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GMTruckGuy74

Advice on shopping for and test-driving a used pickup

28 posts in this topic

I mentioned in another post that while online 'window shopping' for newer-but-gently-used GMC Sierra pickup trucks the other day, I ran across a 2006 GMC Sierra 1500 SLE Z71/4WD Crew Cab with a tad under 20k miles and appears to be in pristine condition for under $22k (GM Certified Pricing). A few e-mail exchanges between the Internet Sales Manager and I and now I'm planning to see & test-drive the truck in person on Friday (12/26). If they can get me out of my GMAC SmartLease (AURA XE) without any penalities, I may just bite. But before I do, what particulars should I be looking for? The truck was originally sold by this dealership and was maintenanced by them too, so I know to ask for copies of service department and warranty-related work reports. But, is there anything else I should be speciffically asking about, and possibly insisting they work on (recalls, TSBs, etc) before I "take the plunge" (if at all)??? I ask because this dealer is in central NJ and will be quite a drive for me (it's not convenient to make several trips to check things out). Here's some pictures of the truck in question:

FS_2GTEK13T961144316_1.jpg

I am very serious about getting out of my AURA for this truck if all works out in my favor. I'd really appreciate any and all advice and suggestions from those knowledgable of this generation of GM pickups. TIA!! :AH-HA_wink:

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Here's my list based on my 2000 Sierra, and the 2001, 2004, and 2006s owned by friends. All are 5.3, 4sp.

  • Defrosting element in the heated mirrors
  • Blower motor for HVAC
  • Control Settings for HVAC (dual zone climate control)
  • Steering Shaft (TSB)
  • Propeller shaft/slip joint (TSB)
  • Electric 4WD Switch
  • Stereo Speakers
  • Rear defroster elements
  • Tailgate cables (may be non-issue on a 2006)
  • Axle seals and CV boots related to front axle/transfer case (driver's side tends to go first)
Edited by BigPontiac
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My uncle's 99 had those and more....

My friend's dad has a 2003, and only had the shaft and CV issues....

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Damn that's a nice truck, clean too! I love the GMT800 Sierra/Yukons but for some reason I think the new GMT900 Chevrolets look better, at least in SUV Form. Here's hoping you can get out of your lease but I think that GM is really trying to dump as many leases as they can so you might just luck out. Just ditch that ugly bedcover (!)

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Here's my list based on my 2000 Sierra, and the 2001, 2004, and 2006s owned by friends. All are 5.3, 4sp.

  • Defrosting element in the heated mirrors
  • Blower motor for HVAC
  • Control Settings for HVAC (dual zone climate control)
  • Steering Shaft (TSB)
  • Propeller shaft/slip joint (TSB)
  • Electric 4WD Switch
  • Stereo Speakers
  • Rear defroster elements
  • Tailgate cables (may be non-issue on a 2006)
  • Axle seals and CV boots related to front axle/transfer case (driver's side tends to go first)

This is a solid list. Basically, with a truck that's clearly been pampered and quite low mileage, I'm betting there won't be much of anything to notice on a test and examination. The steering shaft clunk is a time and time again repeating thing with no fix, just quiet time for a few 10k's, and everyone knows that going in. Otherwise, solid.

Takes me back to the days with our two GMT-800 SUV's...not exactly flashy, but solid and comfortable with stellar powertrains. I miss them, especially that 5.3L/4L60E.

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Well, you know the saying, "You snooze, you lose"? - I lost out on the Sierra today. I was supposed to go and test-drive it today, but my plans changed and I couldn't make the 40+ mile trek out to the dealership that was selling it. I guess I'm thankful that I didn't, as it sold earlier in the day to someone else working the deal for a couple of days now, according to the sales woman's e-mail. Oh well...

So onto the next vehicle!!! :P Last Saturday we drove into NYC for our annual "Christmas trek" to see the Rockefeller Center tree. While in the 45-minute long line going from the NJ Turnpike exit tollbooth to the Lincoln Tunnel, the wife noticed a ton of full-size SUVs carrying families on their travels to the "big city". She commented that I should buy one of them, so that we can take more long-distance roadtrips and/or take more people along with us when we go places. She said even with higher gas prices <eventually> and the gas usage of those SUVs, I drive a small commute and it wouldn't be that bad of a thing (btw, I want to thank the aliens that abducted my real wife and replaced her with a full-size truck lover!!).

So here's what we will be looking at on Monday afternoon/evening:

2116226962.jpg

2116227022.jpg

2005 GMC Yukon XL SLT 4WD... Summit White and Neutral Leather, 30,337 original miles, one-owner (previous lease), fully loaded (7-passenger seating <captain's chairs>, factory sunroof & TV/DVD player, heated/power/memory leather seats, upgraded 17" aluminum rims, etc) and priced under $24k. And the best thing it's pretty much right in my 'backyard' - this dealership is approximately 10-15 miles away, so it's much easier to get out there.

