Where are all the Sonoma owners ?

floridianfloridian Member Posts: 219
edited April 2014 in GMC
Has any one out there had any experience with a
four cylinder Sonoma ? A S-10 Chevy would be the
same I guess. I "obtained" A 2000 Sonoma in a
business deal, brand new, 5 miles on the thing,
never titled. In driving it I find it is terribly
underpowered, seems to me anyway. It is a automatic
to boot. It has to be really spun up on the
tachometer to get ANY acceleration to speak of and
with the A/C on the kids on heir bikes can almost
out drag me away from a light. Should I keep this
"sled" or trade it in for another Ranger? Comments



  • lchiassonlchiasson Member Posts: 1
    For what it's worth: Drive a comparably equipped Ranger and see for yourself. This is the only way you can be absolutely sure. Some people take too much pride in who makes their vehicle and are very likely to give a biased opinion and or comment(s).
  • delmont88delmont88 Member Posts: 1
    I bought a '91 Sonoma brand new (4.3 engine, manual trans.) and have been very pleased. I'm in the process of turning over 170,000 miles. Other than your normal maintenance, I have only replaced the air conditioner, water pump, and the brakes (twice). I have been very pleased!
  • dmoulddmould Member Posts: 76
    I'm currently shopping for a new small truck. I test drove a 2000 stepside ZQ8 with the 4.3 manual, and was suprised to find the thing pretty gutless. The transmission and clutch worked well, and the truck handled nice, but I expected the truck to light up the tires in 1st gear, and it wouldn't. My 2.9L Ranger would give it a run out of the hole. I also tested a Dakota Clubcab 4.7 manual, and that thing was sweet - I wanted to buy it on the spot, but my finances aren't all in place yet. I'll probably wait to try the 4.0LSOHC manual 2001 Ranger when it comes out this fall. Bottom line - even though I could buy the Sonoma through work below cost, and get 0.9 financing, I wouldn't buy it because I wouldn't be happy.
  • superjim2000superjim2000 Member Posts: 314
    I dont know about the truck you drove, if it had something wrong with it, but my '99 4.3 has plenty of power and I can light 'em up anytime, even with the automatic transmission.
  • eforstereforster Member Posts: 1
    I own the 1998 model. Although 'gutless' in low gears, It's a true sports truck when you get it to full speed. It will do rural winding roads at 60 MPH. No other truck can come close.
  • fuq95fuq95 Member Posts: 1
    You ain't kidding. I just bought a '97 extended cab with the 4-cylender and it's SLOW. I have the 5 speed transmission so that helps a little. I think the only people that put power into small trucks are the Japanese. I traded in my 87 toyota and it would blow the doors off the Sonoma -- ha ha. And to top things off, my Sonoma governs out at 91MPH. But I have to admit that it handles great and has a really smooth ride. I just got back from vacation where I got 360 miles out of the tank of gas. That's not too bad with it loaded down in the back carrying my wife, 2 kids and myself. I'm sure that there is a computer chip somewhere that can replaced to give you a little more power. If you find one, let me know.
  • kylep2kylep2 Member Posts: 2
    I just bought a 2000 Sonoma about 2 wks. ago. I ended up with the 4 cyl. 5spd. manual--I think it has pretty decent pickup. I was going between a Ford and the GMC--drove a Ford 4cyl. automatic--what a dog, it didn't feel like it could even get out of its own way. Plus Ford dealers didn't seem to anxious to make a sale. I'm hoping I made the right choice--it's my first GMC--we'll see how it goes.......
  • chillalobonchillalobon Member Posts: 1
    My first Pickup and US make is 2000 Sonoma. I got the 4 cl. After driving a manual, 4WS prelude I was little unhappy about the slow pickup of the sonoma. But after 3 months I am happy now with the smooth ride and ok pickup. You have to remember you are not to race with a 4 cl. sonoma.
  • buyingsoonbuyingsoon Member Posts: 1
    Can anyone give me some feedback on a 6 cyl. Sonoma?
  • superjim2000superjim2000 Member Posts: 314
    I have a Sonoma twin...the S10, its a V6. What feedback do you need?
  • zonkzonk Member Posts: 208
    I heard that GM was putting a 4 door crew cab for the Sonoma/S-10 for the 2001 model year. Anyone else hear about this?
  • ryanbabryanbab Member Posts: 7,240
    its coming out probably spring 01

