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Suzuki XL-7



  • Hi guys thanks for all the nice posts on this forum, now I finalized XL-7 will be my next buy.
    I spot an ad, they are on year end sale for a base model for $16,999 4x4 manual trans. Do you think is a good deal. Any help would be much appreciated!

  • tistevetisteve Posts: 142
    That sounds like a fair price. Be sure you'll be OK with a base model. We have a Plus and even wish we had a few of the limited/touring goodies like the fog lights.
    I think the '02 base does not have the third row, but if it is an '01, it should.
    We paid $20,875 for a Plus 4x4 auto. Coming up on 5,000 miles and everything is tight and proper. Very nice and easy vehicle to drive.
  • XL-7, was not ignoring you but had to go to Tucson ( I am in VA) on an unexpected trip and did not have access to a computer. I understand about the rear seats. thanks for the info. The solution leaves some gaps and with my dogs I can not afford gaps so I came up with my own solution. Take Care
  • clay11clay11 Posts: 17
    Just curious what you came up with as your own solution to the seat gap issue. Anything you wish to share? Thanks.
  • I cut two pieces of plywood and put a hinge on them. Combined they are the length of the 2nd row seat when it is down plus 8 inches to cover the hole between the two rows. The hinge is so the wood will angle down and not create an unbalanced piece. I know if sounds strange but it works. Also it is just right to fit the space behind the second row and the back door when the second row is up. It is just a first option now. I an going to get a piece of plexiglass and cut it to match what I have in wood now. It will be lighter. BTW, I have covered the wood with a thin pad and stapled fabric to it that matches the interior of the truck.
  • I just had a 2" hitch installed on my XL-7. I called a number of hitch installers and none of the manufacturers had the XL-7 listed in their suppliers catalogs. Jiffy Hitch suggested I call my dealer's parts dept. to find out if the Grand Vitara and the XL-7 use the same hitch. The dealer confirmed that they were the same part #. I had Jiffy Hitch install it and I saved at least $100.00 U.S.

    I have had my 2002 Limited for a 1 1/2 weeks find I like it even more than I expected. I had thought I liked a few other SUV's better, but bought the XL-7 because I need the extra seating for occassional family outings and it seemed like a well built vehicle. As I drive it I find there is a great deal to like about this vehicle.

    I ordered the rear cargo cover and It was so pathetically designed I refused to accept it. Unlike my wife's Subaru which has a very easy to use "window shade" design, this is a flimsy piece of vinyl which has to be clipped to the headrest support rods to stay in place. It would be awkward to use. Obviously the people who designed the truck did not design the cargo cover.

    One final comment. Some reviews have said the interior plastic looks cheap. I do not find anything cheap looking about the interior, although I do have the limited which has nice leather seats. Everything fits and seems to be well integrated. I think the design is refreshingly simple and not overdone. I also like the older style pushbutton ventilation selectors. One reviewer criticized the Suzuki because these buttons were reminiscent of older style vehicles. I happen to think they are easier to use then the newer rotating knobs. Although I usually like innovative design, sometimes newer is not always better. Remember, the wheel was invented a long time ago, and nobody has been able to improve on it.

  • Finally took my XL-7 in to the dealer to have them diagnose a very quiet "gear noise" that I've been hearing since new. I had mentioned it to them once before (for my free 3K oil change), but I didn't have enough insight into the problem then, and they suggested that I wait to see if it was something that just went away upon futher breakin.

    Well, in short, it didn't. I tried switching over the tranny and transfer case to a synthentic lube, and that didn't help (but the transmission shifts noticably smoother). By accident, I discovered that the noise could be made to more-or-less come and go by playing with the transfer lever.

    The service manager took it for a ride and came back to tell me that it needed a new transfer case. He seemed pretty sure of the diagnosis too, like he had seen this before. At any rate, I'm waiting for it to arrive so it can be put in, hopefully while I'm still on vacation.

    I still love this truck!!! Overall, this is minor, considering the value you get with this vehicle. I still expect this to last me well over 100K, like my last Suzuki did (and I expect is still doing), with proper maintenance. Besides, it's not going to cost me anything, accept a little inconvenience in waiting for it to be installed.

    Since I've spent a little time in the dealership lately, I thought I'd mention what I've seen on the 2002s. The back (3rd row) seat seems no different than the one in my 2001, save for the flap they added between the 2nd and 3rd rows (same slight incline). The seat fabric is indeed different (I'm pretty sure someone else mentioned that before). Not better or worse IMHO, just different. Haven't noticed anything else visually.

    My mileage has dropped a little lately, probably due to the type of driving I've been doing (less constant highway), and the colder weather (finally got a little snow here yesterday in southern Wisconsin!). I'm averaging around 22.5, from a high of 24 earlier this fall. Coming up on 4K and everything else is just great!

    Hope everyone enjoys (or enjoyed) their holidays!
  • xl7xl7 Posts: 20

    Thanks for the insight on the gear case problem. I'm at 16,300 on my 2001 touring model. Other than the check engine problem (gas cap missing) that I experenced it seems to be an excellent vehicle.

    My vehicle is mostly drivin on smooth surfaces,rarely in cold tempatures, on rough terrain, on mountains, snowy surfaces,mud,rocky surfaces, in fact I have never used my 4 wheel drive.

    Is there any specific gear,4x4 high-low pattern, speed,turn,surface,weather,or movement that I can compare my findings with to provide you with information that may verify that this may not be a factory defect, and only a minor malfunction,etc.

    Once again, thank you for your comments. This town hall has been very knowledgeable and helpful. I wish you the best! Happy holidays and Happy motoring!
  • xl7-

    As you might imagine, describing the sound is a little difficult, but I'll try. First, it's very low volume, perhaps less than the wind noise. It's a high pitched whine, or even a ringing, but if you listen closely, you can certainly tell it's gear related, like a "teeth-on-teeth" thing. It might even sound a little like a hissing sound, if you didn't listen closely enough to hear the "buzzing" part.

