Uplander - would you chose it again??

spike99spike99 Member Posts: 239
Thinking about trading in our current 2001 AWD Safari van for a smaller van. Possibly a "used" 2007 FWD 3.9L ext Uplander. Or, possibly a '07 FWD 3.9L Montana van.

If wondering, van will be used for 2 adults + 3 kids + 1 dog for mostly 2.0 hour weekend driving and for a "run abouts in my small village. Nothing too fancy or too over loaded with electronics.

For those of you who do have a newer Uplander or even '07 Uplander with long wheelbase model, would you buy it again?




  • jpfjpf Member Posts: 496
    Check out some of the other Edmunds discussions about these vans (Uplander/Montana/Terazza). These vans are very problematic. I would stay clear away from GM's front wheel drive minivans. Good luck.
  • 1bigdog1bigdog Member Posts: 5
    Save your money.. I have a 2006 Uplander.. Nothing but problems. I owned alot of cars this van blows.. At 300 miles low oil pressure..Took three months to fix.. Both front wheel hubs replaced. Brakes noise you can't stand..Replaced computer 4 times. Last repair was trans @$3500.00 Warranty work..The car spends more time in the shop then our garage. I tried to trade it in but dealers said to sell out right.. I paid cash for this lemon.. I could have went to Shoprite and spent $1.00 instead of $24000.00 If you need a van purchase a Ford of Honda. Chevy willn't buy back. My problem is I paid cash..............If I had a loan would have left in dealer lot. Also the new van market is very soft right now.....
  • morewasabimorewasabi Member Posts: 58
    I have the Buick version, 2005 with the smaller engine. It's been a great ride. only has the 3 year 36000 mile warranty. The new ones have the 100,000 mile warranty. For the money these are good vans. The best van is the Toyota, but you pay a premium for them. The Honda's are over priced and have had their share of problems. Nissan's problems too. They all have issues. How can you go wrong with a 100,000 mile warranty?
  • dannodanno Member Posts: 114
    Other than the bfront rake rotors warping and being replaced under warranty, the van has been very reliable and has great fuel economy - 30 mpg highway is easy.
    The 3.9 is a bit worse on fuel but is a peppy engine.
    I had a 1997 Venture LWB previously and drove it 200,000 miles until the heads cracked - didn't owe me a thing at that point.
  • spike99spike99 Member Posts: 239
    Thanks for the info about your brake rotors warping. On pre-2007 models, warped brake rotors are a known problem. I read that brakes rotors on the '07/08 Uplander have been improved. Not too sure if this is true (but do hope to check part numbers soon). If true, many of its previous "brakes problems" should be resolved - on the newer year models. Many folks like the stronger 3.9L engine as well. Especially the folks who like to cargo/mass people haul. Or, folks who live in hilly country. For me, I'd go for the stronger engine - for my occasional small utility trailer hauling.

    If wondering, I did read the '07 Uplander "Consummer reviews" on the Edmunds site. Many of the folks are pleased with the stronger engine, its 4 wheel disc braking power and its sharp cornering. Didn't see any negative patterns about mechanical weakness. All but one person seemed to be pleased with their new vehicle. For details, surf:

    If we did get an Uplander/Montana van, it would be an '07 up. Might even hold off for an '08 model with a 0% factory interest - which GM sometimes offers during the slow summer months.

    Only time will tell - on which path my wife & I will take.

    Thanks for all who replied to my inquire.

    Much appreciated.

  • spike99spike99 Member Posts: 239

    Just to advise that my wife & I decided to "re-invest" into our current 2001 AWD Safari van. Currently, she's in the shop getting 2 x idler arms (Moog brand) and a wheel alignment. At end of Feb, she's booked for E-Test and muffler piping replacement. Last week, she got new rotor, distributor cap and battery installed. Last Dec she got new shocks and last Nov, she got new brake pads (with 2 x new front brake rotors). With this in mind, most of its common items have been replaced. Hopefully, this will the be last of her winter 2007/2008 repairs. Since this is our 2nd vehicle (that is only used for family "long haul" and occassion utility trailer towing trips), we can't justify paying huge monthly payments to replace her. Especially since our current van sits in our driveway 6 of the 7 days a week.

