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Buick Rainier, Chevy TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy



  • I have the 4WD Envoy SLT with the SLT Premium Package with Professional Towing that includes the rear load-leveling suspension, and everyone that has ridden in the back has commented at how smooth the ride is. No complaints at all.
    Just my experience.
  • tlaurotlauro Posts: 504
    I must say my black LTZ is perfect in finish quality. No orange peel at all...I haven't seen that on one of my cars in a long while.

    Perhaps it's just me picking good vehicles, but again, it's fine.

    Just my experiences.


    (site move in process)

  • My TB is doing the exact same thing (high revs, lots of noise, lack of power, etc.) sometimes in the morning, but I think I recall it happening with the engine warm as well. Wife asked the dealer and he said it was the fan. I don't think so. Goes away in less than a minute after driving, so I haven't pushed the issue, yet.
  • Hey.. thanks all for the inputs..

    Fletch 45--- are you suggesting using a lower grade fuel? Please pardon my ignorance on the the Ethanol factors.. :) That is possible though cause I filled her up with the "good stuff" and noticed the difference not long after..(I didn't fill the first tank so I don't know what it was) I think this will be a test of just finding out what "works" best..and again.. giving her the opportunity to work in a little and me the chance to get a better feel for the truck....I have no doubt that I will hit the mileage that was provided for city of 16.. if not better in time...

    Bobmn- Thanks for the RPM note.. I just had a couple of "odd" experiences ( two to be exact) when I pushed er to go and the freaking RPM's jumped way out of wack..(It made me nervous)Please pardon my description here without having any "auto" language..but there are definetly certain points (ranges, speeds) where the "get up and go" is right on the edge and the pick up is awesome.. at other speeds it seems as if it won't shift out to hit the next gear or something..

    I just wanted to note for the "Wannabe a Trailblazer Owners" or "Considering being a Trailblazer Owners" reading out here that many of these posts, at least mine, are " New ( often under 1000 Miles)" mostly "Happy Owners" that are looking for input from others in the boat .. Not really complaining just trying to ensure that the "experiences" are within norm..though you can probably see that already and on your own~~ I just felt like noting it... I know I have received a lot of great information out here that had I not checked on it I might have then really wondered if something was wrong (ie. mileage, sluggish etc.)

    Hambone.. What do you think about the Ethanol comment from Fletch..What are you using?

    My opinion, the Trailblazer is a one of a kind.. best of breed for the midsize SUV market...It's got style,luxury yet is a little rugged~ as so it should be.. and it's got alot of pep too.. There is no doubt that Chevy/GM has made it's mark with this truck. I love mine.. Indigo Blue LT..3.42..sunroof, boards..leather.. I love this truck..

    To the backseat info.. one thing I noticed the first day I got the truck.. ( I let my Dad drive) cause I wanted to ride in the backseat.. The backseat ride is awesome~~ smooth, quiet, roomy.. not to mention the toys..(stereo, air controls and all back there)..

  • jwdsrbjwdsrb Posts: 2
    I'm trying to decide between a TB LTZ and a Bravada. The prices are nearly identical, so is there a reason not to go with the Olds and its 5 year/60,000 warranty? Also, any great differences between the Olds All Trac system and standard 4 wheel drive options available on the TB? Any input would be appreciated. Thank you.
  • hambone7hambone7 Posts: 130
    I have the dreaded "tailgate paint chipping around the plastic insert" too. This stinks.

    What really irks me is that people were reporting this to dealerships back in the spring, well before mine was built. I would venture to say that this design flaw will result in the repainting of all TB tailgates. I've had the TB for almost 3 months and at first the chipping paint was barely noticable, but now the chipping paint is getting worse.

    My fear is with others on this body shop will be able to match the color and orange peel effect with a repainted panel.
  • hambone7hambone7 Posts: 130
    My opinion is this:

    Ethanol mix was really popular many years ago, and if it is such a great product then why don't I see it at any gas stations anymore? I would avoid it.
  • bobmnbobmn Posts: 28
    I don't have any paint chipping yet but on numerous occasions I have heard the plastic insert popping and snapping as it expands and contracts so its just a matter of time. My TB was built in August.
  • Sorry, man, but from the pictures on your site, I can detect the same orangepeel texture that my truck has.

