GMC Envoy

The GMC Envoy is a mid-size SUV that was produced by General Motors. It was introduced for the 1998 model year. After the first generation Envoy was discontinued after the 2000 model year, the Envoy was reintroduced and redesigned for the 2002 model year, and it was available in the GMC line of vehicles from the 2002 to 2009 model years.

GMC Envoy
ManufacturerGeneral Motors
Model years1998–2000 and 2002–2009
Body and chassis
ClassMid-size SUV
(Mid-size crossover SUV for XUV)
Body style4-door SUV
LayoutFront engine, rear-wheel drive / four-wheel drive 4.2 vortec 98- 00
PlatformGMT330 (1998-2000)
GMT370 (Envoy XL)
GMT305 (Envoy XUV)
RelatedBuick Rainier
Chevrolet SSR
Chevrolet TrailBlazer
Isuzu Ascender
Oldsmobile Bravada
Saab 9-7X
Engine4.2 L LL8 I6
5.3 L LM4 V8
Transmission4-speed 4L60-E automatic
Wheelbase113.0 in (2,870 mm)
129.0 in (3,277 mm) (XL/XUV)
Length191.6 in (4,867 mm)
207.6 in (5,273 mm) (XL)
208.4 in (5,293 mm) (XUV)
Width74.7 in (1,897 mm)
Height71.9 in (1,826 mm)
75.5 in (1,918 mm) (XL)
77.0 in (1,956 mm) (XUV)
PredecessorGMC Jimmy
SuccessorGMC Terrain
GMC Acadia (Envoy XL)

The Envoy nameplate had previously used by GM in Canada during the 1960s that was sold only at Chevrolet and Oldsmobile dealers.

1st generation (1998–2000)Edit

1998–2000 GMC Envoy
1998–2000 GMC Envoy

The Envoy first hit dealers' lots in 1997 as a 1998 model. It is similar to the Chevrolet Blazer, GMC Jimmy, Oldsmobile Bravada, and Chevrolet TrailBlazer. The Envoy was discontinued after the 2000 model year and then was reintroduced and redesigned to replace the Jimmy as GMC's new midsize SUV in 2002. The Bravada was redesigned for 2002 and the TrailBlazer was redesigned for 2002 as well. The Blazer 4-door and the Jimmy 4-door were both discontinued after the 2004 model year and the Blazer 2-door and the Jimmy 2-door were both discontinued after the 2001 model year (the Jimmy was discontinued in Canada after the 2005 model-year). Most of the S-10 and Sonoma trucks which share the same chassis were being discontinued during the 2003, and 2004 model years. So both the Jimmy 2-door and the Jimmy 4-door were both discontinued after the 2001 model-year in the United States & Mexico, and then after the 2005 model-year in Canada.

The Envoy had many extra features not available on the regular Jimmy 4-door including: a remote trunk release, heated driver's and passenger's seats, as well as a Bose sound system. Optional features included: a power sunroof, a panic alarm, an anti-theft system, and a power front driver & passenger seat.[1]

Safety featuresEdit

The 1998-2000 GMC Envoy had a four-wheel ABS braking system standard as well as standard front driver and passenger airbags. However, the Envoy received a Poor rating in the IIHS frontal offset crash test.[citation needed]

2nd generation (2002–2009)Edit

Envoy replaced the Jimmy name in GMC's lineup in early 2001 for the 2002 model year. While it still shared a platform with the Chevrolet TrailBlazer, the exterior styling is different. The interior, however, has a more premium appearance, especially on the SLT trim with optional rear LCD and DVD entertainment. The Vortec 4200 straight-6 engine was rated at 270 hp (201 kW) and 275 lb⋅ft (373 N⋅m). This smooth, efficient inline 6 engine was duty tested at WOT for 300k miles before being approved for production, almost 3 years before production started in 2002. Hydroformed and a fully boxed frame encompasses the GMT-360 platform and it employs either an AWD or a 4x4 Shift On-Demand electrically actuated system with 2hi, A4wd, 4hi, and a 2.69:1 4lo reduction ratio. Owners can opt for the automatic rear locking Eaton differential or a standard rear Posi-trac LSD. The 4L60e routes power to the back with rear differential gears varying from 3.23-3.42-3.73-4.10. Twintube Bilstein shock absorbers dampen the IFS up front and the 5-link coil sprung rear solid axle or opt for GM's Auto-ride air suspension. While the 2003 model received a small boost to 275 hp (205 kW) this rating grew to 291 hp (217 kW) for the 2006 model year with a redesign of the Vortec 4200. All models in the line-up have 4-wheel disc brakes. A Displacement on Demand 5.3 L V8 was optional on the Envoy beginning in 2003. The articulating headrests were discontinued, and made no longer available beginning for the 2003 model year for both the Envoy and the Envoy XL.

