2002 Chevrolet Astro Review

Pros & Cons

  • Big-van capacity, small-van package, available all-wheel drive, towing ability.
  • Engineered in the early '80s, mediocre crash-test scores, intrusive front wheelwells.
List Price Estimate
$2,515 - $4,157

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Other than its ability to mimic a small pickup truck in terms of towing ability and cargo space, there's not much about the Astro van that makes it a viable choice over its numerous competitors.

Vehicle overview

A staple in Chevy's lineup since 1985, the Astro is a hard-working minivan that still offers a few features that even the newest, most expensive competitors on the market can't match.

Curvaceous contours or modern ergonomics are certainly not the Astro's strong suit. What it does offer is a stout V6 engine, eight-passenger seating and the highest towing capacity of any minivan on the market.

Astro passenger vans can be equipped with standard LS or upscale LT trim. Included with the basic van are such items as chrome wheels, air conditioning, power windows and door locks, cruise control, an AM/FM CD stereo, tilt steering wheel and remote keyless entry. Step up to the LT, and you get an upgraded cloth interior, rear A/C and heat, second-row captain's chairs, rear Dutch doors and brushed aluminum wheels.

All Astros offer a host of appealing features, such as a tow/haul mode for improved transmission performance while towing heavy loads, headlights that automatically activate in low-light situations, and battery rundown protection that will make sure you always have enough juice to get started.

Taller than many of their rivals, Astros are admittedly more truck-like in temperament, but deliver a pleasant highway ride with competent handling. Interior room is generous, with 170 cubic feet of total cargo space. Unfortunately, small front footwells make the driver and front passenger feel more cramped than in most minivans. Dual depowered airbags and antilock brakes are standard, but the aged Astro doesn't perform well in crash testing.

A 190-horsepower 4.3-liter V6 is the only engine available, sending power through a smooth-shifting four-speed automatic transmission. Standard rear-wheel drive allows the Astro to boast a maximum towing capacity of 5,400 pounds. A full-time all-wheel drive system is optional. This system transfers power to the front wheels when it detects rear wheel slippage for maximum traction in adverse weather situations.

Basically, if you're looking for a no-frills minivan that offers plenty of interior room, a torque-rich V6 engine and the ability to haul a small trailer with ease, the Chevrolet Astro is well worth considering. But if you've got to have all the latest features and gadgets along with perfect crash-test scores, save yourself some time and scratch the Astro off your list.

2002 Highlights

A multiport fuel-injection system has been added for smoother operation along with a revised catalytic converter for better emissions control. Synthetic gear oil is now standard in the rear axle for reduced wear during heavy towing.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2002 Chevrolet Astro.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

This is one great van! Bring it back!
Ron,01/07/2009
I have owned four of the Astro series and one Safari van since '96. I've had only good experiences with them. Maybe I apprciate its comfort level, driveability and road feel because I don't expect this truck to drive like a luxury sedan. My Astros gave me better mileage than any pickups I've driven from time to time (including the big new Toyotas), yet with much bigger enclosed hauling space for my tools, lumber, etc., with the seats out. Then, when you need it, unlike a pickup, it's a great people mover too. And, as far as the styling goes, a nicely detailed 2002 Astro looks better than anything else out there. I'm keeping this one!
Satisfied
Mike,08/19/2010
Purchased vehicle as a rental return. I need AWD because I sell property in the mountains and occasionally go off road. Clients are always comfortable. Currently has 180K miles, mostly reliable, minimal repairs have been needed. Gas mileage in the mountains averages 13-14 MPG. 18-20 MPG on the road.
2002 Astrovan
Jed Depew,07/16/2006
I purchased an Astrovan due to its vast cargo capacity and some advice from a mechanic I know. While the engine and drive train has been good it seem likes everything else has a problem. Small things break on a regular basis and are a pain to repair. Door handles, door locks, rear seats, windshield, lights front and rear, etc.
Astro Snow Mobile
D-Mac,12/31/2015
LS AWD 3dr Minivan (4.3L 6cyl 4A)
bought the astro w 130,000 mi. 3yrs ago. 160know. Replaced a jeep cherokee with it and so happy with our choice. More cargo and smoother ride. Mine is not a soccer mom mobil. It's the Toy Box. And I have a long playlist. Take one seat out. still seat 5 comfortably. and put 5 bikes in the back. Or skis or snowboards... climbing gear... windsurf/kitesurf rigs... or a mixture of them all. In the winter move the seat to the back row and you have a nice space to put ski boots on or have lunch between snowkite sessions or sleep in it..rear heat works great. No need for a rocket box. but it has factory racks so easy to do if needed. Hook up a trailer and pull 4 dirt bikes or two snowmobiles no worries. Right now its winter and this van loves it. So stable on ice and snow. Good tires of course do help a lot. We ski little cottonwood cny and chase wind for snowkiting so often driving in blizzards. Its weight is well proportioned to its size and make it a smooth reliable snow mobile. The gears work awesome. Just put it in 1st or 2nd on steep snowy downhills and you barley need to use the brakes. I work on the great salt lake, if it's not stormy, and have to commute across a 15 mile dirt road which gets icy, horribly washboarded, and rutted this time of year. Set the cruz control at 45 and let the S-10 chassy do the work. although i have had to replace fuel pump and catalytic converter, normal stuff for its age, affordable parts and minimal labor made it no big deal. I recommend this van to all fun hogs... especially snow lovers.

Features & Specs

MPG
14 city / 18 hwy
Seats 8
4-speed automatic
Gas
190 hp @ 4400 rpm
MPG
13 city / 17 hwy
Seats 8
4-speed automatic
Gas
190 hp @ 4400 rpm
See all Used 2002 Chevrolet Astro features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver3 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    DriverNot Rated
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover3 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Not Tested
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Not Tested
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Poor

More about the 2002 Chevrolet Astro

Used 2002 Chevrolet Astro Overview

The Used 2002 Chevrolet Astro is offered in the following submodels: Astro Minivan. Available styles include LS Rwd 3dr Minivan (4.3L 6cyl 4A), and LS AWD 3dr Minivan (4.3L 6cyl 4A).

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Which used 2002 Chevrolet Astros are available in my area?

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Should I lease or buy a 2002 Chevrolet Astro?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

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