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Chevrolet Avalanche



  • If you visit the Edmunds site you'll also discover that the Avalanche is Editors Choice for Crew Cab Pickup Truck. Also, Chevrolet counts Avalanche sales toward truck unit sales and not SUV sales.
  • mpalombompalombo Posts: 186
    Has anybody gone from a pickup to an Av? I am wondering what you think about the box size in the Av as compared to a pickup. I currently have a '00 ext. cab short box Silverado that I love. I have always liked the looks of the Av and I wanted one wicked bad but when I went to the dealer to finally see one up close I was surprised at how small the bed was. I would always have the midgate up since I have 1 (soon to be 2) children in car seats. I fill the bed of my pickup every week with camping stuff during the summer and I don't think it would all fit in the Avalanche bed. I've heard that the '03 Silverados are going to have the same front end as the Avalanche, that would be nice. Does anybody know if this is true and if there are any websites with information on this?

  • I live in upstate NY and pay about $875/year for full coverage, $500 deductable, insurance for my Avalanche. That's with no points on my license, no accidents in 10 years, and over 40. It's great to live in a state with the 2nd highest insurance rates in the country. We're catching up to NJ! ;-)
  • timfarntimfarn Posts: 289
    I went from a '92 Jimmy @ $630/yr., to a '99 F150 @ $730 and now the Av @ $780. These are IL rates and, of course, each replacement has been a lot more valuable. If you have rates in this ballpark and have a decent history with the company - stay put. We're going to see rates go up 15-20% a year for at least the next two years.
  • timfarntimfarn Posts: 289
    Sounds like another ad in the "from an SUV to a pickup" series.

    Mark - We had an F150 Excab 4 door for a short while as we were getting ready to get the Av. It had the short bed (6 1/2') like yours and had a factory tonneau. I couldn't tell if you had a bed cover, but what I've found is that the box on the Av is so deep, it will hold a comparable amount of gear with the cover on. I hated trying to load and unload the bed of the F150, especially on a hot summer day. My 12 year old usually ended up crawling to the front. With the Av, I remove the covers, stow gear, replace the covers and head out. That tonneau was not good at keeping out the weather. The only thing you might miss is how to handle 6' to 6 1/2' items.
  • mpalombompalombo Posts: 186
    I don't have a cover on my truck, I do think that would be a nice feature. My problem isn't so much the 6 1/2' length of items it's just that some of the items I have are big and can't be stacked. For instance, My son has one of those Power Wheels Silverados, it seems as though that would take up most of the bed in the Av. Maybe I will take it with me to the dealer and try fitting it in if I decide to buy one. My other concern is that I love the power that the 5.3 gives my truck, I believe the Av is about 1000lbs heavier than my truck and I'm afraid it will under powered.

  • The Av is not under powered with the 5.3 - Motor Trend turned an 8.6 0 to 60, not bad for a 5,700 pound fat guy. However compared to the Silverado, yes you'll lose whompf off of the line - the Silverado with 5.3 has SERIOUS nads.

    It's all relative. If you want gobs of power check out the GMC with the 6.0 liter and quadrasteer - Motor Trend got a 7.7 in 0 to 60, the fastest full size quad cab they've ever tested and it did something insane like 62 MPH on a slalom [sic?] course. Of course speed costs money as the ol' Mad Max movie goes, and the GMC is around $45K.

    Just depends on what you're looking for. I'm familar with the Power Wheels and I'm almost say you could shoehorn two of them in there. I have one in a box in the back right now (birthday present) and I could easily fit another (but I know - some assembly required) with room to spare!
  • On the owners reviews on the Fan Club site one right now is from a pickup to Av, and I have four more pending that were all former pickup owners. The reviews should be up by Sunday.

  • Thanks Outdoorplaces, helmutk, and timfarn - appreciate your sharing insurance rate information. Sounds like rates I have are good - I'll be more thankful that I'm not living in one of the high rate areas! Having not investigated, I had thought DC was a high rate area but obviously not so.
  • f1julesf1jules Posts: 288
    "Ouch, that's got to hurt. It has been my experience that most critics of the Avalanche cannot afford them. I believe they run around $45,000 Canadian."

