- A happy powertrain couple
- That clever midgate
- Easy-to-use controls
- One powertrain fits all
- Niche appeal of the midgate
- Rear seats' vertical back cushions
The 2011 Chevrolet Avalanche flexes its midsection to show off a versatile Midgate, but you'll notice its luxe features and nicely trimmed cabin, too.
Some GM pickups are defined by ultimate towing capacity or luxurious cabins, while others are hallmarked by their low prices. The Avalanche is related to all of them, but it's completely different thanks to the standout feature that lets it transform from SUV to full-size pickup--the midgate.
With the midgate, it's a simple few steps to swapping interior room for cargo-bed capacity. Lower the Avalanche's rear window, flip some latches and the rear wall of the cockpit folds down, extending the otherwise short pickup bed to near full-size dimensions--while also removing three seating positions from the equation. It's a big trade-off, for sure, but many truck drivers see it as a better fit for everyday driving than a full-time, long-bed, crew-cab truck.
The Avalanche stands out for its flexibility, but the rest of the package gets nods too, for sweet acceleration and handling with real feedback--something not normally found in big pickup trucks. It's also fairly plush in higher trim levels, with a nicely detailed cabin, wide but cozy seats, and of course, the unique talents of the midgate available at a moment's notice.
It's beginning to show its age in small ways, but the Avalanche remains the only choice for shoppers who want a better balance of utility from their pickup truck.