2002 GMC Yukon XL Review

Pros & Cons

  • Unmatched interior space, strong V8-engine lineup, extensive list of available features.
  • Interior fit-and-finish concerns, still too similar to the Chevy Suburban.
List Price

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Not the biggest full-size SUV, but in terms of horsepower, functionality and features, easily the best.

Vehicle overview

When it comes to full-size SUVs, it doesn't get much bigger than the Yukon XL. Coming in at over 18 feet long and weighing almost 3 tons, the XL comes in both half-ton and three-quarter-ton models, with either two- or four-wheel drive. The Yukon XL boasts seating capacity for nine and the ability to tow a 12,000-pound trailer when properly equipped, making it one of the most versatile sport-utes available. Accomplishing such heroic feats of hauling requires serious muscle under the hood and the XL has the goods. Half-ton models get a 5.3-liter V8 rated at 285 horsepower and 325 pound-feet of torque, while three-quarter-ton models get a choice of either a 6.0-liter V8 rated at 320 hp, or an 8.1-liter brute that delivers 340 hp and 455 lb-ft of torque. GMC is quick to point out that even the smaller 6.0-liter engine boasts a higher horsepower number than the V10 available in the Ford Excursion, while the 8.1-liter engine enjoys a solid 30-point lead in both the horsepower and torque race. An all-new 4L85 heavy-duty four-speed transmission is now standard with the 8100 V8, while a stronger version of the 4L80 four-speed remains standard on all 6.0-liter engines.

All half-ton Yukon XL models utilize an independent torsion bar front suspension and a five-link coil-spring rear setup that delivers a satisfying ride whether you're on the highway or off the beaten path. Three-quarter-ton models utilize the same torsion bar setup up front, but rely on two-stage Smooth Ride leaf springs in the rear that provide a comfortable ride while retaining the capacity for heavier loads. An optional trailering package adds even higher-rate springs and retuned shocks for better handling of extreme loads.

Buyers can choose between two different trim levels: base SLE or uplevel SLT. SLEs come standard with front and rear air conditioning, aluminum alloy wheels and deep-tinted glass. Add to that power windows, locks and doors; a nine-speaker AM/FM CD stereo; and an electrochromic rearview mirror with an integrated compass, and it's easy to see why these make great family vehicles. Step up to SLT trim, and you'll enjoy leather upholstery, heated driver and passenger front seats with power lumbar and lateral support, electronic climate control and the OnStar communications system.

An optional traction control system keeps 2WD XLs on the road when the going gets slippery, and standard four-wheel disc brakes with ABS help stop the big sport-ute quickly in panic situations. Front and side airbags are standard, and LATCH child seat attachment anchors are now provided for more secure fastening of second-row child seats.

When it comes to providing plenty of room for a large group of passengers, it's hard to beat the Yukon XL. Although we would like to see higher-quality interior pieces and an overall improved level of fit-and-finish, we still love the big sport-ute. The wide-range of engines and high level of standard equipment make it a nice place to spend time on long trips with the family. Even if you're not saddled down with restless rugrats, the Yukon XL will still prove useful with its huge cargo capacity and ability to haul a sizeable trailer with ease.

2002 Highlights

Three-quarter-ton models equipped with the 8100 V8 get the new 4L85 heavy-duty transmission, while the previous 4L80 version also gets upgraded with more durable internal parts. A more efficient starter and a stronger steering gear housing have also been added to all gas engines along with flexible fuel capability for the 5300 V8.

Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2002 GMC Yukon XL.

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Most helpful consumer reviews

Beast of Burden
Bought it new in July 2002. Excellent vehicle, particularly if you do a lot of camping or fishing. GREAT gear space when all seats are in use. Only 1 early problem, parking brake cable stuck under warranty, wearing out parking brake shoes. Only other problem - oxygen sensors went bad at 60,000 miles, too early, perhaps got splashed hard with salt brine or water. Good:The front disc pads lasted 70000 miles, rear disc pads 80000 miles, battery 5 years, changed it when I had the Dexcool coolant changed at 5yrs. Original tires lasted 70000 miles. No problems with A/C or transmission. Overall very reliable. 15mpg city, 14 mpg city when very cold. 20mpg highway at 55-60mph; 18mpg at 70. 17@75.
Too many kids
I needed something that could fit 6 kids and still had the room for other things like a stroller fit for twins and groceries. This is the best vehicle that I have ever owned. The most reliable and definitely the best looking. The gas usage isn't nearly as bad as my friends told me before the purchase. But with this many kids I had no choice and it was a great one
Yukon XL experience
We have been driving this SUV for three years. Relaibility has been the big issue. We've had to replace the fuel system, air conditioning system, knock sensors and have ther front end re-built because it wouldn't maintain alinement. Now we are having transmission problems at 90,000. In fairness, I have a friend with the same vehicle and similar mileage who has had no problems. Aside from the many mechanical problems we have enjoyed the SUV and find it comfortable to travel in with a large family. I'm disappointed that it has proved much less relaible than my 1996 Suburban.
i am happy with my new yukon
francisco quezada,02/27/2002

Features & Specs

See all Used 2002 GMC Yukon XL features & specs


NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 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

More about the 2002 GMC Yukon XL

Used 2002 GMC Yukon XL Overview

The Used 2002 GMC Yukon XL is offered in the following submodels: Yukon XL SUV. Available styles include 1500 SLE 4WD 4dr SUV (5.3L 8cyl 4A), Denali AWD 4dr SUV (6.0L 8cyl 4A), 1500 SLE 2WD 4dr SUV (5.3L 8cyl 4A), 2500 SLE 4WD 4dr SUV (6.0L 8cyl 4A), and 2500 SLE 2WD 4dr SUV (6.0L 8cyl 4A).

What's a good price on a Used 2002 GMC Yukon XL?

Price comparisons for Used 2002 GMC Yukon XL trim styles:

  • The Used 2002 GMC Yukon XL Denali is priced between $2,300 and$2,300 with odometer readings between 293326 and293326 miles.

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which used 2002 GMC Yukon XLS 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) 2002 GMC Yukon XL for sale near. There are currently 1 used and CPO 2002 Yukon XLS listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $2,300 and mileage as low as 293326 miles. 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 2002 GMC Yukon XL.

Can't find a used 2002 GMC Yukon XLs you want in your area? Consider a broader search.

Find a used GMC Yukon XL for sale - 11 great deals out of 17 listings starting at $10,205.

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Find a used certified pre-owned GMC Yukon XL for sale - 12 great deals out of 16 listings starting at $10,298.

Find a used certified pre-owned GMC for sale - 10 great deals out of 13 listings starting at $24,093.

Should I lease or buy a 2002 GMC Yukon XL?

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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