2009 GMC Envoy Expert Review

You'll Like The 2009 GMC Envoy If...

If you need a big SUV but can't make the Yukon's size or price fit your driving needs, the 2009 GMC Envoy holds the answer. It has excellent front-and rear-seat legroom, lots of headroom and a fair amount of cargo space.

You May Not Like The 2009 GMC Envoy If...

The 2009 GMC Envoy is a well-rounded SUV, but some observers think that the lack of independent rear suspension is a detriment. Those seeking better fuel economy, the latest in safety and eight-passenger comfort might be better off with GMC's Acadia crossover SUV.

What's New

Bluetooth hands-free communication technology is added to OnStar 8.0 for 2009.

Interior Features

The Envoy's interior is typical GMC: simple and clean. The seating is firm, and the instrument panel controls are handsomely adorned with wood trim and sturdy black plastic. Backlit power-window buttons and steering wheel-mounted controls are two of the Envoy's finer features – details sometimes overlooked by other manufacturers. Safety features include standard head-curtain side airbags for front- and rear-seat outboard passengers. The airbags are tied to an advanced rollover detection system capable of determining if and when deployment is necessary. Unfortunately the Envoy no longer offers the option of a third-row seat, limiting its passenger capacity to five persons.

Exterior Features

The 2009 GMC Envoy strikes a rugged yet refined pose that seems equally comfortable off-road or at valet parking. Tall doors make it easy to get in without bumping your head, and there's enough glass around the sides to give the driver a good 360-degree view. The Envoy's generous ground clearance creates a high step-in height, but not so extreme it requires the use of a grab handle. The Envoy features a lift-up rear window, which allows placing smaller items inside the cargo hold without having to open the full tailgate. Although the Envoy design has been around a few years, it still looks good, especially in Denali form.

Driving Impressions

On the road, you'll find the 2009 GMC Envoy's ride to be extremely comfortable, with a firm suspension that soaks up most road imperfections before they ever reach the passenger compartment. Extreme lean and dive are kept in check by the complex five-link rear suspension and double A-arms up front. Though the Envoy exhibits some body lean in sharp turns, it does so gradually and never imparts the feeling of being top-heavy. This may be the Envoy's greatest attribute. It offers a car-like ride but still has the ground clearance and suspension settings to take it far off-road.

Pricing Notes

A two-wheel-drive 2009 GMC Envoy SLE's Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starts just over $31,000, while the SLT trim starts around $34,000. A fully-loaded four-wheel drive Denali tops out around $43,000. To help you make your best deal, be sure to arm yourself with the Fair Purchase Price before you start negotiations – it shows the typical transaction prices consumers are paying for their cars in your area. As for resale, the Envoy does not hold its value as well as the Toyota 4Runner, Volkswagen Touareg 2 or Acura MDX. Overall, the Envoy six- and eight-cylinder models mirror the Ford Explorer and remain ahead of the Dodge Durango in projected resale values.

Notable Equipment

The 2009 GMC Envoy SLE features a powerful in-line six-cylinder engine, dual-zone manual air conditioning, four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes (ABS), Stabilitrak, illuminated entry, keyless remote, cruise control, tire pressure monitoring system, power liftgate release, dual power mirrors, AM/FM stereo with CD, head-curtain side airbags, XM Satellite Radio, rear window wiper/washer and aluminum wheels. The SLT model adds a garage door opener, heated mirrors, eight-way power driver's seat and the TravelNote digital recorder. The Denali trim features a V8 engine, revised grille and front bumper, heated leather seats, power-adjustable passenger seat and 18-inch polished aluminum wheels.

Notable Options

Options for the Envoy include four-wheel drive, a 5.3-liter V8, power moonroof, rear DVD entertainment system, limited-slip rear differential, rear load-leveling suspension, locking rear axle, navigation, 20-inch wheels (Denali), and power-adjustable foot pedals.

Favorite Features

Adjustable Foot Pedals

The optional power-adjustable foot pedals make finding a comfortable driving position a breeze.


Rear-Seat DVD

The Envoy's optional rear-seat DVD player is a great way to keep the kids amused on long trips.

Under the Hood

The 4.2-liter in-line six-cylinder engine is all the Envoy needs, unless it will be towing something really big. The Vortec 4200 engine is very impressive and offers the pulling power of a small V8 without the added thirst for fuel. The 5.3-liter V8 delivers a little more horsepower and a usable increase in torque, and at lower engine speeds, and its Active Fuel Management technology helps improve highway fuel economy by cutting fuel to four of the eight cylinders when they're not all needed.


