2005 GMC Envoy XL SLT Road Test

By Rob Rothwell
2005 GMC Envoy XL SLT Road Test

XL Wheelbase Delivers Extra-Length Comfort

Since their introduction to the domestic SUV market in 2002, I have been a fan of GM's mid-size SUV cousins the GMC Envoy, the

I have been a big fan of GM's mid-size SUV lineup, which includes the GMC Envoy, the Chevrolet Trailblazer, the Buick Rainier and the discontinued Oldsmobile Bravada. (Photo: Rob Rothwell, American Auto Press)
Chevrolet Trailblazer, the Buick Rainier and the discontinued Oldsmobile Bravada. Each variant rides on the same GMT360 platform but distinguishes itself through brand-oriented styling, various trim levels and slightly different ride characteristics.

Add the Isuzu Ascender and Saab's upcoming 9-7X off-roader to the list and it's safe to say that GM is making the greatest use of this hydroformed fully-boxed frame as possible. But wait! This dexterous architecture can also be found beneath Chevrolet's phenomenally cool SSR pickup, although for this application it was shortened by 6 inches.

Although little has changed design-wise since its introduction, the Envoy

Considering the Envoy is a body-on-frame truck, its outer assembly quality is very good. (Photo: Rob Rothwell, American Auto Press)
exterior remains as clean and fresh looking as it did in 2002. Its overall proportionate body shape is softened by large windows, which provide unimpeded all-around visibility.

Considering the Envoy is a body-on-frame truck, its outer assembly quality is very good. Body panel gapping appears minimal and accurate, reflective more of passenger car tolerances than those of truck-based, four-wheel drive SUVs. The doors on my test unit opened and closed with ease, resonating a solid "whump" when sealing shut.

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