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I'm looking for a new vehicle for my wife to replace a Olds mini van that the engine locked up on.
Is there any major issues to look out for? Any years that had problems that I should stay away from? I read some posts that talk about a G80 rear end. What is this and how do I make sure I get one (if the G80 is a good thing).
Any advice would be really appreciated.
Larry in Colorado
 

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2005 chevy trailblazer_ls
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I just bought an 05 a month ago and love it.

Likes
  • Really manuverable for an suv
  • Good size but not so big I feel like I'm driving the airport shuttle.
  • I love the I6 motor, it' sooo smooth and quite.
  • Rides very nice.

Dislikes/Questions
  • G80 Option: Is a locking differental for the rear axel. Think really good traction. not sure how critical to you.
  • Problems? Ignition switch failing seems to be something that comes up often.
  • Any years to staya way from? I don't believe there is a bad year.
  • If your going to be doing any towing you should look for one with the 3.73 gears.

There are a lot of people that know the TB inside and out on this forum. I'm sure they can give you way more detail than I can.
 

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2004 chevy trailblazer_lt
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2,082 Posts
Pros:
Perfect size not too big yet not small like the s-10s were.
I have the 3:43 gears and still thow a 3000lb camper great
Factory prewired 7 pin harness for towing.
I6 engine has ton of power while offering decent fuel milage.
Tons of info and knowledge here.
Very good priced for what you get.

Cons/awnseres
GM is not making them anymore.
Fan clutches are know to go on them.
I think when the came out some of the first years had the sunshell in the tranny explode.
I do not have the G80 rear but with 4wd I feel it goes good without it. I do not do any exteme offroad stuff. Im not saying I would not want it tough.
 

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2002 gmc envoy_slt
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Since you live in CO, look for a 4x4 model with the G80. The G80 can help getting going from a stop under slick conditions. Basically if one of the rear wheels starts to slip, it will lock both rear wheels together up until you get to around 25mph. Now that benefit comes with a minor draw back, if you abuse the G80 by nailing it under slick conditions, over time the engagement shock will takes it toll and the G80 becomes a 'Grenade 80'. (That was a knick name given a couple years back).

If you're looking for the longer EXT/XL models, they come with a beefier 8.6" rear axle that holds up better. The other model to consider would be an TB SS.....AWD, it will get you through the worse CO winters and has true AWD and not a 4HI lock or on-demand A4WD.

Only major issues are the fan clutch and if you buy an '02, a possible cylinder sleeve issue on units made in mid-2001.lj

My wife had an '04 Venture when we were married in '07 and I can positively tell you that my Envoy felt 10x more stable and secure on the highway and handled better at low speeds STOCK, than her Venture did. (I never liked the suspension dynamics on the Venture at any speed).
 

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:iagree:
forgot about the cylinder sleeve. I would not buy a 02 but I am very paronoid. I know someone with one and never had a problem. I wou ld also stick with 4wd mine don't do so hot in 2wd on winter roads. 5000lbs is alot to get started once stoped. I do travel some real bad roads inthe winter.
 

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2003 chevy trailblazer_ltz
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I'm looking for a new vehicle for my wife to replace a Olds mini van that the engine locked up on.
Is there any major issues to look out for? Any years that had problems that I should stay away from? I read some posts that talk about a G80 rear end. What is this and how do I make sure I get one (if the G80 is a good thing).
Any advice would be really appreciated.
Larry in Colorado
Get a North Face, their the best, but hard to come by! :O) I love everything about mine!
 

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Yes, the G80 is very desirable, either 2WD or 4WD, and costs a bunch to add later if you get a vehicle without it. It's an RPO code, and included in the glove box sticker along with one of three codes that designate the gear ratio.
:hijacked Hey Roadie, you bring up a question I have been having. What do I look for to determine if I have the G80? I have a square sticker in my glove and do see the g80 in the mix of all the other dozens of codes in there. I am assuming that is it.

How do i know what type of gear ratio I have? Is there a code for that.

I have an 04 Rainier i-6 AWD.
 

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2005 chevy trailblazer_ls_ext
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:hijacked Hey Roadie, you bring up a question I have been having. What do I look for to determine if I have the G80? I have a square sticker in my glove and do see the g80 in the mix of all the other dozens of codes in there. I am assuming that is it.

How do i know what type of gear ratio I have? Is there a code for that.

I have an 04 Rainier i-6 AWD.
Up at the top of the page, there is a button - "Resources" Click on that and it will take you to another page where you can get all the RPO codes.

GU6 is 3.42
GT4 is 3.73
GT5 is 4.10
 

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Up at the top of the page, there is a button - "Resources" Click on that and it will take you to another page where you can get all the RPO codes.

GU6 is 3.42
GT4 is 3.73
GT5 is 4.10
Well sweet it's confirmed....

I have a 2004 Buick Rainier with almost 60k. It has the AWD system and does have the G80, plus air ride suspension. Put some Michelins on it and it rides like grandpa's caddy. It's a very sound vehicle and feel very safe in it.

I have to admit, I was a little hesitant buying another American car as I had major problems with every Ford I have ever owned: a 1994 Explorer XLT, 1994 Mustang 5.0 GT/Cobra Mods, and 2004 Eddie Bauer Explorer. Not to offend Ford peeps, but as they say...Fixed Often Repaired Daily (FORD)...it was true in my case.

My dad bought new a 2003 TB LT and now has almost 90k. He has only had to fix two things on it: a thermostat and fan clutch. Not too shabby imo for a 6 year old car. He loves it and is going to drive it until the wheels fall off so he can order his new 2010 Camaro!!!

My next car will be a 2007 Yukon SLT:hail:.......if gas stays stable :hopeless
 

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Well sweet it's confirmed....

I have a 2004 Buick Rainier with almost 60k. It has the AWD system and does have the G80, plus air ride suspension. Put some Michelins on it and it rides like grandpa's caddy. It's a very sound vehicle and feel very safe in it.

I have to admit, I was a little hesitant buying another American car as I had major problems with every Ford I have ever owned: a 1994 Explorer XLT, 1994 Mustang 5.0 GT/Cobra Mods, and 2004 Eddie Bauer Explorer. Not to offend Ford peeps, but as they say...Fixed Often Repaired Daily (FORD)...it was true in my case.

My dad bought new a 2003 TB LT and now has almost 90k. He has only had to fix two things on it: a thermostat and fan clutch. Not too shabby imo for a 6 year old car. He loves it and is going to drive it until the wheels fall off so he can order his new 2010 Camaro!!!

My next car will be a 2007 Yukon SLT:hail:.......if gas stays stable :hopeless
I'd say your Dad is lucky. I bought my 05 new and it's had numerous repairs. It's been in the shop more times in the 4+ years I've had it than my other 2 Fords and my wife's Toyota combined!
 
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