So now I'll ask the group about these SUVs, though I'm sure it shares much with it's Sierra brotheren. caddycruiser , I expect a full-report from you now; please oblige!! :P

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Here's hoping you can get out of your lease but I think that GM is really trying to dump as many leases as they can so you might just luck out.

That's what I'm hoping for. The Chevy dealer selling the Yukon XL I posted above though (via e-mail) didn't seem to interested in dealing with me (the sale man's first response included the following statement - "we can just roll over your remaining payments into the new loan", when I clearly explained in my original e-mail I will not do that). His second reply indicated that statement was a "worst case scenario, and that they will see what the deal is with GMAC when I come in" (I'm assuming they will see if it's worth buying to resell on their lot?). I want to contact the newly opened CarSense dealership in town to see if they would take it off my hands. Depending on the Chevy dealer's response, I may be visiting CarSense on Monday too!!

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My dealer took the Equinox even though it wasnt due to be turned in until March 16th. I got out of the last 2 payments and they rolled the 3rd in the Impala loan. I am told the dealer isnt usually interested in selling lease vehicles because GM wants too much for them. So they go to auction and get sold there.

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My dealer took the Equinox even though it wasnt due to be turned in until March 16th. I got out of the last 2 payments and they rolled the 3rd in the Impala loan. I am told the dealer isnt usually interested in selling lease vehicles because GM wants too much for them. So they go to auction and get sold there.

ya, we returned our leased 2005 Venture LS in Feb and they wanted 17K$ to buyout the lease for us to keep the vehicle. It went to the auction and our dealer bought the van back and set out selling it for 10.5K$, a move which brought us within an inch of buying it back.

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My dealer took the Equinox even though it wasnt due to be turned in until March 16th. I got out of the last 2 payments and they rolled the 3rd in the Impala loan. I am told the dealer isnt usually interested in selling lease vehicles because GM wants too much for them. So they go to auction and get sold there.

Yeah, we too took advantage of GMAC's "Lease Pull-Ahead" Program when my wife got out of the Envoy back in June. We had two payments remaining and GMAC waived both. However, in the past with our other SmartLease contracts, GMAC was more giving - we've had pull-ahead offers as far as 7 months before lease-end. Since I made the decision recently that I will be financing-to-own my next vehicle, I've had this burning desire to rid myself of the AURA lease and start putting that monthly payment towards something I'd be owning ('why continue paying for a vehicle that isn't mine?' thinking). And seeing what I can afford new (not what I want/desire), buying a GM Certifierd/pre-owned vehicle is the next best step (I'd still rather buy brand new though). I just have to gain some patience - I'm usually a very patient person, however when it deals with anything automobile-related, patience is not one of my virtues!! :neenerneener: And the downside to the pul-ahead program is that you can't use it for anything other than "new" <_<

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Here's my list based on my 2000 Sierra, and the 2001, 2004, and 2006s owned by friends. All are 5.3, 4sp.

  • Defrosting element in the heated mirrors
  • Blower motor for HVAC
  • Steering Shaft (TSB)
  • Stereo Speakers
  • Rear defroster elements

A friend's '02 has had all of these problems, possibly including the tailgate cables as well. Not to mention the interior looks like crap after six years. Personally, I'd stay away, but that's just me. These trucks don't exude quality, that's for sure.

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If it were me I'd try looking for a used current gen, those are much higher quality based on what I've seen at least. Of course then I'd rather have the Tahoe or Suburban, as the front ends look better IMO, although the Sierra still has an edge over the Silverado.

Hell, edmunds shows that a used `07 Sierra Denali 69.3" runs around $25,000. I'd rather spend the extra grand or three and get a far better truck.

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A friend's '02 has had all of these problems, possibly including the tailgate cables as well. Not to mention the interior looks like crap after six years. Personally, I'd stay away, but that's just me. These trucks don't exude quality, that's for sure.

So what is a quality truck in your opinion?

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If it were me I'd try looking for a used current gen, those are much higher quality based on what I've seen at least.

Yeah, the original Sierra I found and lost the other day would have been perfect - I'm sorry I took so long to make a move on it. The only ones I found since that offer the equipment & options I want are all in black (not a color I prefer due to the amount of work it takes to keep it clean and how it shows off scratches & stuff). I did a search of 2007 & 2008 GM Certified Sierras for $hit$ and giggles and was suprised to see that for a couple of grand more I could get a newer Sierra. I'd just have to wait a little longer though, as I'd need some additional down payment cash to get into a newer one.

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Yeah, the original Sierra I found and lost the other day would have been perfect - I'm sorry I took so long to make a move on it. The only ones I found since that offer the equipment & options I want are all in black (not a color I prefer due to the amount of work it takes to keep it clean and how it shows off scratches & stuff). I did a search of 2007 & 2008 GM Certified Sierras for $hit$ and giggles and was suprised to see that for a couple of grand more I could get a newer Sierra. I'd just have to wait a little longer though, as I'd need some additional down payment cash to get into a newer one.

