In addition to large families, nearly every hobbyist group is interested in the Suburban--the fly fisherman, the grouse hunter, the camper, and the flea-market super-shopper. Women and men drive them in equal numbers, and they turn up at trailheads as often as shopping centers. The three-quarter-ton version's maximum tow rating of 12,000 pounds opens quite a few doors--trailer doors, that is. The Suburban's heritage is hard to match, and so is its resale value. Even amid incentives, the Suburban has a strong track record for a Better than Average Cost of Ownership.
If you need a utilitarian carryall, look for a deal on the last of the 2006 Suburbans, but for more refinement, safety, and panache, wait for the new 2007 model.
Touch-screen navigationA lot of truck for the moneyCarry and tow everything and everyone
ParkingLacks second-row airbagsNo five-speed automatics
For 2006, a special AWD LTZ model brings a dressed-up exterior and interior, along with a potent 6.0L powerplant. The 1500 editions see their catalytic converters moved closer to the engine for improved emissions performance, while 2500s are available with extendable trailer mirrors. A tire-pressure monitoring system is standard on all variations.
The Suburban can be configured for multiple purposes, be it local family commuter, long-haul tow duty, or off-road adventurer. The key is to outfit it realistically for the intended purpose, including buying the right-sized engine. For flash and style, the LTZ trim is a standout. The various entertainment options can help immeasurably in placating passengers on interstate vacations.