Towing ability; tough body-on-frame construction; traditional SUV looks; smooth ride
Bluetooth hands-free connectivity is newly available in the Envoy for 2009, and three new exterior colors are offered: Sand Beige Metallic, Quicksilver Metallic and Silver-Green Metallic.
Unlike the newer, passenger-oriented GMC Acadia, the Envoy follows an older, truck-based design that may be a better choice for those who plan to tow frequently yet don't need all the extra space of a full-size SUV. Those who appreciate the Envoy had better act soon, though; it's going to be discontinued after this model year.
The Envoy is GMC's mid-size truck-based sport-utility vehicle, powered by V6 or V8 engines. Standard on Envoy SLE and SLT models is a 285-horsepower, 4.2-liter in-line 6-cylinder engine, while Envoy Denali models get a 300-horsepower, 5.3-liter V8. Both engines are mated to a smooth-shifting 4-speed automatic transmission, and any of the models can be had with rear- or 4-wheel drive.
The Denali's 5.3-liter Vortec V8 actually has fuel economy figures that are similar to those of the 6-cylinder, because of GM's Active Fuel Management technology, which effectively shuts off half of the V8's cylinders during coasting or cruising, smoothly returning to all eight cylinders whenever more power is needed. Both the 6-cylinder and the V8 carry EPA fuel economy ratings of 14 mpg city, 20 highway with rear-wheel drive.
With body-on-frame construction, with a perimeter-type frame, a solid-axle rear suspension and stabilizer bars front and back, the Envoy is set up to be ready for heavy towing (up to 6,600 pounds) or hauling while also delivering a reasonably comfortable ride. The air-adjustable, load-leveling air suspension system that's standard on the Denali and optional on the other Envoy models may be a good option to check for those who frequently tow.
Inside, the Envoy has two rows of seating, with bucket seats in front and a split-folding bench seat in back, to seat up to five. Behind the back seats there's quite a bit of cargo space--nearly 44 cubic feet, expandable to more than 80 cubic feet with the bench down.
SLE trims of the Envoy both come well equipped, with air conditioning, cruise control, an overhead console, keyless entry and a universal garage-door opener among the many standard features. SLT models add automatic climate control, Bluetooth hands-free calling, leather upholstery with power heated seats in front and steering-wheel controls. Across the model line, GM's Stabilitrak (electronic stability control) is on the standard-features list, along with head-curtain side airbags that cover front and rear outboard occupants.
At the top of the range is the flagship Envoy Denali model, which turns this GMC truck into a full-fledged luxury vehicle with an appearance that borrows cues from the larger GMC Yukon Denali. It includes a high-end Bose premium sound system, rear audio controls with headphone jacks, power-adjustable pedals, and other extras, along with added sound insulation for a quieter interior. The Denali also gets its own, dressed-up look, thanks to special front and rear fascias, a bright honey-comb grille, polished-aluminum wheels and body-color side mirrors with built-in turn signals; inside there's a unique steering-wheel design and Denali-specific trim.
Vehicle Price: 31,370.00
*Estimated payments are for informational purposes only and don't account for acquisition fees, destination charges, tax, title, and other fees and incentives or represent a financing offer or guarantee of credit from the seller.
Equipment that may affect values (standard equipment is pre-selected):
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