I think it would be worth the extra time and extra cash. :wink:

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Well the wife is still suggesting that we look at the '05 Yukon XL, as she sees little value in a pickup over a SUV (she makes a good point - we could use the extra passenger seating & covered storage area more). The Yukon XL I found seems to be the best deal out there right now too - it's a completely loaded SLT (leather/memory/heated seats, 2nd row captain's chairs, homelink controls, white-outlined tires on the upgraded 17' polished aluminum rims, factory DVD player with wireless headphones, sunroof, running boards, tow package, etc) with 30k miles for under $24k (which I will try to negotiate a better selling price, as the Yukon has been on the lot for almost three months now). Other Yukon XL's I found are black (a color I do not want; this one is white and I'm fine with that), have higher mileage and a higher selling price. And I'd rather have the '05 body style over a 2007 or 2008 model (they're too slab-sided and I'm still not sold ont he front-end design; I'd rather spend the money on an '07 or '08 Sierra over a '07 or '08 Yukon XL if I were to wait). So depending on the deal I can make with the selling price of the Yukon XL, and whether or not they can get me out of my lease scott-free, maybe I'll be the owner of a Yukon XL?!?

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Anyone with knowledge/feedback on GM's AutoRide system? I went to see and test-drive a Carbon Metallic, fully-loaded to the gills, '05 GMC Yukon XL SLT with the AutoRide system and 42k miles for $18,500 (blow-out sale price; was $23,999). Here's a picture of it:

1GKFK16Z75J113658-0.jpg

And since I never figured I'd own a vehicle with the AutoRide system, I never bothered to 'learn' about it. I'm use to the standard 'AutoTrac 4WD buttons (AUTO4WD, 2WD, 4Hi, 4Lo) - the AutoRide dash control buttons confuse the bejebus out of me:

4x4_controls.jpg

Is this a plus to have over the standard suspension package, or os this an option that I should run quickly away from? I'd appreciate some quick feedback please!!

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Also, here's the link to the CarFax Report that they posted on the vehicle's web page. I'd like the more mechanically-minded posters here to take a moment, read through the detailed service reports, and give me your best interprutation if you can. Thanks!!

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The only detailed report is:

10/05/2007 Perrine Pontiac GMC

Cranbury, NJ

609-395-5599

www.perrinecars.com Vehicle serviced

Power steering fluid flushed/changed

Maintenance inspection completed

Washed/detailed

Fuel injection system flushed/serviced

Manufacturer's recommended maintenance performed

Four tires mounted and balanced

Alignment performed

which is possibly the 15,000 miles service. What is conflicting is that you mention the vehicle has 30K miles, while the Carfax says 42K+, which one is the case? If it is 42K then probably there should be the 30,000 miles service which is considered to be one of the most important ones. Check those facts, otherwise to me the vehicle looks good.

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Thanks for replying smallchevy. The 30k mile Yukon XL is the white one that I have not gone to see; the 42k mile Yukon that I posted the CarFax link to is the dark gray one that I test-drove yesterday and is the one I'm focusing on now (I'd like the lower mileage one <white>, but will not pay $5,000 more!!).

Here's what I'm concerned about from the CarFax report:

12/09/2007 - Perrine Pontiac GMC Cranbury, NJ 609-395-5599 www.perrinecars.com

- Vehicle serviced; Tire pressure sensor replaced

10/11/2008 - 42,731 - Perrine Pontiac GMC Cranbury, NJ 609-395-5599 www.perrinecars.com

- Vehicle serviced; Tire pressure monitoring system checked

It seems that there may be a problem with the wheel sensors, does anyone else think this too?

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Thanks for replying smallchevy. The 30k mile Yukon XL is the white one that I have not gone to see; the 42k mile Yukon that I posted the CarFax link to is the dark gray one that I test-drove yesterday and is the one I'm focusing on now (I'd like the lower mileage one <white>, but will not pay $5,000 more!!).

Here's what I'm concerned about from the CarFax report:

It seems that there may be a problem with the wheel sensors, does anyone else think this too?

Roger,

TPMS systems are prone to problems, especially the early ones when they started installing in 2004/5. I think there was a TSB in 2007 please check that out as I am not certain.

Thanks for clearing the mileage part. As far as I know, the gray truck should have had the 30k mileage maintenance schedule done too and should be listed on CARFAX. Ask the dealer if such has been the case.

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Thanks for the replies so far guys - I appreciate them!

Do all 2005 GMC Yukon XLs have the TPMS? And as for the AutoRide System, is it better to find a Yukon XL without this option?

And can anyone explain how these dash controls work?

4x4_controls.jpg

The 'normal' 4WD system has the following buttons, and I know how they operate:

13223-MVC-003S.JPG

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