    It's most noticeable over 40 mph, in either 2wd or 4hi (can't really tell in 4lo, too much engine noise) and if I pull the transfer lever toward the back of the driver seat, it quiets down, toward the back of the passenger seat, it gets much more noticeable, and even sounds more like a dry bearing. Also, taking a right hand curve (like an off-ramp) seems to make it go away too. Like I said, I think it's been doing it since I took delivery, and I've only got 4K on it now.

    I'm really not concerned that this is indicative of any quality issue for the XL-7s in general. I just figured I'd offer up the news, in case anyone else heard something like this, and like me at first, thought they were being too "picky".

    I'll keep everyone posted on the final outcome, but expect my dealer to take good care of this, as they have done up until now. I guess it really pays to give a dealership repeat business...
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    If you've been using it in 4-hi on dry pavement, then there is a good reason why it would be making horrible noises! You can only use 4-hi on snow covered or slick roads or off-road.

    My guess is that it's something with the T-case and your dealer can probably fix it.

  • What paisan said.

    I believe it's common to hear a little bit more noise when you shift into 4-hi since you have more stuff in action. But the noise should not be that significant.

    I'm sure that driving on dry hard surfaces would cause problems.
  • The truck was never driven on dry roads in 4hi (or lo for that matter). I'm not a newbie to 4wd, and do know better. The only time it's ever been in 4hi was on wet roads, and that was to see if the noise changed under that condition. 4lo was in my back field (pretty sizable).

    But thanks for the "heads-up". If I hadn't been too familiar with 4wd, it might have been news.

    Hope everyone had a Merry Christmas. Have a good (and safe) New Year.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Just we've seen it here a few times (gas cap un-done = CE light, etc. etc.) where something that is common sense to a "car" person isn't common sense to non "car" people.

  • big_guybig_guy Posts: 372
    I had a '93 Suzuki Sidekick that generated the grinding noise at times, almost always in late summer and early fall. I didn't do a lot of offroad driving so didn't use the 4WD frequently during the spring and summer. I found that if I engaged the 4WD and drove for a short distance then took it back out of 4WD the noise would go away. I think it was a lack of using the system that created the noise and after using it for a bit (lubing up all the gears again so to speak), the noise did not return until I had not used the 4WD again for a long period. I used the 4WD all the time in the winter so it was never a problem then. Just my $.02.
  • Has anyone used or read about using synthetic oil in the 4WD system? I use Mobil 1 in all my cars and it does a really nice job. My dealer has said that as long as it meets the requirements of suzuki it would not void the warranty. Any thoughts or comments
  • - big_guy
    Yeah, I thought of that too, so that's why I took it back in my field for a little 4lo duty. It didn't seem to help. Also, since putting it in and out of 4hi didn't make a difference, I'm inclined to think that the service manager is just hearing something he's heard before on another case or two. At any rate, for such an expensive component, I can't believe they'd be so quick to replace it under warrantee without some reason to believe it's defective. I'll keep you posted on the outcome, whenever it gets taken care of. I called the parts dept. the other day, and because of the holidays, they don't think they'll be seeing the replacement until next week sometime.

    - 5greyhounds
    In my attempt to solve my apparent transfer case problem, I switched over both my transmission and transfer case to Redline MT-90. Redline was the only company that offered the GL-4 in the weight recommended by Suzuki. If you find any other source, please post it for us. For what it's worth, I think that the transmission shifts as smoothly now that it's (much) colder, as it did when warmer (although, as you already painfully know, it didn't do much for the transfer case issue).

    You know, it just occurred to me to point out again that I have the 5-speed manual tranny, not the automatic, as I recall you saying you have. I'd be willing to bet that there's more options out there for a synthetic for that automatic than for my manual.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I plan on doing Redline in my diffy's, T-case and AT on my Trooper. These japanese trucks usually last 200K+ so it is a good idea to go to synthetics on them early and often! :)

  • I own a 2001 xl7. I have had a re-occurring steering problem that the dealership can't seem to fix . The steering wheel keeps "rolling" to the left. They keep re aligning the front end but that doesn't fix the problem. Is anyone else having this problem?
  • I am looking to buy an SUV for the first time. I am seriously considering the Standard XL-7 4x4. They have the exact model I want at the local dealership and have been using it as a demo. It has about 1150 miles on it. Their firm offer is they'll sell it to me at invoice and throw in the $1000 aluminum wheels already on it for free. I don't care about the wheels but they say they'll only take $150 off if they remove the wheels. Does anyone have a feeling for whether this is a fair offer or not? My inclination is that I'm being screwed since those miles come straight off my warranty and I should be able to get the truck for close to invoice brand new. Any advice would be GREATLY appreciated. I want to make a decision while the low financing is still available.

    P.S. This is my first posting although I have been a frequent reader.
  • I recently purchased a 2002 at invoice (no freight charge) and 0% financing. The dealers in the Baltimore/Washington area seem to have a large number of XL-7's on the lot. I checked on the internet for dealers and found a few who were willing to sell at invoice. Armed with that info my local dealer immediately matched the price. A 2001 demo at invoice is not a good deal as you have a vehicle who's resale value is that of a year older vehicle. The 1000 miles is not too big of a deal in the big scheme of things, but if you're buying a last year demo model you should get more off then the invoice price. If the aluminum wheels don't matter to you then their inclusion in the deal shouldn't sway you.

    Now that I have my XL-7, I find that I like it even more then I thought I would. It rides and handles great and I find it very comfortable. I like it better than my wifes Subaru Forester.

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