Trim LevelsEdit

Throughout its production run, the Envoy was available in three different trim levels:

The base SLE trim level was produced from 2002–2009, and included a plentiful amount of standard equipment, including full power equipment (power front seats, power door locks, power windows, and power mirrors), keyless entry, cloth seating surfaces, an A/M-F/M stereo with single-disc CD player (later, with satellite radio), a four-speaker audio system, OnStar, aluminum-alloy wheels, a full-size spare tire with black-painted steel spare wheel, a 65/35 split-folding rear bench seat, faux carbon fiber interior trim panels, a cruise control, a dual-zone, manual climate control system, the 4.2L Vortec Inline Six-Cylinder (I6) gasoline engine, and a four-speed automatic transmission. Optional features included an in-dash, six-disc CD changer, a Bose six-speaker premium amplified audio system, a rear DVD entertainment system by Panasonic, a security system, polished aluminum-alloy wheels, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, luxury leather-trimmed seating surfaces, dual heated front bucket seats, and a power moonroof.

The uplevel SLT trim level, available from 2002–2009, added extra luxury and convenience features to the base SLE trim, including a six-disc, in-dash CD changer, a Bose six-speaker premium amplified audio system, OnStar, polished aluminum-alloy wheels, luxury leather-trimmed seating surfaces, dual heated front bucket seats, Driver Information Center, faux wood interior trim panels, a universal garage door opener system with a travel note recorder, a dual-zone, automatic climate control system, and a driver's memory system for driver's seat, mirrors, and radio preset settings. Optional features included an in-dash, touchscreen GPS navigation system (later models), a rear DVD entertainment system by Panasonic, and a power moonroof.

The top-of-the-line Denali trim level, available from 2005–2008, was the most luxurious trim level of the Envoy, adding additional luxury features to the already luxurious SLT trim. Additional features included additional faux wood interior trim accents, a two-tone, luxury leather-trimmed interior, a 'Denali' emblem for the steering wheel, the 5.3L Vortec V8 gasoline engine, a power single-pane moonroof, unique chrome-plated aluminum-alloy wheels, satellite radio, and a chrome mesh front upper grille. Additional options included an in-dash, touchscreen GPS navigation system and a rear DVD entertainment system.

The Envoy was Motor Trend magazine's Sport/Utility of the Year for 2002. The 4200 Vortec 4200 engine I6 engine was named one of Ward's 10 Best Engines from 2002 to 2005.



During this year, GMC detached many options from packages in order for customers to save money. Additionally, the I6 engine received a small increase of 5 hp (3.7 kW). For the XL model, a new engine was introduced, a 5.3 Liter V8 with 290 hp (216 kW). Other notable changes included making front side-impact airbags previously standard on the 2002 model, optional, recreating the headlight switch to allow a Daytime Running Lamp (DRL) off switch, and also increasing the fuel tank to 22 US gallons (83 L). Articulating headrests are no longer available.


Not many changes were made to any of the models this year. The only changes included the added feature of optional adjustable pedals, optional XM Satellite Radio, and an optional DVD-based navigation system.


GMC Envoy Denali

In 2005, a Denali luxury version of the Envoy became available. Both the standard-length wheelbase Envoy as well as the Envoy XL were available with the Denali trim option. The Envoy Denali features the hallmark bullet pattern grille and an upgraded interior with high-end car-like features such as heated power seats, extensive woodgrain trim, and rain-sensing windshield wipers. It also featured the GM Vortec 5.3 liter V8 engine with "Displacement on Demand," shutting off four of the eight cylinders when workload was minimal. Prices for the Envoy Denali ranged from US$37,145 to $42,750; prices for the Envoy XL Denali ranged from $38,575 to $43,895.

Across the range, seating was restyled in hopes to increase comfort and quality of control of driving position. Additionally, a touch DVD navigation system was offered as an option. The option of side airbags evolved from previously just front-seat side-impact airbags to full-length side curtain airbags, covering both rows of seats (in the XL model, all three rows).


