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8.0

Overall

Scorecard

Critics' Rating: 9.2
Performance: 8.6
Interior: 8.5
Total Cost of Ownership: 8.4
Safety: 8.7
Reliability:
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2009 Chevrolet Suburban Review

The 2009 Chevrolet Suburban is capable of towing heavy loads and hauling lots of people and cargo, but if you don’t need that capability, a crossover SUV might be more practical.

Pros & Cons

  • Best-in-class cargo capacity
  • Ample towing capability
  • Good fuel economy for the class
  • Third row must be removed to expand cargo space

New for 2009

  • Six-speed automatic became standard on all models
  • Bluetooth phone connectivity became standard

2009 Chevrolet Suburban Overview

When it was new, the 2009 Suburban got high marks for its ability to serve as both a trailer-towing workhorse and a capable family hauler. Reviewers praised the 2009 Suburban for its upscale, high-quality interior, which can seat up to nine. And with high safety scores, the Suburban is well-suited for families. As a result, the 2009 Suburban may be more expensive to maintain over the long haul compared with other 2009 large SUVs.

Two versions of the 2009 Suburban are available: a half-ton model, propelled by a 5.3-liter V8; and a heavy-duty variant with a 6.0-liter V8. While you might be able to save some money by getting a slightly older model, the half-ton Suburban received a standard six-speed automatic transmission for 2009, which is more refined than the 2008 model’s transmission. The 2009 Chevrolet Suburban gets up to 14/20 mpg city/highway with two-wheel drive, or 14/19 in four-wheel drive models.

With the third row removed and the middle row folded, the Suburban can hold up to 137.4 cubic feet of cargo. Reviewers cautioned that removing the third row can be difficult, and preferred the third row in the 2009 Ford Expedition, which folds flat into the floor. Standard Bluetooth was new for 2009, and all Suburbans also came equipped with power windows, mirrors and door locks, as well as electronic stability control. Features like satellite radio, a navigation system, blind zone alert and a backup camera were optional features.

See the full 2009 Chevrolet Suburban specs »

Other Cars to Consider

If you’re looking at the Suburban for its towing and passenger-hauling capability, be sure to take a look at the 2009 Chevrolet Tahoe as well. The Tahoe is essentially a slightly shorter Suburban, with similar exterior styling and interior, though reviewers felt the Suburban’s interior was more praiseworthy. The base model comes with a smaller V8 engine, and the Tahoe’s 5.3-liter V8 and six-speed automatic transmission were optional in 2009. You’ll get slightly better fuel economy and more power with the bigger engine.

The 2009 Ford Expedition is another SUV worth a look. With a third-row seat that folds flat at the touch of a button, maximizing cargo space in the Expedition is easier than it is in the Suburban. The Expedition holds its own with the same fuel economy as the Suburban. For more space, consider the Expedition EL, which offers a longer wheelbase than the base Expedition.

Compare the Suburban to the Tahoe and Expedition »

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