PUTC Buyer's Guide: 2002 Chevrolet Avalanche

 



Reader Ratings:

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Price:
$30,245* (1500 4x2)
$33,245* (1500 4x4)
$32,145* (2500 4x2)
$35,145* (2500 4x4)
Add $720
destination charge.
*Prices are base prices.

Engines:
Two engines are available for the Avalanche

5.3 liter Vortec® OHV V8 with sequential fuel injection.
285hp @ 5200 rpm
325ft-lbs. @ 4000 rpm

8.1 liter OHV Vortec® V6 with sequential fuel injection.
340hp @ 4200 rpm
455ft-lbs. @ 3200 rpm

Transmissions:
Two transmission choices exist for the Avalanche:

- 4L60-E Four-speed automatic (1500 version)

- 4L85-E Four-speed heavy duty automatic (2500 version)

Fuel Economy (city/hwy):
Vortec 5300
2WD: 14 / 18
4WD: 13 / 17

Vortec 8100
2WD: N/A
4WD: N/A

Competitors:
Ford F-150 SuperCrew

 

 

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Overview:
Selected as Motor Trend's Truck of the Year for 2002, the all-new Chevrolet Avalanche has had a significant impact in the truck marketplace since its introduction.

The 2002 Avalanche takes the best attributes of GM’s award-winning full-size truck family and adds a new look and a technical breakthrough using its Convert-A-Cab system, featuring the exclusive Midgate.

With Convert-A-Cab, when the rear passenger seat is folded, the Midgate can be lowered to allow longer and larger cargo into the cab. When folded down, the Midgate allows the 5'3" standard bed length to convert to a full 8'1", long enough to carry 4' x 8" sheets of plywood.

And in a cue borrowed from the 1968 Chevrolet Corvette, Avalanche’s rear window is removable and can easily be stowed on board, creating a convertible-like open-air driving experience when the Midgate is left up.

Though it looks more similar to the Silverado, the Avalanche actually shares around 90% of its content and parts with the Chevrolet Suburban full size SUV. It also inherits the Suburban's unibody construction plus a modular, three-piece frame incorporating a number of hydroformed components for precise dimensional control, superior ride and handling and reduced NVH levels.

Chevrolet brings several variations of Avalanche to market.

The Avalanche 2500 Series uses the new Vortec 8100 engine. This new Vortec powertrain has received high praise for its use in the all-new Silverado HD pickup. The 2500 also comes with eight-lug wheels.

The North Face Edition Avalanche has unique features intended to please outdoor enthusiasts.

A Z71 off-road package can be selected for excusions off the beaten path. Two-wheel drive owners can select a similar Z66 appearance package.

Exterior Design:
The aggressive exterior of the Avalanche signifies the direction that all GM trucks will be headed in the coming years.

Interior Design:
Revolutionary and an exclusive among trucks, the Midgate allows for pass-through access from the cab straight into the bed of the truck. This essentially creates a huge trunk protected by 3 removable composite panels. The Midgate can be operated by two people in 30 seconds or less.

The exclusive interior offered in The North Face edition Avalanche has green and black seats, door trim panels, floor mats with The North Face logo, and a white instrument cluster. Also included are two Summit Pod backpacks, as well as Water Duffalo storage bags, which will initially be exclusive to Avalanche.

Powertrain:
The most notable difference in the Avalanche 1500 and 2500 Series will be the power under the hood.

While the 1500 version of the Avalanche supplies ample 285 horsepower in a 5.3-liter V8, the 2500 Series uses the new Vortec 8100. The Vortec 8100 engine is mated to a a heavy duty 4L85 automatic transmission with overdrive and tow haul mode. It achieves 340 horsepower.