    They had em at the autoshow last yr

  • zonkzonk Member Posts: 208
    Thanks, Ryan. I have checked with the Chevy and GM dealers in the area and they "think" they might be getting a couple in in the Nov-Dec timeframe for folks to look at and drive, build up some interest. Kind of like the Dakota Quad Cab did last year. I would think they might start some ad campaigns pretty soon.
  • bobs5bobs5 Member Posts: 557
    The 4 door crew cabs are arriving. Saw one when I passed the Greenbrook Pontiac dealer here in N.J.
  • bblackbblack Member Posts: 2
    I bought my second Sonoma in June. I traded in my 94 regular cab for a 2000 Extended cab. Both with the 4.3 V6. Plenty of power with it. I am very happy with the low seats extended cab as I'm 6'1" and my son is 6'3" so we both fit with plenty of head and leg room. The seats go back farther than the regular cab. Other trucks seemed smaller because the seats were higher not allowing for taller individuals. I have installed a tonuea cover which adds to the sportiness of the 2000. The only thing I had to replace on the 94 were the brakes once, the starter and the fuel tank. Never get passenger shocks and hall gravel over stumps in your yard! The fuel pump is in the gas tank, it gets pushed up (stump in yard) the fuel pump shorts out and your stuck.
  • superjim2000superjim2000 Member Posts: 314
    I have a 99 reg cab V6 S10 that I'm very happy with. I will be replacing it with a 2001 V6 S10. I your opinion, is the extended cab worth the extra $$$. I use it for commuting 90% of the time.
  • superjim2000superjim2000 Member Posts: 314
    Should be "in your opinion"
  • madridjoemadridjoe Member Posts: 28
    I have owned three v-6, 4wd, ext. cab GMC's. An 85 S-15, an 89 S-15, and a 95 Sonoma. All three have been real good trucks. For me, I would not consider a regular cab. Sure the ext. cab is more money, but the extra room is well worth it to me. Being able to recline the seat back a little if you are 6 feet or over is a big deal on a long trip. Also, being able to throw something behind the seat is real handy too.
    I am about to replace the 89 S-15 with a 2001 Sonoma 4.3, 4wd, ext. cab. One concern I have is this. My 95 is equipped the same way, I get 18 mpg. around town and 21 or better highway. I see that the EPA estimates have been lowered for 2001 to 15/18 from 16/21 for 2000. The dealer has no explanation, and as near as I can tell there have been no mechanical changes that would cause this kind of drop in mileage. I contacted GMC customer assistance and they were no help at all. Anyone have any thoughts about this?
  • bblackbblack Member Posts: 2
    I feel the ext. cab is well worth the $$$. I use mine for commuting also. It's more comfortable than the reg cab for me. I guess it's a convenience in the northwest for stowing things quickly, rather than trying to unlock and open the lids on a utility box in a down pour.
  • superjim2000superjim2000 Member Posts: 314
    The 2nd gen S truck reg cabs are definately bigger than the 1st gen, (had a '83 before my '99) I'll have to spend some time in a extra cab before I order my new truck.
  • ogreencogreenc Member Posts: 5
    All the of Sonoma Owners are probably buying Chevy since it's the EXACT same vehicle. Either that or they think that their truck sucks and they switched to Ford.
  • xena1axena1a Member Posts: 286
    Not exactly a rave review. A disgruntled Sonoma/S10 owner, perhaps?
  • xena1axena1a Member Posts: 286
    Just discovered that ogreenc is a dedicated Ranger owner who does not care for his mother's S10...
  • kylep2kylep2 Member Posts: 2
    Well, I wrote about 2 months ago about my new 4 cyl. 5 spd Sonoma and here I sit waiting for an engine--I hope this GMC ownership gets better than this. If I bought this at Wal-Mart, atleast I could've returned it! The engine started making a tapping noise at about 2400 rpm--went to have it checked and the sound seemed to be coming from the cam/lifter area. Today makes two weeks w/o the truck, the engine is on backorder--does this mean that this is a high usage item--I hope the hell not. Should I have gone for the FORD?? Who knows!
  • joe3891joe3891 Member Posts: 759
    Bought new 4cyl auto a/c std cab.At 70 mph gets 25 mpg at 55 to 60 mph gets 29 mpg.Have to modulate a/c even at 90F,must use one size for all models.At 11K no problems to speak of,great truck.I also installed cruise an tach out of my old truck.Another happy Sonoma owner.
  • jpan1jpan1 Member Posts: 1
    I just purchased a 2001 Sonoma Highrider and I am impressed with the power. Living in Oregon there are plenty of Mountains and Hills and there is no hesitation from the 4.3 liter V6. The automatic with overdrive helps a little or alot. My review is that this truck can compete with any 4x4 on the rod and hold it's own.
  • habfamhabfam Member Posts: 6
    I have a 2000 Sonoma with the 4 cyl engine. After two weeks of driving, I noticed a tapping sound from the engine esp. when cold starting. I took it to the dealer and they said it was normal. I took it to another dealer and they too said it was normal. It has now been three months later and getting colder outside, and the darn thing sounds like a diesel engine when you first drive it in the morning. The engine knocks and tapps like it has bad lifters. I took it back for a 4th time to my dealer and let it sit overnight. The next day, we both drove the truck and they finally said that it does sound like something is wrong. They have had the truck for 3 days now and are still waiting to hear from GMC as to what to do about it. Has anyone else had engine problems? I traded in a 1999 s-10 4cyl (the same engine) and it made absolutely no engine noises. I also have a loud hissing sound coming from the intake manifold that is so loud that I must turn on the radio to mask the sound (dealer also says that this is normal)!
  • habfamhabfam Member Posts: 6
    Hey kylep2, drop me an email. I'd like to discuss the engine problems with you.
  • joe3891joe3891 Member Posts: 759
    I noticed a TSB for 2000 sonoma,mismachined crankshafts on 4 cyl engines.None for c/s on 1999.Looks like they have a problem.Found it at the NHTSA site.Good luck guys.
  • habfamhabfam Member Posts: 6
    I checked the NHTSA site and all they mentioned was the 6 cyl engine.
