Gmt400 vs. gmt800
Hey folks, this is my first post here. I'm currently driving a ford f150, and was raised a ford man. but with 193xxx miles and near 20 years on the clock my "hillbilly hotrod" is showing her age. Not to mention it'll be difficult starting a family with a single cab truck. I haven't been very impressed with my ford built options for its replacement. What did impress was the 1996 k1500 I test drove. It got sold so i'm still on the hunt. I drove a 1999 gmc sierra recently that was amazing, but I have no experience with the gmt800, and little with the gmt400. I'm looking for a later gmt400 our an early gmt800, so what's your alls experience past a test drive.
I've put tens of thousands of miles on GMT400 trucks. I love them. Currently on my fifth. Driven several GMT800 trucks, never cared for them as well. Generally speaking, I don't like the interiors on the newer trucks as well, but being newer they have more/better creature comforts. The 5.3 is definitely a better engine than the 350, but it likes/needs to rev to perform. GM continues to go the wrong way with gears, so they feel numb until you really get on it. A 350 powered truck with 3.73s is a whole lot more pleasant to drive compared to a 5.3 with 3.42s.
The frontends on the older trucks will last much much longer than the newer ones. My 96 Tahoe has 215K. Original CVs, hub bearings, ball joints, and tie rod ends. Only the Pitman and idler arm have been replaced, and that was just recently. You'll never see a GMT800 last that long, especially the hub bearings.
In my opinion, a 99 Suburban or Tahoe/Yukon is one of the most versatile, comfortable, affordable, and safest family vehicles you can buy.
Having the Gmt-800 Silverado and owning it from Day one......It's been an Awesome Truck.....back in the day, I Almost bought a GMT-400 Truck, but a Friend of the family say to hold off, as the Chevy was Coming out with a New Redesigned Silverado, and I Glad that I waited.....my 99" Silverado has been the Best Vehicle I've every Owned!!.....the only issue's/concerns I've had with it has been the Catalytic Converter's going out and as mentioned above the front Wheel Hub Bearings......But IMO all Vehicles Cars and/or Trucks what every the brand.....Chevy.....Dodge or Ford All have Issue's/concerns,
I have the.....5.3 liter With 3.73 gears.....I Tow a Tournament Ski Boat with No Problems....its has more than Enough Power when Towing......on the interior, I have front Buckets with both full length Overhead and floor Console's.......on the GMT-800's do have a Bigger Ext Cab's than do the GMT-400 Ext. Cab's, which give more comfort for rear passengers and the overall Ride Comfort on my Truck is Very Good to say the leased....and at almost 13 yrs old and with 157K miles my Truck is Still Running Great!!.......
I do really like the bigger back seat on the newer ones, but its not a huge concern as get the drivers seat. I've got the search down to an extended cab half ton 4x4. Just stuck between a 1995-98 (preferably chevy) or a 1999-02 (preferably gmc)
my brother had a 98 chevy with the 350 in it, he loved that truck had ot for almost 10 years. ive driven a bunch of 97-05, you really cant go wrong. the 5.3 is a good solid engine, as is the 350/5.7.
just try and find something with 3.73s, itll be a little more snappy and better for towing.
I have a 1998 Suburban 2wd-5.7.
It has 217,300 miles on it-
I bought it 4.5 years ago with 195,000 miles- $2900.
It has been a very reliable vehicle.
The motor still runs smoothly and strong- gets 20-21 mph hy and 13 mpg pure city- very very good for a 5200 lb vehicle with all those years on it.
Pretty much the only shortcomings of that vintage 1/2 tons-96-99
1) Factory brakes are nothing to brag about-adequate, but barely adequate. They were definitely upgraded when they changed motors/ body style in 2000.
2) They do occasionally eat intake manifold gaskets-I currently have Fel Pros latest greatest gaskets-stainless steel and fancy silicone-no problems yet. I'm pretty sure the latest models also have this shortcoming to some extent.
On the plus side they are very comfortable- EASY TO WORK ON- PARTS EASY TO FIND- PARTS CHEAP TO BUY-easy handling-
AND THEY ARE DIRT CHEAP TO BUY-RARELY MORE THAN $3500- frequently one of that vintage will have had a trans rebuild fairly recently- maybe 175,000 miles or so-saving you $2000.