1999 Chevrolet S-10 Review


Pros & Cons

  • Sleek styling, fuel-efficient base engine, stout optional V6, sporty Xtreme model handling.
  • Spotty build quality, inferior-grade interior trim, low seating positions.
List Price Estimate
$1,266 - $2,677

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Vehicle overview

Like most of today's compact trucks, Chevrolet's S-Series has been growing more car-like, especially since its last redesign in 1994. That's the trend, and Chevy has done a good job of transforming its small-scale pickups into everyday vehicles, without blurring their identity as practical machines. Riding smoother and handling better, they gained plenty in performance and overall refinement, ranking closer to their main competition, Ford's similar-size Ranger. Grasp the S-10's long manual-transmission gearshift lever and it's easy to imagine you're piloting a big rig, while enjoying the blissful comforts of a compact.

Four-cylinder models need that manual shift to gain top performance, but the two V6 engine options are strong with either manual or automatic transmissions. For maximum output, the optional 180-horsepower L35 Vortec 4300 V6 is the engine to select (190 horsepower in 4WD models). But the slightly less- energetic LF6 Vortec 4300 V6 is no slouch, thanks to 175 horses and 180 pounds-feet of torque.

Extended cab models can be equipped with a handy access panel that opens wide to allow for easier access to the rear of the cab. Located on the driver's side, this optional third door deletes one of the extended cab's jump seats, but makes it much easier to load cargo, a friend, or your pal Spot into the S-10. But be warned, the third door makes for aggravating rattles on broken pavement.

Two- and four-wheel-drive trucks come in several configurations, with a short or long bed, a Fleetside box or Sportside box, and a short or extended wheelbase available. Ride comfort varies from car-smooth to strictly firm, depending on the choice of suspensions and tires.

Headroom is ample and seats are supportive, but the driver sits low, facing a tall steering wheel and cowl. In theory, three people fit across an S-Series bench seat, but only someone as slim as TV's Ally McBeal could fit comfortably in the space allotted. Surprisingly, the extended cab's rear jump seats are comfortable enough for short trips, as long as only one adult occupies the space behind the front seats.

The full complement of gauges is excellent and easy to read, but the upright dashboard is constructed of cheap- and brittle-looking plastic. Despite a low-height windshieldnot unlike the Ranger'svisibility is super, helped by huge mirrors. Dual airbags and daytime running lamps are standard, as well as a theft deterrent system four-wheel ABS. Off-roaders will want the burly ZR2 package with its wider track and taller ride height, featuring special wheel flares, tough suspension components and aggressive rubber.

New this year is the Xtreme package, which can be had as a regular or extended cab, with a Fleetside or Sportside box, a four- or six-cylinder engine, manual or automatic transmission, and in base or LS trim. Riding on a special ZQ8 suspension that is lowered two full inches, the two-wheel-drive only Xtreme aims to be a factory sport truck that can be custom-tailored to meet a variety of needs and budgets. No matter how you configure it, Xtreme stands out from the crowd with body-color grille and bumpers, front air dam with fog lamps, full ground effects with wheel flares and unique 16-inch aluminum wheels wearing P235/55 blackwall tires. While we'd pick an extended cab LS Sportside with the V6 and a five-speed, this truck rides sports-car firm and handles superbly any way you package it.

Also new for '99 are improvements to the automatic transmission and outside mirrors, plus the addition of a content theft alarm, headlamp flash-to-pass feature and three new exterior colors. There's even a new lockout provision that prevents the doors from locking if you inadvertently leave your keys in the ignition.

Like many Chevrolets, the S-10 is loaded with value, but we've never quite warmed up to it. Occasional squeaks and rattles and the low-buck interior don't provide the feeling of brawny quality that we've experienced in the S-10's major competitor, Ford's Ranger. With further refinement in this year's S-10, maybe more test drives will help win us over.

