Suburban Does Big Very Well

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CHATHAM, Mass. – Big. That is the best one-word description of the 2024 Chevrolet Suburban 4WD High Country in which I spent a week carefully navigating the ever-increasing traffic of seasonal Cape Cod roads.

I admit it took me a bit of time to adjust to the dimensions of the Suburban – 225.7-inches long, 81.1 wide (not including the very ample external mirrors) and 75.7 high – because most of the vehicles I drive a considerably smaller, but once used to it, I enjoyed the room, comfort and performance of the Duramax Turbo-diesel engine.

Making the driving even more pleasurable and less intimidating was the extensive set of advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS), a truly wonderful set of features in a vehicle this size.

Super Cruise keeps on truckin’ without help

Another pleasurable driving experience was my first utilization of General Motors’ Super Cruise, the SAE Level 2 hands-free-driving system (partial driving automation that requires human attention at all times) and the primary piece of the optional ($2,700) Advanced Technology Package.

A push of the steering-wheel button while cruising along the Mid Cape Highway (U.S. Route 6), a four-lane, divided highway, a band at the top of the steering wheel turned green and Super Cruise took control.

It tracked my lane accurately, slowing for traffic then picking up speed when appropriate. I flicked on the turn signal and the Suburban smoothly moved into the left lane without an issue. When the highway merged from two lanes traveling East to one, Super Cruise announced, with a prominent dash message, it was disengaging, the steering wheel band went red and I took over (as the SUV told me to).

I was always in control, monitoring the driving situation, but confident in all the movements. The system worked like a super modern radar-equipped cruise-control system, but with the added capabilities of changing lanes by itself and operating without my hands being on the wheel. I look forward to trying it more extensively in a future drive.

Quiet diesel offers performance and efficiency

Did I mention the 2024 Chevrolet Suburban 4WD High Country was a big sport-utility vehicle? It is a very big one, not a vehicle one would expect to produce good fuel-economy numbers.

Powering the review vehicle was an aluminum block-and-head 3.0-liter turbo-diesel engine with dual overhead camshafts and four valves per cylinder. Horsepower is a modest 277 but the quiet (never could tell it was a diesel by sound) motor has a stump-pulling 460 pounds-feet of torque.

The power flows through a 10-speed automatic transmission into the four-wheel-drive system with automatic, full-time 4WD mode.

The powertrain’s capabilities translate into strong everyday driving performance, with quick response to throttle actions. Towing, in many ways the more significant performance operation for the Suburban, can be of trailers up to 7,800 pounds.

Fuel economy, normally not a Suburban strong point, was a solid 22 miles per gallon while I drove it which is the federal Environmental Protection Agency overall rating (20 urban, 26 highway – I saw 29.6 mpg during my one extended highway trip).

Platform delivers ride comfort, control

Again, this is may be a very big SUV, but the ride and handling belie the overall size.of the vehicle. The Suburban is no sports car, but I never felt awkward (once I was acclimated to the size) whether driving through the crowded town/village streets of Cape Cod entering the summer season or on the more challenging, tight twisting roads near Cape Cod Bay.

The suspension components are a big part of the vehicle’s on-road dynamics. Up front is an independent coil-over-shocks and stabilizer bar, four-corner air control and Magnetic Ride Control setup, while at the rear it is an independent multi-link with coil-over shocks and stabilizer bar, four-corner air control and Magnetic Ride Control one.

These pieces combine to help make the Suburban more like the civilized soft-roader SUVs which are replacing passenger cars in so many garages rather than the heavy-duty, off-road capable major people-and-their-stuff mover a Suburban represents.

The brake system features four-wheel discs with ABS; vented front and rear Duralife™ rotors, 13.5-inches front, 13.6 rear.

Cast aluminum 22×9-inch wheels wearing P285/50R22 all-season tires complete the chassis picture.

ADAS list extensive

The advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) roster is comprehensive on the Suburban High Country beginning with Chevy Safety Assist including front-pedestrian braking, lane-keep assist with lane-departure warning, following-distance indicator, enhanced automatic-emergency braking (AEB), and intellibeam-auto high beam; HD surround vision monitor; rear cross-traffic alert, and rear pedestrian alert.

The optional Advanced Technology Package, in addition to Super Cruise, brings enhanced parking assistance to the ADAS menu.

Comfort, technology fill the interior

Luxury seems the wrong word for such an outdoorsy, tough vehicle like the 2024 Chevrolet Suburban 4WD Hi Country so I will go with premium to describe the appointments and features. Leather covers the seating surfaces all around (power adjustment, heat, ventilation for the front buckets, heat for the second-row buckets); the second and third row seats have a power folding mechanism, and the steering wheel is power adjustable as well as heated.

Speaking of heat, a tri-zone automatic climate-control system takes care of the inside environment.

There is no shortage of technology, either. A customizable cluster faces the driver while a 10.2-inch color LCD touchscreen at the top center of the dash provides the foundation for the Google-based infotainment system with navigation.

The system includes wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, SiriusXM satellite radio, Bluetooth streaming audio and 10-speaker Bose audio system.

Overhead an optional ($1,500) panoramic moonroof lets the sun – or moon – shine in.

Suburban range offers many choices

Chevrolet offers seeral different Suburban trim levels, engine possibilities and rear-wheel or four-wheel drive choices. The extensive range opens with the RWD LS at $59,200 to $82,900 for the 4WD High Country like I drove.

The review model added a number of significant options like the Super Cruise one, the moonroof, air-ride adaptive suspension ($1,000), power running boards ($1,745), and rear-seat media system ($1,995 including dual 12.6-inch video screens). Including the $1,995 destination charge brought the review-vehicle’s price to $92,750.

The 2024 Chevrolet Suburban 4WD High Country is a vehicle with the ability to carry – and tow – a significant amount of people and their stuff comfortably over a great variety of road surfaces. For those who need these capabilities, the Suburban remains a great choice.

Next week TBR Drives the 2025 Toyota Camry XSE sporty sedan.

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Mike Geylin
Mike Geylin

Mike Geylin is the Editor-in-Chief at Hagman Media. Geylin has been in automotive communications for five decades working in all aspects of the industry from OEM to supplier to motorsports as well as reporting for both newspapers and magazines on the industry.