The Thousand Series Flagship
Suburban: Six Door Super Spaceship.
Suburban is the longest running SUV for a reason. It’s the best. But this year’s Suburban is the most radical re-design ever. We’ve greatly improved both cargo and people hauling capability with the new semi-perimeter frame. Like the all new Tahoe, the new Suburban has an eight inch lower foot well for second and third row passengers. The lower foot well, combined with a two inch longer (132") wheelbase and front row seats moved 6” forward have allowed us to move the third row bench seat about 18” forward. It’s come out from between the wheel houses, so it’s a full 60” wide bench seat this year. Three men can fit in the back row comfortably because hip room is up by 11.” That’s Suburban. Unlike other SUVs, it’s got a third row seat built for men! It’s just as wide as the optional second row bench. No other SUV does that.
Suburban Spaceship features new ‘escape hatch’.
When we first offered the Suburban, it only had two doors – like our pickups. The front row passenger seat folded forward to allow passengers from the second and third row bench seats to exit. In 1967 we added one back door. You could order a full width, second row bench seat, or two narrower bench seats. The middle one was offset to the left to leave some space by the lone rear side door for the passengers to exit. At that time it had over 180 cubic feet of stowage space behind the front bench seat when the middle and back row seats were removed.
In 1973 we raised the floor and made the middle row bench fold forward to provide 144 cubic feet of cargo space. We lost nearly 40 cubic feet but you didn’t need to remove the middle seat bolts with hand tools to get the extra space. The middle seat was divided into 2/3 and 1/3, either of which folded forward to allow the exit of third row passengers.
But this year, with the new full sized back bench just aching to be used, we decided on a third row exit strategy once and for all. The back doorframes of the Suburban arc at the same angle as the ‘coupe’ doors on Silverado pickups, so we simply used the Silverado Club Coupe rear Ĺ doors, modified with different door-skins, to expand the back side opening to allow the rear-most passengers to exit. For the first time, back passengers have a clear exit strategy. With no ‘aisle’ and no folding of seats to fool with, nine people can jump into a Suburban in the time it takes five to get into all those lesser SUVs.
That’s why Suburban is the ultimate SUV: The Super Utility Wagon.
Suburban gains substantially as a ‘cross over’ with more utilitarian, van-like properties.
Last year’s Suburban had 137 cubic feet of cargo capacity with the third row seat removed. But this year we’ve lowered the load floor. Optional middle row bucket seats can be folded into the deep foot wells so that this year’s Suburban offers 180 cubic feet of maximum cargo volume. With the optional middle bench seat and ‘triple bucket’ front seat, you get six passengers and 120 cubic feet of stowage in the six foot long, rear load floor. Even with nine passengers you still have 60 cubic feet of stowage.
The larger rear side opening of the six door design also allows you to carry objects so bulky that they can’t fit into the rear loading area. Suburban offers 60 cubic feet second row cargo volume when equipped with middle bucket seats, which fold into the deep foot wells to form a low, flat load area. You could put all of your outdoor equipment in the middle of a Suburban, and without the rear bench seat you still have a rear load area long enough for two to sleep. That’s Suburban: you couldn’t do that with any other SUV
We kept all the Space inside our Spaceship. It’s got more room and passenger space than ever, but we couldn’t just make it better inside, we had to make it easier handling and smaller outside. That’s why it’s one inch narrower and 10” shorter. We took most of the length from front overhang so the hood is both shorter and steeper making it easier to see directly in front of the vehicle.
Semi Perimeter Frame: Simply Safer.
The perimeter frame is just that: it follows the perimeter of the body. In side impacts, the Suburban’s frame is out on the sides of the body, meeting the bumpers of errant T-boners, and absorbing much of the force that would have otherwise been transferred to the body and passengers.
Smaller, more efficient standard engine.
Suburban uses the same standard “260” V8 as all of the other Thousand series CK trucks. Livery drivers will find substantial fuel thrift – especially under light load. There’s always enough torque multiplication to move the load with the standard six speed transmission. New 5:1 ‘granny’ first gear gives 2wd Suburban unprecedented pulling power. 1.66:1 single speed transfer case gives ‘crawler’ ratio in lower gears without need to shift to a different range at higher speeds. Optional selectable 'full time' transfer case features direct drive and integral differential that allows use on dry pavement at high speeds.
Suburban is all grown up now. Substantial changes in engine and payload choices make the Suburban the most customizable vehicle we make.
Every Thousand series engine, including the Duramax diesel V8 and high performance “400” Cadillac gas V8, is available in combination with any payload rating in the CK Thousand series. That means for the first time in Suburban history, you can get a “One Ton” load rating, with our 6000lb payload chassis.* It’s a first for Suburban and makes it more useful than ever. To top it off, we gave the ‘1/2 ton’ Suburban the same rear leaf springs used on the Silverado pickup. Standard‘heavy half ton’ payload of 2000lbs is 600lbs greater than last year.
*N/A with dual rear wheels.