The Chevrolet Tahoe is a full-size sport utility vehicle (SUV) built on a truck platform. First launched in 1992 as the Chevrolet Blazer, the SUV shared platforms with the Chevrolet Suburban and GMC Yukon. The first models were offered in 2-door and 4-door configurations, with a variety of engines and powertrains. The current, third-generation Chevrolet Tahoe was introduced in 2007. It offers seating for up to 9 passengers and a choice between rear- or 4-wheel drive (2WD or 4WD) powertrains. Revisions for the 2011 model year include new exterior colors, an integrated trailer brake controller with the towing package, 20-inch chrome wheels, upgraded OnStar telematics, and upgraded head restraints.
The 2011 Chevrolet Tahoe is offered in three trim levels: LS, LT, and LTZ. Tahoe LS models are configured with standard cloth upholstery, tri-zone air conditioning, full power accessories, OnStar telematics, Bluetooth phone connectivity, 8-speaker audio system, manual 50/50 folding third-row seat, steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, 17-inch alloy wheels, and more. The LT is upgraded with leather upholstery, heated outside mirrors, parking sensors, tri-zone automatic climate control, remote vehicle starting, and more. The Tahoe LTZ, reserved to the 2500 chassis, has premium accessories including rear air suspension, upgraded audio, and 20-inch polished alloy wheels. The Z71 Off-Road package fits heavy-duty springs and shocks, skid plates, unique front and rear fascias, and 18-inch alloy wheels.
The 2011 Chevrolet Tahoe is offered with a gasoline or hybrid powertrain. The standard powertrain is a gasoline-fed, 5.3-liter V-8 engine rated at 320 horsepower mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission. The optional powertrain is a hybrid gasoline-electric combination. It uses a gasoline-fed, 6.0-liter V-8 engine rated at 332 horsepower and two 60-kW electric motors. The electric motors are tied to a 300-volt nickel-metal hydride battery that supplies the power. The gearbox is a 2-mode continuous electric ratio hybrid transmission with 4 fixed gears. Chevrolet says that the hybrid powertrain allows the Tahoe to run on either electric or gasoline power. According to Chevrolet, the Tahoe 2500 is capable of towing 9,600 pounds, when properly equipped. The EPA rates the fuel economy of the 2011 Chevrolet Tahoe between 15 mpg city and 23 mpg highway, depending on chassis, engine and transmission.
The 2011 Chevrolet Tahoe LS 2WD starts at a base price of around $38,500, and the model range tops out with the Tahoe LTZ 4WD, which starts at around $52,000.