The large Tahoe Chevrolet SUV is certainly the most popular of its niche in North America and if one combines sales with those of his twin, the GMC Yukon, there is no competition that can approach him.

This 2019 Chevrolet Tahoe is here without real changes except for the addition of a more powerful version, the Tahoe RST (Rally Sport Truck). Unfortunately, Chevrolet causes a bit of confusion with the nomenclature of its models because there is, in the Tahoe catalog, a version RST Edition that includes elements of design and finish of the sportier RST but remains with the standard engine of this SUV , the only one that was offered to him in recent years.

This engine is the venerable 5.3-liter V8 well known for its reliability and very acceptable performance combined with the six-speed automatic transmission and four-wheel drive on command (which includes the traction function). automatic integral). This engine develops 335 horsepower which is enough for many caravans, since this translates to a towing capacity of 8600 pounds.

In the past few months, Chevrolet has now offered potential Tahoe buyers the opportunity to switch to another small block V8 in its 6.2-liter, 420-horsepower inventory, but in its case, it comes with a Ten-speed gearbox similar to that of the Silverado pickups (the same one that was developed jointly with Ford). The rest of the mechanical training resembles that of the other Tahoes with the choice of custom-made traction.

In addition to this engine, the engineers reworked several other technical elements of the Tahoe RST so that its handling, braking and behavior in general match more the image of the vehicle and the expectations of its buyers. Therefore, the RST version of “performance” is equipped with a revised suspension, Brembo brakes much more powerful and even a double-ended Borla exhaust that emits a slightly more “sporty” sound (read “noisy”) but whose tone does not go beyond the limits. Unfortunately, the towing capacity of this RST is no greater than that of the RST Edition, which proves that Chevrolet was more for performance enthusiasts than trailer or trailer.

The Tahoe Premier Edition RST that was used for this report was a relatively luxurious vehicle whose first quality is to be very quiet. It is hardly if you hear the sound of the engine cruising speed while the V8 makes its presence felt during sudden acceleration or demanding overtaking but again, within the limit of very respectable. As described in the past, it’s a big van that’s easy to drive. Obviously, it is more comfortable on the highway where its consumption remains very reasonable (around 12 liters / 100 km) and its smooth ride very obvious. In other words, this is an ideal vehicle for long journeys.
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However, in an urban situation, it is a different story. Its size makes it difficult to park (especially since it does not have the same cameras at the front of the vehicle, an accessory that we have appreciated on its main competitor, the new Ford Expedition). Obviously, its consumption becomes a little more important but not exaggerated, again. Driving this great SUV is almost child’s play because everything is there. In addition, its large ice sheets provide outstanding visibility. The steering, while flexible, is relatively accurate and the braking adequate. The acceleration is satisfactory with a time of about seven seconds to go from neutral to 100 km / h and reassuring recoveries.

However, when one slips behind the wheel of the RST performance, one gets faster acceleration and faster recoveries. Despite the nature of the Borla exhausts, the audible sound of the V8 is not so pervasive in the cabin except when the throttle is on the floor. The stiffer suspension allows the driver some feats little possible with the RST Edition version especially that the manufacturer equips the RST with “performance” of Bridgestone Dueler H / L tires better suited to the character of the vehicle. These same tires also come in Brembo braking aid already more powerful.
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A short test on a small slalom circuit allowed us to see the capabilities of this RST. By cons, given its imposing size, it will be understood that this great Tahoe has its limits. We would have liked the rear suspension to be independent like the Ford Expedition which would not only have contributed to a better handling but would have also freed some legroom for the passengers in the last row (by the way, the more modest versions of this same Tahoe do not have this bench seat in basic equipment).

The interior that has been discussed here remains pretty much the same with comfortable front and center bucket seats and a three-seat bench seat at the rear. You will understand that when the backs of these seats are folded, we get a cavernous loading space characteristic of this type of large SUV. Note that the GM designers have included a small storage with lid at the back (what my son calls the gun chest, the favorite accessory of the locals from which this truck comes).

The base price of a Tahoe Premier four-wheel drive is $73,625; adding the $100 of the excise tax for the air conditioner, $495 for the special Tungsten metallic paint, $3,595 for the entertainment accessories, $2995 for the RST Edition decoration, and $ 995 for the center. Information to the driver, $1,795 transportation and preparation costs, but that we take $795 off MyLink radio, we get a final price of $82,805… plus taxes.

It is possible to get a Tahoe with recumbent back for more interior space but it then becomes a Suburban. In addition, almost all of the Tahoe remarks discussed here can be applied to its almost twin, the Yukon GMC (and Yukon XL Extended version). Also be aware that there is a police version of this Tahoe, very popular vehicle with the services of the order whose behavior is similar to that of the RST performance. As mentioned several times in this text, the most important competitor of Tahoe remains the Ford Expedition but one can also include the Toyota Sequoia and the Nissan Armada.