We’re not making this up. Chevy has launched a petition on change.org to make the Suburban the national vehicle of Texas. Celebrating 85 years of manufacturing the ubiquitous truck, Chevy wants to play up the Suburban’s Texas connections.
Those connections include being manufactured at the Arlington Assembly Plant in Arlington, Texas. Of the top 10 dealerships with Suburban sales five are in Texas. Also, more Suburbans were sold in Texas than in the combined 25 smallest states.
“The Most Texas Vehicle”
“It’s the most Texan vehicle there is,” is Chevy’s slogan for the petition. Chevy says, “Today, there are more than 200,000 Suburbans on the road in Texas and a Suburban is sold approximately every 90 minutes in the state.” OK, then!
Since everything is bigger in Texas we guess this goes along with that. Suburbans are big. Generous three-row seating with room to haul more it is the ultimate SUV. And Texas, with its long, open expanses suits the Suburban well with what Texas Monthly called “the primeval Texas instinct to drive as far as possible.”
Longest Running Nameplate
With the Suburban has been around since 1935, it is the longest-running nameplate in automotive history according to Chevy. Who are we to argue. Actually, it was one of the few vehicles to continue production during WWII when auto manufacturing stopped. Suburbans were used as military transport vehicles during the war effort.
Starting in 1973 you could get a Suburban in a ¾-ton version, emphasizing its truck origins. Basically it’s a pickup truck station wagon. And, like a station wagon, it was one of the first to be made entirely of steel. As you probably know most station wagon bodies were made of wood until the 1950s.
12 Generations of Suburbans
In all, there have been 12 generations of Chevy Suburbans. The current version came out in 2014 as a 2015 model. iSeeCars performed a study that showed that the Suburban is the vehicle driven the most each year. It also found that the Suburban is the second-most longest-lasting vehicle made.
For most of its production, the Suburban has been available with both two-wheel- or four-wheel-drive. This made it as versatile as a truck while able to carry more people. Starting in 1952 the Suburban came with either a tailgate or double doors.
GM used the Suburban name on a GMC pickup produced from 1955-1958. It was almost identical to the Chevy Cameo, and both were built in limited copies. This was a special pickup with fancy fiberglass bedsides which was the precursor to the “fleetside” pickup. When the first Fleetside pickup came out in 1958 it was quietly discontinued.
Sixth generation Suburbans had only a single door on the driver’s side, and two on the passenger side. This lasted for the entire sixth-gen run from 1967-1972. When the new “square body” trucks debuted in 1973 the Suburban again was built with four doors.
When we last looked the petition was shy by about 400 signers of achieving its goal. “The Suburban would not be what it is today without the great state of Texas,” the petition says. GM estimates that more than two million Suburbans have been sold over the decades.
Chevy finishes the petition pitch saying, “We are truly honored and humbled by how Texans have embraced the Suburban and allowed it to play a part in their lives.”