    Maybe we have different definitions of orangepeel, but on your first page of pictures, 2nd row, 2nd picture, you can see the reflection of the house siding... The lines of the siding are broken up or rough in the reflection, not smooth and continuous as they would be in a true mirror. That's what I'm calling orangepeel... images reflected in the paint have a stippled effect because there are small ripples in the surface of the paint.

    BUT DON'T KILL ME! Maybe I'm looking at compression artifacts from your digital photos. Maybe I have some kind of psyc disorder that makes me see car paint in a different way.

    You've still got a great lookin' truck. Looks JUST LIKE mine, except I don't have those cool GM Accessories!
  • I agree 100%, finally2. I would buy the EXACT same truck again if I had to do it over.

    I've been posting about the 2 or 3 problems my truck has had just to see if there are others out there, and what their solutions have been. But my problems are FAR outweighed by the satisfaction I receive from the truck. I have a long list of items that I like about the truck that I guess I never post.

    Maybe I should start throwing some love out there for my TB.

    I'll start with the tires: BF Goodrich Rugged Trail T/A's! FIVE of them! These are relatively quiet for on/off road tires, and I understand from a buddy that they're long wearing, too!
  • mgrcmmgrcm Posts: 53
    Well I might as well weigh in on this paint thing.Well I have an Envoy SLT in Indigo Blue and yes my paint job is far from perfect,yes it overall has a rough finish to it the orangepeel seems to be most pronounced on anything plastic.I have some small area's that were undersprayed mostly along the side moulding.When you open up the rear doors and look at the top of the fenders it looks like someone through some sand down first then sprayed the paint.I guess they figure you don't see this area a hole lot but still it reflects on the overall quality.I guess it could be worse but there looks like there could be some room for improvement.

  • hambone7hambone7 Posts: 130
    THANK YOU for mentioning the sand under the paint thing. I made a few postings about a month ago asking if anyone else has seen this. I see it in the front and rear door openings. I'm told it's welding flax or some kind of welding residue. Whatever it is, it shouldn't be there.

    And yes, it could be worse.

    BTW, orange peel is not a bad thing, but it needs to be consistent across the vehicle.
  • It seems like a lot of cars have the crud under the paint in the door jambs. I've noticed it to some degree in MOST of the car doors I've opened. It's not too bad in my TB...

    I agree that the orangepeel is not that bad. It is consistent over the entire truck.
  • ees1996ees1996 Posts: 31
    I am looking for a nerf bar (side step) for my TB. Anyone have any sites that I can find a stanless steel set. Also tlauro nice TB where did you purchase your Bug deflector and your VentVisors. Do yours install in the channel or with two sided tape?
    Happy TrailBlazin!!!
  • tlaurotlauro Posts: 504
    No Orange peel's the photo. you're seeing the reflection and jpg compression of a typical lossy format image for the web. 72dpi isn't sharp enough to show the mirror that it has.

    No slam or anything, but it's crystal clear. I grew up in a family that GM Dealerships so believe me, I know what orange peel is. Bad in the 80's for sure.

  • tlaurotlauro Posts: 504
    I've seen the side steps other than factory somehwhere....will try and find the link in my emails....but can't recall if they are stainless.

    The visors and bug guard I have came from the dealer...GM Brand Accessories. I got my TB in June and wanted them right away so I didn't shop around. Love them though. The vents attach with mounting tape that is already installed and very strong. They won't pull off without a pry bar...even on hot days. Had them on previous cars too. Nothing shows through....very nice.

  • tlaurotlauro Posts: 504
    Yes the Bravada does have a different drive system. Smart Track is one of the best AWD systems out there.

