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2020 Chevrolet Suburban

Starting at $52,995

8.5/10 C/D RATING
2020 chevrolet suburban
8.5/10 C/D RATING

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  • Highs Good tow capacity, muscular optional V-8, cavernous interior.
  • Lows A handful to park, expensive to fuel, it's easy to balloon the sticker price.
  • Verdict A handsome, comfortable beast of burden with room for a Little League team.
By Eric Stafford and Rich Ceppos


The 2020 Suburban offers great tow capacity and a muscular optional V-8 to make it a comfortable beast of burden with room for a Little League team. It can be fitted with a package that gives it some decent off-road chops or dressed up almost like a luxury SUV—at which point it is priced like one. It's definitely not made for tight parking lots, however, nor for passing by gas stations. It might not fit in your garage, either. That's just the price you pay for a handsome, huge, do-everything SUV that can coddle you and a hoard of passengers while it works hard.

What’s New for 2020?

For 2020, the only revisions to the Suburban lineup are that the Deepwood Green metallic and Pepperdust metallic paint colors have been dropped. That's it. So, it could make sense—and save you dollars and cents—to consider grabbing a great deal on a 2019 Suburban. If you can find one, that is: although the current Suburban will be replaced by an all-new model in 2021, the current model is selling as well as ever.

Pricing and Which One to Buy

It's easy to run a Suburban's price into the luxury-truck stratosphere, so we suggest starting modestly, with the mid-level LT trim. It includes heated leather seats, a Bose nine-speaker audio system, and driver-assistance features such as forward-collision alert and low-speed forward automatic braking. We'd buttress the Suburban's bad-road, bad-weather capability with the optional all-wheel-drive system (it adds $3000 to the price of any Suburban). To enhance its hauling ability, we'd select the Max Trailering package—which ups the towing capacity to 8300 pounds and includes an air-leveling rear suspension, a trailer-brake controller, and powertrain revisions for snappier acceleration.


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Engine, Transmission, and Performance

Chevy supplies the Suburban with one of two engines: a standard 355-hp 5.3-liter V-8 and an optional 420-hp 6.2-liter V-8. Every model is available with either rear- or all-wheel drive, but the smaller engine pairs with a six-speed automatic transmission. The bigger V-8 uses a 10-speed automatic. Unsurprisingly, the upgraded powertrain is much quicker—charging from zero to 60 mph in 6.2 seconds versus 6.9. Still, the standard engine had plenty of giddyap to shuttle the family from A to B. The Suburban can also tow up to 8300 pounds when properly equipped. However, the Ford Expedition can pull up to 9300 pounds.

Despite large dimensions and an outdated rear suspension, the Suburban drives smaller than it is thanks to controlled body motions and accurate steering. However, its pickup-truck underpinnings diminish its ride quality versus smoother rivals such as the Nissan Armada. The Suburban RST we tested has standard adaptive dampers and massive 22-inch wheels, but it still had a lot of jittery vibrations, even on smooth roads. Thankfully, its firm and responsive brake pedal was particularly effective.

2020 chevrolet suburban rear

Fuel Economy and Real-World MPG

Although the Suburban's two V-8 engines utilize cylinder-deactivation technology to save fuel, this hefty SUV still guzzles gasoline. The EPA estimates the standard 5.3-liter V-8 with all-wheel drive will earn 14 mpg city and 21 mpg highway. However, we observed 19 mpg on our 200-mile highway fuel-economy route. The government rates the optional 6.2-liter V-8 with all-wheel drive at 14 mpg city and 20 mpg highway. Our test vehicle exceeded that highway estimate, earning 23 mpg on the same fuel-economy route.

Interior, Comfort, and Cargo

Inside, the Suburban boasts a vast dashboard with well-placed controls. Its large center console and soft door armrests provide comfortable places to rest on long trips. The Suburban's high seating height provides a commanding perch, and its optional front bench seat offers more passenger space. Likewise, the three-row SUV can be fitted with second-row captain's chairs. The Suburban's third row has nearly 10 inches more legroom than the Chevy Tahoe, but its high floor still disrupts comfort. While the Suburban's material quality isn't exemplary, the cabin can be dressed up with multiple color schemes. Desirable upgrades include a head-up display, heated steering wheel, and ventilated front seats. However, these are limited to the top-of-the-line model.

With an immense center-console storage bin and numerous trays throughout the cabin, the Suburban has convenient interior cubby storage. A power-operated liftgate and power-folding third row are available, but the latter is reserved for the top model. The Suburban has 39 cubic feet behind the third row (24 more than the Tahoe) and up to 95 cubes with the second and third rows folded. We managed to fit 12 carry-on bags with all seats up and 44 bags with all seats down.

Infotainment and Connectivity

Every Suburban has an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a 4G LTE mobile hotspot. Along with useful hard buttons and rotary controls, the infotainment system has a plethora of charging points that include five USB port and five 12-volt outlets. Most models also offer an upgraded Bose sound system, rear-seat entertainment system, and wireless charging.

Safety and Driver-Assistance Features

Overall Safety Rating (NHTSA)

View Crash Test Results

The 2019 Suburban earned a four-star crash-test rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), but it hasn't been fully tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). While the Suburban lacks standard driver-assistance features, notable equipment is optional. Key safety features include:

  • Available automated emergency braking
  • Available blind-spot monitoring
  • Available lane-keeping assist

Warranty and Maintenance Coverage

The Suburban has competitive warranties compared with rivals, and it's one of the few that includes complimentary scheduled maintenance. However, the Toyota Sequoia offers better complimentary maintenance at 2 years or 25,000 miles.

  • Limited warranty covers 3 years or 36,000 miles
  • Powertrain warranty covers 5 years or 60,000 miles
  • Complimentary maintenance is covered for the first visit


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