The Chevrolet Tahoe is a spacious powerhouse with confident handling and superb ride quality. Since its introduction in the 1990s, the Tahoe has improved on its predecessors in every way, and Chevrolet shows no signs of slowing progress. For 2012, the new Tahoe is full of improvements ranging from new comfort and entertainment options to new colors and safety systems.
The 2012 Chevrolet Tahoe (MSRP starting at $38,450) seats up to nine (yes, nine
) and is available in LS, LT and LTZ trims (plus a Hybrid, a topic for a separate article), each available with either rear-wheel drive or 4WD. Every Tahoe is equipped with an E85 FlexFuel-capable 5.3-liter Vortec™
V8 and a Hydra-Matic 6L80 six-speed automatic transmission. That V8 is capable of 320 hp and 335 lb/ft of torque and, in combination with the Tahoe’s fully boxed frame, provides a generous towing capacity of up to 8,500 pounds. That impressive power and tow rating comes with an EPA-estimated 21 mpg highway (2WD models), thanks in part to Active Fuel Management (AFM), which can deactivate as many as four cylinders during light driving conditions. This transition is seamless and takes less than 20 milliseconds, meaning you feel virtually nothing.
While the interior of Tahoe has always been a comfortable place to spend time, Chevrolet has graced the 2012 model with various improvements including a leather-wrapped, heated steering wheel that’s standard on the LTZ. New for 2012, previously optional heated seats are now standard on the LT trim level. To enhance Tahoe entertainment credentials, the 2012 model offers a new hard-drive navigation radio with USB port, Time Shift Recording capability and available SiriusXM Weather Service. Side Blind Zone Alert is now standard on LTZ trims, and LT and LTZ trims offer an available rear-seat entertainment system that includes a DVD player with remote control and overhead display. The DVD entertainment system comes with two sets of wireless headphones, so drivers won’t be distracted on those long family trips and passengers won’t get on each other’s nerves. To make trips even more comfortable, Tahoe LT and LTZ trims are available with heated and cooled leather-appointed front seats, second-row power-release fold-and-tumble seats and heated second-row seats, depending on trim.
When you make it to your destination, everyone will be impressed with the look of your new Tahoe. Features like the optional power-retractable assist steps and available chrome recovery hooks on 4WD models (standard on LTZ 4WD, black recovery hooks are standard on LS and LT 4WD) give the Tahoe an undeniable presence. For even more visual punch, the LT trim is available with the Z71 Off-Road Appearance Package. The package adds 18-inch all-terrain tires, color-keyed wheel flares, satin chrome tubular assist steps and an aggressive front fascia with a bright chrome grille insert. The Tahoe is available in 10 exterior colors including the new-for-2012 Crystal Red Tintcoat, Silver Ice Metallic and Blue Topaz Metallic (late availability).
Keeping your family safe is just as important as keeping them comfortable. This is why every Chevrolet Tahoe comes equipped with a large array of active and passive safety equipment that includes features like the LATCH child seat attachment system to safely secure little ones, and four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes. The Tahoe also features StabiliTrak Electronic Stability Control with Traction Control, and Proactive Roll Avoidance to help reduce rollover risk. The standard StabiliTrak system has been upgraded for 2012 to include Electronic Trailer Sway Control and Hill-Start Assist as well.
The Tahoe is equipped with an advanced system of airbags including standard head-curtain side airbags for rollover protection and standard seat-mounted side-impact airbags for driver and front passengers. All 2012 Tahoe models are also equipped with OnStar. OnStar is the leading provider of in-vehicle safety, security and information services in the United States, and will call for help automatically when a collision is detected.
The Chevrolet Tahoe just keeps getting better. Each improvement helps keep the Tahoe at the head of the segment. With an astounding set of comfort features, multiple entertainment options, modern looks, a powerful, yet frugal drivetrain and an impressive list of safety features, including the industry-leading OnStar system, it is easy to see why the 2012 Chevrolet Tahoe is the perfect choice.