    I still can't figure out why anyone would want one in the first place. I wouldn't buy one at half the price.

    Hey, you started it...
  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    with paper tags still on. We took off at 25 entering the freeway. Since it was he that decided we would race by nailing it entering the freeway, I was half a length behind. This guy was pretty fast as I crept up closing his lead finally catching him at a 100 and slowing after while he continued. When I reached my destination I needed to get something out of the back of the truck, when I opened the Pace Edward cover, I realized I had about 800# of equipment....wonder if that made any difference?

    '00 LS xcab 5.3 3.73 Michelin 275/70R16
    JBA headers/ PV exhaust/ Magnecor wires/ Airaid/ HPIII programming
  • timfarntimfarn Posts: 289
    Dean - it sounds like you met up with one of the idiots who put the "break" into break-in. What are these people thinking when the first thing they do is "see what it's got"? Feel sorry for the guy who buys it if it's the dealer's boys who are abusing it.
  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    cause first it was tagged 02-02 and secondly, it was around 11:30 pm. Looked great too in all black including the body cladding, cept of course for that oversized gold caddy badge on the tailgate. I thought he was crazy about driving at different engine speeds....
  • I'm still debating between 2WD and 4WD for an Av. Is the Z71 package definitely worth the extra money on the 4WD model? Do the specially-tuned shocks and springs improve the ride and handling of the truck? I do not plan on going off-road much, if at all. My wife will mostly be using the truck driving locally. She refuses to even use cruise control, so you can bet she'll never be engaging the 4WD at all.

    I realize that 4WD makes a big difference in resale and depreciation. And we do camp, so I would like to have it for gravel or dirt campground roads when needed.
  • ygmnygmn Posts: 179
    If you can afford it and somewhat want it then buy the Z71 package.

    It will add to resale value but the difference should be the difference in initial sale price.

    For maintenance reasons I would not buy it if you are not going to use it often...IT just seems a potential service issue if you never use 4WD...I dorve both the Z66 and Z71 and the rides are extremely similar if not undistiguishable.

    Good luck with your choice.
  • timfarntimfarn Posts: 289
    4WD isn't necessary for gravel or dirt roads - unless it's rainsoaked and rutted (will the campground restrict vehicles in those conditions?). What did the recent storm give you for winter weather? If going was pretty tough for a day or two, consider 4WD. The 4WD does include Autotrac (4WD for soccer moms) which senses slip and engages automatically. The selection can be made and is then the default.
  • Snow in this part of Jersey happens only a handful of days a year. We've had no problem getting around with a FWD minivan for many years.

    I'm thinking that the Z66 package would work well enough in the conditions I will encounter. But there seems to be a stigma attached to a 2WD pickup, as if it's not really a pickup unless it is 4WD.

    The problem is, there are very few Z66 pickups in stock to choose from. Seems like the dealers in this area stock mostly 4WD models, and most of them are optioned out to the max in the $38K range MSRP.
  • Has anyone had experience with the K&N filters mentioned in Outdoorplaces great website? The testimonials on the K&N website make them sound too good to be true. Am seriously considering buying but would like to hear some independent comments on their compatibility with standard issue and on their real effect on gas mileage. Do they do as good a job at filtering the air as standard issue?

  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    aftermarket with increased gas mileage in mind. Slight increases in performance yes. If your mileage improves it's a plus but I wouldn't bank on it. It wouldn't pay off in a million miles. And then you'd have to replace it! It has been stated here that some feel K&N's let too much stuff through. They do indeed flow more air though. Personally I've used them for years, but I don't keep a vehicle long enough to be concerned with whether it's letting in too much dirt. And am not convinced it's that serious.
  • ygmnygmn Posts: 179
    I have read on some sites where they do dyno testing of only increases of 2-4 Hp at the wheels.

