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Old 03-29-2005, 11:40 PM   #1
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Reliability of GMC/Chevy 'Burbs,Yukons?

I am doing research on buying a new vehicle to tow with. I am very interested in the GMC Yukon XL Denali... I realize it's a 1500, but it's got the 6.0 and 4l65e tranny. I am wondering about the reliability of GM's in general, I have no personal experience driving one regularly, riding in one regularly, or working on one. What would I be getting myself into if I were to buy a Yukon? --Chad--
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Old 03-29-2005, 11:56 PM   #2
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Reliability of GMC/Chevy 'Burbs,Yukons?

Greetings Chad!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepinAudiophile
I am doing research on buying a new vehicle to tow with. I am very interested in the GMC Yukon XL Denali... I realize it's a 1500, but it's got the 6.0 and 4l65e tranny. I am wondering about the reliability of GM's in general, I have no personal experience driving one regularly, riding in one regularly, or working on one. What would I be getting myself into if I were to buy a Yukon? --Chad--
While my experience isn't with the current Suburban, I did special order my '99 in January of '98 and took delivery in April '98. It has been one of the very best vehicles that I have ever owned - - with one exception the electronic transfer case has been temperamental from day one (the circuit board that controls the transfer case lasts about 15,000 miles and then must be replaced as the transfer case will be stuck in whichever mode it happens to be in when the board fails - - so far with seven failures, it has only failed in one of the 4 X 4 modes once. I currently have 144,000 + miles on the odometer and solo economy is 15-18 MPG while towing is 10-12 MPG Overlander and 12-15 MPG with the Minuet. If I were to consider a new tow vehicle today, it would definitely be either a Suburban or Yukon XL with the 8.1 Liter/4.10 differential without four-wheel-drive (it is an extra expense that I don't need since my relocation to Southern Illinois) - - I don't expect to be in the market for a replacement for my '99 Suburban as my estimate is that it won't require replacemnt until it has at least 300,000 miles on the odometer.

Most of my vehicles have been one of the GM makes, and have all been excellent with three exceptions (a 1982 Pontiac Bonneville Brougham, a 1983 GMC G-20 Vandura Conversion Van, and a 1995 Chevrolet K1500 Z-71 Clubcab pickup). Among my favorites were an '84 Oldsmobile Tornado (sold at 225,000 miles), a 1983 Oldsmobile Cutlass Cierra (sold at 198,000 miles), a 1985 Oldsmobile Delta 88 Royale Brougham Luxury Sedan (going strong at 99,000 miles), a '94 Chevrolet S-10 Blazer Tahoe (going strong at 135,000 miles), a '75 Cadillac Eldorado (going strong at 117,000 miles), a '75 Pontiac Grandville Convertible (destroyed in the flood of '93 at 198,000 miles) and an '84 Cadillac Eldorado Biarritz Convertible (going strong at 88,000 miles).

Kevin
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Old 03-30-2005, 01:59 AM   #3
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The Yukon Denali XL is a very reliable vehicle. Just because it has the 6.0, don't think it can tow like a 3/4 ton can. It has a towing limit (7900) that is actually lower than the 1/2 ton 5.3L Yukon XL 4x4 (equipped with 4.10 rear end it has a max of 8200). The 6.0 in the 3/4 ton Yukon XL 4x4 with the 4.10 rear end can tow up to 9600 pounds. The Denali is definitely a fine looking unit, and should tow your present 24' AS easily. You would really like its AWD in the New England winters.
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Old 03-30-2005, 07:58 AM   #4
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Growing up we had a 1985 454 3/4 ton Suburban. I recently (last August) bought a new 2004 3/4 Burb with the 6.0L.

The 1985 would still be here running like a top if it wasn't for the bad rust it had.....strong great truck.

The 2004 is IMHO a very well built truck. Panels fit well, no odd rattles or loose items, and the 6.0L engine is a very solid engine. My pops has a 2000 Silverado with the 6.0L and has been extremely pleased with it.

I doubt that you will be unhappy with what you're talking about and I agree, with your tradewind, you'll be in great shape almost any way you go in the GM truck line (or other brands for that matter).
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Old 03-30-2005, 08:20 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JeepinAudiophile
I am doing research on buying a new vehicle to tow with. I am very interested in the GMC Yukon XL Denali... I realize it's a 1500, but it's got the 6.0 and 4l65e tranny. I am wondering about the reliability of GM's in general, I have no personal experience driving one regularly, riding in one regularly, or working on one. What would I be getting myself into if I were to buy a Yukon? --Chad--
If you wind up getting this vehicle, take a look at the tires. It should have 16" tires on it, but load range B tires. It would be very wise to get the load range C or D tires, they have stiffer sidewalls, it will reduce sway. You don't have to pump up the tires to max inflation when not towing, so they should still ride okay, although a little stiffer than the passenger car tires that come on the truck.
Also, since this has a shorter wheelbase than the Suburban, it would be very, very wise to use sway control to minimize wallowing around.
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Old 03-30-2005, 09:28 AM   #6
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Post Suburban 2500

Just got a 2003 with 44,000 miles on it, dealer maintained.

