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Suzuki XL-7



  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    I purchased mine in June of 01. It was the owner's wife's car who was also a sales person. It have 5k on it when I got it. I just went over 10k and can not tell you about repair costs since I have not had any to do, nor any warranty work. It has been dead on reliable. It goes to work, dog shows (with my retired racing greyhounds), and just driving around town. Just a really nice truck.
  • You are the 1st person i've heard that has 2 Mini SUV's. Your choice, but why did you buy 2 similar? I do not do off roading,basically to & from work(12 miles roundtrip),trips to Home Depot,occasional trips to seashore,supermarket(easier to load/unload than wife's Accord). For these purposes, are you recommending the CR-V? NO KIDS,either. CR just blasted the XL-7 and rated the CR-V behind the RAV4 & Forrester(neither of which I care for) Their negatives were uncomfortable ride,seats,large turning circle,MPG.
    Please don't misunderstand, I only take CR with a "grain of salt" and have been quite satisfied with some products which they did not top rate. I'd much rather take advise from owners which is one of the purposes of these forums.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    And don't believe the rollover tests performed by CR they are bogus, since they don't show you how hard or how late the test driver cranks the wheel...

  • parideparide Posts: 52
    I'm wondering if any other XL-7 owners have had this situation. This weekend, I began to hear considerable noise from the rear end every time the brakes were applied at low speed. It sounds like metal scraping on metal, very much like the low front pad warning sensors I've had on other cars. I'll be calling the dealer service department on this today. Note that my XL-7 is a 2002 (don't know if they've changed some of the brake components from the 2001 model year).

    Phillyguy2 - We've owned our XL-7 Touring about a month now, and absolutely love it. I have 3 kids (16, 13 and 11 years old) and they have room to spread out in the XL-7 that simply isn't available in the Honda or other smaller SUVs. At 1500 miles, we're getting roughly 20-21 mpg, which is better than I expected. As for Consumer Reports, I take what they say with a big grain of salt because they've been knocking Suzuki for years.
  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    You may have picked up a stone or something similar. It happened to me once, many years ago. If your dealer is like mine they will bend over backwards to help.
  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    I think those of us that are on this thread need to pat ourselves on the back, at least a little. For a vehicle that does not sell a lot we have kept this board alive and have reached the 500 mark. This is like a TV show that reaches 100 episodes, (the number needed for syndication). There are other, more popular vehicles out there that have nowhere the support this one has. Keep up the good work and advice. Congratulations to all.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Glad to see the other GM-Japanese name is alive and kicking. Suzuzu need to stick together to try to keep GM from totally overrunning the quality vehicles that they make! :)

  • My wife and I both wanted the flexibility of smaller SUV's. We didn't plan on having 2 brand new vehicles, but after I purchased my XL-7 our daughter totalled my wife's 2000 Subaru Forester. Our insurance covered replacement value, so they gave us a check for $25,000 (an opportunity to buy a new vehicle without a loan). My wife liked our Forester a lot, and would have been happy to get another, but she wanted to see what else was available. We thought the Forester was extremely well built (passenger compartment held up wonderfully after the car went vertical down an embankment, hitting a tree and rolling over). My daughter's only injury was a broken collar bone. We looked at another Forester, and a number of other vehicles. We liked the CR-V best of all of them. Again, I am very happy with my XL-7, but my wife doesn't like it as much as I do. We both find the CR-V to be roomier and more comfortable than the Forester. For the uses you describe I would probably choose the CR-V over the XL-7. I think it has more room then either the Forester or the RAV 4. Cargo capacity is quite good on the CR-V. While not as long as the XL-7, the cargo capacity is much deeper. The XL-7 cargo floor is much higher due to the extra seating.

    Finally some comments on my XL-7. I find it to be very well built. Unlike some reviewers I do not find the interior to be cheap looking (I have the limited, but I don't know if that makes much difference). The driver's seat bottoms are short and do not offer enough knee support (about 1 inch longer would help. The vehicle is great to drive. I find it responsive and handles well, and the ride is very comfortable. Rear Air Conditioning and the extra seating is a plus for a vehicle at this price.