    Besides the above, I'm still not too sure of the 4+ years reliability track record of the '07 Uplander/Montana. Better brakes and larger 3.9L engine sound great. But... Still not too sure how reliable this upgraded vehicle is.

    Many Thanks to all who replied to my above vehicle replacement inquire. We'll try to breath 2-3 more years into our current 2001 Safari van. Hopefully, we've had the last of our immediate repairs....

  • rtriprtrip Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2006 extended uplander and this van has been great. I was not a fan of minvans but needed one for work so i decided on the uplander. I put a lot of miles on my cars in a short time so it's really important to buy a car that will hold up and give me 250,000 plus with litttle repairs. It had 26,000 on it when i got it in Sept of 2006 it now has 139,900 and I have had no problems. I have put brakes in it the front then the front and back but that's expected. This van does hard driving going up and down steep hills in up state NY and it still drives like it's new.

    I took out the back seats and throw my skis and bike back there it has lot's of room. I've used it for tailgating at football games,apre ski and bringing stuff to the dump, everything but hauling small children...but i am sure it would be good for that to, just leave the seats in.

    I have come to love my minivan and this uplander has proven to be a solid problem free van. If I had to complain about something then it would be the CD player but on the scale of things...i can handle that!

    I have never owned a chevy before and I thought maybe I should buy a Honda, I was worried about the realibilty of the Chevy. I went with the uplander, glad I did, I have had other great cars 250,000 + with little problems but no car that hit 139,900 with out putting something in it.

    I just hope I wasn't lucky because my next van will be an uplander.
  • rbhoelrbhoel Member Posts: 1
    My wife bought a new 2007 Uplander LT last summer for a trip we made with her parents going from Tampa to Scranton PA. It was a very pleasant trip, especially because of our new Uplander. It came with tons of accessories we were not used to having in a vehicle and for a very reasonable price for the van. The comfort level of the ride surprised us and it is also very quiet. The engine (the larger one) has great power and will climb any grade with ease. I believe this is the largest vehicle in the USA with front wheel drive. The only problems we have had were with the DVD player not playing and a gas guage sensor; both repaired promptly under warranty by a very friendly dealer, Gordon Chevrolet. We bought our van from a dealer out of town. My wife drives it to work every day and still likes her Uplander very much and has no complaints and she is very forward to complain if there is a problem.

    Ron in Tampa
  • tlneeltlneel Member Posts: 1
    We bought an 05 Uplander LS and have loved . We traded it a week ago on an 08 Uplander LT. The 05 had 79K miles on it, with no problems.
  • aubryjaubryj Member Posts: 2
    No. I would not choose it again. Mine has been in the shop numerous times. I am now at 50k miles and the fuel sending unit has gone bad.
    Previous: A/C, wiring harness for blinker (twice), child belt ajustment broken @18k miles and 47k, part in steering column (needs to be replaced again), tie rods, pistons on lift gate and now the fuel sending unit. :cry:
  • uplanderguyuplanderguy Member Posts: 15,349
    We have an '05 (built 6/05) and I'd consider an '08, what with the deals available and apparently the brake rotor and probably the wheel bearing issues fixed, as well as the peeling side-molding issue. I've been disappointed in our '05 but luckily our dealership's Service Manager has stepped up to the plate and made good on a few things, even beyond the warranty period. I do like the looks of the van. I think the tire noise is too much though. But yes, I'd consider an '08.

  • lilbug1lilbug1 Member Posts: 1
    when we bought the van in march of 2008 with 14,000 miles, we have had nothing but problems with it. this van is 1 yr old. between the rotars being turned the sliding door modulre needing replaced, the back up sensor not working the tires are really worn, needed a new balancer, rough idle not fixed the first time. the seat needing fixed and best of all to take this van 4,000 miles on a raod trip we had the ding going on the whole trip. had the salesman been honest from the start then that would have helped me but instead coming back from vaction and taking the van in the get looked at they have told me that the salesman had gotten fired and they are still cleaning up messes from him. we took a loan out for this van and have had it for months and so far it has been in the shop every month for something. every time i turn around i have to take it into the shop. that is bad for a 2008.
  • spike99spike99 Member Posts: 239