    Follow up: Well the GMC dealer called me back and said to come and pick up the truck. They decided after all that the noises coming from my truck are suddenly normal. I feel this is there answer to not have to deal with a lemon or a potential buyback. Now I noticed that the valves clatter with the engine under a light load. I'm using mid grade fuel. I took it to the dealer and they said that they are not sure the noise is coming from the engine. WHAT CRAP! They are going to call the area service person and see if they want to come in. I can't even trade the thing in because the first person to drive it will hear the noise, plus I would hate to stick someone else with a lemon.
  • terry73terry73 Member Posts: 2
    I own a 2000 sonoma 4x4 highrider and have lots of problems.I have a water leak on the passenger side and it has been in the shop 3 different times.The last time it was in there,it was there for 2 weeks.Everytime I get it back they say it is fixed.I started to find silicone in places where it should not be,so it's tells the storie that they cannot find it and are sealing anything up to cover it up. Then I have a whistling noise only when it is cold like it is now.Also both seats are toast,passanger does not lock in after you recline it,driver seat recliner handle which goes on the metal knob,well the metal knob is broke.Then I have a rear clonk.When I take my foot off the gas and then hit the gas again the rear end clonks.Have a vibrating noise on driver side,the truck pulls to the right and they said they adjusted the toe-in and that was all they could do.It still pulls to the right and they tell me I will have to get a alinement and I have to pay for it because the warranty does not cover it.Once in a while I have a loud thump noise and feel in the whole truck and it has also stalled out on me when I was driving it 2 or 3 times.Once again today it was cold out this morning and my suspension started making weird creaks. I have just received my forms for a arbitration hearing and Iam hoping I can get a buyback. It only has 18500 kms on it,and is only 7 months old.I do have to say it is a great looking truck and I hope I get a buyback so I can get another.Who Knows maybe I just got one made on a Saturday nightshift. NEED HELP!!! Terry OSHAWA,ont
  • semanassemanas Member Posts: 1
    I am looking to buy a 2001 Sonoma crew cab, but Consumer Reports did not give it a good review. CR claims Sonama reliability is much worse than average. Edmunds review was not encouraging either. I need some unbiased evaluations from you Sonoma owners out there. Thanks
  • terry73terry73 Member Posts: 2
    HI just me again with more news on my truck.Well today I was on my way home for lunch from work and I heard something ping off of the bottom of my truck,well wouldn't know it now my truck has the service engine soon light on.It seems like it every other few days there's something different wrong with it.Semanas if you read my last posting I'am at about 10 things wrong with my truck.I just hope it was one bad truck out of the bunch because if I get a buy back from when I go to the arbitration hearing I wiil get another.Anybody out there that can give me advice on what I should do or say to the arbitrater,to help me win my buy back.Thanks
  • desertshanedesertshane Member Posts: 3
    I just bought a 99 sonoma high rider with 16K on it. I like the truck so far with only one complaint. IT STARTED PULLING TO THE RIGHT AFTER ONLY ONE GOOD ROMP THROUGH THE DESERT. I'm takin it in Thursday to be checked out. Wish me luck.
  • desertshanedesertshane Member Posts: 3
    Hey again everybody! I forgot to mention in my last input sesion that I towed a medium sized trailer loaded with two ATV's and a pretty good amount of camping supplies from Phoenix to Glamis California. It towed really good around 65 mph but if I tried to push it past that forget about it. The trany seemed to be working really hard and it was sucking gas like it was dual carbed 454. The [non-permissible content removed] end of the truck didn't sag at all so the suspension proved it's muster. I'm not sure if I was expecting to much or the Vortek V6 just wasn't made for towing. AND IT WAS STILL PULLING TO THE RIGHT. Also we went and did some pretty heavy duty 4X4ing that weekend the truck did great. I got pretty stuck once but some fancy shovel work and a little tire pressure adjustment and it wiggled out of differentail high dune sand like it was a day in the park.
  • madridjoemadridjoe Member Posts: 28
    I have a 89 S-15 4X4 4.3 Auto and a 95 Sonoma equipped the same way. I have done more towing with the 89 and it has no problem, even with a horse trailer with two Work horses on board. Both have the 3.42 rear gears. Perhaps you are geared differently?
  • desertshanedesertshane Member Posts: 3
    Gearing is a good point. It didnt even cross my mind. I'll have to check it out. Do you have factory gears or did you install them after market?
    Also I got my truck back from the dealer concerning the pulling to the right problem.....it seems there were some loose ball joints causing the problem so they said! Well, after about 10 miles right after I pulled off the dealers lot it started pulling to the right AGAIN!
    All the work was covered under the factory warranty so thats all good I'm just hoping this isn't something they expect me to live with.
  • habfamhabfam Member Posts: 6
    Well I spoke with the regional service manager today. He said that the noises I am hearing are normal. He suggested that I trade the vehicle in through the dealer where I bought it, saying that they would give me a better than average trade-in. They called later and offered $10,800 for my trade-in (I paid around $14,000 just 8 months ago). I told them that wasn't acceptable and they told me to come pick up my truck. I was on my way there when my wife received a call from the dealer service manager who said that the area manager had spoken with some engineers who told him that some of the 4 cyls are louder than others. The service manager then said that they would go ahead and install a new 4 cyl engine for me under warranty. I agreed and I hope this takes care of the problems! I'll let you know!
  • ithertzithertz Member Posts: 3
    While I myself don't drive a sonoma my sister drives a '98 SLS..I haven't noticed any engine noise during cold morning starts. However, I drive a '93 Suzuki Sidekick JLX, I've done routine maintence on this vehicle and I receive this engine noise in the morning which does sound a bit like a diesel engine... My friend's '89 Pathfinder also had this engine noise while the engine was cold... if my memory serves me right, i've had this noise going on for atleast the past couple of years. No fluid leakage or any problems on my car, I'm pretty sure the knocking noise during the morning is normal.
  • madridjoemadridjoe Member Posts: 28