    Heck if I empty the back it would have a greater effect and be cheaper too.

    IMO all hype for the price
  • txyank1txyank1 Posts: 1,010
    is not that bad. And it's re-useable. But when you buy the whole intake system then IMO you've spent too much. Which I did on an AirAid. (Approx. $300 for 10 hp and 20 lbs. ft.)
  • Does anyone have a link to the Chevy bulletins? The one I bookmarked from geocities is no longer avalible.

  • dcontedconte Posts: 4

    I need helping in narrowing the buying decision. I want the Av, but I am not sure what model, the 1500, or the 2500.

    I have tried the pro and con list but I need advice from those who have experience with the Av.

    I do a ton of camping and MTN bike Riding, I tow a Coleman Tent Trailer, about 3500 lbs loaded, I live in California and I am in the snow 5 to 8 times a year. I commute a short distance but love road trips.

    Should I go with the 1500 with the 4.10 axle, even though this hurts gas economy, or go with the 3.73.

    Should I go with the beef, 2500 with the 8100.

    Also should I go with the Z71 package or just the standard 4x4 package. The Z66 does not interest me, I want a 4x4, I have Durango now, and I love it, but the Av has the versitlity I long for.

    Also is ther an aftermarket chip that will improve performance, such as bumping up the horse power.

    I know you guys can help, thanks
  • timfarntimfarn Posts: 289
    DC - For everything you get with the Z71, hands down it is the way to go. The 1500 will handle the 3,500# trailer easily, take your pick of the 3.73s or 4.10s. If you have a short commute, you might go with the 4.10 as the Av is so heavy, it will make it feel a little snappier. On short trips, the MPG penalty will be negligible.

    Now, as to the 2500, are you a bigger is better freak? I haven't driven the 2500, but the ride has to be compromised some by the rear leafs. Wheels/tires/suspension are not enhanced by a Z71 package, but shields are available. MPG in low teens max - min = ? 1500 should get the same or a little better than your D'ango.
  • timfarntimfarn Posts: 289
    I did a chip on my '92 Jimmy in order to run a cooler thermostat without having to worry about running in open loop. Chips can change shift points, quicken shifts, optimize fuel/air at WOT, etc. - but they are not a magical horsepower booster. The HPIII will give these benefits, but it's not like turning up the pump on a diesel.

    Gandolphxx did a major change - whipple, headers, and more - true horsepower gainers.
  • ygmnygmn Posts: 179
    Buy what you can afford.

    The 2500 has to have less comfy ride due to the harsher suspension..

    The trailor weight you mentioned is nothing for any avy setup.

    Good Luck
  • dcontedconte Posts: 4
    I believe I have my answer,

    I am going to go with the 1500 Z71 with 4.10.

    Any thoughts about leather packages, I have full leather now, and love it, summer in California gets hot and my legs if sticky on the seats at times, is the leather -cloth combo the better choice or stay with the full leather.

    I already spoke to the dealer, whatever, I decide I am going to get it at invoice.

    Thanks again for the feedback.
  • timfarntimfarn Posts: 289
    DC - No experience with the cloth/leather; we have leather w/the heated seats for our cold Midwest winters (that's what sold the wife on getting the truck). I also prefer the leather for cleaning.

    Have you demo'd both? IMO, GM has some of the ugliest cloth on the market, along with Ford and Dodge.
  • ygmnygmn Posts: 179
    I test drove both full leather and the sport cloth leather seats.

    The leather is better plus you get more power controls!!!!!

    Oh the heat yes go leather!!
  • Dude - go full leather. I've got it in my Avalanche. All the magazine reviews rip the cloth/leather combo for being low quality. The full leather seats are high quality, give you driver/passanger power seats with power lumbar and side bolsters as well as rear-end warmers (OK, not a big deal in So Cal).

    They're a lot better though and you get more features for your bucks - I'd say it's the only way to go.
This discussion has been closed.