Jeffrey Johnson is a legal writer with a focus on personal injury. He has worked on personal injury and sovereign immunity litigation in addition to experience in family, estate, and criminal law. He earned a J.D. from the University of Baltimore and has worked in legal offices and non-profits in Maryland, Texas, and North Carolina. He has also earned an MFA in screenwriting from Chapman Univer...

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Laura Walker graduated college with a BS in Criminal Justice with a minor in Political Science. She married her husband and began working in the family insurance business in 2005. She became a licensed agent and wrote P&C business focusing on personal lines insurance. Laura serviced existing business and wrote new business. She now uses her insurance background to help educate drivers about...

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Reviewed by Laura Walker
Licensed Agent for 10 Years

UPDATED: Jul 8, 2019

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For the 2011 model year, U.S. News and World Report analyzed critical reviews for eight large affordable SUVs, and it ranked the Chevrolet Suburban second out of these eight.

The 2011 Suburban tied with the Toyota Sequoia for the #2 spot, and the Chevrolet Tahoe beat out both the Sequoia and the Suburban for the #1 honor. The GMC Yukon took the fourth place spot in the U.S. News rankings, and the Ford Expedition came in at #5.

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The Suburban can carry eight passengers, and when properly configured, it has 137.4 cubic feet of cargo capacity. This requires that the driver remove the unwieldy backseat and fold down the middle seat, though, so if you want to take advantage of this cargo space, you’ll have to leave some passengers behind.

Even with the third-row seats in, the Suburban’s cargo space still exceeds 45.0 cubic feet.

The Chevrolet Suburban is no lightweight when it comes to towing capacity, either.

A 2011 Suburban with the base 1500 trim can tow a boat or horse trailer weighing up to 8,100 pounds if it is equipped with 2-wheel drive, and 8,000 pounds if it has 4-wheel drive. A 4-wheel drive Chevrolet Suburban with the 2500 trim can tow 9,400 pounds, or 9,600 with 2-wheel drive.

The Suburban 2500 comes with a standard trailering package that includes oil and transmission cooling, as well as integrated brake control. This package is optional for the Suburban 1500.

Reviewers like Edmunds and Motor Trend say that despite its truck-like size and towing capacity, the Chevrolet Suburban SUV handles better than most trucks, and has a smoother ride.

Consumer Guide says the Suburban’s gauges and controls are intuitively arranged, and Cars.com says that the cabin materials are “high-quality.”

How much is auto insurance for the Chevy Suburban?

According to estimates from the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), the 2011 Chevrolet Suburban is not the most expensive large SUV to insure, but it isn’t the least expensive either.

The NADA anticipates that a typical Suburban 1500 driver will pay $1,182 in auto insurance premiums annually. This is lower than the expected annual cost of auto insurance for the Toyota Sequoia and the GMC Yukon, which are $1,193 and $1,191, respectively.

Owners of the Ford Expedition and the top-ranked Chevy Tahoe can expect slightly lower annual auto insurance bills than Chevy Suburban owners.

The NADA estimates that the Tahoe will cost just $1,145 to insure annually, and the Expedition will cost only $1,030 per year to insure.

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Chevrolet Suburban Scheduled Maintenance

If you drive a Chevrolet Suburban, the NADA reports that you can expect to pay roughly $2,280 to maintain this SUV during its first five years in operation. This figure is identical to that for the competing 2011 Toyota Sequoia, and it is about $10 less than what Ford Expedition owners can expect to pay.

The NADA estimates that routine maintenance costs for the Chevrolet Tahoe will be just a few dollars less than those for the 2011 Suburban, at $2,275. The scheduled maintenance bill for GMC’s Yukon SUV is only expected to be about $2,222.

2011 Suburban Warranty and Reliability

The 2011 Chevrolet Suburban’s basic warranty extends for either 36 months or 36,000 miles, whichever comes first.

Its powertrain is warranted for the first of 60 months or 100,000 miles, and this warranty is transferable to new owners under certain circumstances. This warranty, which is standard for GM vehicles, is very competitive with those offered by other full size SUV makers like Toyota and Nissan.

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Along with the GMC Yukon, the 2011 Suburban earned a Predicted Reliability Score of 7.0 out of 10.0 from J.D. Power and Associates.

This is a very respectable score, but it isn’t as impressive as the scores of 8.0 earned by the Sequoia and the Tahoe. It is much better than the Ford Expedition’s score of 5.0, though.

Repair Costs for the Suburban

The 2011 Chevy Suburban has one of the lowest expected repair bills among affordable full size SUVs.

The NADA expects that the 2011 Suburban will rack up just $1,835 in repair costs over five years, compared to $1,874 for the Toyota Sequoia and $1,935 for the Tahoe and Yukon SUVs. The NADA anticipates that the Ford Expedition will incur a 5-year repair bill of just $1,774.

Chevrolet Suburban Fuel Efficiency

With EPA-estimated fuel efficiency statistics of 23 highway mpg and 20 city mpg, the Yukon and Tahoe hybrids offer the best fuel economy of any large affordable SUV.

For a gasoline-powered large SUV, the Suburban’s fuel economy numbers are very competitive, though. It gets 15 mpg in city driving and 21 mpg in highway driving.

Safety Ratings and Features for the Suburban

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety hasn’t evaluated the 2010 or 2011 Suburban models yet, and the federal government has only tested the 2010 model thus far.

The 2010 Suburban performed well in these crash tests, though, and that bodes well for the 2011 Suburban since it is very similar.

The 2010 model earned the full five available stars for protecting its occupants in front, rear, and side impact crashes. It only earned three stars for protecting occupants in rollovers, but this is an average score for a large SUV. The Toyota Sequoia is the only large SUV to earn a higher score, with a 4-star rating.

All Suburbans are equipped with traction and dynamic stability control systems, anti-lock brakes, and anti-theft systems.

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