1999 Highlights

An all-new sport package called the Xtreme debuts. All S-10s get automatic transmission enhancements to improve sealing and durability and larger outside mirrors with an optional power-heated mirror. Other changes for '99 include a content theft alarm, headlamp flash-to-pass feature, three new exterior paint choices and the availability of GM's AutoTrac electronic push-button transfer case on select four-wheel-drive models.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the Used 1999 Chevrolet S-10.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Bullet-proof engine and tranny, but....
LS 2dr Regular Cab LB
I've owned this truck for 8+ years and am generally happy with it. I replaced the alternator in 2006, but the biggest problem has been the fuel pumps. As of 2011, the truck is on its 3rd fuel pump. Local mechanic says Chevy/GMC fuel pumps burn out every 5 years or so, and as the fuel tank needs to be dropped (or bed removed), it is a very expensive ($700-$1200) repair due to labor costs. Recently, an exhaust manifold bolt failed due to corrosion, but it was a quick and easy fix. Overall, this truck is pretty solid. It's old, but the engine, clutch and transmission have been trouble-free. It would cost too much to replace, so a few hundred bucks a year sure beats a monthly car payment.
Love this truck!
Budget Tuners,12/27/2006
LS 2dr Regular Cab SB
This is a truck I have wanted for a while now and I finally got it back in Aug of '06. I got a '99 with the 2.2 5speed and I love it. I put an intake and exhaust. Sounds great, runs great. Power for the mods I have on it aren't bad. Looking to get more out of it soon but all and all a great truck to customize. A lot of parts that change out and soon I'm going to lower it a bit and put rims and tires on it. Love this truck. Best truck I have had
LOVE this truck
2dr Regular Cab SB
I bought this truck about 11 years ago. It has been a lifesaver. Four years ago on a crowded super fast highway that ran through town some maniac going 90+ tried to run my truck and a small SUV off the road. The two of us sideswiped each other and the perpetrator got away BUT my little truck did not spin out of control or tip over. It could have. Both vehicles and all occupants were safe and sound and all I got was a 4-inch dent and a lost side mirror (replaced that). The flexibility of this truck has been phenomenal. I plan on (when the time comes) to simply put a new engine in it. But so far, no need. Two weeks ago I easily (for me) replaced the pulse switch board for the wiper blades but that in essence was all. It is good on oil. I take care of it; give it regular maintenance check ups. No major issues. Yes, did have an alternator fail a month ago but the original alternator was already 17 years old. The paint job has held up too. I did have some AC issues that were handled by two different mechanics but given how heavily I use that part, totally understandable. This truck has been a workhorse in every sense of the word. It is my main commuting truck now and I used to use it for my job which required 30-40K miles of driving annually. It is a stick shift and for that reason I can scoot out of the way when I need to. One update: windshield wipers kept dying on me so I researched it on You Tube and got a 21.00 part and replaced it myself. All good now. Did have to replace the clutch a few months ago due to materials fatigue but that only cost 250. Other than that I get regular oil changes and it keeps on running just great.
RANCE H. GREGORY,02/27/2003
LS 2dr Regular Cab SB


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver2 / 5
    Passenger3 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver3 / 5
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    RolloverNot Rated
    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

More about the 1999 Chevrolet S-10

Used 1999 Chevrolet S-10 Overview

The Used 1999 Chevrolet S-10 is offered in the following submodels: S-10 Regular Cab, S-10 Extended Cab. Available styles include LS 2dr Regular Cab 4WD SB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS Wide Stance 3dr Extended Cab 4WD SB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS 2dr Regular Cab SB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS 2dr Extended Cab SB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS Xtreme 2dr Regular Cab SB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS 2dr Extended Cab 4WD SB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS 2dr Regular Cab LB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS 2dr Regular Cab 4WD LB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), 2dr Regular Cab 4WD LB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS Wide Stance 2dr Regular Cab 4WD SB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), 2dr Regular Cab LB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS 2dr Regular Cab 4WD SB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), 2dr Regular Cab 4WD SB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS 2dr Extended Cab 4WD SB (4.3L 6cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS Xtreme 2dr Extended Cab SB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), 2dr Regular Cab SB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS 2dr Regular Cab SB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), LS Xtreme 2dr Extended Cab SB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M), and LS 2dr Extended Cab SB (2.2L 4cyl naturally aspired 5M). Pre-owned Chevrolet S-10 models are available with a 4.3 L-liter gas engine or a 2.2 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 180 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 1999 Chevrolet S-10 comes with four wheel drive, and rear wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 5-speed manual.

What's a good price on a Used 1999 Chevrolet S-10?

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Which used 1999 Chevrolet S-10s are available in my area?

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 1999 Chevrolet S-10 for sale near. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 1999 Chevrolet S-10.

Can't find a used 1999 Chevrolet S-10s you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used Chevrolet S-10 for sale - 1 great deals out of 12 listings starting at $15,910.

Find a used Chevrolet for sale - 4 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $22,764.

Find a used certified pre-owned Chevrolet S-10 for sale - 10 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $13,173.

Find a used certified pre-owned Chevrolet for sale - 1 great deals out of 23 listings starting at $15,017.

Should I lease or buy a 1999 Chevrolet S-10?

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.

Check out Chevrolet lease specials
Check out Chevrolet S-10 lease specials