2006–2009 Envoy

For 2006, GMC added standard stability control, called "Stabilitrak," as well as standard cruise control, OnStar, and a tire pressure monitoring system. For the Denali, new 18-inch alloy wheels were introduced.

The Envoy XL, and the Envoy XL Denali were both discontinued after the 2006 model-year when the Oklahoma City plant closed on February 20, 2006. It was replaced by the Acadia crossover SUV in 2007, and the Acadia Denali in 2011.


No changes except that the Envoy XL was no longer available.


For 2008 side-curtain airbags were made standard as well was XM Satellite Radio and Bluetooth wireless technology for wireless phones.


In 2012, General Motors had recalled more than 258,000 SUVs in the U.S. and Canada to fix short-circuits in power window and door lock switches that could cause fires. The recall covered Chevrolet TrailBlazer, GMC Envoy, Buick Rainier, Isuzu Ascender and Saab 9-7X SUVs from the 2006 and 2007 model years. The SUVs were sold or registered in 20 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and Canada, where salt and other chemicals are used to clear roads in the winter.[2]


Envoy XLEdit

GMC Envoy XL

The Envoy was also offered with an extended wheelbase to increase accommodation of more cargo and/or passengers. The Envoy XL was the full-size counterpart to the five-passenger mid-size Envoy. One unique element of the Envoy XL was the availability of a usable third row that was comfortable for a 6-foot (1.83 m) passenger. This vehicle is 16 in (406 mm) longer and has a higher roofline to allow easier access to the third row of seats. This roof is disguised by standard roof racks. The Envoy XL was longer than the short-wheelbase Yukon.

The XL model was produced on the Oklahoma City Assembly plant in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Envoy XUVEdit


The five-passenger Envoy XUV, introduced for 2004,[3] was an attempt to create a combination of pickup truck and SUV. It featured a retractable rear roof section that slid forward, giving an open-topped load area. A 'MidGate' could be raised to partition the load area off from the passenger compartment; this was a solid, waist-height plastic-lined panel and with a retractable glass partition for the top half. The two-way tailgate could either hinge sideways or drop down; the tailgate glass retracted into the solid tailgate. The cargo area was waterproofed and fitted with a drainage system, allowing it to be easily hosed down for cleaning.

The advantage of the Envoy XUV over a pickup truck or a more truck-like configuration such as the Chevrolet Avalanche (which originated the MidGate feature) is that with retractable roof and rear glass closed, the cargo area is sealed, full roof height and lockable, thus making it an enclosed SUV. The disadvantages include a much shorter cargo bed area and breakable side glass. The Envoy XUV's retractable roof was reminiscent of the Studebaker Wagonaire of the 1960s, while other features such as the 'MidGate' were similar to those of the GMC Terracross concept SUV.

Envoy XUV sales, projected at 30,000 per year (approximately a third of Envoy production), were much slower with just over 12,000 sold in 2004. GM discontinued XUV production on March 15, 2005.

Discontinuation of the GMC EnvoyEdit

The Envoy (along with the Chevrolet TrailBlazer-Saab 9-7X-Buick Rainier-Isuzu Ascender) were phased out during the 2009 model year. GM closed the Moraine, Ohio plant on December 23, 2008, ending production of all GMT360 products. The final Envoy rolled off the assembly line when the Moraine, Ohio plant shut down. [4] The closing of the last factory that manufactured the trucks was the subject of an emotional 2009 HBO documentary: The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant.

It is unknown if the Envoy name will return should the second generation of the TrailBlazer go on sale in the North American market.

Calendar year US Sales
2001 51,208[5]
2002 110,720
2003 127,782
2004 134,897
2005 107,862
2006 74,452
2007 48,586
2008 23,876
2009 4,857[6]


  1. ^ "1999 GMC Envoy standard equipment". Retrieved 2010-10-10.
  2. ^ "GM recalls SUVs for fire hazard". CNN. Retrieved 18 August 2012.
  3. ^ "2002-2009 GMC Envoy: Year-to-Year Changes". Consumer Guide. November 13, 2010. Archived from the original on September 10, 2011. Retrieved March 27, 2011.
  4. ^ "GM to shut Ohio SUV plant 2 years ahead of plan". Retrieved 2010-10-10.
  5. ^
  6. ^

External linksEdit