If the Suburban seems like a vestige of the past, when gas was cheap and hybrids weren't even a glimmer in most manufacturers' eyes, well, it sort of is. At seventy-seven years old, the Suburban is the automotive industry's longest-running nameplate. What is even more surprising is that, in all those years, the Suburban hasn't veered from its mission: a big, capable truck with lots of room for people and cargo. In fact, with an overall length of well over eighteen feet and an interior capacity of nearly 138 cubic feet, the Suburban can carry more people -- a maximum of nine -- and more cargo than any other sport-utility for sale in America. A vehicle this big needs a powerful engine, and the Suburban can be equipped with one of three V-8s all mated to a six-speed automatic. The half-ton (1500) model comes standard with a 5.3-liter V-8 with 320 hp and 335 lb-ft of torque but can be upgraded with an optional aluminum-block version of the same engine that adds 6 hp and 13 lb-ft. Three-quarter-ton (2500) Suburbans get a 6.0-liter V-8. Both engines can burn E85 and use Active Fuel Management to switch from eight to four cylinders to save fuel while cruising. Interior appointments are decent but lack the quality and cohesiveness of Chevy's recent efforts like the Cruze and the Equinox. Fortunately, the Suburban can be equipped with a plethora of comfort and convenience features, including a DVD entertainment system with eight-inch screens for the second and third rows, touch-screen navigation, heated seats for first- and second-row passengers, and a backup camera.
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