    Just the factory 3.42 gears. The pulling should not be a big problem for a competent mechanic, make him go for a ride with you, and make sure you are both on the same page.
  • joe3891joe3891 Member Posts: 759
    99 4 cyl auto Cracked flywheel less than 12000 mi.Would like to here from any S-10 or Sonoma owners with the same problem.
  • billh97billh97 Member Posts: 1
    I own a 1997 GMC Sonoma SLS. It is an extended cab, stepside, 4-cyl. 5-spd, 2WD. I bought the truck new and it currently has 41,xxx miles.
    I love the ride, styling and the gas mileage. I average about 28mpg. It is a very solid ride with no rattles.
    Although, I have had some repairs: front wheel bearings, U-joint, broken belt, muffler replaced and the anti-lock brakes service. I don't consider these repairs excessive. But, the engine has developed a "pinging" or "knocking" at startup. I have taken it to the dealer and I did get the same explaination as some you. "Normal for that engine". The noise is irritating and really sounds like a much bigger problem. But, the dealer insists not to worry it's normal.
    I have spoken to quite a few other Sonoma owners and the majority admit their engines have developed startup noises regardless of the type of oil or grade of gas.
    Like I said, I love this truck. But, I am considering selling it due to this engine noise. Would I buy another Sonoma? "Maybe... with a extended warranty"
  • greg116greg116 Member Posts: 116
    Im looking at the new Sonomas. My dream is an Extended cab, 4x4, sportside V6 SLS model with the offroad (but not ZR2) package, 3rd door and lots of luxury, in Cherry Red. i work hard and I deserve it. Thought about Dakota, but I really want the Sportside body, proven GM powertrains and 4-wheel discs without unreliable aftermarket conversions, not to mention that 3rd door. Any longevity tips from all you experienced owners? Fuel economy is at the tp of my list, with engine preformance a close second. K&N no doubt, but what else?
  • spitfire9spitfire9 Member Posts: 1
    i own a 96 zr2 and run a auto dealership and i have no problem towing a fullsize chevy on a 18ft car trailer. but the 93 and down 4.3 6cly were a heck of a better engine. had a 93 somoma with the 4.3 in it and it would pull any thing i tried to pull, and was a lot faster than he new engines.