    Basically the vehicle has a 65% 35% split at all times, but can transfer over 90% of the torque to the front wheels if needed. A good example is pulling a boat out of water. Get your rear wheels wet and the spin...down you could go. The bravada would actually transfer the torque up front and pull you out. The TB and GMC are just auto 4x4's. Once the slippage in the rear is detected, the transfer case locks and shifts to a 50% 50% mode within 100rpm. Lightening fast basically.

    On the Bravada the locking rear differential senses wheel slippage (loss of traction or not having a good grip on the ground) and automatically locks the rear axle shafts together so they rotate at the same speed. (Option on TB and GMC) This occurs only at speeds under 20 m.p.h. and when there is a 100 revolutions per minute (rpm) difference in the speed between the right and left axles. This system adjusts the action so that the vehicle delivers the same amount of power to both rear wheels, improving traction and keeping the vehicle moving forward even in slippery conditions.

    Finally the all-wheel drive transfer case provides instant traction with the help of a unique technology called a "viscous-clutch." When a wheel begins to slip, plates in the clutch interact with a silicone-based fluid. The fluid thickens, creating resistance against the plates. Torque increases as resistance increases. The increased torque is transferred to the wheels enhancing traction thus allowing the driver to get a better grip on the road and maintain control of the vehicle.

    SmartTrak differentiates the Bravada from other four-wheel-drive vehicles in its class through its ability to sense separate levels of wheel spin. It automatically adjusts on its own, distributing power and traction to the other wheels to compensate for the difference. Accomplishing the same adjustment in one of the Bravada's competitors, the driver manually switches from two- to four-wheel drive while also locking and unlocking the differential manually. SmartTrak knows what to do on its own, without driver input.

    In reality, a 4x4 can sit on ice and spin three wheels since very few vehicles can lock the front axel to spin all 4....Land Rover I think offers this, but then you are limited to driving straight....but then like most likely won't be doing anything requiring a smart thing to try anyway. AWD like Smart track though would shift power all over. Kinda like in Jurassic Park II...the Mercedees SUV has a great system too. Not sure of the specs, but you can see the affect in the movie.

    Sorry to go on, but I've been through my fair share of technical classes and what not on the systems via ride-n-drive comparisons throughout my life in the car business. Detroit proving grounds are fun places :)

    Portions of the above were borrowed form a review not written by me.
  • mgrcmmgrcm Posts: 53
    I don't know if this will help but Manik makes a set of S.S.nerf bar side steps for the Envoy I don't know if they make them for the TrailBlazer though or if they would fit on a TrailBlazer.Maybe someone else could answer this.Someone had posted this on the triplet accessory board earlier and I don't know where this went.

  • ees1996ees1996 Posts: 31
    there is someone selling a set of LTZ TB rims with tires on Ebay. I just wanted to send an FYI to those that may be interested. Also I did finally see one set of available rims on Tire Rack they look ok but Ill wait for the selection to improve. Happy TrailBlazin'!!
  • Maybe an isolated case,maybe not. Location of this sensor is right front of engine close to the top radiator hose housing on the engine. It is about 2.5 in long and the dia of a quarter with a electrical connection. I noticed this connection was saturated with engine oil,after disconneting the wire connection the lower part of the connector was full of oil. It is leaking through the electrical contacts. Just got back from dealer, no part number available. They are calling GM for a number. I have been getting some freakish exhaust smells on occasions,maybe the oil has caused the unit to short out and not function properly. Something everyone might want to check to see if yours is showing signs of oil on the electrical connector.
  • hambone7hambone7 Posts: 130
    Yours is about the 3rd cam sensor that I have seen replaced on this posting board...
  • lurker01lurker01 Posts: 103
    Well, I finally gave up on selling the old Jimmy and traded it in. Best I could do was 1200 below NADA trade value. That is what I get for being a GMS customer. Got the 0% deal, though.

    Indigo Blue, med. pewter int. with 1SH pkg, sunroof and running boards.

    Didn't really want the running boards. If anyone wants them, make me an offer. I am in the Seattle area so you will have to figure out how to get them to you.

