Used 1998 GMC Envoy Review

Edmunds expert review

What's new for 1998

GMC introduces its finest luxury compact SUV to date: the Envoy.

Vehicle overview

GMC has been tagging itself as the premium truck division during the past two years. The release of the brand-new, upscale Envoy sport-utility vehicle is part of a marketing plan to expand that reputation and appeal to buyers in the ever-booming luxury-SUV market.

To prove they're serious, GMC is offering tons of standard equipment on the sport-ute with only one option: a $750 power sunroof. Some of the standard features on the vehicle include four-wheel drive, leather seating, a Bose sound system and High-Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps. These headlamps emit a true white light that is brighter, lasts longer and uses less electricity than a halogen bulb. It offers more than two and a half times the light emitted by halogen bulbs and provides a longer, wider beam.

Using the Vortec 4.3-liter V6 engine that's currently found under the hood of the Jimmy as well as the same four-speed automatic transmission, the company has refurbished that rugged truck with some pretty two-tone paint and a revamped interior, calling it Envoy. They've made some changes to the exterior of the vehicle, including new front-end styling, but from the rear, you could be looking at any sport-utility vehicle made by GM.

Inside, you'll find the coolest of automotive gadgets: the OnStar Communication System, which allows you to speak to a representative at the touch of a button to get directions, your current position, emergency services, travel conditions or even dinner and hotel reservations. The system works over cellular phone lines, so you might have some trouble in rural Wyoming or anywhere else cellular access may be unobtainable. Still, for most trips and certainly for everyday driving, it is comforting to know there's someone standing by to help if you were to lock your keys inside the vehicle.

The truck also features driver and passenger Next Generation airbags, the PassLock theft deterrent system, keyless remote entry, three-button HomeLink transmitter, heated outside mirrors and tinted glass behind the B-pillar. Designers gave the driver the feel of being in a cockpit by putting the gauges on a semicircular panel and angling the instrument panel 15 degrees toward the driver. Zebrano wood accents lend a feeling of sophistication to the interior and the center console includes a cellular phone. Front-seat occupants can enjoy heated seats that are also eight-way power adjustable while driving to the mountains or just to the store.

Priced competitively at $34,000 in this segment, the Envoy is one to look at if you were thinking along the lines of a Jeep Grand Cherokee or Infiniti QX4.

Edmunds expert review process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.