    Just to advise that last spring, my wife & I bought a brand new 2009 Montana EWB 1SB package van. Due to high pattern areas, we bought our van without power sliding doors, without air level suspension and without DVD system. We got our new van with simple "basic" power items (like: PS, PL, PW, PB, rear AC, side impact air bags) and that's it. Since owning this van, I've installed my own Class III trailer hitch, installed my own rear Timbrens (which are like air bags without pressuized air inside them), installed my own transmission aux oil cooler (for 5,000 lbs trailer) and installed my own electric brake controller. Even lowered both front seats 1.5" - to obtain better visual sight out the front window. Since March 30th (our "drive home" date), my new '09 Montana van has been great. Runs great, stops great, has lots of power under its hood (especially with 3.9L VVT engine), can easily fit it between parking lines and is very comfortable to drive. Its a great change from my previous 2001 Safari "slug" van. So far, I'd recommend my new Montana van to others. Especially for folks who have 3 small kids and do lots of "long haul" trips - like my family. So far, "turn its key and go!".

    Just wanted to advise that so far, I love my new 2009 Montana van.

  • cheeze74cheeze74 Member Posts: 30
    Just purchased a 2005 Uplander and the rear wiper is stuck in the middle of the window. Motor apparantly quit. Dealer wants $142.00 for motor. Seems to be a common problem. Anyone else experience this? Can motor be repaired rather than replaced?
  • jmb66jmb66 Member Posts: 2
    I have an 05 that I am ready to get rid of. The rear wiper also died and I was able to get it replaced free because of an extended warranty I purchased when I got the van.
    I have had several problems with mine and think it is very uncomfortable as well.
  • chevyjaxchevyjax Member Posts: 12
    I have a 2007 Uplander. I loved it at first. It has all th bells and whistles, smooth ride, nice and roomy, and plenty of room for my kids. I think it looks great too! No I have had it less than 2 years, only has 22k miles on it and I have been having issues for about 1 year now and no one seems to care. The passenger sliding door will not secure properly and will even open when you do not want it to. I am afraid to drive it. I have taken it to the dealer 6 times, they can not get it to duplicate the problem. It only happens when you least expect it too. Here is a link with a van that has a similar issue that everyone should see. I just want to get it fixed or get a vehicle that does not have this problem.I talked to an attorney, but because the dealer can never find the problem, there is nothing they can do for me. I am so frustrated and do not know what to do next. http://www.wpxi.com/money/14592999/detail.html?rss=burg&taf=burg
  • cheeze74cheeze74 Member Posts: 30
    The front passenger air bag has a cover that rattles every time I hit a bump in the road. Wondering if anyone else is having the same problem and how to fix it. Thanks!
  • genmtrfangenmtrfan Member Posts: 78
    The dealer has to remove the airbag and place some insulation in there. We had this done about 4 years ago and the rattle hasn't returned. There may have been a TSB about it.
  • genmtrfangenmtrfan Member Posts: 78
    We've had our '05 Uplander about 4.5 years. Bought it new and now it has 77,000 miles. We had the first year problems fixed under warranty-flickering lights, body molding issue, air bag rattle, horn springs replaced because the horn was too stiff. Most of these issues were TSB-covered. Also replaced both sway bark links in the front. I did this myself and paid about $35 each for them (I noticed that the replacements were thicker than the originals). That's the only out-of pocket cost I've incurred other than tires and brakes. Definitely need to upgrade the tires and brakes upon replacement and keep the allignment job current.