  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    "The TrailBlazer EXT will be longer than the regular model by a foot, boost available seating to 7 from 5, and add about 20 cubic feet of cargo space. Production of the new model, along with the extended Envoy XL, will begin early next year." (No 3rd row for the Bravada).

    More here.

    Vans, SUVs and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards

  • hardhawkhardhawk Posts: 702
    You have the exact same vehicle as we do. You will love it. We love ours. The running boards do prevent a lot of road debris from being thrown up against the lower body, so you might consider keeping them. Since we have two young children who use them to climb into the back seat, we use the every day as well. We hope yours is as trouble free as ours has been. Good luck!
  • We've had our 2002 Trailblazer for a week and like a fool, I didn't do a test drive at night. The TB's low beam is awful and the fog lights are so dim, they are useless. (Fixing the faulty factory aiming helped, but the lights are still bad.) Should have bought the Envoy, which has MUCH better lighting; e.g., the Envoy fog light is quite good.
  • bryancosbryancos Posts: 282
    klt99md: The problem of poor lighting from the headlights is easily remedied... I replaced the stock 9005 and 9006 bulbs with aftermarket PIAA Superwhites. (or you could try a set of Solaris Xenons):

    MUCH better lighting-- whiter light, (not blue or "HID LOOK") greater distance and slightly wider lowbeam. Give them a try.. worse case, you just return them. Someone had mentioned getting a set of Philips Ultravision bulbs, but I couldn't find anyplace that sold them.

  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    FWIW, Solaris bulbs do not have a very good reputation for quality.

    For more information about aftermarket halogen bulbs, check out the Aftermarket halogen bulbs discussion topic in the Aftemarket & Accessories message board. also has an article called Light up the night.

    Unfortunately even with different bulbs you may not be able to improve much since it is largely dictated by headlamp reflector design. The Trailblazer's much smaller low beam headlamp reflector than the Envoy is probably why its beam pattern may be poorer.

    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket & Accessories message boards
  • mfullmermfullmer Posts: 819
    Ok guys, I've been away for a while so I am commenting on several issues.

    Regarding ANYTHING that ANY car magazine says about comfort, convenience, or "lack of performance" - They are NOT interested in what the average car owner thinks about their driving experience. They judge things relative to the small percentage who view their autos as extensions of their childhood pride and "race-car" mentality.

    Remember, these are same folks who for years bad-mouthed Chevy for the column shifter in the Blazer. So much so that GM finally moved all the shifters to the floor (except for a few ultra-luxo exceptions) so that we all have to deal with consoles littered with shifters instead of useable cup holders, cubbies, etc. Of course the small percentage who actually try to drive their automatics by shifting manually only do so a small percentage of the time.

    Backwards thinking at it's finest.

    With that said, the air suspension on the Bravada is absolutely perfect for this vehicle. It's a luxury SUV and handles like it. It's very stable and very comfortable for all occupants. Anyone who says its ride is "pillowy" could only be comparing it to a corvette with the sport suspension or some other such vehicle.

    Regarding the grill that is by the drivers head. There seems to be much confusion over it. I had one in my 2000 Jimmy that had no on-star and it definitely is NOT a speaker. The mic for the On-star is on the upper console next to the speaker for the recorder (if you happen to have that) I believe it is either a microphone for the auto-volume control for the stereo or a sensor for the climate control. That would explain why some have it and some do not.(climate control)
  • boat10boat10 Posts: 59
    this small grill is a cover for the climate control sensor in the TB. I had the same question, so I asked my service adviser at the local Chevy dealer. They seem to be up-to-date on this thing. I really love my TB, just took a 1750 mile trip to Florida, vehicle ran great. Averaged a little over 22 on the interstate driving 70-75, still having problems with cruise control turning its self off. Cannot get an answer from GM as to what is going own, I tought it may be going over ten miles-per-hour over the set speed.....NOT whats happening, just kicks its self out of cruise...VERY ANNOYING!!!!!!!
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