I bought my Avalanche in 2006 and have had it until present. I have put quite of bit of miles on it, and seems to be doing just fine. The transmission did go out at 116k miles because of the four wheel sticking in between 2wd an 4wd. All in all this is a really good driving truck, makes parking lots a breeze to pull into, and can handle when you press the gas pedal through the floor as well. You can't go wrong with it if your wanting a SUV and Truck together.
The steering wheel audio controls are the best, dual climate control, turning radius, and how the back glass comes out along with mid-gate folding down. The back glass is easily stored onto the mid-gate. The sound system is great as well because of the Bose.
The push button 4 wheel drive should have been designed better along with motor that controls the engaging, better fuel economy, should have out the 5.7 L instead of the 5.3 L, and GM should have used the 4L80E trans instead of the 4l60E to pull its mass.
I bought my Av new in 2004. GM should have named it the Transformer. There isn't anything I can't do with this truck. I carry full sheets of plywood and sheetrock (and it stays dry in the rain). I've carried firewood, gravel and anything else a regular truck does. I've gone camping with four others in the passenger compartment, my four wheeler in the back, two canoes on top, towing four wheelers and gear on the trailer behind. I live in Maine and the Av keeps me cool when it's in the high nineties and toasty warm when it's forty something below. It stays on the road during a blizzard like a bengal tiger on it's next meal. I will own this Av forever. Really. I still own my '72 Dodge Demon.
When I have to decide which vehicle to take, I choose between: The work truck. The play truck. The five passenger family vehicle. The vehicle with the great Bose sound system. The truck that's great in snow and any other type of weather. The one that's the most fun to drive. I'll take my Avalanche
The '02 also has two lights in the back, my '04 only one. I would put a key slot in the passenger side door. I would change the cup holders in the center console. We sit side by side, the cup holders are front and back. Why? My wife's Tahoe and a friend's '02 Av are side by side. This one bugs me.
I purchased this Z71 4WD Avalanche new and have enjoyed excellent reliability. It has always run flawlessly. I usually trade every couple of years due to boredom or a more desirable rig, but I haven't been able to find anything that compares to the ride, performance, and awesome design. People are amazed at how much room it has with the bed fully extended. More than a long bed pickup! I highly recommend the Avalanche to anyone looking for a great all around truck.
I can remove the rear window (it stows neatly in the mid-gate) and get an open air feel. Or lower the mid-gate and haul an 8' couch or sheet of plywood with the tailgate closed.
Better mileage, but it does pretty good for a large vehicle, about 17 MPG average.
I've owned this vehicle for just over three years. Had to replace front shocks, fuel pumps, brakes all around. Have the "clunking" from the steering shafts, trouble with rear tailgate latches, poor fuel economy. But I love this truck, might not buy another one, but I still really like it.