    I bought my 96 zr2 from a insurance auction and it was a flood damage vehicle, only replaced a altanator and havent had a problem with it at all.I sell a lot of landrovers through my dealer ship and ive bought a number of water damage ones and have had more problems with the "ultimate 4x4"(yeah right) than ive had with any of my GM vehicles.
  • skyhawk3skyhawk3 Member Posts: 42
    I have a 96 v6 5 spd extended cab rear wheel drive. This was bought new. Only real problem was passenger mirror, and the dealer fixed it but then the door would not unlock. 3 trips for that. I had the pingin late fall two years ago and the dealer said RI had not switched to winter gas yet (right). The next week a different dealer down loaded changes to the computer and no more ping. The second dealer now services the truck. 64k and I love the truck. The mileage is around 21 for mixed driving. It is transportation only, not a working truck. I have only done normal maintenance including a tune up at 60K.
  • 9highrider79highrider7 Member Posts: 3
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    241 messages, Last post on Jan 18, 2001 at 07:33 AM

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    #236 of 241 Help Please!!!! by 9highrider7 Jan 17, 2001 (10:50 am)
    I have a 97 GMC Sonoma Highrider. 39,000 miles. In the past week or two I've noticed two things. 1. After I drive for a couple miles it starts shifting into second gear really hard (its auto). 2. When I am getting on the highway or pulling out on a hill (any time i accelerate hard) the truck makes a screeching, scratching, vibrating noise for a couple seconds. It dosen't do this everytime, but enough to be noticed. We checked the U joint and that seems to be fine. If anyone has any idea what this may be please let me know. Thanks so much, Scotti
  • marcospaulosmarcospaulos Member Posts: 1
    I have a 99 sonoma with the performance V6 4.3L after about 6 month I'm getting a knocking from the left side of the motor and when it warms up it go's away. At a cold start the motor runs fine then 3 to 5 minutes it knocks then 40sec's later it stops.. What could this be? Also when I let up on the gas and the rpm's are around 1800 to 2000 and step on it I feel a clunk from the rear end or drive shaft. Can any one help me out, I did think a new truck what be such a problem..
  • richardg40richardg40 Member Posts: 2
    i use a sonoma for my bussiness and let me tell you so far so good. This little 4 cyl can handle a lot of weight( extra spring) .

    We have 93,000 km on it and only one thing not working the sending unit in the gas tank, so no fuel gage. Used the sending units are $ 300.00 cnd if you can find one.
  • skyhawk3skyhawk3 Member Posts: 42
    I have a v6, has anyone converted to dual exhaust and did you have to move your spare tire?

  • emtorreaemtorrea Member Posts: 2
    Hi. I am considering a Sonoma High rider for my next vehicle. I have a couple questions and I am hoping that somebody can help me out. I am 6'4" and I am concerned that there will not be enough room in this truck (leg and head room). Are there any tall High rider owners that can share their experiences with me? Also, I found a demo (8000 miles) for $22,000. Does this sound reasonable? Thanks
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