Timberline vs Z71 Tahoe 6.2

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dlcorbett

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Felt like this was the best thread to respond to but this seems like a good place to send this along. Not that it will help, as I have been told time and time again Ford doesn't look at or care about forums on the web.

I recently spent a full week with a rental 22' Chevy Suburban Premier. It had 25k miles on it and was actually in pretty good shape for a rental. This particular model, was a Premier edition, with HD tow, and a few upgrades. I just thought I'd come on and give my thoughts after a full week with this rig. And I want to preface this with the fact that this barely competes with my Platinum, I would generally consider a Yukon Denali a little more like the Platy, maybe this is more like a Limited. But regardless, I'll give my thoughts.

Interior:
I'm sorry, in many ways this beats the Expy. Far more leather, and less plastic. I do prefer the cluster in the expy, but the controls both physical and digital crush the 22' expy. You don't need a 15" display to make something usable. The seats in this were heated, cooled, and included both massage and the infamous driver alert vibration system. the seats had better lateral control and felt more comfortable. the doors felt far more rigid and the sound they made was more secure. They also seemed to have better weather stripping just about everywhere. The center console was more functional, including the substantially larger bay for wireless phone charging. My phone is pretty small and barely works in the expy, but this was much larger! the software for the touch screens seemed much more responsive than even the latest updates for Sync 3.4.

Driver dynamics, electronics:
I have to say, this is one that makes me the most annoyed. My window sticker literally says "Heads up display" and Ford considers stupid red LED's that flash when you're coming up on a vehicle as a heads up display. I had a better HUD on an 90's Mitsubishi. But the Chevy's HUD was amazing. It had everything from speed, to fuel efficiency, to navigation, to even adaptive cruise info. Fully functional, even better than the Navigators display. This ****** me off, you pay more for the plati and this thing is so much more functional. The stereo (which in this was the Bose upgraded system) was also better. Lower volume and higher volume music was better. I personally think a lot of that has to do with the stage. This system not only has tweeters at the listeners level in the front, but far more. In the dash, there is a center channel as well as at least 4.5" if not 3x5 or 4x7 speaker's in the front. the best mid to high sound for front passengers is what radiates off the windshield and this really helps. The sub was pretty much the same. But the mids and highs were much better. I absolutely hated, hated, hated the gear selection functions. those buttons you have to push and pull were terrible, and on paddle shifters. Hated that SOOO much. Even worse than our dials. I didn't like the location of the trailer brake controller or some of the other knobs to the left of the steering wheel though.

Drivetrain:
This section is a little hard. hte acceleration was no where near as "powerful" as the 3.5ECO. But I will 100% say that the 10SPD seemed to match the V8 a whole lot better. While the acceleration in the 3.5ECO is more dramatic, heavy acceleration in the Suburban wasn't as dramatic but felt much smoother. The tranny responded to shifts during heavy acceleration better, and didn't seem to be searching for gears nearly as badly. I sort of feel like the busrty nature of the turbos causes the tranny to be on edge if you will, where as the V8 was more predictable. I will say, I broke the rears loose several times, was interesting with the very low V8 torque that quickly dropped, vs. the pretty nuts torque after 1500 RPM. In this big rig I managed to get some pretty good MPG, at least 18 at sea level. One thing I thought crushed the expy, was the sound. The low rumble and high RPM sounds coming from the 4 exhaust tips on this were substantially better than stock Expy and even after the thousands I've spent on my exhaust, not only does it look better, but it sounds way better.

Suspension/steering:
The suspension was actually pretty nice. I personally way more prefer an air suspension over the magnetic fluid. My last two vehicles had air suspensions (and were way cheaper than my expy) and rode so much better. I think Ford opting for the mag fluids is a bit of a cheap choice. The Suburban and pretty much the same bobble head experience as my expy pre-upgraded sway bars but riding over rumble strips and cattle guards was way nicer. Potholes, speed humps, etc were way better and it just had less road noise. The steering was pretty equal, although the Suburban seemed to have roughly the same turning radius even though it's larger, that's not a scientific measurement but it felt close. I hated the brakes, they were super squishy and just didn't respond well at all until you pounded on the. The breaks alone were pretty scary.

