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2018 Chevrolet Tahoe vs. 2018 Chevrolet Suburban: What's the Difference?

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ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Chris O'Neill August 2018

Chevrolet's two full-size SUVs are the Tahoe and Suburban. While the Tahoe is large, the Suburban is what you'd call extra large. You might've noticed by now though that the two vehicles look quite similar. That's because they are -- the Suburban is nothing more than a lengthened version of the Tahoe. Still, the Suburban's added mass has a slight influence on certain attributes that you may not have considered. Below, we'll take a look at the two vehicles and highlight all of the differences.

Price

The 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe starts at $49,195 while the 2018 Chevrolet Suburban starts at $51,895; a $2,700 premium. That price premium stays consistent as you go through the trim levels and add different options and packages.

Exterior

The only real difference between the Suburban and Tahoe is their length -- the Tahoe is 204 inches long, while the Suburban is 224 inches long. The Tahoe's wheelbase is 116 inches, while the Suburban's is 130. From this, we can tell that the Suburban is fourteen inches longer than the Tahoe ahead of the rear wheel, and six inches longer behind the rear wheel; the Suburban's length is added just ahead of and behind its rear axle. Both vehicles are 81 inches wide and 74 inches tall.

The 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe and Suburban wear identical exterior styling, save for the Suburban being longer. Both have a streamlined look with low profile headlights bracketing a black and chrome grille. Both offer body-colored D-pillars and traditional red taillights, as opposed to the black D-pillars and partially clear taillights offered on the similar GMC Yukon.

Interior

The Tahoe and Suburban have identical interior designs. Entry-level models offer fabric seats, while higher-end models come with leather. Both offer three rows of seats with room for up to eight with a second-row bench, or seven with second-row captain's chairs available on higher-end models.

The Suburban offers exactly 0.7 inches of additional second row legroom; with 39.7 inches to the Tahoe's 39.0 inches. Other than that, the differences between these two vehicles is solely limited to the area behind the second row of seats.

In its third row, the Tahoe offers 24.8 inches of legroom, while the Suburban offer 34.5 inches.

The Tahoe offers 15 cu ft. of storage behind the third row, 52 cu ft. with the third row folded and 95 cu ft. with both the second and third rows folded. The Suburban adds to this rather significantly, with an ample 39 cu ft. behind the third row, 77 cu ft. with the third row folded, and 122 cu ft. with both the second and third rows folded.

Mechanicals

The Tahoe and Suburban are both offered with either rear- or all-wheel drive and a standard 5.3-liter V8 making 355 horsepower and 383 lb-ft of torque. Optional on the Tahoe for 2018 is a more potent 6.2-liter V8 making 420 hp and 460 lb-ft of torque. The Suburban will be available with this powertrain starting in 2019.

All 2018 Tahoes equipped with the newly optional 6.2-liter V8 engine are also available with a new performance-themed RST 6.2-liter Performance Edition Package. The package includes the RST appearance package and adds to that a 3.23 rear axle ratio, an integrated trailer brake controller, a high capacity air cleaner and a 170-amp alternator.

When the Suburban gains this optional powertrain for the 2019 model year, it will also be available with the RST 6.2-liter Performance Edition Package, further aligning it with the Tahoe.

The 5.3-liter V8 is mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission, while the 6.2-liter comes with a 10-speed.

The Tahoe and Suburban earn very similar fuel economy. In the Tahoe, the 5.3-liter V8 earns 16 miles per gallon city, 23 mpg highway and 19 mpg combined with rear-wheel drive and 16 mpg city, 22 mpg highway and 18 mpg combined when equipped with all-wheel drive. Each of these figures decreases by one mpg when working with the 6.2-liter V8.

Relative to the Tahoe, the 2018 Suburban takes a one mpg penalty in all categories thanks to its added mass.

The 5.3-liter gets both SUVs from 0-to-60 in about 7.2 seconds. When equipped with the more powerful 6.2-liter, the Tahoe hustles from 0-to-60 in 5.8 seconds; quite fast for a 5,600lb behemoth of an SUV.

Both the Tahoe and Suburban are available with GM's great Magnetic Ride Suspension.

In basic guise, both the Tahoe and Suburban are able to tow up to 6,400 lbs with AWD or 6,600 lbs with RWD, but opt for the trailering package and these figures both jump by 2,000 lbs to 8,400 and 8,600 lbs, respectively.

Features and Technology

The Tahoe and Suburban can be optioned with both heated and ventilated front seats, heated rear seats, a sunroof, a 10-speaker Bose sound system with active noise canceling technology, power retractable running boards, a power liftgate and power-folding second and third row seats, among other things.

The Tahoe and Suburban both come standard with an 8-inch infotainment screen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay along with 4G LTE supporting mobile Wi-Fi. Chevrolet's MyLink infotainment system is easy to use and highly regarded.

Safety

As large SUVs are seldom crash-tested by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, neither the Tahoe nor the Suburban have undergone crash testing by the third party institution, although both vehicles receive only three out of five stars with regard to rollover risk in testing conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

A comprehensive suite of driver assistance features is offered on both the Suburban and Tahoe, with available adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warning with lane-keeping assist, automatic high beams, forward-collision warning, front automated emergency braking, blind spot monitoring, front parking sensors, rear parking sensors and rear cross-traffic monitoring.

Conclusions

There isn't a whole lot that differs between the Tahoe and Suburban; really, it all comes down to the Suburban's added length with regard to third row passenger room and cargo space. For 2018, the potent 6.2-liter V8 engine and performance-oriented RST packages are only available for the Tahoe. When this is added to the Suburban for 2019, there will be even less setting these two vehicles apart. Deciding between the two really comes down to whether or not you need that extra space. If you do, you can't go wrong with the Suburban, but if you don't, the Tahoe will suffice.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2018 Chevrolet Tahoe vs. 2018 Chevrolet Suburban: What's the Difference? - Autotrader