    Bottom line is that I'd definitely buy it again. With my GM card I bought a 30,500 vehicle for 23,800 and I've only put $70 into it. I have a family of 6 and here are the things we love..Smooth ride, DVD system with wireless headphones- no issues after 4.5 years, automatic sliding doors have worked perfectly, cool wheels, styling, audio system sound, room and versatility, gas mileage, reliabliity. No engine or transmission issues to date.
  • cheeze74cheeze74 Member Posts: 30
    Thanks for the info. I checked the TSB's on this site but didn't see anything in regaurds to the front airbag.
  • jillybean2jillybean2 Member Posts: 1
    Would never buy another Uplander, and I am so unhappy with my Uplander, will probably never buy Chevy again. With 105,000 miles on our 2005 Uplander, had to replace transmission, third brake light (really??), we have starting issues (have to step on the gas to get it to catch), paint on trim is rusting (coating was not properly put on and warranty is over) and numerous other issues. So very discouraged with my Uplander it's not even funny. Purchased a Honda for our daughter, and will most likely purchase another when it's time to replace the Chevy. This is our third Chevy and if I have my way, it will be our last. Yes, it's roomy and solid, but I'm sure there are others out there as well without all the mechanical issues.
  • alchipalchip Member Posts: 18
    Yes, I very definitely would choose our 2006 Uplander LS again. Overall, after 147,000 miles of enjoyable driving, I am a very satisfied Uplander owner. We have been very diligent in caring for our Uplander, but we do not garage it (it's spent all of its Virginia winters outdoors). While it is showing some signs of transmission fatigue (it slips occasionally), we've had no extraordinary repair costs to date. Given all of the variables - the purchase cost, the maintenance, the features, I personally think the design team at Chevy did a great job on this product.
  • lj2009lj2009 Member Posts: 1
    HELL NO! 50,000 kms on our 2009 Uplander and it has been a prob since about 4 months into buying it! ABS traction control lights on every few months...always in getting a sensor replaced...gas tank does not read right-been in 4 times to fix that and just last week they said it was done but nope not...heat only heats when driving when stopped for a red light it will blow very cool! THe list can go on. PIECE of CRAP
  • jpfjpf Member Posts: 496
    My wife and I traded in two months ago a base 2006 Dodge Caravan SE (4 cylinder) with 80k miles for a 2007 Uplander LT (SWB) with 55k miles. We had purchased the Caravan brand new in September 2006 for just under $16k and did not have a single warranty issue with it. The only maintenance issue was the serpentine belt and tensioner. The belt was replaced several times and the tensioner twice. The Caravan was due for its timing belt replacement (recommended at 90k miles) and it had developed an oil leak from the valve cover. Overall, a very reliable vehicle that served us well.

    We went with the Uplander because of its low mileage and price. We got it for $11,900 (taxes and $350 of accessories included). Many of the maintenance issues indicated in these forums were already fixed on this vehicle (e.g., sway bar, wheel bearings, head gasket). We drove from northern Ontario to Mississippi and averaged 23 MPG. Overall, we're quite pleased with the Uplander.
  • max5841max5841 Member Posts: 4
    I purchased 2008 LE uplander with 19000 miles.MAKE SURE IF YOUR HAVING TIRE ISSUES TO GET A 4 Wheel alignment,they had to chime the back wheels in order to get it aligned and no tires issues at all.and that's after 68000 on a set of tires.Had a wheel bearing go out after70000 miles and traction control light coming on which I find out there's. Alot of owners having the same issue,It's working ,some problem of moisture getting in the harness.I really like mine I know have 93000to miles.
  • spike99spike99 Member Posts: 239
    edited January 2012
    Hi JPF. Just noticed your Nov 21 - 2011 post a few moments ago.

    If wondering, my wife & I did buy a 2009 Montana van - sister design to your 2006 Uplander van. To view a few tips / DIY improvement ideas for your new van, surf entire thread at:


    Hope this helps improve your GM mini-van as well….

    If wondering, our GM mini-van is still doing great. And, I'd still buy another GM mini-van today. Especially for our family and minor towing needs.
  • jpfjpf Member Posts: 496
    Our 2007 Uplander is running fine. My wife and I have made two trips to Mississippi (2,600 miles return from northern Ontario) and I made one trip to Duluth, MN. We averaged 23 MPG on the first trip, 22.5 on the second trip(mainly highway but some city driving), and 25.5 MPG on the Duluth trip and the van is equipped with winter tires. We've had one warranty issue; cross over pipe gasket was leaking and repaired free of charge under the powertrain warranty. This gasket leak is a problem with GM's 3.5 and 3.9 liter engines. We use Mobil1 synthetic oil. Overall, very satisfied with the van and plan to keep it for at least 4 to 5 years.
  • Papapop23Papapop23 Member Posts: 1
    Hell No, But yes to give to a worst enemy
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