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Author Topic: What A Difference a Decade Makes  (Read 1909 times)
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« on: 04/17/16 10:09 pm »

Back in 2001 I was one of the first kids, kind of, on the block with an Avalanche. I now own one that was built a decade later and I'm really left in awe in all of the changes from the original GMT800. Styling changes aside, in 2001-02 the "top of the line" 1500 series Avalanche was the Z-71. The Northface Edition got some more items that the Z-71 didn't get, however you couldn't get heated, full power, or memory seats the TNF versions because of the seats GM selected for the option package.  banghead banghead

A loaded out early production 2002 Avalanche, bought in 2001, would top out close to $39K sticker. That would be every option checked off on a Z-71, along with the dealer installed running boards, roof racks, and mudflaps, along with the up level all weather floor mats and one of the upcharged paint options.

A loaded out 4WD LTZ in 2011 could go to about $55K if you checked all the boxes. That is a big difference. But as I've had my Avalanche I've observed the major differences a decade made. That includes (optional or standard):

Things you couldn't get on a 2002 Avalanche no matter how much you wanted them from the factory:

* 35 extra HP
* AFM (which isn't always a good thing, GM has some issues with collapsing lifter I know well)
* 2 extra cogs in the automatic transmission
* A "quasi-full-time" 4WD mode between 2-Hi and 4-Hi
* An extra .2" of ground clearance
* Rack & pinion steering (the GMT800 was recirculating ball)
* Air suspension (available on the 2WD Z-66 package)
* Integrated trailer brake controller
* 20" wheels
* 22" wheels
* chrome wheels

Then you have safety equipment

* Rear parking assist (forget a backup camera, the original GMT800 Avalanche didn't even have a rear parking sensor option!)
* Backup camera
* full side curtain airbags
* LATCH (although I believe they were government mandated)
* Headlights that actually provide -- light
* Integrated turn signals in wing mirrors
* A parking brake that doesn't become useless after using it 5 to 10 times (this was a HUGE problem on the GMT800)

Then you have creature comforts

* DVD navigation with XM traffic
* Bluetooth
* USB connectivity
* RCA stereo inputs if you have rear entertainment
* 1/8" stereo input jack to listen to your stuff
* An upgraded stereo system beyond the basic CD player system
* Rear seat DVD entertainment system
* Rear seat audio controls
* Ventilated front seat
* Interior leather that actually at least resembles -- leather and isn't crack to heck after 5 years
* Power folding mirrors
* Optional power running boards
* Sirius-XM radio
* Steering wheel audio controls
* Steering wheel mounted cruise controls
* Remote locking tailgate
* Dual zone climate control
* Remote start
* Ass, back, or both heated seats (original GMT800 had heated seats but just ass and back, and I want to say hot or kind of hot as your choices)

I know I'm leaving a ton of stuff off, and on the other hand, other things got cut along the way like

* Carpets on floor are lower quality
* Fold down armrests on front seats - inboard - bummer
* Dual lights in the bed
* Lights that shine into the side storage boxes
* Removable tailgate
* Dual sun visors with pullout extensions
* Tinted strip across front windshield so sun on upper edge of all that glass doesn't burn your eye holes out
* It appears to be that dimming and heated driver side wing mirror is no longer there (I didn't notice a heated mirror emblem on the wing mirror - but gladly corrected)
* The DIC message center took a step backwards from the GMT800
* Cabin air filter (WHAT?!?!?)

It is just amazing to me how far the Avalanche came -- and it is sad to think that it ended in the 2013 model year with a bit of a whimper. I was thinking today that something around the new Colorado size that was Avalanche in design would have a lot of potential, or it seems it would.

The strength of the Avalanche remains the versatility of the Midgate. It is basically a 5 passenger Suburban, with a throw up, very water resistant cargo area that can store the golf clubs for a foursome, the caddy, and their golf cart if so inclined. Want to enjoy the sun? Roll the windows down and take the back window out. Need to drive through a blizzard to work? Ya, that's handled. Need to hall 1,000 pounds of gravel to your home? Check. Need to have something the wife is happy in with her Recliner grade heated seat and own climate controls and a quiet cabin? Check. Need to "keep up with the Jones'" while still having your pickup truck. Ya, you got that too.

It's like being single, meeting an old girlfriend from a decade ago that curled your toes, and discovering she is even sexier than before. Ya - I'm a smitten. GM had a home run here. I get it, times change, and the buyers made it clear there was no home for the Avalanche in GMT9xx.

Bummer.
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2011 LTZ 4WD, White Diamond Tricoat, Black Leather - purchased 4/6/2015

2002 Z71, Indigo Blue, Graphite Leather

2009 Pontiac G8 GT, White Hot, Onyx Leather, Holden Commodore conversion

2005 Saturn Relay FWD3 Bronze Mist, Tan Leather, weather beater

2005 Pontiac Grand Prix GT2 Silver, Gray Leather

1985 Isuzu Impulse Silver, Blue Cloth, fully restored survivor
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« Reply #1 on: 04/17/16 10:44 pm »

I feel your pain my 2003 2500 with every thing except leather and sunroof sticker at 42, and change. I can't image getting a replacement for under 64, k.

BTW I was at my 45 high school reunion, all those hotties did not age well I'm just a lot grayer.
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« Reply #2 on: 04/27/16 03:53 am »

They're amazing vehicles. I felt (and still feel) like I'm driving a brand new modern truck every time I get into my 2011 Av. It's definitely my perfect ride.
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2011  LTZ (K&N filter, Red LED interiors and puddles, Eagle Alloy rims, Klein train horn, Setina push bumper with integrated LEDs, license-plate LEDs with flash capability, Husky under-seat storage with Mag-light mod, custom removable mid-deck)

It was inherited from my beloved father. This was formerly his account. I have taken it over to honor his memory. May he not cringe in the heavens from my lack of car knowledge.
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« Reply #3 on: 11/01/16 08:38 am »

It's not just a decade. We have a 2004 Z71 and now we're loving our 2009 LTZ.

The 6.0L with the 6L80 is so far pretty fun. The cooling seats are great too. All the creature comforts are great to have, as this one, as yet to be named, is a pavement princess that occasionally will get dirty.
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1st Avvy: 2004 Z71, "Charlie", bone stock save for the 20" wheels.
2nd Avvy: 2009 LTZ w/6.0L and 6L80, "Sixer", in Imperial Blue Metallic
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« Reply #4 on: 03/06/17 07:23 pm »

i agree...made a 5 yr upgrade to (from my 2004 to my "new to me" 2009) and wow!

I recently installed the Android Navigation headunit and totally updated the truck!
(Google Live Maps Navigation, DVD, USB, Bluetooth calling and music streaming, Facebook, Pandora, Instagram, Gmail, SoundCloud....wow!
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« Reply #5 on: 08/11/17 10:13 pm »

BTW I was at my 45 high school reunion, all those hotties did not age well I'm just a lot grayer.
Big laughter with tears

We were thinking the same at the 25th reunion of my beautiful young bride. (Mine was on the same night so we chose hers.)
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« Reply #6 on: 08/11/17 10:51 pm »

Well I can't say you can't put lipstick on a pig, because it's still a pig.

But money can make them real pretty,
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2003 2500
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