I'm a NEWBIE and I've only towed once, but the thing has power to spare for my 22ft CCD. I'm far more confident than I thought I'd be, and with the extended towing mirrors I am ready to find a vacant parking lot and practice my backup skills until I can amaze the experienced.

I think I'll name it "big dawg" - because I need an escalator to get in and a parachute to get back out. In spite of it's size it is very easy to drive and turns in a tight radius considering it's length. It also has every gadget known to man and a few I'd never expected. The front passenger seat WEIGHS the passenger to decide whether the airbag should be enabled - it disables if the weight is below 50lbs because it assumes there's a child in the seat.

Tin lizzie
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Old 03-30-2005, 10:56 AM   #7
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another vote for 2500 Burb

We love our 2500 Suburban. We ordered the camper mirrors. The 2500 3/4 ton is really set up for towing. Temp gage for transmission and 37.5 gal fuel tank. Just can't say enough good about the Burb, too bad GMC dropped the ball on Quadrasteer...

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Old 03-30-2005, 11:05 AM   #8
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We have a 2000 1500 Yukon XL. It has 135,000 miles. The only repair it has had was replacement of the front hubs under warranty. Other than that only maintenance. Hasn't even needed a brake job.
Yesterday I asked my wife what vehicle we should buy next - she said she couldn't think of anything she didn't like about the Yukon.

I have only towed a 2000 lb utility trailer and the occasional rental trailer. It's been fine for those uses.
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Old 03-30-2005, 11:07 AM   #9
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You won't have trouble pulling your existing trailer with the XL. The XL has the same wheelbase as the Burb and the Avalanche(130"). I have a 5.3 1500 Avalanche with a 4.10 axle, I do not have problems pulling my 1996 30' classic. It would be better if you could get the 4.10 axle with the XL but it's not available from what I can see. Also, go for the 20" wheels. You can now get 20" D rated BF Goodrich tires.
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Old 03-30-2005, 11:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulaFord
.....The front passenger seat WEIGHS the passenger to decide whether the airbag should be enabled - .....Tin lizzie
Oh man - that just doesn't seem sporting! Does it have a dash read out visible for all or does it just make a log in the vehichles computer that the dealer has to print out. I can see it now - "well Lizzie, your data all looks pretty good, we adjusted the mixture a little for improved performance, but about this weight spike at the holidays....."
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Old 03-30-2005, 11:58 AM   #11
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Oh man - that just doesn't seem sporting! Does it have a dash read out visible for all or does it just make a log in the vehichles computer that the dealer has to print out. I can see it now - "well Lizzie, your data all looks pretty good, we adjusted the mixture a little for improved performance, but about this weight spike at the holidays....."

LOL I can just imagine all sorts of alarm buzzers going off and lights flashing! (WHOOP-WHOOP-WHOOP!)
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Old 03-30-2005, 12:50 PM   #12
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Yea, the neat thing is that starting in 2000, the main differences in the Chevy truck vs the Caddy trucks is tweaked sheet metal and tweaked interior decor (engines can vary too), but my point is that all the Chevys, GMCs and Caddys all have the neat bells, whistles and creature comforts you'd only have expected in the Caddy line 6-8 years ago.

Heck my new Burb has a factory sub, DVD, Sunroof, Blondestar, Leather, power everything, blah, blah, blah....and the neat part is GM is still having a fire sale on these trucks right now with I think $3k cash back or low APR. You can beat the dealer up for another $5k, so if bought today, you could actually get a Burb for about $8k off sticker with almost no trouble.
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Old 03-30-2005, 02:57 PM   #13
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Heck my new Burb has a factory sub, DVD, Sunroof, Blondestar, Leather, power everything, blah, blah, blah....and the neat part is GM is still having a fire sale on these trucks right now with I think $3k cash back or low APR. You can beat the dealer up for another $5k, so if bought today, you could actually get a Burb for about $8k off sticker with almost no trouble.[/QUOTE]

The GM side of the shop had a factory rep in here last week. The way GM decides which car line to drop will depend largely on sales for the next 3 months. My understanding is that the light duty GMC trucks are also getting a hard look to be downsized or eliminated. Too much crossover to Chevy. Get the dealer to hand you the truck on a platter. Even if GMC cuts back I suspect the Chevy dealers will cover any repairs that come up.

Good luck, Tom
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Old 03-30-2005, 04:33 PM   #14
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i'm going on year 5 with my chevy 3/4 ton silverado.

it has the 6.0 and 4l80e tranny. 52,000 trouble free miles! it pulls my 29 excella like a big block.

in short, best tow veh. i have ever had.

john
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