.

    I think the decision as to which to buys falls to one's set of values. For me the Sequoia does not represent that much of better value, given the price difference and I will be buying a Suburban/Yukon XL in the not too distant future. On the other hand, if my '91 Suburban keeps chugging along, I just might keep it for a few more years. That it has held up as well as it has for as long as it has amazes me.
  • Suburbans have been around for along time. The first was built in 1935, of which 3 are still known to exist. Where was Toyota in 1935? A Happy Suburban Owner
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