What’s New for 2013 Chevy Tahoe
The 2013 Chevrolet Tahoe is pretty much unchanged. The optional navigation system is now hard-drive based, providing quicker responses and digital music storage capability. On the Tahoe LTZ trim, a new heated steering wheel is standard.
Introduction to the 2013 Chevy Tahoe
Although there’s a dwindling market for full-size SUVs, a sizable number of folks continue to appreciate the mix of truck toughness and surprisingly refined practicality in the 2013 Chevrolet Tahoe. A smaller sibling to the venerable Chevy Suburban, the Tahoe is based on the same fully boxed-frame architecture as the Silverado pickup but with a more compliant rear suspension. This strategy maintains healthy towing and payload capacities while providing a smoother ride.
The do-anything, go-anywhere capability isn’t required every day by most owners, but they’re glad the Tahoe is ready when needed. Otherwise, they appreciate the traditional big-SUV advantages such as high-profile seating, excellent visibility and a robust body/frame structure.
The Tahoe is big but relatively athletic for its size, with a strong V8 engine and well-tuned suspension. The few clumsy manners it has on the road are easily overlooked when considering the eight-passenger seating (with potential for nine), 8,000-pound-plus towing capability and respectable off-road prowess when properly equipped. In the era of the crossover, few vehicles offer such a combination.
Within its segment, the 2013 Chevy Tahoe compares well to the Ford Expedition and Toyota Sequoia.
Chevy Tahoe Body Styles, Chevy Tahoe Trim Levels, and Chevy Tahoe Options
The 2013 Chevrolet Tahoe is available in three trim levels: LS, LT and LTZ. The Tahoe Hybrid is reviewed separately. Eight seats are standard, but there are two optional seating arrangements: second-row captain’s chairs drop the count to seven and an available 40/20/40 front bench seat ups it to nine.
The base Tahoe LS comes standard with 17-inch alloy wheels, tri-zone manual climate control, power front seats, a 60/40-split second-row seat and 50/50-split removable third-row seat. Also standard are Bluetooth, OnStar and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player, rear audio controls, satellite radio, an auxiliary audio jack and an iPod/USB audio interface. An optional Convenience package includes power-adjustable pedals, remote ignition, rear parking assist and a rearview camera system.
LT models include most available LS equipment plus foglamps, a locking rear differential, tri-zone automatic climate control, driver memory functions, leather upholstery and a nine-speaker Bose sound system. Among options not available on the LT are second-row captain’s chairs and a Luxury package with heated front and second-row seats (with power release), power-folding mirrors and a power rear liftgate. An optional Z71 Off-Road package adds specially tuned springs and shocks, 18-inch alloy wheels with all-terrain tires, skid plates and unique front and rear fascias.
LTZ-trimmed Tahoes include the LT Luxury package content with the captain’s chairs as standard equipment and add 20-inch wheels, an upgraded air suspension, perforated leather-trimmed seating with more adjustments, heated and ventilated front seats, power flip-and-fold second-row seats, a hard-drive-based navigation system and a 10-speaker Bose surround-sound audio system with digital-music storage. The second-row split bench seat is still optional. LTZ options include power-retractable assist steps and a blind-spot warning system.
Optional on the LT and LTZ is the Sun, Entertainment and Destinations package, which includes a sunroof and a rear-seat entertainment system. On the LT, it also includes the navigation system.
A Trailering package and a variety of 20- and 22-inch wheels are also optional on the Tahoe.
Tahoe Powertrains and Performance of the Chevrolet Tahoe
All 2013 Chevrolet Tahoes come with a 5.3-liter V8 generating 320 horsepower and 335 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic transmission transmits power through the rear wheels on 2WD models or all four wheels on 4WD models. The 4WD Tahoe is offered with a choice of either a traditional two-speed transfer case or a single-speed unit without low-range gearing (not available on LTZ).
Chevy Tahoe Safety
Standard safety equipment on the 2013 Chevy Tahoe includes antilock disc brakes, traction and stability control, front-seat side airbags, side curtain airbags and OnStar emergency telematics. Rear parking sensors and a rearview camera are available on every Tahoe, while the Tahoe LTZ can be had with a blind-spot warning system.
In government crash safety tests, the Tahoe earned an overall rating of four stars (out of five), with five stars for overall frontal-impact crash protection and five stars for overall side-impact crash protection. Its three-star rollover rating contributed to its lower overall score. In Edmunds brake testing, a Tahoe came to a stop from 60 mph in 134 feet, an average distance for a vehicle in this class.
Chevrolet Tahoe Interior Design and Special Features of the 2013 Chevy Tahoe.
The Tahoe’s cabin features an attractive design supported with high-quality fit and finish, including wood trim on the LTZ model. The control layout is straightforward and the switchgear operation is intuitive. Large front seats provide comfort and support for long drives, though the lack of a telescoping steering wheel might be a drawback for some drivers.
One of the Tahoe’s advantages over its competition is the ability to accommodate nine occupants with the LS’s available front split bench seat. However, the Tahoe lacks a convenient flat-folding third-row seat. With the third seat in place, there’s barely 17 cubic feet of cargo space behind the seat. If maximum passenger space isn’t a priority, the Tahoe can be had with bucket seats in the middle row.
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