America's first SUV, the Chevrolet Suburban, has long been the vehicle of choice to schlep people, tow boats and explore the outdoors. Let's venture off-road into this vehicle's past. Larry Printz, Virginian-Pilot
Base price: $580
The 1935 Suburban Carryall was the first eight-passenger, steel-bodied station wagon and was sold with two, three or four doors. Power came from Chevrolet's six-cylinder engine that produced 60 horsepower. That jumped to 79 two years later, when the Suburban was restyled.
Base price: $1,474
For its first redesign in a decade, the Suburban's appearance was updated and Chevy's six-cylinder engine, nicknamed the "Stovebolt," received more muscle, generating 90 horsepower. For 1950, the option of a rear-lift gate or traditional barn doors was offered.
Base price: $2,150
Attractive new styling signaled that much had changed. Running boards were out, a wraparound windshield was in. Chevy's small-block V-8 and two-speed automatic transmission were new options. Two years later, four-wheel drive would be offered for the first time.
Base price: $3,560
A conventional four-door model was added for the first time when Chevy trucks were totally revised. A longer wheelbase and revised suspension improved the ride. A 454-cubic-inch V-8, rated at 240 horsepower, was standard; full-time four-wheel drive was a new option.
Base price: $8,771
With its updated design, more efforts were made to enhance the Suburban's appeal as a personal-use vehicle. New automatic locking front hubs meant 4x4 Suburbans could be shifted into four-wheel drive at speeds up to 20 mph. The 454 cubic-inch V-8 was optional.
Base price: $12,983
While the Suburban's strengths continued to find buyers, Chevrolet updated the drivetrain for greater efficiency, adding electronic fuel injection and a four-speed automatic transmission. A 5.0-liter, 5.7-liter, 7.4-liter gasoline V-8 and a 6.3-liter diesel V-8 were offered.
Base price: $18,155
A sleek redesign featuring flush side glass modernized the Suburban's appearance while new standard features, such as antilock brakes and shift-on-the-fly four-wheel drive, added a measure of safety. A 5.7-liter V-8 was standard, while the 7.4-liter V-8 was optional.
Base price: $27,421
With SUV sales booming, GM redesigned the Suburban for the new century. New features included automatic climate control, rear-seat audio jacks, programmable door locks and side-impact air bags and four-wheel disc brakes. Both gas and turbodiesel V-8 engines were offered.