    The passenger capacity is really six not seven as the middle row middle seat is not suitable because of seatbelt placement. If all 3 rows of seating are used, cargo capacity is extremely limited.

    The ability to shift into 4wd lo and high is a great feature for the rare times I would be off road, or for our occassional snow storms. I do disaster response work so that having off road capability is something that I may need to use. My XL-7 has had 0 defects, and I have a lot of confidence in the quality of construction.

    Sorry for the long post, but I hope this information is helpful in your decision making process.
  • A friend of my daughter owns a Suzuki dealership & he lent me an XL7 LTD. Just got back from a turnpike drive. The wind swayed it a little more than I'm used to on my Pathfinder. Also noticed more imperfections on road. Both not terrible,but noticable. Driver's view good,engine sounds good & responsive, since I don't drive like most teenagers. Seats not quite up to excellence as far as comfort but acceptable. What is very annoying-when I opened the sunroof,a terrible burning odor forced me to close up. I'd have to ask the dealer,unless somebody out there knows about this. Tomorrow I give the car back so I'll let you all know if anything else comes up.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    If it's new, you are smelling the undercoating burning off. Subarus are known for this it takes almost 10K miles for the smell to disappate on them.

  • tistevetisteve Posts: 142
    All of the Suzuki's come with an oil like stuff that is sprayed on the engine to prevent rust while being shipped over seas. It takes a few thousand miles to burn it off completely, maybe that's what you smelled.

    As to your CRV vs. XL-7 comparison. I have to agree 100% with what everyone above said. The CRV is more car like and likely to be a bit more comfortable. If you'll never off road and won't need to carry more than four people at a time, I would go with the CRV (for resale, reliability, etc.)

    We really wanted a mini suv that was still a real truck at heart. We go down to Hatteras during the summer and drive on the beach. The all-wheel drive vehicles are marginal at best on the sand and you really have to be careful not to get stuck. Also, as others have mentioned, the XL-7 can actually tow a small load, the CRV is really not meant for towing.

    Reliability, hard to beat a Honda and I would never say the Suzuki's are better, but I think they are one of the most reliable "other" imports behind Toyota and Honda. Certainly way above Hyundai or Kia.

    It is a bit frustrating the lack of support GM gives Suzuki and Isuzu for that matter. We just like to think of our XL-7 as one of the best keep secrets of the mini suv world and appreciate the rarity of them.

    Good luck on your choice.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    "We just like to think of our XL-7 as one of the best keep secrets of the mini suv world and appreciate the rarity of them."

    That is exactly the quote we have over at the Trooper site! Best kept secret in the med-SUV world! :)

    Happy Zuking!

  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    I also like the fact there are not to many XL-7s on the road. I do get some looks once in awhile since they are not seen that often. However, I want enough of them sold so they keep being imported. I was going to change the oil this weekend but had a honey-do list a mile long so it will have to wait. It is a real pain but since I am running Mobil 1 I only have to do it every 5k.
    I took my van in for some service prior to it going our of 3/36 warranty and my Ford dealer gave me a 2002 Explorer XLT with sunroof and leather with 12K on it as a loaner. I must say that my XL-7 is doing better than it is: rattle in the dash(it appears this is a common problem with a fix, but should not be there), the rear suspension bushings give the sound of "old springs" (another common problem with a fix) the sunroof is a little lose and rattles when open and at speed, and a lose drivers window ( you can push it down about an inch after you open it). However, it does have the rear sensor for backing up, puddle lamps, 6 cd changer, side airbags, and a lot more cargo room than ours. However, the sticker is about 33K. All things considered my XL-7 (limited) is still solid as a rock after 10K. My only noise is the first aid kit in the back.
    I have seen some adds for after market backup sonar systems. I am going to look into them. With the van and truck they would be nice to have. Has anyone looked into them?
  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    I went to the after market and accessory board and found some good info on back up sensors.
  • Before I returned the car, I gave it to my wife for her impressions. Everything was fine until she took it on the turnpike. The XL7 swerved in the wind to the point that my wife had to make constant corrections to stay on course. Has anyone else had similar experience?
  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    Not really, but then it depends on the speed of the wind. The XL-7 does have a larger area to be hit by the wind simply because it is larger than the smaller SUVs, but you knew that. If she was in 20 to 30 MPH winds any vehicle would have some problems.
  • subzero206subzero206 Posts: 111
    is the XL-7 built in Japan?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    "Despite enjoying incredible success with its SJ and Vitara off- roaders somehow Suzuki has always struggled to be taken seriously as a manufacturer of 4x4s."

