Nobody wants to buy a vehicle that breaks down. Car buyers are looking for dependable, reliable vehicles, so they turn to information from J.D. Power and Associates and Consumer Reports. Buyers looking for full-size SUVs may be considering the newly announced 2021 Chevrolet Tahoe, coming soon in mid-2020. What will these organizations have to say about the reliability of this new fifth-generation Tahoe?
How is reliability measured?
Reliability is rated by J.D. Power and Associates as well as Consumer Reports. J.D. Power uses owner surveys to collect information. Among their studies is the Vehicle Dependability Study, which looks at the number of complaints regarding three-year-old vehicles. The J.D. Power ratings are also used on U.S. News & World Reports’ scorecard ratings.
Consumer Reports sends a survey to its members asking about vehicle problems that have occurred in the past 12 months. They look at 17 categories and provide comparisons to other vehicles of that year. New vehicles get a predicted reliability based on recent history.
What’s new with the 2021 Tahoe?
The 2021 Chevrolet Tahoe has been redesigned for the new fifth-generation, as recently announced in a press release. The redesign includes a new diesel engine option, a ten-speed automatic on all trims, and an independent rear suspension. It also includes more interior space, new technologies and features, and improved driving dynamics.
The Tahoe will have a longer wheelbase and an extra 6.7 inches in total length. The new tech includes a standard 10-inch touchscreen plus options to upgrade the gauge cluster display from 4.2 inches to 8 inches on certain trims and to add two 12.6-inch screens for the rear seats.
Relationship between Tahoe and Silverado
How will this redesign affect the Tahoe’s reliability? It’s hard to know for sure at this point, but looking at the Chevy Silverado can give a hint since the Silverado was recently redesigned for 2020.
The Tahoe redesign combines aspects of the new Chevy truck architecture with SUV-specific features. Like the Silverado, the new Tahoe will use GM’s new T1 truck platform. This platform is used by the Chevrolet Suburban, Cadillac Escalade, and GMC Yukon. These SUVs will also share GM’s new Global B electrical architecture, which offers additional computing power, over-the-air updates, and improved network security.
The Tahoe’s exterior design also looks like the Silverado’s. In addition, the new Tahoe will have similar engine options to the Silverado. The 2020 Silverado has five engine options: 3.0-liter Duramax Turbo-Diesel, 6.2-liter V-8, 5.3-liter V-8, 4.3-liter V-6, and 2.7-liter Turbo. The Tahoe will offer three options: the 3.0-liter Turbo-Diesel, 6.2-liter V-8, and 5.3-liter V-8. One change from the Silverado is that the Tahoe will switch from the live axle and leaf springs to an independent rear suspension.
Reliability of the 2020 Silverado
Since the Tahoe is built on a similar design to the Silverado, the 2020 Silverado’s reliability provides a guess about the reliability of the upcoming Tahoe. Consumer Reports didn’t rate the 2020 Silverado 1500 well for reliability, giving it a 1 out of 5 rating. Also, so far, the 2020 Silverado 1500 has three recalls from the NHTSA. J.P. Power hasn’t yet released their rating of the 2020 Silverado’s reliability. Looking at owner complaints on CarComplaints.com, the 2020 Silverado so far has no complaints. The website calls out the 2017 Silverado as the worst model year.
The 2020 Tahoe was given a great rating by J.P. Power, with 85 out of 100 for quality and reliability. Hopefully the new fifth-generation 2021 Tahoe will be at least as reliable, but the first year of a new generation might be a bit of a gamble.