Overall, I still really like my expy, but I can completely understand why this product family is beating sales and has attracted a lot of folks lately. I know the expy has better towing and better overall stats, but Ford I don't believe is competing on the creature comforts front right now. certainly not when you're comparing the premium Ford (not Lincoln) with the lower class GM.
Interesting comparo, Are you comparing to a 2021 expy or a 2022 expy?

You mentioned platty expy, i didnt even know the sub had massage function for the seats, the denalis we driven surely didnt. Are you saying the suburban had better massage function?

Is the gm interface more user friendly? You did mention sync 3, not sync 4. I remember the15in screen being ok with speed and logic but the graphics and display was sharp and clean, just wondering how the gm system is better.

Did the materials feel nicer as well? I haven't driven the new platty, the kr we tested was nice but not luxurious. You said the subs seats were better, however, my wife and I thought the denali seats were a touch too stiff, esp compared to the old expy ltd seats. I will say, my dad escalade did feel a bit better put together, it shook less on the road than the expy. The 22 kr seats were super cushy, felt very similar to my dads escalade. I will say, I do appreciate gm having longer seat bottoms and angling them.

I remember driving a 21 nav and all the information you stated was available for display in the nav hud. Actually, my dads 22 escalade displayed less Info than our current mazda cx9, but regardless the expy doesn't offer this which I agree is annoying. It just surprising that gm would put more Info on the sub hud than the escalade and denali hud.

I won't speak on the sound system of the burb, but my wife and I have driven the denali which has an even more premium sound system and we both agreed is was inferior to our b&o in the 18. We tested the 22 spkr system and we both agreed that it didn't sound as good as the aforementioned ststem, but our sales guy wouldnt stop talkin so we couldnt rele test it. All were inferior to the escalades base akg though. Sound is very subjective I guess.

Did the burb have air ride and mrc, or just mrc? Also, did it have the 20s or 22s? Again, comparing, my dads truck has the air ride but no mrc. It's high speed ride is very good, if a bit too soft, and it's low speed ride doesn't filter bumps as well. Im comparing to the expy. It is more isolating than the expy and better at managing harshness, ours was the base no ccd. The 22 kr had the same level of iso on the hwy, but not as floaty, and was a bIt better at low speeds, but less body control.

Just asking questions, it's interesting to hear different perspective than your own.
 
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JohnSC

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Now to wait for the 2023 Escalade V! 682HP! :)
For all those people who think the Expy is overpriced…. That one is a real bargain! I will stick with the SPP that I have on order. The number of times I expect to need more HP will not be worth the additional $70k plus markup.
 

shane_th_ee

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I’ll just say that if I had to replace my Expedition today, I’d go with the Yukon XL AT4 6.2L. Because you can’t get the Timberline with the long wheelbase.
 

5280tunage

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Interesting comparo, Are you comparing to a 2021 expy or a 2022 expy?

You mentioned platty expy, i didnt even know the sub had massage function for the seats, the denalis we driven surely didnt. Are you saying the suburban had better massage function?

Is the gm interface more user friendly? You did mention sync 3, not sync 4. I remember the15in screen being ok with speed and logic but the graphics and display was sharp and clean, just wondering how the gm system is better.

Did the materials feel nicer as well? I haven't driven the new platty, the kr we tested was nice but not luxurious. You said the subs seats were better, however, my wife and I thought the denali seats were a touch too stiff, esp compared to the old expy ltd seats. I will say, my dad escalade did feel a bit better put together, it shook less on the road than the expy. The 22 kr seats were super cushy, felt very similar to my dads escalade. I will say, I do appreciate gm having longer seat bottoms and angling them.

I remember driving a 21 nav and all the information you stated was available for display in the nav hud. Actually, my dads 22 escalade displayed less Info than our current mazda cx9, but regardless the expy doesn't offer this which I agree is annoying. It just surprising that gm would put more Info on the sub hud than the escalade and denali hud.

I won't speak on the sound system of the burb, but my wife and I have driven the denali which has an even more premium sound system and we both agreed is was inferior to our b&o in the 18. We tested the 22 spkr system and we both agreed that it didn't sound as good as the aforementioned ststem, but our sales guy wouldnt stop talkin so we couldnt rele test it. All were inferior to the escalades base akg though. Sound is very subjective I guess.

