1 Feb 1998
By CHRIS HARRIS
HOLDEN’S attempts to bring a full-sized American 4WD wagon to Australia failed dismally.
Aimed mostly at rural boat and caravan towers and built on a 3340mm wheelbase, the Mexican-made Suburban was the longest Holden ever sold, and featured eight or nine seats depending on which model was purchased.
Six versions arrived. The 1500, 1500LS and 1500LT were powered by a 190kW/447Nm 5.7-litre GEN II OHV V8 mated to a four-speed automatic gearbox.
Meanwhile the Suburban 2500, 2500LS and 2500LT offered a 6.7-litre eight-cylinder turbo-diesel truck engine, delivering 145kW and a monstrous 583Nm of torque. It too used a four-speed automatic gearbox.
Being based on a truck, drive in both models was directed to the rear wheels unless the 4X4 lever was activated.
All models featured climate control air-conditioning, cruise control, power steering, power windows and a trip computer.
Priced from $65,000 to $80,000 when new, the Suburban had neither the quality nor the refinement needed to woo Australian buyers, while its vast dimensions were also a put off.
The Road to Recovery podcast series