You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

2018 Chevrolet Tahoe: What You Need to Know

US News & World Report - Cars logo US News & World Report - Cars 11/9/2018 U.S. News & World Report
a car parked on the side of a road: 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe© General Motors 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe

The 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe has a comfortable ride, plenty of features, a high-quality cabin, a strong predicted reliability rating, and a powerful V8 engine. It sits near the top of our large SUV rankings.

Is the Chevrolet Tahoe a Good SUV?

The 2018 Tahoe's great fuel economy estimates, compliant ride, and V8 muscle make it a great option in the large SUV class. The Tahoe was a finalist for our 2018 Best Large SUV for Families award because of its spacious first- and second-row seats, an abundance of safety features, and positive feedback from automotive critics. It also has good crash test and predicted reliability scores, comfortable seats, and an upscale cabin. Its downsides include a cramped third row and a shortage of cargo space.

Should I Buy a Chevrolet Tahoe?

The Tahoe is a perfect vehicle for long family road trips. It’s also up for more strenuous jobs, like towing a camper or boat to the mountains. This large, truck-based SUV also has a high-end cabin, a ton of features, and above-average fuel economy for the class. It's not as posh as the sumptuous Cadillac Escalade, and the redesigned Ford Expedition gives the Tahoe a run for its money. Still, the Tahoe is a solid choice for a decent price. Some crossovers offer more cargo space and better maneuverability in tight spaces, though. If you don't need a heavy duty hauler, consider buying a 3-row crossover such as the Chevrolet Traverse

Should I Buy a New or Used Chevrolet Tahoe?

For 2018, a new 6.2-liter V8 engine and 10-speed automatic transmission are available for the Tahoe. If you can live without this muscular new option under the hood, consider shopping for a used Tahoe. A 2017 or older model will likely save you money compared to a new model. Last redesigned for 2015, the Tahoe has had a few features added over the years. The 2016 model saw the introduction of Apple CarPlay, forward collision warning, and lane keep assist, while Chevy's Teen Driver system and a rear-seat reminder became standard for 2017.

To research other models in this generation, read our 2015, 2016, and 2017 Chevrolet Tahoe reviews. If you decide that an older model is right for you, check out our Used Car Deals page for savings and incentives on used vehicles.

Compare the 2016, 2017, and 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe »

We Did the Research for You: 28 Reviews Analyzed

To help you decide if the Tahoe is the right SUV for you, we've gathered and analyzed 28 professional reviews. We've also included information about the Tahoe's fuel economy, safety, towing capacity, and much more to give you an idea of the Tahoe's strengths and weaknesses.

Why You Can Trust Us

U.S. News Best Cars has been ranking the best vehicles since 2007, and our team has more than 75 years of combined experience in the automotive industry. To keep our reviews unbiased, we don't accept expensive gifts or trips from automakers, and an external partner places and sells the ads on our site. This 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe review incorporates applicable research for all model years in this generation, which spans the 2015 through 2018 model years.

How Much Does the Chevrolet Tahoe Cost?

Starting prices for the 2018 Chevy Tahoe range from $47,450 for the base rear-wheel-drive LS model to $65,130 for the four-wheel-drive Premier trim. Most rivals have similar price ranges. Every Tahoe trim is available with four-wheel drive for an extra $3,000. If you want a more powerful V8 engine, you'll need a Premier model equipped with the RST Edition and RST Performance packages, which add $5,350.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Chevrolet dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Chevrolet deals page.

Chevrolet Tahoe Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: Chevrolet Tahoe or Cadillac Escalade?

Cadillac builds the Escalade on the same platform as the Chevrolet Tahoe. They both have a nearly identical features list as well as similar pros and cons. While the Tahoe has an available 6.2-liter V8, the Escalade comes standard with one. Also, the Escalade has a long-wheelbase ESV model that considerably increases cargo capacity. For the Chevy equivalent to this, check out the Chevrolet Suburban. Nonetheless, the Tahoe is a better value. If you're willing to forgo the Cadillac badge, you can get a fully loaded Tahoe with practically the same features as the Escalade at a much lower sticker price.

Which Is Better: Chevrolet Tahoe or Ford Expedition?