    What's in a name?

    SUVs, Vans and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards
  • I read a review this week,can't remember which,that said the XL7 tends to sway on the highway more because of it's tall cabin and narrow width. Anyway,my wife won't drive it -too much effort to control-,so, regretfully,I'll have to pass and go with the CR-V and it's quirks and looks. Shame,though.
  • xl7xl7 Posts: 20
    Model Xl-7 Touring Model

    I purchased my vehicle Mar.22, now has 23,600 miles...

    Problems that i encountered: Missing gas cap, warning indicator light stayed on...check engine

    Tires: Wear on inside front tires...out of allignment. Replaced both duller 687's.

    Other than that I havent't had any concerns.It really runs great. I do a lot of hwy driving 70-75mph, 4 adult passengers on occasions.




    For those that have purchased xl-7's or may have concerns. I've found this message board truthful,helpful and full of experienced owners.

    Special thanks to 5Greyhounds,Paisan,and Tisteve.
    These gentlemen have provided helpful info.

    Also for those that, have that ify attitude about this problem....Rent one....try it. There are several faults that we all have shared (like 3rd row of seats) coffee holders,arm rests,etc.
    However, check out the storage compartment under the front passenger seat.....!


    Thanks & Happy Motoring
  • subzero206subzero206 Posts: 111
    I purchased my vehicle Mar.22, now has 23,600 miles...

    WOW u put 23,600 miles on your vehicle in 15 days!!?! lol
  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    I think most of us have increased our tire pressure. I know I did the first day I had the truck. It steers better with the high pressure also.
  • xl7xl7 Posts: 20

    Correction: Purchased Mar. 22, 2001 23,600 miles. 1yr + few days
  • Do your GH's have a problem with the uneven floor. I am assuming you have your rear seats folded "flat". Suzuki needs to redesign their seats to give a flat cargo area.The ride is fine, the seats are comfortable, it handles good and it is one of the better values. I am checking on the tire pressure issue. Also, I have lost more confidence in CR since they knocked the XL7 for bad reasons. Their reliability reports seemed to be dictated by a small sampling of older Sidekicks, which I know nothing about. If Suzuki sold as many SUV's as Ford, I believe the reliability reports would go in in their favor based on a larger sampling. Suzuki(GM?) needs to promote their vehicles more, as Ford has shown marketing can sell more than quality.
  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    Actually, they do not have a problem but I did a slight modification to the back of the truck. I have a piece of plywood with a hinge on it so that it will cover the entire back of the truck with all seats down. This takes care of the gap between the front row seats and the second row and also the gap between the 2nd and third row. When I need to put up the second row I fold the plywood and bingo, there is no gap between the second row and the floor where the third seats are. To even out the floor a little I have three bricks at the back under the wood that raises up the plywood a few inches and makes the floor much more level. The wood is covered with foam and cloth so it also serves as a bed for them.
    I agree about CR but there are still a lot of old sidekicks, etc out there. I agree about it being a really good deal. I am presently looking out my window and there is a blue touring XL-7 and a Jeep Cherokee parked across the street. They look about the same size with the jeep being a little wider but then again the price is 10k more. I just like it. It is fun to drive, looks good and so far is reliable. What else can you ask for?
    The XL-7 is maybe not the most sophisticated truck but it does have coil on ignition, a timing chain (vs a belt), rear air and a nice ride. For the money I will take it.
    I may go to a custom shop and see how much it would cost to cover the inside door panels and dash with a nice vinyl to match the leather. I do have an appointment for this Monday to have a reverse sensor system installed. I will let you know how it works.
  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    Anyone out there with a 2002 with the new fix for the gap between the second and third row? If so do you think it could be retro-fitted to a 2001?
  • Hello all. I have been reading the posts here for a few weeks now. I find this very interesting and informative. I am looking into buying an XL-7 sometime this year but I'm hoping that someone in this discussion who owns an XL-7 can share with me their experience after taking a long trip. How comfortable were you? I live in Arizona and would probably drive to California once every other year and maybe to Texas, I also am married and have a 3yr old and a 5 yr old. I want my family to be comfortable. Who has owned the XL-7 the longest? I am also considering staying with the Toyota line of vehicles, even though I know I'm definitely going to spend more cash. Really would like the Suzuki to work out though.