4.2-liter in-line 6

285 horsepower @ 6000 rpm

276 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4600 rpm

EPA city/highway fuel economy: 14/20 (2WD), 14/20 (4WD)


5.3-liter V8

300 horsepower @ 5300 rpm

321 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4000 rpm

EPA city/highway fuel economy: 15/21 (2WD), 14/20 (4WD)

Editors' Notes

Do you find yourself attracted to the reasonable size and off-road ability of the Chevrolet TrailBlazer, but feel your position in life requires you to drive something a bit more upscale? Well, you're in luck, because that's exactly what you'll find in the 2009 GMC Envoy and Envoy Denali. Though identical to the TrailBlazer under the skin, the Envoy visually excels beyond its Chevrolet counterpart with its upscale exterior, plush interior and, for those who can afford the extra premium, high-end Denali trim package. The Envoy is extremely flexible, offering a choice of six- or eight-cylinder engines with two-wheel or four-wheel drive. When equipped with the V8 and the optional tow package, the Envoy can pull up to 6,600 pounds.

Road Test Video Reviews

2009 GMC Envoy Owner Reviews

4.15
33 Reviews
36% 45% 15% 3% 1 star 0%
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I have owned new suvs for almost 20 years. Many makes and models. The envoy is the best in its size. Where else can you find a 4x4 that will pull over 5000 pounds and still have all the creature comforts. I was driving a low mileage trailblazer when i found out they were stopping the envoy and trailblazer. I immediately started looking for a 4x4. it took almost a month before the right suv and deal came in. Why GM stopped making it is one of many reasons GM is in trouble. They felt that the Acadia was a replacement...Go drive one and you will find out how bad it's visibility is and lack of towing.

I have owned new suvs for almost 20 years. Many makes and models. The envoy is the best in its size. Where else can you find a 4x4 that will pull over 5000 pounds and still have all the creature comforts. I was driving a low mileage trailblazer when i found out they were stopping the envoy and trailblazer. I immediately started looking for a 4x4. it took almost a month before the right suv and deal came in. Why GM stopped making it is one of many reasons GM is in trouble. They felt that the Acadia was a replacement...Go drive one and you will find out how bad it's visibility is and lack of towing.

- Chase K

Good on gas, tiny issues from buying used.

Driving a envoy SUV, to be honest I didn't think I would enjoy the car at first. I was worried over the gas prices and how much the car would use to take trips with. It is turned out to be great on gas, comfortable to ride in for long trips. The downside is the leather seats, I slide around on them being short. I have had a real problem with the rear window on the hatch door and the inner panel coming loose. Overall it's a great ride and I am happy I got it, but there are some tiny things every used car comes with.

- Paula G

Envoy- safe, secure, reliable.

My envoy is reliable, safe and secure. Living in a cold weather state I never feel like I am going to get stuck or that I will be unable to safely drive in bad weather. I feel safe driving my envoy. Gas mileage and storage are big issues for me and my envoy covers both well. I can move all work items with ease. The interior of the vehicle is cozy and comfortable. The doors can be drafty in the winter but the heater is very warm and easily wipes out any cold.

- Nicole P

SUV with good gas mileage, spacious interior and trunk space

I like the space that we have in the car since it is the XL model. It is roomy on the inside and has adequate space in the trunk. My only complaint is that the seat belts in the front seat tend to ride up against my next so it has to be moved periodically when sitting. My husband and I both noticed it so it seems to be a generic issue, not one based on a specific body type or height. Gets good gas mileage too for an suv

- Erica H

GMC envoy a great choice in 4 wheel drive vehicle!

This vehicle is good in the snow. 4 wheel drive works well, good steering and handling. Had some trouble with the relay shorting for high/low beams and daytime running lights. Had to replace the relay. The seats are comfortable for long trips. Plenty of space in the back for groceries or luggage and back seats fold down for more space if needed. All together this vehicle runs great and I haven't had too many problems.

- Maria V

Long term relationship with my GMC envoy.

I love my GMC envoy. It has 160k miles and still runs great. The only issue it has had has been an electrical issue that was determined to be fuse related. After replacement, it is fine. I have found it important to keep good tires on the envoy, otherwise it pulls a little to one side or the other. Great ride, and very useful vehicle. The hatchback is indispensable for times with our grandchildren.

- Debra W

My awesome Horse mobile review

Very reliable car. I love the heated seats. It has space needed for my pets and hobbies. We've had normal mechanical maintenance needed for an older car. I love the leather seats and automatic remote start especially in the winter. I wish the cup holders were in a place where they don't interfere with the gear shift

- Michele N

dependable to no end never leaves you stranded i would buy another

gmc envoy is very dependable i have never been stranded very comfortable to drive cold ac and all the luxuries i have only one complaint is that the power steering pump cooler keeps going it's expensive and i have had it replaced 2 times but overall dependable and comfortable bad gas mileage also but it's an suv

- julie b

A very family SUV, plenty of room for everyone!

We have used our GMC for travelling, fishing, and our around town car. It is pretty good on gas. Also very roomy, back seat is very comfortable. Also of course back seat folds down in case you need extra space! That back is pretty good size! It pulls a little gheenoe and we have never had problems with that!

- Suzanne B

The electrical system is not like other cars.

My GMC Envoy has problems with the transmission, and the ignition. Sometimes I have to turn the key four or five times before it will start and sometimes the inside lights flicker on and off for no reason. I've checked the fuses, battery, spark plugs, had the computer tested and nothing was found.

- Matt P

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