The Tahoe and the redesigned Ford Expedition are close in our rankings, but the Expedition is the better choice on most fronts. It has a higher towing capacity, more passenger and cargo space, and superior fuel economy estimates to the Tahoe. Both have high-quality cabins and cushioned rides. One area of advantage for the Tahoe is price. Its price starts a couple thousand dollars lower than the Expedition. But if you can swing the higher price, you can’t go wrong with buying the Expedition over the Tahoe.

Which Is Better: Chevrolet Tahoe or Chevrolet Traverse?

The redesigned-for-2018 Chevy Traverse comes with more cargo and passenger room than the Tahoe. Additionally, its third-row seats have enough space for two adults. Both vehicles essentially offer the same features list. In regards to performance, the Traverse has a peppy V6 that gets better fuel economy estimates than the Tahoe. Also, the Traverse's relaxed handling and smooth, comfortable ride make it easier to drive. For towing, the Tahoe is the superior choice. But for everything else, the Traverse is likely better for most buyers.

Tahoe Interior

How Many People Does the Tahoe Seat?

The Tahoe can seat as many as nine people when properly configured, though seating for eight is standard. The front seats are comfortable and spacious and offer a good view of the road. There's ample room in the second row where the seatbacks can recline, though the seats can't slide forward or backward. The third row is best suited to children, which is common for an SUV with three rows. Cloth upholstery and a 10-way power-adjustable driver's seat come standard, while leather upholstery, heated and ventilated front seats, heated second-row seats, and 12-way power-adjustable front seats are optional.

Tahoe and Car Seats

There's a full set of LATCH connectors on each of the outboard second-row seats, along with additional upper tethers on the middle second-row seat and on each third-row seat.

Tahoe Interior Quality

The Tahoe's cabin is fitted with top-shelf materials and a stylish design that make it feel luxurious. Soft-touch surfaces permeate the interior, giving the Tahoe a premium look and feel.

Tahoe Cargo Space

Compared to other large SUVs, the Tahoe falls short when it comes to cargo space. There's only 15.3 cubic feet of room behind the third row, 51.7 cubic feet behind the second row, and 94.7 cubic feet of overall cargo space. Most competitors offer significantly more room. The second- and third-row seats fold flat into the floor. While this is convenient, it means the load floor is high off the ground. Available cargo features include a hands-free power liftgate and power-folding third-row seats.

Tahoe Infotainment, Bluetooth, and Navigation

The Tahoe's 8-inch touch-screen infotainment system features the MyLink interface, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, which incorporate some of your phone's apps on the infotainment display. Overall, the system is straightforward to use, with intuitive menu structures, quick response times, and sharp graphics. Still, it can be cumbersome to change some audio settings, which require multiple steps using the touch screen in conjunction with some buttons and knobs. Other tech features available in the Tahoe include a built-in Wi-Fi hot spot, a Bose premium audio system, wireless smartphone charging, and navigation.

Tahoe Performance

Tahoe Engine: Powerful V8 Engines

The Tahoe's standard 5.3-liter V8 engine and six-speed automatic transmission have enough power to easily move the SUV when fully loaded with passengers and cargo. Still, the SUV's large size means acceleration isn't particularly quick. An available 6.2-liter V8 that's paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission has even more punch.

Tahoe Gas Mileage: Decent for a Truck-Based SUV

Chevy equips both V8 engines with an Active Fuel Management system that improves gas mileage by shutting down four of the engine's cylinders when they're not needed. This helps the Tahoe earn respectable fuel economy estimates for the class, getting up to 16 mpg in the city and 23 mpg on the highway with the base engine. Keep in mind that a large crossover SUV with three rows (as opposed to a body-on-frame 3-row SUV like the Tahoe) will likely get better gas mileage.

Tahoe Ride and Handling: It's Big and Heavy

The Tahoe is a large body-on-frame SUV, so it feels heavy to drive compared to crossovers. This makes maneuvering in small spaces somewhat difficult. The steering strikes a balance between precision at higher speeds and easy turning for tight maneuvers. The ride is smooth over most road surfaces, and the optional Magnetic Ride Control suspension makes the ride even more comfortable.

Tahoe Towing Capacity

When properly equipped, the Tahoe can tow up to 8,600 pounds. That's more than most competitors can handle. The Tahoe has a seven-wire harness, 2-inch trailer receiver, and hitch platform.