Did the burb have air ride and mrc, or just mrc? Also, did it have the 20s or 22s? Again, comparing, my dads truck has the air ride but no mrc. It's high speed ride is very good, if a bit too soft, and it's low speed ride doesn't filter bumps as well. Im comparing to the expy. It is more isolating than the expy and better at managing harshness, ours was the base no ccd. The 22 kr had the same level of iso on the hwy, but not as floaty, and was a bIt better at low speeds, but less body control.

Just asking questions, it's interesting to hear different perspective than your own.
My comparison is between my '19 and the '22 suburban. I get that some would say that's not really a fair comparison, but so much of the '19 and '22 expy is the same. other than some of the electronics, in fact the 22's are missing some of the features the 19's had. But mechanically, they are very similar.

What's funny about this, is I just went out to configure a new Suburban Premier edition, and several of the functions I liked aren't even available right now, same as Ford, due to supply chain. Simple stuff, like perforated heated/cooled seats, but the cooling function is missing right now. I did find the user interface to be a bit better than the Sync 3 (mine is on the latest version of 3.4). I get the 15" is newer, but based on many of the reviews on other sites and this one, it's not reliable and many have issues, especially when it's acting up, not having access to climate features, etc. And I get it, the upper end GM's will have much larger screens and will likely eventually shift this model of everything behind a large screen, but this experience was nicer. Not sure what diagonal dimension the screen is, but it is larger than the 8" sync 3, and the cameras were far better. Come to find out, it appears GM is doing 4k resolution cameras on the upper end packages.

The material felt very much the same as the expy, they are probably all made by the same suppliers behind the scenes anyways. But it just seemed like more attention to detail. More leather on the door panels vs. so much plastic (i know, it's all plastic, maybe covered in leather). And you may be right on the Denali seats being too stiff, thing is, both my '19 and this '22 had 30k+ miles, so they are more broken in, in fact we have almost identical mileage so it's a pretty fair comparison. Better bolsters, longer seats near the knees, etc.

As far as info in the HUD, all I can say is its software, could have been fairly updated (though as a rental I would doubt that). I just loved the level of information, things like parking sensors, cross traffic alert, vehicle distance in front, etc. I'm still bitter about the Ford sticker calling red LED's a HUD.

As far as the suspension, I'm not sure if it had the MRC, but based on trying to configure a new one, MRC and Air come together. I do know it had the air, as periodically I could hear the small compressor. Same as every vehicle I've ever owned that had an air suspension. I prefer the air for sure, it definitely helps with even road noise to a degree, as it helps isolate the chassis a bit more. These are just things I noticed.

Another thing I didn't mention originally, one of the other things I don't really like about the Expy's interior, is the crappy design and fit of a lot of the plastic. There are so many cracks, gaps, places for food, dog hair and debris to build up. and it's difficult to get vacuum attachments into these nooks and crannies to clean. The plastic molding along the floor for example in the suburban were tighter, more single pieces and not lots of little plastic ones that keep falling apart. Like the seatbelt attachment covers that keep getting sucked up in the vacuum and never stay in place.

On the downside, you can tell the suburban shares parts with other vehicles that have more features, and this had a bunch of makeshift cubbies and stuff. I can't say enough how much I hated the shifter buttons, DUMB! I think Ford knows there is pretty limited competition in this space, and likely won't invest in making these any higher quality and more reliable. That just eats into the profits!

Interesting to see the pics of the new Seqouia interior. Not really even considering it, it's a lot smaller. But there are some characteristics of the new interior I kind of like, like an actual transmission shifter! I know toyota has a massive following, I'm sure it will do okay. we'll see how the hybrid motor really holds up.
 

rd618

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My comparison is between my '19 and the '22 suburban. I get that some would say that's not really a fair comparison, but so much of the '19 and '22 expy is the same. other than some of the electronics, in fact the 22's are missing some of the features the 19's had. But mechanically, they are very similar.

What's funny about this, is I just went out to configure a new Suburban Premier edition, and several of the functions I liked aren't even available right now, same as Ford, due to supply chain. Simple stuff, like perforated heated/cooled seats, but the cooling function is missing right now. I did find the user interface to be a bit better than the Sync 3 (mine is on the latest version of 3.4). I get the 15" is newer, but based on many of the reviews on other sites and this one, it's not reliable and many have issues, especially when it's acting up, not having access to climate features, etc. And I get it, the upper end GM's will have much larger screens and will likely eventually shift this model of everything behind a large screen, but this experience was nicer. Not sure what diagonal dimension the screen is, but it is larger than the 8" sync 3, and the cameras were far better. Come to find out, it appears GM is doing 4k resolution cameras on the upper end packages.

The material felt very much the same as the expy, they are probably all made by the same suppliers behind the scenes anyways. But it just seemed like more attention to detail. More leather on the door panels vs. so much plastic (i know, it's all plastic, maybe covered in leather). And you may be right on the Denali seats being too stiff, thing is, both my '19 and this '22 had 30k+ miles, so they are more broken in, in fact we have almost identical mileage so it's a pretty fair comparison. Better bolsters, longer seats near the knees, etc.

As far as info in the HUD, all I can say is its software, could have been fairly updated (though as a rental I would doubt that). I just loved the level of information, things like parking sensors, cross traffic alert, vehicle distance in front, etc. I'm still bitter about the Ford sticker calling red LED's a HUD.

As far as the suspension, I'm not sure if it had the MRC, but based on trying to configure a new one, MRC and Air come together. I do know it had the air, as periodically I could hear the small compressor. Same as every vehicle I've ever owned that had an air suspension. I prefer the air for sure, it definitely helps with even road noise to a degree, as it helps isolate the chassis a bit more. These are just things I noticed.

Another thing I didn't mention originally, one of the other things I don't really like about the Expy's interior, is the crappy design and fit of a lot of the plastic. There are so many cracks, gaps, places for food, dog hair and debris to build up. and it's difficult to get vacuum attachments into these nooks and crannies to clean. The plastic molding along the floor for example in the suburban were tighter, more single pieces and not lots of little plastic ones that keep falling apart. Like the seatbelt attachment covers that keep getting sucked up in the vacuum and never stay in place.

On the downside, you can tell the suburban shares parts with other vehicles that have more features, and this had a bunch of makeshift cubbies and stuff. I can't say enough how much I hated the shifter buttons, DUMB! I think Ford knows there is pretty limited competition in this space, and likely won't invest in making these any higher quality and more reliable. That just eats into the profits!

Interesting to see the pics of the new Seqouia interior. Not really even considering it, it's a lot smaller. But there are some characteristics of the new interior I kind of like, like an actual transmission shifter! I know toyota has a massive following, I'm sure it will do okay. we'll see how the hybrid motor really holds up.

A lot of what you mention makes good sense. I think Ford is pushing people into a 2 class system with their full size offerings. Expy for mainstream (good enough) and for those more discerning taste or want more upscale, they have Nav for that. Expy is not a high volume seller for ford. It’s not worth it to address all these topics.
GM has 3 tiers and even further sub tiers of full size suv. Best bang for your $$ with GM is the Chevy offerings, and they lead the full size suv sales for a reason.
I’ve driven 2019 Tahoe, 21 expy plat, 22 Tahoe, and I own a 22 expy SPP, the updated Tahoe and suburban do put them back on top feature wise. But then again we’re comparing two different generations. Ford’s current gen is 2018+. GM updated for 2021. If you compared the 2019 expy to the 2014-2021 Chevy, the Ford would easily win out. Ford is keeping expy relevant for the 22 refresh, but still has gaps. They do fix some of topics like plastic with leather, better interface, higher res cameras, etc. but not all of them.
When it comes down to it, I considered both the Tahoe and expy when making my purchase. Ford had better pricing per feature at the time and would secure me an order. GM was not interested and I couldn’t negotiate less than 2500 over MSRP. So ford was easily 5-7.5k cheaper for similar features. Second was the performance, ford takes that. Finally the tech. I liked ford’s offering more. Now that I have it. I’m a bit disappointed, but at the time it appeared more updated and capable.
I do think a few updates will help it a lot. But that’s not on the horizon yet.
At the end of the day, these are both very capable and expensive vehicles.
 

dlcorbett

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What about it is disappointing?

The redo will be here within the next 3yrs.
 

rd618

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What about it is disappointing?

The redo will be here within the next 3yrs.
The infotainment system, it’s the one thing that I love what they are trying to do but their implementation is pretty buggy and lags unnecessarily. Just going from nav to radio. The radio has to “load”. Clicking something takes a second to react. First world problem, but better response and QC testing exists.
 
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