Sorry about the steal, New Orleans- it just sounds right for Tahoe. In a still desired full-size SUV market, Tahoe has a good case to make as the short-term Heavyweight champion. Brands may be trending toward efficiency, promoting small as good, but Tahoe stays relevant by combining what is convenient about size with a practicality that masks traditional weaknesses.
Take the 2012 Tahoe for a spin, keys are in it.
Chevrolet Tahoe Trims and Features
Chevy offers Tahoe in base LS, LT, and LTZ trims, as well as a single Tahoe Hybrid model. LS Tahoe (from $38,450) comes with a 9 seat arrangement option, 17” alloy wheels, tri-zone manual climate control, cloth seats, Bluetooth, XM radio, and OnStar services. Chevy also offers upgrades to LS Tahoe such as bigger wheels, heated front seats, and a convenience package featuring remote start, rearview camera, and parking sensors.
LT Tahoe ($43,600) adds leather seats with front heating standard, remote start, foglamps, automatic climate control, and a Bose sound system.
LTZ Tahoe ($52,665) gets 20” wheels, heated 1st & 2nd row seats with and front row cooling, heated steering wheel, power liftgate, upgraded Bose sound, touchscreen navigation, and blind spot warning system.
Tahoe Hybrid ($51,665) is equipped similarly to LTZ inside minus the blind spot warning; LT, LTZ, and Tahoe Hybrid also come with a sunroof option.
Chevrolet Tahoe Performance
Each Tahoe is equipped with a 5.3L V8 with 320 HP and 335 lb.-ft. of torque. Transmission is a 6-speed auto driven with either 2 or 4-wheel drive.
Tahoe Hybrid utilizes a 6.0 liter gas/electric engine capable of 332 HP and 367 lb.-ft. of torque along with a specialized transmission.
Add the trailer package (with 2-speed active transfer case) and Tahoe will tow up to 8,500 lbs.
Chevrolet Fuel Economy
15/21/17 (city/highway/combined) MPG is the consequence for full-size SUV driving, with either 2 or 4-wheel drive. Tahoe does have Active Fuel Management, though further fuel-saving efforts are better left to the Tahoe Hybrid, claiming 20/23/21 MPG.
Chevrolet Tahoe Interior Highlights
People tend to like Tahoe’s simple controls, handsome trimmings and respectable upgrade options. You’ll be able to seat 9 with the optional front 40/20/40 split bench seat for LS trims; otherwise it’s 7 or 8 passengers, dependent on the 2nd row 60/40 split bench or bucket seat option for LT and LTZ Tahoe. Negatives seem to rest on the omission of a telescoping wheel and the cumbersome 3rd row configuring. Tahoe’s 108.9 cubic feet of cargo space is on par with Ford Expedition, however, the caveat remains the 3rd seat: gaining every inch requires the actual removal of the 3rd row seat; there is no button or slide option like Expedition. 2nd row legroom is adequate at 39”, while the 3rd row drops to 25.6”.
Chevrolet Tahoe Safety
2012 Tahoe standard features include 4 wheel anti-lock disc brakes, stability/traction control, and 6 airbags, including 3 row side curtain bags. OnStar services come free for the first 6 months, while parking assist and a rearview camera (with camera display in rearview mirror) are available on all trims. LTZ Tahoe also comes with a blind spot warning system standard. Tahoe receives 4/5 stars overall for governmental crash testing; it gets there by way of 5/5 scores for both frontal and side collisions, while rollover accidents get a 3/5.
Is Tahoe’s Size Necessary?
It’s an important question. Some truly need the room and towing capacity of a burly V8, others are simply accustomed to the SUV lifestyle. It should be pointed out that if you don’t need all the room of a Tahoe, many crossovers like Chevy Traverse, GMC Acadia, or Ford Explorer offer more mid-sized luxury with better efficiency. But if you’re here, you’re here for a reason, so on we go.
2012 Tahoe: Winner, winner?
Yes. In a Chevy world filled with Volts and Leafs, Tahoe still stands at the top of the full-size SUV market. If you can’t be persuaded to jump in a smaller crossover, Tahoe’s tune will serve well. Check one out on CarWoo! now.
And play it again, Chevy.