    Thanks for your help!
  • 5greyhounds5greyhounds Posts: 338
    I have a 01 Limited with just over 10k. I picked it up in July of 01. My longest trip has been about 300 miles with my wife and two of our greyhounds. What we like is all the room. It is just a little rougher than a RAV4 but not so much as you would think. On smooth roads there is really not that much of a difference. You will find that with the second row of seats up there is a great deal more space than in the RAV 4. I assume you are talking about the RAV 4 since that is the one that is comparable to the XL-7. I took a RAV 4 for a test drive just after I drove the XL-7 and found the RAV to be Tinny (sp)and the ride was not as smooth as you would think. With the short wheelbase it just seems to bounce around more than it should. Just seemed to be not that well put together. With the four of you and bags I would venture the weight would make the ride better in the XL-7. Also, I think you will find the V6 is much more responsive than the I4. I used to spend a lot of time is Tucson and with it being so flat you really did not appreciate the V6 till you started to get into the mountains and then it really showed it's value. Mine has be dead on reliable and I get around 22MPG which is not bad for a V-6 truck. Are you thinking about getting the 2WD version? I would think that is all you need our there unless you go into the mountains or off road.
    We love the sunroof. Do not know what we would do without it. The indash single CD is nice since the sound system also includes a cassette player. Some people do not like the HVAC controls since they are buttons but they work just fine. Go for the Touring or the Limited. The plus is ok but lacks some of the really nice touches. Since I have the limited I have the leather seats. I find them comfortable. My only complaint is the armrests are a little short.
    Since you have been reading this board I am sure you noticed everyone talking about the tire pressure. If you take one for a test drive have the dealer check the pressure. If it is down to 26 have him add 6 PSI. Makes a world of difference in handling and turning. One thing that many people do not realize is the second row doors are wider than the front doors. This makes for real easy entry and exit. Most SUVs have rear doors that are smaller than the front ones. As I said, this makes a world of difference. Enjoy and hope this has been a help.
  • parideparide Posts: 52
    I've owned my 2002 XL-7 Touring for a little over a month, and have taken it on a couple of 200 mile day trips to my father's house in Pennsylvania (we live in New York State). My wife, three children (ages 15,12 and 10) and I have found the XL-7 extremely comfortable on these trips. There's plenty of room for the kids.
    My father owns a 2001 Rav 4 and has complained of how the engine labors on hills since the day he brought it home. The XL-7's engine has no problems with these same hills. My father was surprised to find that we paid basically the same amount for the XL-7 as he paid for the Rav 4, but received so much more for our money (V6 engine, sunroof, third row seating, rear ac). I agree with 5greyhounds that you should consider the Touring or Limited models. The Suzuki dealerships I went to before purchasing my truck were much more willing to deal on these models, and the equipment included on the Touring and Limited models is well worth the additional cost.
  • luonghluongh Posts: 12
    Does anyone have any clue what 2003 xl-7 going to be? Is it going to have a major cosmetic change or any new improvements? Thanks a mil.
This discussion has been closed.