The Chevrolet Suburban full-size SUV is said to be one of the vehicles that helped to create the Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) segment. Having been introduced in 1934 for the 1935 model year, the Suburban is GM’s and the world’s longest-running vehicle nameplate. Amazingly, the production of the Suburban has not ceased in the last eight decades; even during the Second World War, it was produced as a military transport vehicle that took on many roles. Today, the Suburban is in its eleventh generation, and remains one of GM’s highest-selling vehicles. It is the preferred means of transportation for many government agencies in the USA, and it stands as one of the most featured vehicles in Hollywood films and TV shows.
The Chevy Suburban was first introduced when the USA and many other countries around the world were trying to come to terms with the Great Depression. Few people had the money to buy vehicles. Chevrolet saw the need for an affordable yet capable vehicle that could do it all, i.e. serve as both a passenger and cargo carrier. So, in 1934, it stamped a station wagon body onto the frame of a cheap pickup truck and unofficially called it the “Carryall Suburban” or “Suburban Carryall”. The Carryall Suburban had three rows of seats so it could carry up to 9 passengers. The 2nd- and 3rd-row seats were initially removable; when these seats were removed, the vehicle would double up as a cargo van. GM later shortened the vehicle’s name to just “Suburban”. Alongside the Chevy Suburban, GM also produced a mechanically identical vehicle under its GMC brand from 1937. It was also called the Suburban until the year 2000, when its name was changed to the “Yukon XL”. From 1957, four-wheel-drive models of the Suburban were also made available.
With the success of the Chevy Suburban Carryall, several other car brands like DeSoto, Plymouth, Dodge, Studebaker, and Nash also started producing large station-wagon-like vehicles that were built upon pickup truck frames in the late 1930s and 1940s, and these automakers also used the “Suburban” name for those vehicles. In addition, there were also several other competing SUVs that came up over the coming decades like the International Harvester Travelall, the Ford Excursion, and the Jeep Wagoneer; the Chevy and GMC Suburbans outlasted all of them. In 1988, GM was finally awarded an exclusive trademark on the “Suburban” name.
In most of its generations, the Chevy Suburban was produced with more than one chassis option, e.g. the seventh generation Suburban (1973–1991) was produced with ½-ton and ¾-ton chassis options. The ½-ton chassis models were dubbed the “1500” models, while the ¾-ton chassis models were dubbed the “2500” models. Today’s Chevy Suburban 1500 models can handle payloads of even up to 1,700 pounds (passengers plus cargo), so the “½-ton” classification is just a placeholder. Depending on its generation and model, the Suburban 1500 is driven by either an I-6 or V8 engine, and it may tow up to 8,000 pounds.
The Chevy Suburban is a highly customizable SUV. It can look great with upgrades like custom grilles, aluminum-alloy wheels, roof rails, seat covers, tubular side steps, custom suspension lift kits, and much more. You also won’t go wrong with power/capability upgrades. You can get all the above parts and accessories right here at GrokAuto.com. We at GrokAuto believe in demanding the new! New tech, new products, and new experiences. Whatever your next passion project is for your Suburban SUV, we can help you make it a reality.