Tahoe Reliability

Is the Chevrolet Tahoe Reliable?

The 2018 Tahoe has an above-average predicted reliability rating of four out of five from J.D. Power.

Chevrolet Tahoe Warranty

Chevy covers the Tahoe with a three-year/36,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty and a five-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty.

Tahoe Safety

Tahoe Crash Test Results

The Tahoe earns typical safety scores for a large SUV. In National Highway Traffic Safety Administration crash tests, the Tahoe gets a four out of five-star overall rating, with five stars in front and side crash tests but only three stars in the rollover test.

Tahoe Safety Features

A rearview camera and rear parking sensors are standard in the 2018 Tahoe. Available safety features include automatic forward braking, forward collision alert, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and adaptive cruise control. A safety alert seat works in conjunction with the advanced safety systems and vibrates to alert the driver when a possible collision is detected.

Which Chevrolet Tahoe Model Is Right for Me?

The 2018 Tahoe starts at $47,450 for the base LS model. A 5.3-liter V8 engine, a six-speed automatic transmission, and rear-wheel drive are standard. Four-wheel drive is available with every trim for $3,000. Premier models can be equipped with a 6.2-liter V8 and a 10-speed automatic transmission with the RST Performance package.

Most buyers should be satisfied with the base LS model's long list of standard features. Prices climb quickly for higher trims, with a $5,000 jump for the LT model and a further $10,000 for the top-of-the-line Premier trim. Some standard upper-trim features are available in lower trims via option packages.

Chevrolet Tahoe LS

Starting at $47,450, the Tahoe LS comes with an 8-inch touch screen, keyless entry, the Chevrolet MyLink infotainment interface, Bluetooth, USB ports, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration, satellite radio, six speakers, a Wi-Fi hot spot with OnStar 4G LTE , tri-zone automatic climate control, cloth upholstery, remote start, a rearview camera, and rear parking sensors.

The Enhanced Driver Alert package ($695) adds the safety alert seat, power-adjustable pedals, forward collision warning, and lane keep assist.

Chevrolet Tahoe LT

The midlevel LT trim starts at $52,580 and adds leather upholstery, heated front seats, a nine-speaker Bose premium audio system, power-adjustable pedals, and a power liftgate. The LT model adds several advanced safety features as well, including lane keep assist, forward collision warning, Chevy’s Safety Alert Seat, and low-speed forward automatic braking.

The $2,860 Luxury package adds push-button start, heated second-row seats, a power-folding third row, a hands-free power liftgate, front and rear park assist, rear cross traffic alert, and blind spot monitoring. With the Sun, Entertainment, and Destinations package, you get navigation, a sunroof, and a rear-seat entertainment system for $2,880.

Chevrolet Tahoe Premier

With the range-topping Premier trim, which starts at $62,130, you get heated and ventilated front seats, 12-way power-adjustable front seats, heated second-row bucket seats, power-folding third-row seats, a 10-speaker Bose audio system, navigation, push-button start, a hands-free power liftgate, front parking sensors, rear cross traffic alert, blind spot monitoring, and Magnetic Ride Control suspension.

The RST Edition package adds unique styling elements for $2,630. For an additional $5,350, you can add the RST 6.2L Performance package to get the 6.2-liter V8 engine, adaptive suspension, and other performance improvements. The Sun, Entertainment, and Destinations package ($2,885) comes with a sunroof and a rear-seat entertainment system.

Check out our U.S. News Best Price Program for great savings at your local Chevrolet dealer. You can also find excellent manufacturer incentives on our Chevrolet deals page.

The Final Call

If you're looking for a capable truck-based SUV that can just as easily tow a heavy trailer as it can haul the kids to school in comfort, the 2018 Tahoe is worth a look. Still, despite its large size, the Tahoe doesn't offer as much cargo or third-row passenger space as some crossover competitors, and it can be difficult to maneuver in confined areas.

Don’t just take our word for it. Check out comments from some of the reviews that drive our rankings and analysis.

Read the full 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe review on U.S. News & World Report for more details, photos, specs and prices.


More from U.S. News & World Report

US News & World Report - Cars
US News & World Report - Cars

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon